Utah and Thoughts About Leadership

I’m writing this on a plane somewhere over Kansas, on my way to Salt Lake City, where I will be participating in a gathering of leaders of Leadership Development Networks (LDN’s) from across our denomination.
Salt Lake City seems like a strange place for a Christian Reformed conference, but apparently it’s a fairly central location, and it’s outside the hub of our usual CRC spots.

I have been serving in the Eastern Canada LDN (ECLDN) for 6 years now and it has been an exciting adventure.  We have graduated 3 groups of participants from our 3 year program and we currently have 31 enrolled this year.  I’m traveling with four others who are involved in the ECLDN–we’ve been thrilled to see our program expand to a second site east of Toronto which was just launched this Fall!

My work with the ECLDN has been somewhat behind the scenes in relation to my role as pastor at Faith Church.  But it has been so important to my own growth.  My involvement with the ECLDN has taught me how vital good leadership is to the mission of the church.  As church communities, we do not simply “drift” toward becoming more effective.  Engaging our neighbourhoods, growing in prayer, deepening our spiritual walk doesn’t just happen.  It must be taught and modeled and practiced.

This is humbling, since I know that I have a long way to go in my own leadership journey.  I often feel like I’m just stumbling along toward a vision of being a person who reflects Christ in a compelling and compassionate way.  But being involved in the ECLDN has been a huge part of my own growth, because it has connected me to so many passionate Christians who share the same vision and want to stumble along together.

It will be good to hear the stories of what God is doing in other LDN’s across our denomination.  And I’m looking forward to the conversations that will take place and the ideas that God will bring to the surface.  Please pray for us as we meet.  I’ll post updates if I get the chance.  And if I run into Donnie and Marie, I’ll let you know!

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