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April 28, 2014

The Danger of Discouraged Leadership

Leadership is an awesome responsibility.  You not only have to motivate yourself, but you have to motivate others as well.  The people that you are leading, unless they are leadership material themselves, take their cue from you.

If ever there was a bold person, a leader, it was Peter.  I mean this man was boldness personified.  When Jesus declared that he would deny Him.  “Who me? Never!  I have your back!!!”  When Jesus walked on water, while everyone else was being afraid, when Peter recognized Jesus’ voice, he said “Well if you tell me to do it, by golly, I will come out on the water!”  And he did, until fear took over.

When Peter and John approached the tomb of Jesus, and they heard that the tomb was empty, they both ran pell mell towards the tomb.  John stopped at the entrance to look in, while Peter ran past him and went inside.

Again, when he decided to return to fishing, they all decided to return to fishing. (More about that later).  While they were fishing not even a hundred yards from the shore, Jesus came.  John said “It is the Lord”, Peter does not hesitate, he grabs his clothes and dives off the boat immediately and swims the hundred yards to shore.  They all came bringing up the boat behind him (there was a little issue of 153 fish).  Remember Peter was also responsible for the first plastic surgery in history.  Malchus laid his hand on Jesus, Peter lopped off his ears and Jesus put it on back immediately – not a scar!!!  We could say Peter had some good leadership qualities: boldness, passion, courage (and if we include the plastic surgery – in partnership with Jesus – innovation).

After Peter denied Jesus three times, he became discouraged and probably thought that his ministry was over.  He decided to return to fishing and the other disciples who were with him, looking to him for leadership,  followed him.  Discouragement leads to depression and that leads to near sightedness.  You cannot see beyond the problem and therefore adopt a position of retreating to the last known comfort zone.  This is what Peter did when he returned to fishing.

When a leader becomes discouraged to the point of giving up what they were purposed to do, it has a ripple effect on the persons that they are leading. If they return to what was comfortable instead of ploughing  through or finding a solution to the problem, they cause others to not fulfill their purpose also.  The people that they are leading comes under their care for a season.  In this season there are crucial lessons to learn.  The season, when it is over should see them equipped to move to the next phase of their development.

When a leader becomes discouraged and acts on that discouragement it can bring about abortion of purpose in the people that they are leading.  Discouragement  has its root in condemnation.  You cannot help beating up yourself for an infraction even though the bible clearly tells us that if we confess our sins He is just to forgive us and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  If a leader does not learn to forgive him/herself for a slip up and move on from there towards the solution, what do you think they would be teaching the people that they are leading?

Sylvia M Dallas

Poet, Author, Photographer and Teacher of the Word and CEO and Director of Creator Services at The Publisher's Notebook Limited based in Jamaica. She is married to Rohan Dallas, is a proud grandmother, loves coffee (Jamaican, of course), loves great tasting and healthy food, love to cook and is an unabashed follower of Jesus Christ.  Her books AND THE PRISONERS HEARD THEM, THE RIGHT KIND OF INTIMACY and THE BED DEFILED are available on Amazon.

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