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Leadership and Gardening

Over-leading is characterized by leading too hard. This means that you don’t give your people time to breathe. Perhaps you have just finished a building campaign, completed a summer drive for volunteers, or an intense evangelistic effort in your community. This one finds me guilty at times. I don’t lead too fast, but at times I can lead too hard. This doesn’t necessarily mean aggressive, though it can, but it is more about being relentless in passion to move the ball down the field. This is good thing, but not everyone is designed this way. Some people need to stop, celebrate, or even just “smell the roses” for a moment before climbing the next mountain.

You are a leader, you have vision, and you see the next level. Good. But remember, if you don’t take the people with you, you aren’t leading. You are more of a reconnaissance scout occasionally coming back with reports of the new territory. People are watching you but they aren’t following you.

How do you know if you are over-leading? First, simply listen to your people, they will tell you. Not the whiney late-adopters, but your committed leaders. Second, and not so simple, seek God about your motives. If you are driving faster than God wants you to go, it may be more about you than about His plans for His Kingdom.

You may not be a gardener by choice, but if you are a good leader, you will naturally know some things about gardening. I pray that all the seeds you plant produce a tremendous harvest.

Image: Kyle Ellefson


This article is used by permission from Dr. Dan Reiland’s free monthly e-newsletter The Pastor’s Coach available at Copyright 2004, INJOY 4725 River Green Pkwy, Duluth, GA 30096

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Category: Ministry, Spring 2017

About the Author: Dan Reiland is executive pastor of 12Stone Church in Lawrenceville, Georgia. He previously partnered with John Maxwell for 20 years, first as Executive Pastor at Skyline Wesleyan Church in San Diego, then as Vice President of Leadership and Church Development at INJOY. He is the author of Amplified Leadership: 5 Practices to Establish Influence, Build People, and Impact Others for a Lifetime (Charisma House, 2012), Shoulder To Shoulder Strengthening Your Church By Supporting Your Pastor (Thomas Nelson, 1997), and From a Father's Heart: Letters of Encouragement to Children and Grandchildren (Thomas Nelson, 1999). Twitter: @DanReiland

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