Leaders are rightly held to a higher standard than the rest. And we should think twice before rushing into positions of leadership when our own house is not in order. All the same, being a leader doesn’t mean we stop being human. And we can humbly accept the mantle of leadership without the expectation of being perfect.
Of course, leadership is not something we should take lightly. To care for the people God has entrusted to us is not a casual duty. And we might wisely choose to bow out of consideration when we know the many undone places still in our own story.
We can only lead others as far as we’ve gone ourselves. And we must simply cover some ground ourselves before attempting to lead others to do the same.
But this doesn’t require us to have arrived. In many respects, we will always be on the way – ever learning, growing, and becoming better versions of who God has called us to be. But we should have enough maturity under our belts not to be easily taken out at the first hurdle of difficulty.
At the same time, being on the way also means we’re still human. We might have areas of weakness and thorns in the flesh we continue to wrestle with even as leaders. But these struggles don’t disqualify us from the role.
In fact, our faith and humility in dealing with them can actually make us better equipped. Remembering our humanity allows us to remember that of others as well.
To be sure, we invite much harm when leadership requires us to pretend to be someone we’re not. But we miss bringing the good when we hold back because of the false expectation of being a superhuman.
In the end, consider carefully the readiness of your own soul before taking a position of leadership. And even when you are a leader, still allow yourself to be an imperfect human.