Thursday, July 16, 2009

Big Picture, My Picture

When Jesus had finished giving these instructions to his twelve disciples, he went off teaching and preaching in towns throughout the country. Matthew 11:1 (NLT)

When it comes to developing leaders, we tend to miss in one of two directions.

On one hand, we sometimes resist training new leaders because it takes up too much of our time. Which is a recipe for failure since we have a constant need for new leaders.

Or, we train someone to do a task, then (temporarily) abandon our position to serve as an assistant (or on-the-field coach) to the person we just trained. Our ministry suffers and they don’t get a chance to really test their own wings.

But Jesus did it differently. He didn’t follow the guys around, carrying their bags, handling the logistics for their meetings, helping them succeed while His own ministry went dormant.

Jesus understood the concept of Big Picture, My Picture.

My Picture is the understanding that I have work to do. That God has called, gifted and prepared me for ministry. And if I don’t do it, it probably won’t get done.

The Big Picture is that we have to be training new leaders for God’s Kingdom. Constantly.

Jesus understood both. He constantly trained new leaders but fulfilled His ministry during the process.

And what’s the key to Big Picture, My Picture? Two words Training and Trust. We have to train our potential leaders for success, then trust them to succeed. Training means they are prepared to lead without us. Trust means we’re prepared to let them succeed (or fail) on their own.

Sure, it’s a tough balance. But real success in leadership development only comes when we keep both pictures clearly in focus.

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