As I search through leadership books in my local store I find the ongoing echo of wars gone by and yet to come. The theme of strong, consistent, and precise men and women in peak form leading groups of loyal followers is almost too good to resist. We can easily dream of battalions of corporate employees focused on a common goal, willing to sacrifice everything for the well understood targets of the company which are naturally shared by all, and exhibiting a dedication that drives fear into every heart of the competitor that happens to sense even a rumor that we have locked mutual clients in our sights.
We dream and then reality strikes. Employees come to work for a wide range of reasons, most of which have nothing to do with corporate goals. Work habits range from model citizens to haphazard, occasionally there, often with mind not engaged. Competitors often know more about our strategy than we do, picking up on the strong parts, discarding the rest and leveraging that knowledge to their advantage with the clients are we blissfully watch, unable to respond to take action.
What does it mean to be a leader? Do we realize that leadership starts with just one person, our true self? As much as we run for groups thinking that with others we will be safe the problems lies right where we stand. “Love and truth form a good leader; sound leadership is founded on loving integrity.” (Proverbs 20.28)
The truth we sense is that those we look to cannot be trusted fully, completely, and without reservation. The confirmation comes as we observe the inconsistencies in their lives and the relationships that exist between them and those closest to their inner self. Military tactics are not the final answer. Leadership is about something more than we find within ourselves.
God offers to come in and lead us to recreation, discovery, and real living. His life, actions, and relationships all confirm that grace, love, and mercy always win in the end. Discover this and you’ll find leadership.