Home Pastors Pastor Blogs It’s Easier NOT to Lead

It’s Easier NOT to Lead

Leadership is a hot topic with plenty of aspiring and hopeful people clamoring for success in its arena. But the reality is it’s easier NOT to lead.

When we aspire to leadership, we envision the good stuff—the people who will look to us for direction, the success of our organization and the accolades of those who follow us. What we can’t really anticipate is the tough stuff—the people who will question us, leave us and criticize us unfairly.

If you’re reading this, you’re probably a leader with influence, or you hope to be. Stop. Take inventory. Is this what you really want?

If you lead, you’re going to have to disappoint people, redirect people, confront people, motivate people to do things they aren’t quite ready to do; and while you may be respected, you will also be disliked and, often, you’ll be alone.

Leadership and popularity sometimes occupy the same space but are never the same thing. Decide which you want.

If you want to be popular, lead halfheartedly, if at all. If you want to influence people, then proceed full speed ahead. The invitation is open for more leaders, and there is certainly a vacuum in our culture waiting to be filled by leaders with character. But count the cost.

It’s easier not to lead. It’s easier to watch from the stands. It’s easier to go with the flow. There is less friction and less pain.

But in the end, maybe God isn’t calling you to do the easy thing.  

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Brandon Cox is Lead Pastor of Grace Hills Church, a new church plant in northwest Arkansas. He also serves as Editor and Community Facilitator for Pastors.com and Rick Warren's Pastor's Toolbox and was formerly a Pastor at Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, California. In his spare time, he offers consultation to church leaders about communication, branding, and social media. He and his wife, Angie, live with their two awesome kids in Bentonville, Arkansas.