In the first half of this 6 part blog series, I’ve shared with you 3 leadership mistakes I’ve made (Distraction, Defensiveness and Drivenness) and what I’ve learned with the hopes that you may be safe-guarded from the same issues in your life and ministry. In the 4th part of the series I’ll touch on the power of incremental drift.
Drift – Sometimes I can be off target and not even know it.
Standing in a harbour recently, I studied the wide variety of colourful boats that had been moored. I’ve always enjoyed the beauty of boats with their bright colours and flowing sails. I find it all very pleasurable and calming.
On this particular day, as I admired the beautiful scene before me, I gradually noticed that one boat was moving a little more than the rest. The boat was not properly anchored! Little by little it just floated out of the safe harbour finding its way out to sea.
At that moment I realized, had I not been standing there observing the harbour, I would have missed it drift just like the captain did. Imagine the surprise and shock to come back to find one of your most prized possessions gone, lost in the wide blue sea!
I hate to admit it but this drift can easily happen to me. When I don’t spend time daily in the Word of God, I can begin a gradual drift that virtually no one notices including myself.
Here’s 3 ways how I try to prevent drift.
1. Anchor myself in the Word
I feel much safer and secure when I make time and space (even just 10-15 minutes daily) for my heavenly Father speak to me by reading His Word and spending time with Him in prayer. In this way, He has the opportunity to keep me in alignment with His purposes for that day and my life. This time provides me with an anchor, something I’m tied to – rather than just drifting in my relationship with Him.
2. Secure good friendships
Having a couple of good friends with whom we keep each other accountable helps to provide me with an objective perspective on what I’m experiencing and how I’m reacting to circumstances in my life. These friends help to identify the drift that can so easily happen in my life without my awareness. They become the anchor relationships that have proven to be “life-saving” in some of the most trying seasons of my life.
3. Check my Compass
Sometimes we can be misaligned and not even know it. I like to be purposeful in setting time aside once a month to stop and gain some perspective of where I am and where I’m going. Drift happens so subtly and can be unrecognizable. Having an intentional routine and time to stop and check my plans and intentions is my way of being proactive. It keeps my thoughts and relationship with God in right order.
To suddenly become aware of incremental drift over time can be alarming and even daunting. The distance from where I am to where I want to be can seem insurmountable.
For me, once I’ve found myself off-course I go first to God for His direction and then to those friends closest to me for perspective. Then I start working towards the desired destination by realigning my relationship with God, strengthening my friendships and purposely setting time aside to ‘check my compass’.
Have you ever experienced incremental drift? Leave a comment below.
Did you miss the first 3 parts of the “6 Leadership Mistakes I’ve Made in Ministry” series? Continue reading here:
Part 1: Distraction
Part 2: Drivenness
Part 3: Defensiveness