How Do You Define Your Leadership? Tom Claibourne
Tom Claibourne

I know I am leading when . . .

• I inspire people to dream more, learn more, and become more.

• I see ahead what others can’t see.

• people thank me for taking a risk.

• not everyone agrees, most people follow, and some of the doubters later understand.

• I see people and love them (Mark 10:21).

• I help produce a healthy atmosphere in the church.

• I communicate well, verbally and in writing.

• I speak biblical truth boldly and in love to a confused, politically correct culture.

• I take advantage of all teachable moments, not just those up front.

• I influence others while wearing a tie or a T-shirt.

• I cause people to think.

• someone repeats an idea of mine as if it were his own.

• someone prays something I have preached.

• a “lightbulb” comes on for someone, indicating I have conveyed a deep truth in a simple way.

• my passion inspires passion in someone else.

• I regularly evaluate myself and my leadership.

• I have hopeful, but realistic, expectations of those around me.

• people around me feel they are an important part of the process.

• I’m patient like Jesus as people learn and grow slowly.

• I challenge people to move beyond their weakness.

• I inspire people to move forward “despite their fear” (Ezra 3:3).

• I help other leaders purposefully move forward amid ongoing discussion, instead of walking away from partially cooked ideas.

• I recognize and address a potential problem before it becomes a crisis.

• I follow through with something important, despite my fatigue.

• I convey biblical truth in a way that my particular audience of varying ages can understand.

• I live and minister by the compass instead of the clock.

• I pay attention to the cultural thermometer, but function like a thermostat.

• I guide and train others to take over some of the things I have done for years.

• I e-mail members of my congregation for input on this article and the overwhelming emphasis in their responses is on leading by example through diligence, participation, partnership, and “you never ask anyone to do anything that you would not do yourself.”

Finally, I know I am leading when I show people the master leader, Jesus, by my life and leadership.

Tom Claibourne is preaching minister at Bethlehem Church of Christ, Winchester, Ohio.

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