On that afternoon when faced with a crowd of hungry people, the disciples came face to face with their own sense of inadequacy. Their idea was to send the crowd away to find their own food. Jesus idea was to have them feed them and said to them, "You give them something to eat." The disciples looked at each other and at what they had (five loaves and two fish) and said that's impossible! We all know the rest of the story (see Luke 9 for the complete story).
Do you ever suffer from a lack of confidence in the leadership task you have been called to carry out? Ever felt inadequate and unsure of your ability to follow through on what God has asked you to do? You are not alone if that has been your experience.
How would you rate your level of leadership confidence today? On a scale of 1 to 10 with 1 being “I feel inadequate and wonder if God is using me?” to a 10 being “I am full of self-confidence and have a strong sense of purpose as a leader” where are you? Where do you want to be?
Confidence is critical for leadership effectiveness. Whether you are a leader during a time of transition or called upon as an outsider to come in and provide coach support for a congregation, your effectiveness increases with your leadership confidence. Confidence that's not full of ego or self interest but confidence that comes from a place of service and humility.
The dictionary defines “confidence” as:
- Trust or faith in a person or thing
- A feeling of self-assurance
- The state or quality of being certain
For the Christian leader, it is fair to say that self-confidence must come from God-confidence. Trust in God produces self-assurance and certainty in leadership. It was Jesus confidence in God which filtered down to the disciples who carried out the work of God and saw a miracle unfold in front of them.
Why is confidence so important for the leader?
1. It creates stability in you as well as in the people you lead. A confidence leader is a non-anxious leader who inspires trust in God and calmness in others. So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded (Hebrews 10:35).
2. Confidence allows you to stretch and grow. When David appeared on the scene and noticed Goliath standing there, his response was much different from King Saul. Saul had lost his confidence and in turn, the confidence of his people. He was unable and unwilling to take a risk in battle - to stretch and trust God to help him tackle Goliath. David on the other hand, came with confidence in his God-given ability to do the job required because of a confidence firmly anchored in God.
3. Confidence fosters a belief in others. When you are confident as a leader and have the humility that goes with it, others flourish and grow. You are more likely to praise others when you are confident in your own abilities and capacity. Insecure people are too busy looking for praise from others to focus on the praise worthiness of those around them.
Next week we will talk about confidence shakers as well as confidence makers that will strengthen your leadership. For now, take these thoughts and turn them into action.
1. Take a look in the mirror and notice where you are on the "leadership confidence scale" (see above). Write that number down and simple notice.
2. Now in prayer, reflect on a few Biblical stories where a trustworthy and strong God was at work doing something significant regardless of the inadequacies felt by the leaders in those situations (feeding of the 5000, David and Goliath, cross of the Red Sea, to name just a small sample).
3. Think of a leadership challenge you are currently facing that will require confidence. See Jesus there with you inviting you to "feed the people" knowing that with invitation comes His power and strength to stir up in you the required leadership confidence.
Leave your comment