Leading by Example

Friday March 25, 2011

I don’t know about you, but I have heard over and over that we need to lead by example.  Leading by example is the greatest teacher.  A leader leads by example, whether he intends to or not.  Think about that last saying.  A leader leads by example because all the followers are watching their moves, their attitudes, their actions, their motivations, their life.  That life is in the public eye for all to see and emulate.  It can be a life that has good morals and actions, but it can also be a life that causes those looking on to emulate the negative things they see doing.

I have been reading in I and II Kings and there is a common thread that emerges when the writer is talking about the death of a King and the taking over of the nation by his offspring.  “He committed all the sins his father had done before him,” (I kings 15:3.  In the twentieth year of Jeroboam king of Israel, Asa became king of Judah, . . .and he did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, as his father David had done.” (I Kings 15:9-11)  “Jehoshaphat. . .followed the ways of his father Asa and did not stray from them.” (I Kings 22:42).  “Nadab . . .did evil in the eyes of the Lord, following the ways of his father.” (I Kings 15:26)  You get the picture.

Our parents–us–have a great influence in the characteristics of our children as they look at us and see our handling of everyday life situations.  I knew of a mother who wanted her son to stop smoking marijuana, and yet when I talked to the son, he was concerned about his mother drinking a bottle of wine each and every night.  He was just following in the steps of his mother in anesthetizing his/her emotional pain.

We are powerful leaders, whether we like it or not.  What lifestyles are we teaching our children for their futures.  The encouragement I offer you today is that destructive behaviour can be worked on by changing our patterns into healthier and healthier attitudes, actions, and behaviors.  Transformation can and will happen, if we are willing to stop justifying, minimizing, or denying our problems and work on fixing them.

On this journey, be careful where you step because all eyes are watching.

About James Gorton

I am happily married to Nadine, a person I've known for 20+ years. She and her late husband owned Airpark Auto Service where I took my car for years. Four years after my wife died we began dating and the rest is history. We have a blended family of 6 children between us and love visiting them across this country. We recently had our third grandchild between us. We love to hike, bike and ski. I am a psychologist and do relational life coaching for marriages and families primarily. I love what I do and never get tired of seeing marriages and families move to more healthy places in their lives. Five years ago my oldest daughter Deborah encouraged me to begin writing my thought into a blog I call my Jlog (Jim's log). I have become more and more passionate in connecting everyday experiences to spiritual truths. I hope that as you read my Jlog, you will gain insight into your personal life and experience true growth in your personal and relational life.
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