June 25, 2007
Most recent posts-
One of the first signs of an endangered leader is a decrease in his/her
willingness to hear and learn from the experiences of others. Protection
and direction comes from listening, hearing, and aligning with the truth
others have to tell us. What are some practical ways we can maintain
open communication and "listening" to those with whom we serve?
that have worked for me include regular brainstorming sessions with
my leadership team geared at coming up with innovative solutions. Dialoguing
with others in this way removes the blinders we so often unconsciously
find ourselves wearing. This works whether I am wearing my executive
hat, my teacher hat, or my ministries leader hat.
Setting up a regularly scheduled town hall session with the community
at large- whether in a corporate or congregational setting has yielded
great results since it keeps eveyone informed of the state of the union.
It also empowers people to have a voice. Publication of the notes of
such gatherings facilitates an environment where followup and accountability
Listening one on one with a partner- a friend, wife, prayer or accountability
partner should be part of our worldview. It's an intentional way to
make ourselves vulnerable and open to critique. Critique is different
than criticism- In my fine arts background it was important to be a
part of the culture of critique and to take it seriously in a give and
take manner. That was the key to freshness and creativity in one's work.
And humility becomes a valued asset since one is not so ready to take
a defensive position.
Listening in the Scriptures implies true hearing- "if you have
ears to hear, then hear this"... so taking good notes, putting
suggestions down on a "parking lot" pad and later praying
and meditating over them for the Spirit to reveal the true reality of
the situation (thus aligning with the truth) is another of those "much"
resource which the prayers of the righteous avail. That's another way
of saying homologeo- confessing and then repenting lest we get hard
hearted in even our mundane attitudes. We also need to read widely in
order to challenge our preconceived narrow presuppositions. God sends
competent voices in so many gracious ways.
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