Imperfect Leader

There is so much tragedy happening all over the world, and we are reminded every instant of this negative news on social media. Many of us read these posts and wonder; maybe even pray for good leadership to get us out of the situation we are in. We ask God when someone is going to step up and lead? If we listen carefully he will respond asking each of us to take a good look in the mirror and rise to the occassion.
In times like these we may feel unequipped to lead. Societies problems seem too large for one person to make a difference. Or perhaps you don’t feel ready or worthy to lead.  I know I feel that way at times. Especially right now!  I wonder and ask God how I can best lead my team and my family during such difficult times. Although, he has given me a gift with words, at times I’m at a loss for how to best put them together. As I write this, a part of me feels somewhat uncertain about sharing this information. Am I qualified enough to call myself a leader?
Maybe it is best to stay quiet until I’m ready. I can Scroll through these same social media sites and find tons of postings and articles on how I can become a better leader.
Although self- development and striving to sharpen ones skills is a good thing, there is a fine line between self development and self rejection. Self development becomes problematic when we are constantly fine tuning ourselves as we strive for the ideal, that we start to lose the essence of who we truly are. My concern is that many of us get caught up trying to be the perfect leader, that we forget that it is our imperfections that qualify us and got us to where we are.

I remember going in to one of my first meetings at my last job nervous to share what I was about. I mean here I am this fancy Human Resources Manager, and people look to me to have all of the answers. I better be perfect! As we went around the room sharing words of affirmation describing what made each of us effective leaders, I decided to put their image of perfection to rest, and shared with the team that I was imperfect. Boy did I raise some eyebrows with that comment! My peers looked at me baffled and even questioned me as to why that would be a good thing. I just wanted to reassure them that I wasn’t going to have all the answers, that I am going to make mistakes, probably more than I would like at times, but that doesn’t make me less qualified. I needed them to let down their guard too, and know that I don’t expect perfection from them either! We were all qualified before we got there and we all have qualities that make us great leaders.

Although we all make mistakes, each of us always gives it our best and learns from our mistakes. After all this is what our teams are looking for us to model. Not that we can behave perfectly at all times, but that despite our flaws we rise above them, by taking responsibility for our mistakes and doing it better each time. When our teams see that we struggle just like they do, but that we get back up and push forward, they learn that their own success is obtainable regardless of their flaws. How much more can we really ask in this imperfect world? That sure does sound like the perfect leader to me!
So, Lead from where you are at today with the tools and gifts you have already been given. Take the feedback and the lessons and decide what feels true to you. Nurture your God given gifts but don’t wait until you are a finished product. You don’t need to wait to finish your degree or until you are promoted with a fancy title to step up and lead. Remember that God qualifies the called and he uses our perfectly flawed stories to help lead others to see that their flawed stories are just as perfect.
After all, there is something in you this world needs. And maybe, just maybe you were born for such a time as this (Esther 4:14) The world needs your voice, your kindness… the world needs your leadership. And when you forget the value you add remember the words of the amazing Momma Gump- “If God wanted us all to be the same, he would have given us all braces on our legs!”

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“My Grace is Sufficient for You, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore I will rather glory in my weaknesses that the power of Christ may rest on me. Therefore, I take pleasure in weaknesses, in injuries, in persecutions, in distress, for Christ sake. For when I am weak, than am I strong.”…. 2 Corinthians 12:9-10

1 Corinthians 15:9-10

 

Written by: Melina Chavarria

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