Power Trip

Blog / Produced by The High Calling
Chains That Bind 300x236

I’ve had some outstanding bosses. And I’ve have some pretty bad ones, too. I bet you’ve experienced both kinds as well. The worst ones were those that were self-absorbed. The entire workplace seemed to revolve around their personality, opinions, likes and dislikes. They expended tremendous energy on the endless accumulation of converts and followers. My job description could boil down to one thing: To make him look good. Jim Lange’s blog recently highlighted what it takes to be a true leader, as articulated by John Maxwell. He lists the following seven points:

  • Let go of your ego.
  • Become a good follower first.
  • Build positive relationships.
  • Work with excellence.
  • Rely on discipline, not emotion.
  • Make adding value your goal.
  • Give your power away.

The last point really struck home. We spend so much of our energy grasping at power – who admires us, who follows us, who listens to us – that we are never really in a place where we can learn from someone else. The tightly controlled ships of power eventually spring a thousand leaks.

Jim Lange quotes Maxwell, “One of the ironies of leadership is that you become a better leader by sharing whatever power you have, not by saving it all for yourself. You're meant to be a river, not a reservoir. If you use your power to empower others, your leadership will extend far beyond your grasp.”

When Jesus leads with a line like, “If you want to be great…” we lean forward in anticipation. After all, we all want to be great in one form or another. But then he says, “Learn to be a servant of all.”

It’s a paradox – give and you shall get. The Bible is full of them. At first, this release of power is deflating. After all, we’ve been schooled in the ways of the world. But letting go of power is actually liberating. It frees us up from the exhausting pursuit of things that don't last. It frees us from pride. It frees us from the pain we inflict on those around us.

What’s your personal experience with power trips?

Read all of Jim Lange’s blog here.

Post written by David Rupert of Red Letter Believers. ‘Chains' photograph by David Rupert, Used with permission.