Questions are the beginning of knowledge. If no one ever wondered what was beyond the horizon, we would have never known that the earth was round (hush to you naysayers). As children, we are hushed if we ask too many questions and left to our own devices to fill in the gaps. For some, being told to hush was permission to stop seeking. For others, the urging to hush created another deep desire to question more –
Why must I be quiet?!
Why are you tired of nurturing my mind?
Why do you get frustrated with me because I keep asking for answers?
Then the inquisitive one considers…
Am I too much of a challenge for you?
Have I pushed you beyond your comfort zone?
Have I made you doubt something you believed to be true or righteous?
And the questions go unanswered…
If you shut me down, then I begin to look at you and not the problem on the table.
I don’t even look at myself because you are standing in the way of answers.
These are things leaders need to consider when they step into the leadership role. I went to a lunch on Saturday hosted by Felicia Breland Dexter, “Hats Off to Women” and the guest speaker was Dr. Veronica Cochran. I’ve never heard leadership explained so exquisitely and succinctly before that luncheon. Of all the years I’ve taught on accountability in leadership, nothing in my research ever hit me like yesterday.
Dr. Cochran explained that the world is set to oppress the leadership capabilities in each and every one of us. God designed us to be leaders for him and the bible is full of examples. However, the world will tell us that we are not and so many influences strive to dampen the desire to lead that is naturally in us. She wove the dynamics of leadership so beautifully that I felt like I was being wrapped in my great grandmother’s quilt I sleep in nightly. Just like the hands that created the quilt, her words were masterfully worked and connected all the pieces to make a beautiful work of art.
So, I say to the leaders everywhere, embrace the questions – even when they are uncomfortable. You don’t want to oppress the leadership skills of someone else because of how uncomfortable it is for you! Accept the challenge and don’t make it about you, make it about growth. Answer the tough questions so that everyone can grow and not just you. Because see, leadership is for everyone in God’s kingdom. We all have it in us and you, in some blessed way, figured out your leadership realm before others – then be gracious enough to help others.