I have had multiple conversations these past few weeks with pastors and leaders about the importance of healthy transitions, particularly as it relates to succession. Why? I am passionate about Jesus and the proclamation of His glory to the next generation. Over the decades I have repeatedly seen the destructive consequences of leaders who hand over power poorly. Andy Crouch says it best: “It is hard to think of many things that do more damage to an organization than leaders who have no plan for how they will hand over power…When leaders do not actively plan for the end of their power, and when we who are led by them allow them to indulge in fantasies of unending influence, they are idols, no matter how well disguised” (Strong and Weak, IVP 2016). I describe my own 4½-year interior succession process in the final 17 pages of The Emotionally Healthy Leader. Almost three years have. Read more.
How healthy are you at exercising power and setting wise boundaries? Join Pete Scazzero and Rich Villodas in this month’s edition of the Emotionally Healthy Leadership Podcast as they discuss this pivotal leadership theme. Click the video below to watch or the link to listen to the audio file. LISTEN HERE
Almost every church, nonprofit organization, and Christian community I know bears deep scars and hurt due to a failure to steward power and set wise boundaries. I was no exception. My understanding of how power affects relationships and the need for wise boundaries was woefully inadequate for many years. I tried to be a good friend and a good “boss,” but I was neither. I lost relationships I treasured that I had spent years building. I didn’t understand two key concepts – stewardship and dual relationships. Every leader exercises stewardship of power, i.e. we have a capacity to influence others. That power is God-given. When we under-use our power out of fear, a need to be liked, or an aversion to conflict, we hurt people. When we over-use our power to manipulate and push, we also hurt people. Exercising power like Jesus requires we know our shadows and vulnerabilities, and build in healthy safeguards.. Read more.
“Navigating issues of power is a true test of both character and leadership” -Pete Scazzero (The Emotionally Healthy Leader, Zondervan 2015). In this month’s Emotionally Healthy Leadership Podcast, Pete Scazzero and Rich Villodas explore how stewarding power well and setting wise boundaries can build a safe and healthy environment for leaders and those they lead. We encourage you to watch below or download on iTunes. For additional in-depth conversations on transformational leadership join us at the Emotionally Healthy Leadership Conference April 22-23.
I have been working hard in these months writing The Emotionally Healthy Leader (Zondervan, 2015). The following is a sidebar from a chapter on power and wise boundaries that I trust you will enjoy: Do an honest inventory of the power God has granted you. To be faithful we need to be profoundly aware of the various sources of power God has granted us. We are at risk to use it poorly if we ignore or minimize our power. Unresolved family of origin dynamics that are buried alive resurface when joined with power. The workplace and church are key places where our triggers and “hot buttons” will emerge. Enlist wise counsel to monitor dual relationships. Mentors, therapists, wise elders and mature friends give us perspective and counsel. It is critical we know our limits and defer to others discernment. Watch for early warning signs of danger. People change. We change. The church changes. What works now may not work. Read more.
Jesus compared His kingdom to a mustard seed – almost invisible, apparently powerless, defeated, and insignificant. Yet He assures us it will grow into something magnificent that will cover the whole earth (Matthew 13:31-32). This smallness was a scandal then. It is a scandal today. In our efforts to copy the ancient great cities of Rome, Athens, and Corinth, and our desire for “real disciples” who aren’t like Peter, James, John, Thomas, and Judas, we end up chasing after goals that aren’t His. We easily miss His movements. Emotionally Healthy Spirituality (EHS) is a mustard seed that has rediscovered and applied a few simple biblical truths. For example: Slowing down for loving union with Jesus is the foundation of all leadership. We are to lead out of a marriage, or our singleness, as a sign and wonder for Christ. Spiritual formation requires we break the sinful patterns of our family of origin and culture. Read more.