November 9, 2005
At age sixty-three, I see more clearly the mistakes I've made in leadership and ministry. On occasion, I wake up in the middle of the night—you do so more often at this age—and think of a mistaken judgment or an inappropriate comment I've made and cringe.
In the morning, it seems less serious. (I've learned never to believe what I see by the flickering candle of night, until it is seen in the full brightness of day.) What changes in the daylight is that I see mistakes as part of the collateral reality of moving forward.
Not to justify stupidity, carnality or self-centredness, leading requires risk-taking. Abraham left the Silicone Valley of his day, all because he heard a Voice calling him. That risk changed history, bringing into humankind a people whose race has influenced civilizations. Many factors characterize leadership but none like risk-taking. There are times unfortunately that our risk-taking damages and hurts others, but if we never move beyond the secure boundaries of our comfort zones, the benefits that might accrue won't.
Father of creation and Lord of invention, may your Spirit help me in overcoming my impulse to protect my reputation and earnings by an unfaith-like caution. My leap of faith is not in the dark, but in the full light of your being here, today, in this place. For that, I give you praise. Amen.
"You must at some point take a 'leap of faith' toward the emerging model of what it means to truly lead and away from the need to be successful, famous, rich, in control, or powerful. The kind of leadership I am advocating is out of the understanding of pain, the loss of innocence, the love of others, the larger purpose, the pursuit of wisdom, the honor of life. Ask yourself if you are willing to take the risk."