Young, Emerging Leaders

This past weekend we conducted our first Mandate session of 2015. It was an impactful time of training and impartation for those who were present. We received a lot of good feedback about how necessary this type of meeting is for emerging leaders.

The meeting and the feedback got me thinking about young, emerging leaders in a fresh way. So, here is my advice, for what it’s worth. If you are a younger, inexperienced leader, be encouraged to participate in something like the Sharpening Stone Mandate. You need the strength, the instruction, the revelation, the activation, the connections, and the camaraderie. It will help you grow and develop, thus stirring the ministry you lead to grow and develop. It is a very small investment that could change your life, and the lives of many others.

Here is what I have seen as the normal progression with young, emerging leaders. They are usually active in a local church home. They may be hanging out with their pastor, or another mature leader in that church home. They are usually hungry for discipleship, training, and coaching. They want to be connected because they see the tremendous need for support in their development and forward advancement.

Once they are sent out to accomplish what God has placed in their hearts, something seems to change. I don’t know if it is self-satisfaction with actually leading a ministry; or maybe arrogance; or maybe a sense of rejection; or maybe a “father” issue; or maybe they feel pushed away; or maybe they feel ignored. These emerging leaders tend to cut ties with the very people they once sought out for support. They stop attending conferences and meetings that they once craved. They tend to isolate themselves. They no longer reach out for any type of help.

I realize there are always two sides in these situations. I am examining myself to determine where I have missed it with some emerging leaders. Could I be more “fatherly” in my approach? Yes! Could I make myself more available? Yes! Could I reach out more often than I do? Yes! Could I be more intentionally strategic in what I am offering to emerging leaders? Yes! I know I have a lot of room for improvement – no doubt about it.

I still believe there has to be some degree of pursuit coming from the heart of emerging leaders. Our young leaders must pursue their development by reading books, reading blogs, listening to podcasts, attending valuable meetings and conferences, etc. And, they need to pursue mentoring or coaching-type relationships with established leaders.

When I was in my mid-twenties, I moved from the L.A. area to Phoenix, AZ to pursue a leader I wanted to be connected with. I pursued him in his local church setting, and I pursued him on a personal level. I was pursuing him because I wanted to get something he was carrying in his life. I was prepared to remain connected to him for the rest of my life. I viewed it as a life-long relationship. Tragically, that relationship ended when he was killed in a car accident. I still think of him today, all of these years later. He had a tremendous impact on my life.

I’m sure there’s much more to be said on this topic. I hope this will generate some beneficial feedback.

Young leaders – be encouraged; and keep pursuing God; and keep pursuing established, seasoned leaders. It is for your good!

Wow. It's Quiet Here...

Be the first to start the conversation!

Leave a Reply:

Gravatar Image

You must be logged in to post a comment.