There are times in leadership when the problems we face seem impossible to fix or we lack the resources to fix them. I’ve not yet met a leader who had a crystal ball to predict the future and be fully prepared for everything.
Resourcefulness is a tool that will serve every leader well. When things go beyond what was expected and we find ourselves short, it’s up to the leader to find a way to make things work, to look up and to look around.
One of narratives in the gospels that continues to teach me today is when Jesus feeds the multitudes. If you think about it, the stories bare significance as they are mentioned in each of the four gospels a total of six times, [Matthew 14 & 15; Mark 6 & 8; Luke 9; and John 6]. I believe one of the things Jesus is trying to point out to his followers is the principle of dependent resourcefulness.
Rather than wring his hands and become frustrated with a lack of resources he asks his disciples to look around and see what is available, after looking up and thanking God for what seems too little he gets creative. Curiosity and Creativity are the foundations of resourcefulness. Curiosity looks for the potential in everything around it and addresses the problem from multiple angles, not just the preferred, best case scenario. Creativity takes what it has and begins to work the problem in ways that were not originally thought of—often times using something outside of its intended purpose.
God directs the path of the leader, and when these moments happen it’s best to look up and ask for help in terms of creativity, and then to look around to see what God has provided to help you meet the unexpected needs of others. Resourcefulness is not a spiritual gift that only a few have, it is however a mindset and skill set that is developed over time.
Here are a couple of book summaries to help. Our agreement with Leadership Studies allows us to share these with everyone who is influenced by Richwoods.
The Soft Edge by Rich Karlgaard
The Myths of Creativity, by David Burkus
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If you have questions about the information shared in this fyi, you can contact our Executive Pastor, Joel Dryden by email. You can also leave a comment below.