Leadership Soul Care
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Leadership Soul Care

How bronchitis brought me face-to-face with my need for balance
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If you are single, I encourage you to find a good friend of the same gender to talk to and share with. You will grow in your spirituality and relationship with God as you share intimately with someone else, and you will be a far better leader as a result.

You are on the way to being a great leader if you are growing in your relationship with God and those closest to you. Neglect these two, and you will have little—if anything—to offer others. I’m not talking about perfection—only God is perfect. If you’re like me, you will continue to feel a huge need for improvement in your relationship with God, your spouse, and other key people. But do keep pressing on.

Character Counts

We have all read about successful leaders who were only later caught in sexual sins or moral failures. Don’t be one of those statistics! Allow God to mold you in the secret places, so that you will then shine in the light as a man or woman of truth. D.L. Moody once commented, “Character is what you are in the dark.” God works on our character because he knows our character will eventually find us out. Most of the requirements in the New Testament, in fact, involve character. Virtues such as honesty, faithfulness, and good judgment are synonymous with New Testament leadership. No amount of talent or giftedness can replace these characteristics. Bad character qualities will ultimately show up, while good ones will shine and make the leader more effective over time.

Long-Haul Leadership

A man once had a beautiful garden which yielded rich and abundant food. His neighbor saw it and planted his own garden the next spring. But he did nothing to it. There was no watering—no cultivating or fertilizing. In the fall, he returned to his devastated garden. There was no fruit and it was overgrown with weeds. He concluded gardening did not work. On further thought, he pondered the problem was bad soil, or maybe he lacked a "green thumb" like his neighbor.

Meanwhile, a third neighbor began gardening. His garden did not immediately yield as much as the first man, but he worked hard and continued learning new skills. As he toiled, he learned. As he put his new learning into practice year after year, his garden reaped an increasingly abundant harvest.

Effective leaders minister from the overflow of their lives, rather than talent, technique, or persuasion. But it does require careful cultivation of time with God, time of rest, and time with those with whom we are most intimate. And of course, the goal is for Jesus to receive the glory as leaders remain in him and bear fruit—both in the present and in the future.

—Joel Comiskey, PhD, is president of Joel Comiskey Group, and author of several books, including Groups that Thrive (available March 2018) and Appointment with the King.

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