Criticism in Leadership, pt2
Leadership in Context with Keith Tucci
None of us are perfect. We should never project to the people around us that somehow, we have reached perfection. We can project that we have the intention to do our best. We should not make excuses for obvious imperfections that come up in our life.
If there is no correction, there is no growth. Correction is part of growing.
If something is dead or dying, there probably have been no corrections or adjustments made. If you see a church that is dying, there is a good chance they haven’t made needed corrections. It doesn’t mean they have done anything morally wrong; they just haven’t done some things right.
1 Timothy 2:3-4
Suffer hardship with me, as a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No soldier in active service entangles himself in the affairs of everyday life, so that he may please the one who enlisted him as a soldier.
What Paul is saying here is: Remember that what you are dealing with, Timothy, is above the normal, everyday, mundane, temporal things–that while they are important, they pale in comparison to what is most important.
You play to the audience of one. As you are trying to go forward, don’t allow criticism for things that are not that significant. Sometimes we can blow things up bigger than they should be.
If you know that you know that you know that you are being criticized or judged unfairly, all that matters is that you are pleasing the Lord. If you can ask the Lord if you are pleasing Him and walk away with His affirmation, you can carry on fearlessly and stay in the battle.
In ministry and in church leadership, I think that there can literally be some PTSD going on. People who suffer from PTSD are either overly aggressive or completely ambivalent—fight or flight. In the church, it can come across as being embattled (fighting about something that isn’t worth fighting about) or embittered (having a bad attitude).
Hurt people hurt people. If you feel like you are being judged unrighteously, that can be very painful.
One of the most painful things that Jesus suffered was to be called a sinner. Yes, the physical suffering was incredible. But for Him to be lumped together and called a sinner when He had completely obeyed God is something we can’t comprehend how painful that was for Him.
Often we say that there are people who can speak into our lives. That is different from just being open to someone. When you say that there is someone who can speak into your life, technically you should be initiating that by asking them how you handled something or how your attitude was. You solicit input.
We can be open to input, but not know how to seek it. It’s easy to think that someone will just tell us when we don’t handle something right or have a wrong attitude about something, but that usually is not the case.
The best prophets among us see our actions before they see our attitude. The best way to seek corrective adjustments is to ask, “How is my performance? Did I do a good job? Was I well-prepared? Was I kind and friendly to people?” Don’t skip straight to, “How was my heart?”
People want to be judged by their heart, yet they judge others by their actions. If we are going to have accountability and learn how to not just be open to criticism, but seek positive, corrective, redemptive input, that means we need to be seeking, asking.
Tell me how I did and tell me how I can improve.
That is being proactive. People who seek input are much healthier than those waiting for people to give them input.
One of the ways you can deal with criticism in leadership is by taking responsibility to generate that criticism ourselves. Judge yourself so that you won’t be judged. A lot of times, people are falling under judgment that they wouldn’t have had to if they had just judged themselves. Their game could have been cleaned up or brought to another level if they had sought input.
Is there someone you can seek out and ask, “How is my game? Are there areas where I can improve?” Being proactive like that is a focus on growth and will result in less criticism.
Join us next week as Keith Tucci continues to put leadership truth in the context of the local church. And as always, please like, share, rate/review, and invite others to listen. See you next week!