Leadership Lesson: Walking in Their Shoes

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Viewpoint

 
Walking in Their Shoes.jpg
Photo by Felix Carroll
 
 
 
It is interesting to me that today it was announced that President Obama would authorize deploying “more than 17,000 troops to Afghanistan.” Barack Obama during his presidential campaign was strongly in favor of bringing the troops back home from Iraq, but now he will be sending some more to Afghanistan.

On one hand, I am all in favor of this move because the battle has to be won in Afghanistan, where the Taliban are regaining their strength, if we want to win this war on terror. The situation does not look good because recently Pakistan gave in to the Taliban in some of the border areas and allowed sharia law to rule.

The leadership lesson is that unless you are in the shoes of the person, you will rarely have any clue of the magnitude of the responsibility or the situation. I think in the years to come there will be many “declassified” things that will surface and we will have a better idea of some of the things that President Bush has done (both good and bad).

It is so easy to criticize, especially when we either think we can do a better job or when we don’t have all the facts.

This phenomenon happens every year in our church.

There are regular members in our church who have a lot to say about various things in their LIFE Groups. It is always easy to criticize a leader or co-leader of what they should or should not be doing.

This is why I love seeing the reaction of the new leaders as they struggle to lead their own LIFE Group. This is when reality sets in for the new leaders. They start to come to the realization that leading a LIFE Group or a church for that matter is not as easy as it appears. When people understand all the various factors that are involved in leading and shepherding people’s lives, they are humbled.

Most of their criticisms turn into hearts of empathy, as well as hearts of gratitude (to their former leaders).

This is why leaders understand that in order to be a good leader you have to be a good follower. As we learn how to follow well, then when God places us in position of leadership and influence, we will know what to do.

I am praying that instead of criticism and judgment, since many of us have not walked in the shoes of many people that we will respond with grace and mercy.

You can read the news article about the troop increases here.