The other day I was feeling pretty down about me being a leader. Does that ever happen to you at all? There are just days in which you sort of question how you do ministry at all? Just me? Sweet. Well it was one of those days where I was in that mood. I was sitting at Starbucks doing whatever I was doing and some of our students walked in. We got to talking and I was asking them about our Winter Retreat we just had last weekend and they just would not stop going on about their leader. They were actually coming to meet up with their leader that day. Their leader is a 45-year-old man with glasses and a beard, but they wouldn’t shut up about how awesome their group time has been and how great their leader is.
So I just asked them because I was feeling down with myself and I wanted to know why this leader was so “awesome” and I wanted to hear it from their mouths. What they said snapped me out of my little pitty party and I got to thinking about how we all need to be reminded of this sometimes. They simply said:
“He is just real with us.”
What a simple but powerful statement. These students were drawn to this leader simply because he was real. He was transparent with them. He opened up to them about what he has gone through, what he is going through presently and that has set the tone for the rest of the group to open up and talk about the things they themselves are going through. Because this leader was “see-through” transparent with his life, his students took his example and followed.
Groups are only as transparent as their leaders. Groups are only as deep as their leaders. Groups only listen to each other as much as the leader allows people to tell their stories and struggles. It got me thinking about me as leader. Was I really being transparent? Was I really bringing the group where I was willing to go? The next group time, I was intentional with being transparent on our topic and the flood gates opened with the students. They were transparent. They went as deep as I went. I was “see-through” so they can be also. What a great reminder that is. Do you have a “see-through” group? How “see-through” are you being?