Leaders ask the hard questions.
Was it a sin for me to lower myself in order to elevate you by
preaching the gospel of God to you free of charge? - II Corinthians 11:7
Paul is confronting himself and a group of people he has led-- the church at Corinth. He chose not to ask them to support him and now questions if that was a mistake. The Corinthians are a rather motley crew of believers who are faced with a myriad of unresolved personal and corporate issues. They have grown, but not at a level consistent with what they received from Paul. He has warned them to “receive not the grace of God in vain.” He has encouraged them against false prophets who simply “play the people” for their own gain. He instructed them to give to others, but did not ask them to give to help him. And now, as we see in II Corinthians 11:7, he questions that decision. Paul wonders if his failure to get support is the reason why the Corinthian church has not scaled.
Paul’s question is not simply about Paul. Instead he is interested in the growth of the people and the expansion of the Church. The hard question he is asking is meant to help the group press through the hard barriers of personal and corporate spiritual growth. After all, that’s the business he is in. He is, as it were, scaling the Kingdom.
Leaders ask the hard questions because hard questions let them scale, that is help them to grow or expand in a proportional way. Beginning with yourself, what questions must you ask to scale your group/organization?
Here are four questions to consider as you think about how to scale:
1. How has my experiences as a follower impacted my decision-making process as a leader?
2. What and who am I willing to lose in order to scale?
3. How will I ensure that my concern for others is greater than my concern for how they will perceive what I do/say?
4. What must be communicated at any cost to the organization in order to scale?
Don’t rush the process . Take your time and prayerfully answer these questions. Then, when you know the answers, quickly move forward with truth and kindness.