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Gifted to Lead

You know that feeling when your brain can't take one more bit of information because you can't physically store it anywhere? Your brain doesn't know how to organize it or move forward because there's so much in there?

I'm there.

I got to attend Gifted to Lead: The Art of Leading in the Church as a Woman yesterday. Great day. Great women. Lots of good stuff to lean into and flesh out.

Today we were at Willowcreek for the Reveal conference. Continues tomorrow. Taking a deep look at how our churches help people move from interested in Christ to a deeply committed disciple.

Highlights from Gifted to Lead...

Growing Up a Leader
  • Young girls with the gift of leadership can be described as bossy. But boys are described as active and agressive. Girls are more verbal when they're younger. It's the line between being strong but likable. Females get confused about how to be assertive yet kind.
  • The fear of men & women working closely together has kept people from great tasks & ministries
  • There is something very powerful about having your gift named. YOU are a leader.
  • Do you have zero ego? Make room for people to use their gifts
  • I have to put my call on the altar of community
  • Can I receive criticism in a way that provokes growth?
  • What is the size of the obstacle it will take to stop you?

Vision of Your Calling

  • My vision of leadership must be bigger than my place & situation
  • The world needs my gift
  • My gift should energize me and bring me joy most of the time
  • When you lead well, you will face obstacles
  • Stop being surprised that leadership is hard. It's 80% perserverence
  • Fight hard to be the leader God called you to be
  • God is the source of my gift
  • We must tap into people's desires to have an impact on their world
  • We have great power in our verbiage when we communicate vision


  • Try to get very clear on who God made you to be and who God didn't make you to be
  • The most difficult person to lead will always be yourself
  • Look around one looks like you. Then why do we always try to copy others?
  • Do I have a settled understanding of who I am?
  • The more comfortable I get with my brokenness, the easier it is to be self-aware


  • Learn the right kind of talking back
  • Communicate strongly in order to clarify, direct, encourage, admonish, apologize, envision
  • Learn how to speak more, be stronger in your voice
  • But maybe your challenge is to speak less and speak better
  • Be gracious in your listening, but firm in your decision
  • If you have to say something difficult, start from making observations and asking questions
  • What am I afraid of? We're afraid our voice won't be heard.
  • If you do not give yourself a chance to make mistakes, your leadership will be capped
  • We must become very comfortable with making mistakes

Managing Power

  • Get comfortable saying "I'm sorry, I made a mistake, I dropped the ball, I need help, I don't know, what do you think?"
  • When we handle conflict well, we own our power, collaborate, create momentum, equip & empower, deal directly with issues & people
  • Compromise is mutually agreed upon medicority

Creating a Rhythm of Life that Works

  • What's one thing you're going to take out of your schedule and one thing you're going to add?
  • Henry Cloud: Three things change people - grace, truth & time
  • In the majority of life, there is not a right or wrong answer
  • There are transitions & then there are seasons
  • If you don't intentionally think about your life after marriage & kids, you'll gravitate to more traditional roles
  • Sometimes you have to lower your standards in different seasons of life
  • What do you need to breathe life into you?
  • Jesus never journaled
  • My heart bursts when I reflect on how much I love my husband & family. That's the tip of the ice burg of how much God loves me

Leaning into your Tribe

  • We are mean to the very women we worship next to on Sunday morning
  • We envy the most in the places we feel the most vulnerable
  • In the church, we don't always celebrate the number of options open to women
  • There are countless ways to do life - stop criticizing other women's choices
  • Believe the best about other women
  • Get over our insecurities

Mentoring & Leaving a Leadership Legacy

  • Don't need a big curriculum - just hang out time
  • They want to hear your stories & talk about situations
  • Leaders like chaos. Administrators clean it up & sequence it
  • Our community needs every valued gift
  • We make heroes out of people with certain kinds of gifts
  • Every spiritual gift is a reflection of God
  • To develop leaders: give them opportunities, challenges & relationships

whew... :)


Shawn said…
Looks like you had a great conference!
Diana said…
I have learned a lot just reading your notes. Wow. Could we bring some training like this to Stillwater for a women's conference of our own? Thanks for your tidbits of information.......

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