What is your viewpoint – about people? How do you “see” others?
Do you see others, especially those you lead, as obstacles, means to an end, headcount, staff, or as people with unique qualities, needs, desires, fears, and personalities?
Do you choose to trust people’s intent or do they have to “earn” your trust?
Quite often, I have viewed others either as obstacles to getting my job done or as a means to get the job done all the while forgetting the fact I was working with wonderfully created, fascinating, imperfect, frustrating, inspiring, and very diverse people with wonderful stories – if I would have just listened and appreciated them.
Three passages from the Bible now guide, most of the time, how I view others:
1. First and foremost: Genesis 1:27 (ESV)
“So God created man in his own image,
in the image of God he created him;
male and female he created them.”
This verse reminds us that when we interact with a person, we are dealing with someone very special to God and that was created in His image. This is not something to take lightly!
2. Secondly, Micah 6:8 (ESV)
“He has told you, O man, what is good;
and what does the LORD require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
and to walk humbly with your God?”
The key reminders for us contained in this passage are to walk humbly, and then to not only do justice to others, but to be kind to them and, again, especially to those we are privileged to lead.
3. Thirdly is 1 Peter 5:2-3 (ESV)
“. . . shepherd the flock of God that is among you, exercising oversight, not under compulsion, but willingly, as God would have you; not for shameful gain, but eagerly; not domineering over those in your charge, but being examples to the flock.’
This passage is a reminder to be a shepherd and not a “boss”. It reminds us to check our motives as we lead others. The passage reminds us to be examples to those we lead. The other thing that strikes me about this passage is how we are to be shepherds. Shepherds of that time were not “rock stars”, but simple and lowly men who were given stewardship over the flocks of other men. Theirs was a lonely life as they nurtured and protected their flocks, oftentimes at great risk and cost to their own lives. They received little reward from society at large. This passage is a reminder to not to make so much of “leadership”, but to learn to shepherd our “flock” on behalf of God and others so that the “flock” may thrive and not for our own glory.
So what is your viewpoint? How do you “see” and lead others?