God has given each of us the ability to make choices. Being granted this freedom of choice by God means that we have the freedom to do or not to do. We have options. If there were no options, then the freedom of choice would be non-existent. That is a great thing, however, we must bear in mind that all choices come with a responsibility and have inherent consequences. If we were to take a reflective look at our lives, we would find that our present circumstances are a direct result of choices. These choices not only affect us, but they may also have a ‘trickle down’ effect that result in consequences for others connected to us as well. It was Adam and Eve’s choice to eat of the fruit of the ‘tree of good and evil’ that lead to the fall of man. A leader must therefore make constant inventory of the choices made and how each one effects those they lead. David’s decision to conduct a census proved to be done in pride and out of God’s will and as a result there were ensuing consequences. Each option would not only effect David, but his subjects as well.
As sojourners on the Earth, we will continually have the opportunity to make choices, but God always wants us to make the right choices. (cf. Deuteronomy 30:19)
In our roles as leaders, we must also understand that those we lead must be allowed to function with a freedom of will. Far too often leaders want to be dictatorial and take the ‘my way or the highway’ attitude. This leads to a cookie-cutter type of administration that leaves no way for creativity, expansion or cutting edge innovations. It is imperative that leaders acknowledge and remain open to the gifts that God has provided for the benefit of the organization. This attitude sometimes born from a spirit of control and fear is totally foreign to the freedom of will inherently present in each individual and breeds a culture of resentment, fear, malice and some forms of deception. In this type of environment it becomes almost impossible to mobilize individuals and create a cooperative body of people working toward a common goal. A great leader must be willing to generate, collect and organize ideas in order for there to be progress.
Great leaders must sometimes take the road less traveled and stay the course!
One determination of your leadership ability is your area of focus. Are you more interested in being effective in your achievements or being popular and looking good? Effective leadership is a choice! Will you choose to lead responsibly and be impactful, or will you choose to follow the status quo and simply look like a leader but with no lasting effect. The choices you make today are the determining factors of your efficacy. So many people today play the role of a leader, but have yet to make the choice to lead.
Who we are as leaders is a result of the choices we make each day. As we choose and choose wisely, we come increasingly closer to being the great leaders God intended for us to become. Make the choice today to:
• Be deliberate in your decision to lead.
• Be reflective. Always take the time to look backward, not in regret, but for evaluation in order to move forward.
• Be courageous.
• Pursue purpose and connect those you lead with it.
• Use your time wisely.
• Develop others.
• Serve others.
• Be mindful in your decisions. Don’t let chance choose for you.
• Be authentic.