Growing Strong Leadership Skills
Strong leaders understand that the failures of those they lead should not be interpreted as a negative experience.
Strong leaders can use the failures of those they lead to help everyone. Effective leaders know how important it is to develop an environment where team members are allowed to fail and pick themselves up and move forward.
Peter, a trusted disciple of Jesus, discovered these statements to be true.
Before Jesus was arrested, he told Peter that he would deny that he knew Christ. Not once, but three times. Peter responded to Jesus in this way,
“Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift all of you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.” But he replied, “Lord, I am ready to go with you to prison and to death.” Jesus answered, “I tell you, Peter, before the rooster crows today, you will deny three times that you know me.” (Luke 22:31-34)
As the gospel story unfolds, Peter did just as Jesus predicted.
“Then they seized him and led him away, bringing him into the high priest’s house, and Peter was following at a distance. And when they had kindled a fire in the middle of the courtyard and sat down together, Peter sat down among them. Then a servant girl, seeing him as he sat in the light and looking closely at him, said, “This man also was with him.” But he denied it, saying, “Woman, I do not know him.” And a little later someone else saw him and said, “You also are one of them.” But Peter said, “Man, I am not.” And after an interval of about an hour still another insisted, saying, “Certainly this man also was with him, for he too is a Galilean.” But Peter said, “Man, I do not know what you are talking about.” And immediately, while he was still speaking, the rooster crowed. And the Lord turned and looked at Peter. And Peter remembered the saying of the Lord, how he had said to him, “Before the rooster crows today, you will deny me three times.” And he went out and wept bitterly.” (Luke 22:54-62)
After this experience of denying Jesus, there can be little doubt that Peter felt like a failure. The Bible teaches that Peter had a severe wave of guilt that hit him after his denial of Christ.
Peter weeping bitterly is a sign of self-doubt, personal failure, and regret.
Everyone has felt an experience of failure, at some time or another just as Peter did. However, Peter’s story does not end in his failure.
After the resurrection of Jesus, Peter took his stand in front of the people who had Jesus crucified. He preached a forceful sermon message about Jesus. As he concludes his message he makes this statement, “And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” (Acts 2:21)
After Peter had shared his message about Jesus with confidence and a sense of assurance, the Bible says that over 3,000 people were added to the church in one day. (Acts 2:41)
Here is a man that denied he knew Jesus. He was transformed into a powerful evangelical preacher that convinced thousands of their need for Christ.
What does this story teach us?
- Strong leadership skills can take place through failure!
- Failure is not permanent.
- Anyone can pick himself or herself up from failure.
- Many great things can be accomplished when an individual is willing to pick himself or herself up from a fall and move forward.
There are those who are not prepared to do as Simon Peter did. Failure can be physically and emotionally taxing; however, that does not mean that it has to take control.
Take failure as a learning lesson and move forward in developing strong leadership skills.
Abraham Lincoln once said, “My great concern is not whether you have failed, but whether you are content with your failure.” Failure can be an effective teacher. Jesus, the greatest teacher, known to man, encouraged his disciples not only in their successes but also in their failures. Failure is a powerful teacher.
Have you failed at anything lately? How have you responded to that failure? Are you willing to take failure as a learning lesson or are you going to be victimized by it?
Growing strong leadership skills can be accomplished through failures!