I was talking with Captain Joe Stanton at the Texas City Police Station this morning about leadership. He had stopped to check on a new employee in dispatch to see how she was doing. She had a funny look on her face as he continued to speak with her and so he asked her if everything was okay. She replied that she had been at another station for years and had never once spoken to a captain. The other department never gave her the time of day.

Good leaders are accessible.

Jesus was a shepherd-style leader. In fact, He even said that He was the Good Shepherd. Western shepherds, I have heard, will at times drive their sheep from the rear, like cattle. But eastern shepherds lead from the front. This was Jesus. He showed us that true leadership must be based on trust and trust is developed through relationship. I have found that leaders, whether they be police officers, pastors, politicians, teachers and so forth, are much more effective when they are regularly part of the tapestry of their community. A smile, a handshake, a helping hand go a long way in securing a solid team.

Now, I know that an organization can reach a point where a leader cannot touch everyone. And there is a balance that must be reached between micro-managing and being untouchable. There was a day when King David’s men in ancient Israel told him not to come into the battlefield with them any longer. They wanted him to stay on the ridge, so to speak. They were so busy looking out for him as their king that they couldn’t fight the enemy with pure focus. This is when true leaders must begin to reproduce themselves in a younger generation so that the legacy of leadership can continue. That leader may not be able to touch everyone in the “kingdom” any longer, but he/she must continually be accessible to the circle of leaders that do.

Our world has some pretty convoluted paradigms about what leadership means. Many want to be the pack leader of wolves instead of being associated with the sheep. But wolves are almost extinct now while sheep prosper around the globe. Jesus told us that the meek would inherit the earth. And meekness is not weakness – it’s controlled strength. Effective leaders are not afraid to be vulnerable and real. He takes his cape off and let’s people know, “I’m just another guy like you trying to do a job I’ve been called to do. Let’s walk together.”

Good leaders are accessible.

1 Comment

  1. I believe leadership at The Fellowship is a long time family tradition starting with Maw Betty, then Sis. Bessie Vee then to Bishop Delbert and then to Pastor Kevin. I know, I am a part of that strong family. Proud of the Herrins and thankful that The Fellowship id blessed to have them. Love you all.

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