Saturday, December 15, 2012

How to be a good wingman II

I loved being on another man's team. When I came to faith back in the 70's, I was on Carl's elders team as a college student. Then when we planted back in 1983, I joined Dudley's transl-local team for around 20 years. Even when we moved to America 16 years ago, I valued the opportunity to wear both hands - leading and following. It was always so helpful because I both led a team as well as was on another man's team. This kept my feet on the ground, as I was constantly being reminded of the "agony and ecstasy" of collaborating on a vision that I hadn't initiated.

One of my favorite quotes in this regard comes from Colin Powell when he was leader of the American Armed Forces. When he gathered all these top generals together he would remind them with words to this effect: "When we gather to discuss and debate this matter, you are obligated to express your opinion and give your perspective. You owe that to the team. When we reach a decision, you are obligated to own it as if it were yours."

Being a good wingman, demands your honesty and integrity. The moment a team can no longer express their opinion freely and easily, it has lost it true trinitarian model. It is in fact dying and will ultimately fragment. It may take a few years, but it will implode. The very nature of true team in includes:

1.   Every team player is valuable for their value as people, with their integrity, faithfulness and gifting;

2.   Every player is valued for their eyes, lenses on each conversation. Their voice in dialogue is essential to the health and maturity of the team. Silence or worse a sense of being patronized is a sure sense that the team is losing her way, and surrendering to the dominant voice of a single leader. That then leads to a form of dictatorship even if it a is a pleasant or benevolent one;

3.   Every player is drawn out to be engage in the conversation - it is not dominated by the alpha personalities in the group. That will always lead to imbalance and bias. A true wingman is valued by the leader, when they know that their perspective is essential and necessary. They are to honor this value by doing their homework, research and coming into the discussion, ready, studied and prayed up.

4.   Every player leaves the room with the decision reached after prayer-filled discussion, owning it as if it was theirs. There is a conviction that we will all carry when the decision is made by "It seemed good to us and the Holy Spirit". It is so important that the private conversation never drifts towards "... well I never really agreed but..." This does so much damage and opens the door for the enemy to divide the team. Ownership is imperative to being a string and steadfast wingman.

1 comment:

  1. Chris, which books would you suggest for reading more on the Trinity, particularly on Trinity and community. Thanks.