Are you sensing a change on the horizon but aren’t sure about what, when, where or how? We’ve all been there and will likely be there again in the future. Whether you are considering a big change of location, vocation or vision, how do you lead well when you honestly aren’t sure what’s next?
Here are 6 Ways to Lead in Limbo…
1) Pray about it, but not alone. If the Spirit brought you to your present position, make sure the Spirit leads you to the next. Invite a small group of trusted leaders to pray with you about what you are sensing. Besides, those closest to you are likely already sensing something themselves. Pray through it together.
2) Talk about it, but not with everyone. Beginning with your spouse and extending to a confident inner circle, don’t just think about it, talk about it transparently. There is power and clarity in honestly processing where you are at and where things are headed. Don’t make assumptions about anything.
Perhaps a good question is… what aren’t you seeing? Others possess a perspective you simply don’t. Tap into their wisdom and perspective behind the scenes. For example, my wife has a sense of discernment that is out-of-this-world when it comes to people. I have regretted deeply not listening to her leanings on several occasions… and have been so very grateful I have on others. Listen up and listen well!
3) Don’t withdraw. It will be easy to pull back relationally when your are thinking… “I may be leaving anyway.” Or, “I wonder if people notice I don’t really have a clue?” Resist the temptation to isolate yourself as a leader and distance yourself from your team, ministry or organization.
4) Focus on the fundamentals. In other words, keep leading! What are the essentials of your role and ministry that will continue long after someone else is filling your shoes? Sure up team relationships, focus on the values that are bigger than any one person and the vision that is greater than you. Remember, you are part of a greater team. Run your leg of the race well before the baton is passed or another direction is taken.
5) Seek more advice. Ask some open and honest questions of those who have been down this road. These may not be in your immediate circles or part of your prayer team. Find out what some seasoned veterans in your field wish they would have asked, said or done if they had it to do over again. Invite them to ask you the hard questions. Answering them now will save a lot of regret later.
The wisdom writer reminds us, “Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed.” (Proverbs 15:22, NIV)
6) Take your time. The tension of feeling torn will tempt you to make a premature decision. Don’t. Besides, you might be settling for something less than God’s best for all involved, whether that means staying or going. Change will come soon enough. Take the time to make sure it is Spirit-led.
Transitions are inevitable. They are challenging even in the best of times. However, you can lead well through them in these healthy ways and more. What would you add? What advice can you give others leading in limbo? Leave your suggestions in the Reply section below!