The first step in mixing  problem is acknowledging there is one right? Over the last week, I have taken a good hard look at my leadership and asked God to reveal some things to me. The funny thing about God, when you ask Him about this kind of stuff, He is usually quick to reveal to you the things that are holding you back so you can be more like Him. The funny thing is too if you ask your friends or your spouse, they will be quick to tell you too. 

The following things are things I suck at. These are the things I have identified as things that are holding me back as a leader, as a pastor and as a good friend, husband, mentor whatever. These are things that I know I need to work on and they might be things you struggle with them as well. You might have some others, but the key is identifying it. You might not want to hear it, but it will only make you better. 

I suck at:

Celebrating – I don’t know if it’s because how I am wired, but once a thing is done, I’m on to the next thing. I don’t think this is a bad thing, but it can be a bad thing if you don’t take the time with your team or volunteers to see what went well, who do you need to celebrate, encourage, say “Great job on…..” too. What gets celebrated gets repeated. Some ways I have been trying to combat this is:

  • At the start of each service review meeting we ask, “Who do we need to text, call and tell them great job? Who did we see stand out who we can encourage?” Then we take a moment to do so.
  • Before diving into fix it mode, we celebrate first. It’s a must.
  • At our volunteer Hang & Trains, we ask for stories of how God is moving in the lives of students and take moments to celebrate what God is doing with our ministry.

Communicating as clear as I thought I did – I always think I communicated something crystal clear (don’t we all?) when it really was muddy at best. I can’t even tell you how many times this has caused some tension on my team because I thought I communicated something clearly and when it came down to execution, it didn’t happen like I thought. When we reviewed the night, it always came down to my lack of clarity. Something I need to get better at is two fold: 1) communicate as clearly as possible and 2) Be approachable enough for anyone to come up and feel comfortable to ask for more clarity if they are not. That’s on me too. Probably another thing I suck at too. Dang it. 

Being in the moment – My Myers-Briggs is ENTJ “The Executive” which means I am always looking for problems and looking to fix them. All of that is great, but it sometimes robs me of being in the moment with my team, my volunteers, or my students. Of course I want my event to go well, of service to be perfect, whatever is happening to go well. But is the event going off without a hitch worth the time I could have been in the moment to listen to a student’s story? Or laugh with our volunteers? Have fun with my staff and enjoy the event we put on? The answer is no. So I have been intentional of being in the moment with our ministry. It’s been paying off, I like it.

There are some thing I know I suck at. What do you suck at and need to get better in?


Justin Knowles