One of the people I’m most looking forward to meeting when I die is Peter, the apostle. As I read the gospels, and particularly the Gospel of Mark (which many believe is a record of Peter’s testimony about Jesus, recorded by Mark), I get a fascinating glimpse into the life and personality of Peter. He’s the type of person who has what experts call “high mental energy.” He was a man of action; when he heard “question,” he thought “answer.” When he heard “problem,” he thought “solution.”
Sometimes this “leap before you look” mentality got Peter into sticky situations. But sometimes, it was just the sort of take charge attitude that was called for. On the day of Pentecost, for example, someone needed to step up and boldly describe what was happening. Someone needed to have the courage to share with all those people what God wanted them to hear. And Peter’s boldness provided him with the ability to do just that.
Part of refining ourselves as leaders means that we discern when are the times to act and speak boldly and when are the times to pause and observe.
Another part of refining our leadership means that we know ourselves well enough to surround ourselves with complementary people. If you are a person of action, like Peter, partner with someone who will keep you grounded. If you are a reflective, thinking leader, surround yourself with people of action who will spur you to activity.
Who is in your life that complements your leadership gifts? How can you refine those relationships in order to maximize your effectiveness?