threading 3 leadership concepts together.
Portions of the following note were also used in a memo for the members of Prairieview Mennonite Church, near Flanagan, Illinois this past week.
I spent this past week at the Christian Leadership Alliance meetings, with 1700 leaders from organizations as diverse as christian camping to crisis pregnancy centers, and from small local churches to the national director of the Gideons. Here are three standout items I am taking home:
1. From pastor Chuck Swindoll– integrity is not so much about perfection but authenticity. It is the single most necessary tool of the leader.
2. From missiologist Reggie McNeal– We need to prepare to take the church to where people already are instead of trying to create something we invite people to at our church building.
3. From Priscilla Shirer, a reminder of what Joshua said to his people– “consecrate yourselves for God is going to do a great thing among you tomorrow” (Joshua 3:5). I was impressed with the link between our personal consecration and the great thing God will do next.
Reading the newspaper as I was returning home Peggy Noonan’s column advocating for Pope John Paul II’s sainthood gripped me (Wall Street Journal, 30 April 2011, A15). In her description of this Catholic leader’s approach to faith, it seems all three points were lived: personal integrity even as a flawed person, a commitment to take the church to the people and personal consecration in anticipation of the next great work of God.
These concepts come from a variety of people representing several streams within Christianity. The example of Pope John Paul II is from yet another. Yet, the God who does great works is not limited by our narrow views and specific preferences of where or how we worship. To better align myself with what this God will do next, I do well to take these insights to heart and let them guide my point of view as a Christian leader.
-mark l vincent