You Just Might Be Susceptible to This Leadership Temptation… I Know I Am

I like To-Do lists. Maybe you do too.

A To-Do list, according to Wiktionary, is a list of errands and other tasks—often written on a piece of paper as a memory aid—that one needs or intends to accomplish. Long story short, a To-Do list becomes your personal agenda for the tasks you believe must be completed on a given day.

So what? What’s the convergence between To-Do lists and leadership?

Glad you asked.

I believe that one of the primary challenges of spiritual leadership is this: the temptation to serve the wrong agenda. To have an off-target To-Do list.

Think about it. Leaders by nature initiate. Leaders are hardwired to make plans. Leaders love to line things out. Cast vision. Shape culture. Implement game plans. They can’t help themselves. It’s what they do.

Ah…but there’s the rub. When you move into the realm of SPIRITUAL leadership, things change. The questions are different.

Let’s take it a step further.

It’s early in the morning—a time for personal worship. In the quietness of that moment, what prayer do you speak out? My own personal experience informs me that a leader on auto-pilot voices a prayer that sounds something like this: “Lord, here’s my plans (my agenda, my To-Do list), bless them.” Sound familiar? (In all candor, I’ve prayed that prayer way too many times).

From my search of the Scriptures, any prayer that asks God to bless MY agenda misses the mark.

In their insightful book Spiritual Leadership, Henry and Richard Blackaby pen these discerning words: God does not ask leaders to dream big dreams for him or to solve the problems that confront them. He asks leaders to walk with him so intimately that, when he reveals what is on his agenda, they will immediately adjust their lives to his will and the results will bring glory to God.

Do you see the difference? It’s an attitude, a perspective on life and leadership that calls out that my agenda must be formed and fashioned and aligned with God’s agenda.

In short, it’s a shift. A significant shift.

And more importantly, it’s a prayer. A much different prayer.

It’s no longer, “Lord, here’s my agenda, bless it”, but, “Lord, here’s my life, use it.”

9 thoughts on “You Just Might Be Susceptible to This Leadership Temptation… I Know I Am

  • thank you for the reminder that i want to be a leader of character and faith, to follow His lead…not just one who makes decisions in isolation and without community.

  • Leaders are to be so well in tune with God’s words and ways that they will not miss His signs, they will not miss His dreams that He has planted deep inside. To walk with God daily gives deep roots that are only developed through the hard work of growing in Jesus. Thank you for reminders Chuck.

  • when leaders are asked to walk with HIM so intimately that, when HE reveals what is on HIS agenda, they will immediately adjust their lives to HIS work…This goes against some of the current trending ideations going on in local bodies today. We seem to have it backwards. Move forward with my dreams and my visions…not really sure if the person has such an intimate walk with Jesus that by all means do it.

  • God’s call to us is to walk with Him so intimately that we will be unquestioning and obey what He desires from us. Father, make me mold me into this kind of leader serious committed with leaving a legacy that points to Him as the way.

  • Thanks for the good reminder Chuck. I also have long TO DO LISTS! And always feel gratified at end of day to “check things off”.
    I actually try to put in some boxes with unmarked lines, so that I can fill these in at day’s end – the times and slots where He has brought someone or some encounter my way that I have engaged in and know it was a Divine Appt.

  • I always find encouragement in what you write Chuck, because you live what you teach. I have been in your circle of influence for many years, and your life of steadfast calling and mentoring have stayed the course for so many of us.
    Thank You!

  • Beautifully said, Chuck! We need to live with open surrender to God’s purposes for our lives. And we need to be intentional about it!

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