A few weeks ago we took our staff on a road trip for a conference and it was a great day. While I learned a lot, my biggest takeaway had nothing to do with the workshops or sermons I heard. It had everything to do with the company I was in.
I sat at the conference and looked around at our team. I thought about each of their journeys, each of their giftings, each of their callings. I was overwhelmed– at the faithfulness of the Lord in each of their own lives and His faithfulness to our church in bringing them to us.
I stood silent before Him thinking about the great lengths He’s gone through to raise each of them up for such a time as this. I am proud simply to be counted among them. When I consider it’s my job and honor to lead them, it’s completely mind-blowing to me in a way that I will never be able to describe and will likely never be comfortable with!
Don’t get me wrong. Many days I bang my head on my desk and shout, “WHAT IS THIS DAY??!!”
I get crazy emails and annoying requests. I have meetings I don’t want to be in to discuss problems that should have already been solved. It is not easy being a leader and certainly not any easier being a leader of leaders in ministry. What is easy is seeing all the cracks and blemishes and mistakes and gaps and balls being dropped. If there were a degree to be had in scrutinizing, I’d have a doctorate by now.
But it’s a beautiful, I dare say holy, moment when the Lord allows you to see things the way He sees them. When He enables you to see people the way He sees them. When He delivers you from walking by sight. When He lends you His perspective.
That was the kind of moment I had that Thursday.
I am surrounded by sons and daughters of God who desperately long to see His Kingdom come and His will be done. I am surrounded by their compassion, their faith, and their perseverance. Our church and our city testify to their labor and creativity. Today I testify to all of those things, as well.
I have watched each of them stretch and grow. We’ve prayed together and laughed together, and Lord knows we’ve eaten a lot together. We’ve car danced together, cried together, and played together.
Sadly, we’ve hurt each other at times but we’ve certainly helped each other, too. We are the better for all of it. Perhaps much like Flannery O’Connor, we “can, with one eye squinted, take it all as a blessing.”
I am surrounded and I am kept by these leaders. They inspire me and give me courage. They share their faith with me when mine seems to be in short supply. Each of them is a gift to me and a reminder of God’s goodness, day in and day out. Even the days when my inner monologue would make a sailor blush and even in the moments that make me find something hard to bang my head against. Even then.