Monday, November 3, 2008

Syncro-Blog: Leadership & Being A Single Mom

This is my virgin run at a syncro-blog but I figured that because of the topic: LEADERSHIP, it was one that I could not pass up. I started writing this with an agenda. I mean look at this. It is November 4th. The election is in full tilt and coming to an end. Millions of voters are casting their votes for the candidate that they want to win. They are exercising their rights as Americans to elect and have a say. They are casting their votes with the HOPE that their guy will win. I am hoping that my guy wins. But either way, whoever wins, I will pray for them. And I will hope. And I will expect.

And that is where this post will go. When I think of leadership, the first thing that comes to my mind is Hope. Then Expectation. Moving on from there is Responsibility. And on to Accountability.

In any leadership capacity whether it be in politics. Church. Corporate America. Or family. Where there is a leader. …there is Hope and Expectation. Healthy leadership should also be responsible and accountable.

In my blogs and on my pages I write about me and how my life is played out. How I process. How I think. Mistakes I make. What I feel. Today is no different.

I have had a lot of experience with leadership. Both with being led and being the leader.

In my life. I am the leader. I am the mom and the dad. I have had to pull up the edges. Carry the weight. Make the money stretch. Be the nurturer. Be the disciplinarian. I have both sides of the coin.

Now that my kids are older. My twins turn 18 next month. I have had to come to terms with things that I did and didn’t do. I have had to swallow mistakes made. Victories won. Hurdles jumped. Bridges crossed….some of them burned. I have had to take off the rose colored glasses that occasionally find their way back onto my face. And then look at where I am and where I am not. I also have to look at where my family is. And part of this inventory is seeing where I have fallen short.

I think I have gotten some things wrong.

In researching this topic. Mulling it over. I have seen that the kind of leadership I expect from those around me….I don’t always model.

***You cannot be a good leader unless you are a good follower***

I think of being a good follower and I gotta admit that I am rebellious. I push back hard and often. Humility isn’t exactly one of my greatest assets. Or strengths. I second guess. I look for a motive. And I expect much. Sometimes my heavy weight expectations exceed my light weight willingness to chip in.

**The best way to lead is to lead by example**

When I think of leading by example…I am a pretty crappy example at times. My kids see me at my very worst. They see the….. raving witch with no makeup…before my first cup of coffee….oh my God I’m late….where are my car keys….how am I going to cover this bill… will someone PLEASE get the phone…..Jack the dog don’t jump on my clean jeans….I don’t want to do another day of this….turn that TV down…..ME. Sometimes my example mirrors Rosanne Barr rather than Christ.

I have taken the responsibility and worn it well. Although at times I have become irresponsible. I have taken the word of God and the life that I should be leading to glorify Him and treaded very heavily and without regard to the effects of my foot steps in the eyes of my children. They have seen me overeat until I weighed over 400+ lbs. They have seen me binge drink and drunk. They have seen me lie to cover my mistakes or buy more time. They have heard me my take my Lord’s name in vain. They notice when I ignore the sin in their own lives instead of confronting it. They have seen the ugly. The sinner in me.

The accountability lies in my conscious and the conviction of the Holy Spirit within when taking this inventory. The accountability also lies with my children and the harm that I have caused. The stumbling blocks that I have placed for them by my example. That is a very hard thing to look at indeed. Taking an inventory of mistakes made by me in the leadership role of my family is downright devastating. I’m so glad that there is an answer and a light that shines in the tunnel of regret and shame.

That is HOPE. Hope that there is grace for me. And for the effects that I have passed on down the line to them. My gifts from God. My children. The HOPE that my sin and my ugly is covered under the blood of the Divine One. That there is hope for my kids to become BETTER than I was. Hope for them to learn from my mistakes. Hope that propels them to want to do things different and better than I did. HOPE that there is a new day tomorrow.

So there. I had intended to write about the role of leadership in politics. But GOD always has a say in my writing. He always has a way of bringing it back to me. Where it starts. The family is where good leaders are shaped and raised up. The leader of the family is there to spot and nurture the qualities and bends that shape who the children are to become. To help them fulfill their call. I may not have always done the right thing. Made the right choice. Covered all the bases. But I’d like to believe and hope that there is someone bigger than my stuff out there that can cover the bases that I missed. Jesus.
Here is a partial list of other bloggers that took part on this topic. The opinions and forums of which they wrote is as vast as the subject: Leadership. Take a look at what others had to say.
Jonathan Brink - Letter To The President
Adam Gonnerman - Aspiring to the Episcopate
Kai - Leadership - Is Servant Leadership a Broken Model?
Sally Coleman - In the world but not of it- servant leadership for the 21st Century Church
Alan Knox - Submission is given not taken
Joe Miller - Elders Lead a Healthy Family: The Future
Cobus van Wyngaard - Empowering leadership
Steve Hayes - Servant leadership
Geoff Matheson - Leadership
John Smulo - Australian Leadership Lessons
Helen Mildenhall - Leadership
Tyler Savage - Moral Leadership - Is it what we need?
Bryan Riley - Leading is to Listen and Obey
Susan Barnes - Give someone else a turn!
Liz Dyer - A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Polls…
Lionel Woods - Why Diverse Leadership is Good for America
Julie Clawson - Leadership Expectations
Ellen Haroutunian - A New Kind Of Leadership
Matt Stone - Converting Leadership
Steve Bradley - Lording or Leading?
Adam Myers - Two types of Leadership
Bethany Stedman - A Leadership Mosaic
Kathy Escobar - I’m Pretty Sure This Book Won’t Make It On The Bestseller List
Fuzzy Orthodoxy - Self Leadership
Sonja Andrews - Leadership In An Age of Cholera


Erin said...

Sorry I didn't get here to comment sooner...I kept getting distracted.

I love it and think you are right that family is where it starts. I hope more than anything to raise up sons who love God and respect others. It's so hard to always example that, yet I know my mistakes are accepted by them as part of being human.

Tara said...

I think that part of being a good leader (parent) is the humility to say that we do mess up. AND it is always how we land that our kids remember. Thanks for the feedback Erin. As always it is wonderful when you stop by.

kathyescobar said...

hey tara, so glad that you wrote for this. what you expressed through your writing, in my opinion, is the best example of a good leader--honesty &, people, God, anyone else we are in relationship with--his image is reflected when we live out those values. thanks for sharing. lots of love kathy

Tara said...

Wow! Thanks Kathy. I'm really stoked at your feedback. Thanks for stopping in...Hugs to you.