Axioms for KidMin #3 – Always Take The High Road
Bill Hybels tells this story in his book Axiom:
Early in his ministry career there was a time when he resigned out of frustration and he was going to communicate hi frustrations & disappointments to the entire congregation via letter upon his departure.
He met with an older man in the church who told him this:
“Bill, I cannot urge you strongly enough to take the high road on Sunday. Bless what you can bless. Thank everyone you can thank. Cheer on what is appropriate to cheer on. And be done with it. I am an old man now, and never once have I regretted taking the high road.”
Good advice. Not only when you are leaving your position, but always! Ministry is messy, plain and simple. People are people. We all make mistakes and we all hurt others at times.
Yes, sometimes it’s worse than others. I’ve experienced shocking decisions by leadership, been hurt by gossip, gotten frustrated with incompetence, and been stunned by gossip about me. If you’ve been in leadership for very long, you probably have, too.
And it doesn’t matter. Taking the high road is always the best option. Always.
That does not mean you don’t address a problem appropriately, or make every attempt at communicating to the right people in the right way. That is different than joining in the fray for the purpose of making someone else look bad, pay for their offense, or getting even.
I don’t think I’m as old as the gentleman Hybels spoke with, but I can certainly agree – I have never regretted taking the high road. And I will add – I’ve almost always regretted when I did NOT take the high road.