Monday, July 18, 2011

A Leader Is A Learner

After years of watching children’s ministry leaders fail to see their dreams come true, I noticed a common problem. Most workers and leaders in the local church just don’t see the need to continually learn. To me learning is not something I have an option on doing. It is a must. Being a learner must be a part of your everyday lifestyle if you are serious about growing.  When I was in college, I learned the smartest and most intelligent response to any question or situation, it’s “I don’t know!” There’s nothing wrong with not knowing it all. I don’t understand why people think it’s wrong to say I don’t know. The key is to let I don’t know move you to I’ll find out. There is nothing wrong with admitting you don’t know how to do something either. In 1990 when I moved to Tulsa my new church was basically the same size as the previous three churches I had worked at. But as we grew in the seventeen years I was there every Sunday when I went to church that was the largest church I had ever been a part of. I didn’t know how to do what I was being asked to do every weekend. This understanding forced me to explore and learn. The intensity of how you pursue exploring and learning is the true sign that sets you apart as a leader. Study makes work approved. One of my favorite scriptures is 2Timothy 2:15   “Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” Approved work that is a direct result of study causes the workman to have no reason to be ashamed. We all know hard work pays off but smart work is also important. Smart work come from study and learning. When smart work and hard work are combined great things happen. Smart work plus hard work always equals success.  If you are reading this article I know you want to bear fruit and be successful for the Lord. But our actions measure the intensity and passion of that quest. In evaluating my own journey I’d like to give you twelve learning habits I believe you should develop to stay fresh and current as a leader.   1. Develop a love for reading. I’m always on the lookout for a good book! I look for recommendations from people I look up to. I visit local bookstores and cruise the shelves of the business and leadership sections. I like to discuss what I’m reading with people who are also reading that same book. On I’ve listed some books I’ve read as well as those I want to read. I’m also a believer in re-reading a book and making sure I’ve put to use what I’ve already learned before I move on to a new book.  It helps me to set a goal for a set time to complete a book. To meet that timeline I try to keep a book with me at all times. I also buy one or two books ahead so I’ll have something to look forward to reading. It also helps me finish the book I’m currently reading as I anticipate reading the new one.  I’ve also enjoyed blogging. There are some great blogs out there.
I like to see who has linked to my blog and I follow the link and see who else they read and check them out as well. I have discovered some great learners to learn with.

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