Weekly Thought – March 7, 2017
Fred encouraged maturity. He believed in the goal of growing to the end. This is why he was a life-long learner and lived with a burning desire to “finish well.” Foundational to maturity is character. He consulted with many organizations, both corporate and ministry. Character is the first element he studied.
Leadership, as we know, is both something you are and something you do. But effective leadership starts with character. When leaders fail, more often it is a result of a character flaw than the lack of competence, training, or even opportunity.
In the case of Christian organizations, the aim of the leader is to conform more and more to the image of Christ. And, it is their responsibility to build up the congregation, training them in righteousness with a goal of maturity. It is a process. It is critical to understand this. There is no “getting there” and settling down to rest. Leaders who last don’t stop growing; they continue stretching themselves. And in the same manner corporate officers refuse to let down. They strive to get better, stronger, and more adept.
Those who understand this process have intangible personal qualities. Some find these hard to define, but I think we can look at it as a growth process.
Growth must be seen as a whole. I wonder sometimes what we would look like if our mental, emotional, and spiritual aspects were as visible as our physical bodies. I expect each of us would have deformities representing our lack of development. When we are seriously out of balance we would be misshapen, distorted, even grotesque. An example of this idea would be the person who develops their mind to the exclusion of social skills or emotional health.
My good friend Zig Ziglar looks at our lives as a wheel. He teaches others to measure where each section of their life is by marking it on the wheel. Then when the dots are connected the seminar participant can see how rocky the ride would be if areas of their lives are much stronger (or weaker) than others.
Maturity is balanced growth. It’s obviously difficult to keep the inside and outside in total symmetry – or Zig’s wheel rolling smoothly, but it is a worthwhile endeavor. I look at life through the prism of discipline, so I suggest a balanced growth pattern contains plans for the disciplines of: freedom, emotions, things, recognition, accomplishment, experiences, ideas, and relationships.
This week think about: 1) What is my personal definition of mature growth? 2) How symmetrical are my internal and external appearances? 3) What is my biggest challenge to maturity?
Words of Wisdom: “Leadership, as we know, is both something we are and something we do.”
Wisdom from the Word: “Brothers and sisters, do not be children in your thinking. Instead, be infants in evil, but in your thinking be mature.” (1 Corinthians 14:20 NET Bible)