By guest author Dr. Dan Reidland, Pastor
Encouragement provides the emotional fuel that enables people to hold longer, reach farther, and dig deeper than previously believed possible.
John Maxwell says that encouragement is 51% of leadership. I believe that. As a leader, your role is to give people hope, build them up, and help them believe in themselves in a greater measure than they have before. In short, to help them live a better life.
Do others see you as an encourager?
Encouragement isn’t something that you do from a checklist of “things to do today.” It’s a way of life for a leader. Encouragement is not a soft expression from a weak leader. The toughest of good leaders understand that it’s something core [fundamental] to sustained influence. Essentially, sincere encouragement comes from a deep love of and belief in people and a desire to see them experience life in a better way.
Encouragers naturally draw people to them.
Let me raise the bar on the definition for encouragement. As a leader in a local [group], if you are an encourager, people will naturally migrate to you. When they see you, they smile and instinctively walk toward you. This is not about a charismatic personality. It doesn’t matter if 5 people seek you out or 55 people seek you out. The point is that people will literally move to you because you cause their life to be a little brighter. I’m not talking about people who want permission for something, an extension cord, or keys to the storage area — but people who just want to be around you!
Let’s be honest, life is wonderful, but it can be difficult. True? Do you have any financial challenges? How’s the health of everyone in your family or close friends? Are you married? Do you have kids? Life is good, but it has plenty of challenges. And the pressures of life will press people down, so anyone who consistently and sincerely lifts people up gains the ability to influence — meaning to lead!
If you are a leader in a local church [or group] and people don’t migrate to you, there is a reason. You need to discover what it is. Ask someone you trust, who loves you, and will tell the truth. For now, start encouraging others. Do it sincerely and often.