Hack the Church Conference Room: Part Two – Leading with Character

While the phrase “natural born leader” is often used, there’s really not scientific support for this phenomenon. In reality anyone could become a leader and everyone should grow as a leader.

To become a leader is to become a learner. Leadership is not a natural gifting but a set of abilities, and like any other skill set it is to be learned and improved.

Those who have chosen to take on or accept a leadership role must own their personal responsibility for developing their leadership ability.

THE QUICK SUMMARY – Integrity, by Henry Cloud

Integrity—more than simple honesty, it’s the key to success. A person with integrity has the ability to pull everything together, to make it all happen no matter how challenging the circumstances. Drawing on experiences from his work, Dr. Henry Cloud, a clinical psychologist, leadership coach, corporate consultant and nationally syndicated radio host, shows how our character can keep us from achieving all we want to (or could) be.

In Integrity, Dr. Cloud explores the six qualities of character that define integrity, and how people with integrity.

Integrity is not something that you either have or don’t, but instead is an exciting growth path that all of us can engage in and enjoy.

A SIMPLE SOLUTION – Lead with Character

Most people view integrity as an aspect of honesty. Integrity is adherence to code of ethics or set of values. It also involves how well our actions match our beliefs. It suggests a wholeness or coherence in our philosophies and values, in our public and private statements, and in our actions across a variety of situations.

In short, integrity is about character.

Character has components to it, or traits, and areas of functioning where it operates. Those contexts are the real places where our personhood and reality interface and results occur, either positive or negative.

Character = the ability to meet the demands of reality.

What I have tried to do is take aspects of character and put them into functions that tend to be different from each other, and therefore discrete, and at the same time, related to each other, and therefore integrated. If we have that combination, then we can focus on specific aspects of our makeup and, at the same time, be focusing on all of our makeup and getting it working together.

Let’s look at what those aspects of character are:

The ability to connect authentically (which leads to trust)

The ability to be oriented toward the truth (which leads to finding and operating in reality)

The ability to work in a way that gets results and finishes well (which leads to reaching goals, profits, or the mission)

The ability to embrace, engage, and deal with the negative (which leads to ending problems, resolving them, or transforming them)

The ability to be oriented toward growth (which leads to increase)

The ability to be transcendent (which leads to enlargement of the bigger picture of oneself)

Henry Cloud, Integrity

A NEXT STEP

Riders in London’s Underground (subway) are very familiar with the audible and visible warning to “mind the gap.” It’s a phrase issued to rail passengers to take caution while crossing the horizontal spatial gap between the train door and the station platform.

Maybe a more familiar use comes from the immortal wisdom of Rocky Balboa, when asked about what attracted him to his future wife, Adrian: “She’s got gaps, I got gaps. Together, we fill gaps.”

We all have gaps, especially when it comes to our character. Do not take this as a weakness, but instead think of it as chance to improve.

Look at the list of character traits above, and list them on a chart tablet. On a scale of “1” (I have little ability in this area) to “5” (I am very confident in this ability), assign yourself a number for each character trait.

The gap is our need and opportunity for growth.

For each character trait you scored between a 1 and 3, list actions you can take to advance the development of that trait to become a 4 or 5.

Excerpt taken from SUMS Remix 69-2, issued June 2017.


 

This is part of a weekly series posting content from one of the most innovative content sources in the church world: SUMS Remix Book Summaries for church leaders.

SUMS Remix takes a practical problem in the church and looks at it with three solutions; each solution is taken from a different book. Additionally, a practical action step is included with each solution.

As a church leader you get to scan relevant books based on practical tools and solutions to real ministry problems, not just by the cover of the book. Each post will have the edition number which shows the year and what number it is in the overall sequence. (SUMS Remix provides 26 issues per year, delivered every other week to your inbox). 

>> Subscribe to SUMS Remix <<

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

VRcurator

VRcurator

Bob Adams is Auxano's Vision Room Curator. His background includes over 23 years as an associate/executive pastor as well as 8 years as the Lead Consultant for a church design build company. He joined Auxano in 2012.

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comment_post_ID); ?> I agree 100%, you can tell if a church is doing this it grows, if there's no growth there's poor leadership..
 
— Dennis Whiterock
 
comment_post_ID); ?> Great work Bubba! Its exciting to see how God has blessed your faithfulness over your lifetime into remarkable, fruitful, Kingdom expansion! Jesus DID say, "without Me you can do nothing!" (John 15:5). No surprise that He rewards "thick and thin" prayer with great fruitfulness! :)
 
— Mike Taylor
 
comment_post_ID); ?> I loved this presentation. It helped greatly as I organized an Outreach Ministry of The Shepherds Care. Thank you. Esther Callaham Mahgoube Emmanuel Pentecostal Church New Jersey
 
— Esther Mahgoube
 

Clarity Process

Three effective ways to start moving toward clarity right now.

A Missional Incarnational Leadership Guide

This week I had a chance to share some coaching pointers with some great leaders at the New Thing Network. As the church is changing, so leaders must change and the coaching questions we used to use may not fit the life, tensions, or reality that many leaders now face. I coach to incarnation not just proclamation. I coach to community and cultural engagement not just tasks of running a church of weekend Sunday experience. Every leader gets lost and blind in their own world and sometimes the most powerful way to influence leaders is by asking the right questions. Jesus did this and it changed history so consider browsing through this list and make some suggestions. Someday this might be a great list that we can all share. I am giving you four key aspects of a leaders life that must be coached for a true missionally incarnational leader must be: Deep in Character, Clear in Calling, Culturally Savvy, and Able to Lead Inclusive Community.

 

DEEP IN CHARACTER

  • What are you anxious about this month, this last week?
  • How much are your concerns stressing you out? How is that showing up? Anger, withdrawal, harsh words, criticalness or any moments of depression that you can’t dig out of?
  • Is anyone being hurt by the stress level in your life? How can you apologize this week to those you’ve hurt?
  • What are you hearing from God about these concerns?
  • Have you been regularly finding a place of silence to hear from God?
    What do you think He is saying to you about your marriage, your heart, the balance of leading people vs. leading your family?
  • How are you dealing with battles of your mind? Purity? Pornography? Do you need some help with this?
  • Have you felt any undue pressure to lie, or try to prove your worth to anyone this last month?
  • Have you been speaking well and praying for other pastors in your city?
  • What have you been reading for your own encouragement?
  • Do you feel like God loves you this month? Do you feel like He wants to give favor to you or do you feel like he wants to discipline you? Why?
  • Where do you feel dark spiritual forces hassling or attacking you? Have you specifically exposed these issues and asked people to pray?
  • Do you feel you have real friends right now? Who? Why or Why not?
  • What things have made you the saddest this last month?
  • What things have made you laugh and find joy this last month?
  • What are you afraid of right now as we talk?

 

CLEAR IN CALLING
Here you are coaching through the intersection of real life and divine calling and roles.

  • Are you taking care of the one body God has given you? What are you doing to stay healthy?  If not, what are your plans to get going?
  • Is your spouse feeling “close” to you in your calling right now? How can you include them more in what you are doing? Do they want to be included more or protected more from your ministry calling?
  • Are you helping them find and pursue their passions while you pursue your own?
  • How often are you having time together without any ministry talk? What fun things have you done together this last month?
  • What types of conversations and experiences have you had this month with your children? What have you planned for this coming month?
  • Are you making choices with your finances that keep you moving toward freedom or bondage?  Any choices you want to run by me at this point?
  • Are you being mentored in any specific area of your life right now? What would you love to get help in?
  • Are you feeling motivated and excited to wake up every day? Why or why not?
  • Do you feel confident or alone in leading the people God’s given you?
  • Are there any aspects of your life that you feel must change in order for God to keep growing your influence or leadership?
  • If you were God, what would you absolutely tell me as your coach, that I should ask you about
  • What are you most excited about? What is giving you life and joy right now?
  • Do you feel that God’s word is alive to you or are you a bit dry this month?
  • Who are you hanging out with that inspires you toward better living?
  • Describe what your “Sabbath” is right now? Is that working? If not, do you see any way to make the happen?
  • Have you been consistently pre-planning your week or have you been more “responding” to the apparent pressures that come to you?  How will be making time to get intentional with your weekly schedule?
  • Where have you been wasting time?

 

CULTURALLY SAVVY
Here you are coaching for their ability to engage the lost culture with the Gospel.

  • Do you know the names of all your neighbors? If not, what can you do this month to get to know them without being a dork?
  • Are you doing any recreation, hobbies, or school functions with the intent to make friends?
  • Tell me about some good conversations you’ve had with lost friends this month? Have you made any plans to invite them deeper into your lives or go deeper into their lives?
  • How could you bless the children of the people you’re meeting?
  • Have any of your lost friends invited you to anything this last month? Did you go? How did it go? Any plans to thank them by inviting them to something cool?
  • Have you done anything this last month that you may need to apologize for to a lost friend? Maybe not being more helpful to them? Saying no to an invite they gave you?  Maybe being gone when something bad happened to them?
  • What are you finding is always good news to your lost friends? Have you made any plans to be good news? What is that?
  • Have you taken much time this month to exegete the needs of your community? Have you talked to any school employees, city workers or government officials? How can you make that happen or begin to help where they expose need?
  • How many parties have you thrown or gone to this last month?
  • What types of non-profits are working in your area that you could help out with and support?
  • Have you been able to share much of your story to a lost friend this month? How did that go? Any follow up?
  • Are you showing patience with the people around you or have you overstepped any lines the culture is giving you lately?
  • Have you helped serve anyone this month?
  • How are you praying for the people around you? What does that look like? Has God led you to do anything unique for a friend?
  • Have you invited any new friends to anything this last month? What was it? How did that go? Any next steps?
  • Are you and your spouse in the same stride in how much time you’re giving to lost folks? How many times a week or evenings have you been opening your home?
  • How many of your 21 weekly meals have you been sharing with people?
  • How have you been engaging the culture with those in your Christian community?
  • Do you feel that your Christian community is trustworthy to bring any new friend to? If not, Why and how can you mentor your community toward inclusiveness and trust?
  • Have you been advocating for any people this last month?
  • What common space, coffee shops, pubs, etc. have you been hanging out in consistently? Have any interesting relationships started to form?

 

ABLE TO LEAD COMMUNITY
Here you are coaching for their ability to lead people toward God and his church.

  • What are you doing to help nurture the lives of the Christians who are with you now?
  • Are there any people in your community right now that seem to be struggling or fighting against what you feel God has led your community to do or be? What do you think God is asking you to do to address the problems?
  • Are any non-believers moving toward your community or in their faith with God? How do you envision integrating them into your “Christian space and rhythms?”
  • How are you feeding the sheep right now?
  • How are you teaching the sheep to feed themselves and each other?
  • Are the experiences that your Christian community participates in causing them to be less or more consumeristic? Less or more selfish and self oriented? Less or more individualistic?
  • Has anything come up this month that is a concern for you regarding the growth or missionality of your Christian friends? What are your plans to help them grow through this?
  • Is the DNA of your community clear? How do you know?
  • Describe how the spiritual activities your people have done this last month have displayed the DNA?
  • Where do you think you may be doing things that go against the DNA of the gospel?
  • How much time are you spending with Christians vs. Non-Christians? How would you assess the rest of your community on this question?
  • How are you leading your people beyond just head knowledge or doctrine but into action?
  • Have you had any weird or awkward conversations between your saint’s and unchurched sojourners? How have you helped navigate that?
  • This last month, do you feel more like a “doer” of the ministry or an “equipper”?  How can you get closer to the equipper? What could you give up or give to someone else to do? What is keeping you from doing that?
  • How are you managing the tension of working in your vocational job and your calling to lead people?
  • Has your community locked into any specific areas of need or found some relational causes to be a part of? Describe how that is being lived out.
  • What do you feel you should protect your community from? What do you feel you should expose your community to this month?
  • What conflicts have come up this month in your community? How are you leading them through this? How are you dealing with judgements and frustrations some might have with you this month?
  • Out of all the false or immature critiques of your leadership, what elements of truth might God still want you to acknowledge and grow in?

 

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| What is MyVisionRoom? > | Back to Leadership >

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Hugh Halter

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COMMENTS

What say you? Leave a comment!

Recent Comments
comment_post_ID); ?> I agree 100%, you can tell if a church is doing this it grows, if there's no growth there's poor leadership..
 
— Dennis Whiterock
 
comment_post_ID); ?> Great work Bubba! Its exciting to see how God has blessed your faithfulness over your lifetime into remarkable, fruitful, Kingdom expansion! Jesus DID say, "without Me you can do nothing!" (John 15:5). No surprise that He rewards "thick and thin" prayer with great fruitfulness! :)
 
— Mike Taylor
 
comment_post_ID); ?> I loved this presentation. It helped greatly as I organized an Outreach Ministry of The Shepherds Care. Thank you. Esther Callaham Mahgoube Emmanuel Pentecostal Church New Jersey
 
— Esther Mahgoube
 

Clarity Process

Three effective ways to start moving toward clarity right now.