A spark. Sometimes that’s all it takes to move someone – to make them feel like they can do it too.
If you inspire enough people, sooner or later, you will awaken someone with greater potential than yourself.
We need to learn to be comfortable with that.
My wife, Liz, inspired me to run. Liz never asked me or pressured me to run, she just started to run herself and kept running. Initially I had no interest but soon her progress and commitment inspired me.
Now I’m arguably more obsessed with running than Liz is.
Over the last couple of months, more of my friends are sending me Nike+ friend requests. It’s actually becoming quite serious. Ha ha. For a while I was enjoying a comfortable lead, but now it’s proving more challenging to stay out in front but I still love it.
As I’m writing this I’m worried it may sound pretentious. If I have influenced anyone to start running it was likely down to one thought only – “if Alastair can do it so can I” – and I’ll take that.
I know one of these days soon I am going to concede to some of these guys. There is simply more running potential in some of them than I am capable of.
Yes, of course there’s a ministry parallel here.
As we lead our respective ministry teams, our focus should always be on inspiring and encouraging other people to do what we do. Our passion and commitment to what we do will speak volumes.
While we should work hard at getting better at what we do, we should never be focused on trying to hold on to our positions. This approach not only blocks potential leaders from rising up, but it also acts as a bottleneck to the organization in which we serve.
We need to acknowledge that sometimes our sole purpose is to inspire and encourage the next generation of leaders, who will go on to do greater things for the Kingdom of God.
There are many examples in the bible. Joshua took over from Moses and brought the Israelites into the promised land. Elisha took over from Elijah and received a double share of Elijah’s anointing.
So, recognize potential in your team. Pour into them as much as you can and if the time comes, move over and let them past. We’re all in this together for the sake of the Kingdom.