There’s an interesting paradox often at play in Christian Leadership. Have you ever heard the adage “When things are going well – All Glory to God but when things are going badly – It’s all your fault”? I think too often, as Christian Leaders we wear that too much. We try to balance the glory and get stuck taking too much for ourselves or walking through ministry with no self-belief.
I’ve struggled with this so much in my own walk. An example of this at play in my ministry and life is in how I prepare sermons. Amongst the preparation, the research, the prayer, the quietness, the writing and the rehearsing I find myself in this constant push and pull of insecurity and pride, “I want God to get the Glory for this, but I also want people to think I’m awesome”. Can you relate?
I talked it out with my coach in one or our sessions and she asked me if I believed God had given me a communication gift, I said “yes”. She said tell me about a gift that you have recently given Henry (that’s my son, he was about 2 years old at the time), I told her about this train set we had recently purchased, we were walking through the toy section of a department store and saw it and bought it for Henry not because it was his birthday or Christmas, he hadn’t even done a poo on the toilet, he’d really done nothing to ‘deserve’ it. We bought it because we knew he would love it and enjoy it. I went on to tell my coach that since Henry received the train set it had become a daily ritual for me to sit on the floor with Henry and play trains with him. I loved watching him enjoy this gift I had given him and just loved playing trains with him and he loved playing trains with me. My coach said to me – “What if it’s that simple between you and God?” What if he has given you this gift and just wants to enjoy seeing you use it?”
Now I know there is a whole lot more responsibility to preaching than just playing around with a communication gift, but this was a poignant moment for me where I realised that God’s plan is realised through faithful men and women. It was a real turning point for me in my understanding that God chooses to partner with us in leadership to see His Kingdom extended, His purposes fulfilled, When I got home, after the coaching session, I couldn’t wait to get on the floor and play trains with Henry and I stopped that exhausting push and pull question of who get’s the glory here. Because ultimately God gets the Glory in all that I do but I delight in the fact that he has chosen me, gifted me in a way that we partner together to see His purposes for His world become a reality – What a privilege.
Cath joined Arrow Leadership in 2017 as the Emerging Leaders Program Director. She began pastoral ministry at Gateway Baptist Church as the Children’s Pastor in 2009 and as Generations Pastor. Cath is passionate about seeing leaders developed and be given the opportunities to achieve the potential that God has placed within them. Cath is married to Michael, who is a doctor and together they are