When a leader leads simply, he or she gives clarity for a chosen path to help others reach a desired vision. Action and outcome needs to be communicated in such a way that everyone involved knows their part for reaching the ultimate goal, and this communication is the leader’s responsibility. Complexity is the enemy of clarity and the larger an organization grows, the greater the need for continued clearness. Leading simply by choice may alleviate confusion and provide greater focus for an entire team.
Leading simply requires you to work deep and wide. Your influence should go deep to the needs and reach many with the redemptive work of the Kingdom. Leadership is about influencing people to grasp on to the vision, and that happens by leading simply and with focus. Invest in the team that will help to navigate through the vision by valuing their role.
A vision will require you to carve out a distinct culture that reflects the needs that only your gathering of Christ followers can meet; it sets your church apart. If you’re a leader, ask yourself, how are we as a church going to add value to the lives of the people we encounter every day? It isn’t about making everyone happy as they enter through your building doors, but instead, it is about bringing value to their lives. The influence of a strong leader requires not only a person who executes and champions the vision but also a leader who can take the time to invest in the conversations of those they lead. Opening the minds of those in their community and taking the time to not only hear but also to listen will help to further the vision. Understanding a church culture and refining the ability to truly listen to others is essential to simple leadership.
Let’s examine one additional benefit from leading simply – power. Power comes from simplicity and a true leader will need to take time to refocus and remember why they are in their current leadership role. Every church can make a spiritual mark on its community, and a strong leader will be able to see where the church can make a difference. This is the environment where God has placed your church to serve, so within your position of leadership, can you identify how God is calling you reach others? This is a powerful position to be called to and it’s integral that a leader is able to refocus and realign him or herself with simplicity in leadership while navigating multiple opportunities for a congregation.
In the Quietness the Lord speaks the Loudest
As a leader, listen to how God is speaking to you and explore what He might be calling you to this upcoming year. What are three things you can do to step further into where God is calling you to lead deeply and wider? What are the risks you’re willing to take to give up your plans and be prepared for whatever He has in mind for His church?
Stripping away the complexities of leadership and slowing the pace will require patience, maybe even long suffering as the answers are not revealed quickly. On a regular basis it is essential for a leader to look back to the initial questions of “What are we doing?” and “Why are we doing it?” and just as important, “Where do I fit in?” Everyone needs to have a game plan and know their place on the playing field. It keeps focus and clarity; and the end goal should always be in site. These three simple questions can keep a leader focused in almost every scenario.
Growth will require a leader to return to simplicity. Leading simply will calm the chaos, streamline the what, where, why and how we lead, and perhaps reap a harvest of changed lives for the Kingdom.