Serving Others In Their Weakness

It has been a while since my last post. As in any other long distance race, you must occasionally stop to catch your breath. This is exactly what happened with me. Economics means that we have limited resources and an unlimited number of desires--we have to choose what we spend our resources to purchase. Time is a resource. Time is limited. I think you get the point.

Let me return to my blog by offering a concept that may be frustrating to grasp, but which has become infinitely more valuable to me over these past nine months. I think this will find a new chapter in my next book. You must serve your leadership in their weakness as much as you would in their strength; allow me to elaborate.

It's not difficult to serve a manager, pastor, family member, client or instructor when they are exhibiting strong characteristics of leadership. During this time we value them, we esteem them and we see them as a champion of their world, and perhaps even our own. But its how we see them when they operate out of their weakness that is of utmost importance. When your manager, pastor, client or other authority figure begin making decisions that you disagree with; when they begin to show blind spots; when they walk in a direction that you are convinced is wrong or that will be damaging, can you still serve them? Can you let go of your concern and give it your all?

Now, I'm not speaking about great moral failure where monies are embezzled or where sexual misconduct would disqualify them from their positions of leadership; certainly, I am not suggesting blind pursuit such as in the cases of Jim Jones, the Waco Texas incident or numerous other circumstances of that kind. What I am saying is that there are issues in leadership that are judgement calls. And in numerous situations, people in authority can choose to operate out of their fears, their failures, their weaknesses, their desire for political gain, their need for attention, their inability to process certain types of data, their moral upbringing, their childhood damages or any other number of innumerable situations. We are all flawed. We all have blind spots. We all have shallow hearing at times. When those in your life that you serve, operate from these positions of lack, can you serve them just as faithfully and whole-heartedly as when they are operating from their strengths, or do you find yourself gossiping, judging and backbiting at them because of their flaws.

I will probably write more on this in my next post because the topic is too large to deal with in a single post. But let me leave you with this thought. In 1 Peter 2:18-23 there is a spectacular section of Scripture that discusses relationships. Here is a small excerpt from the King James version, "Servants, be subject to your masters...not only to the good...but also to the froward." The word "froward" means crooked. The greek is scolios--where we get the word scoliosis. There is a lot more that I will write about later, but note that we are commanded to serve our leadership even when their path is not straight. We must give them the ability to make mistakes, to learn their own limits and humanity, and to support them in the act of change. After all, isn't that what we want?

Do you know someone that could benefit from this posting? Why not send it to them? Bryan Hurlbut is the author of Making It Count: Putting meaning back in business and relationships. This and other topics can be found in the book Making It Count: Putting meaning back in business and relationships.

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