I work with leaders of every shape and size and from literally all types of backgrounds, but one of the things that I have identified that is common among them all is the fact that they are all in some way and to some degree agents of change. Leadership by its very nature is about change. It is about moving from one place to another. To be a leader we must have followers either directly or indirectly and this implies change. Often we get leadership and management confused. But they are really not the same. Leadership is about change, progress, and movement, while management is about maintenance of systems, preservation, and sustaining the status quo. While we absolutely need them both to be effective, they are completely different concepts.
In Leadership creating the right environment is the critical first step to successful accomplishment. You might say there is a climate for success. But one of the great challenges faced by leaders is how to create the right environment for the vision they want to accomplish.
Recently a friend of our ministry, Bishop Tudor Bismark, during a message made reference to the concept of climate in a spiritual context. It really got my attention so I thought I would do a little research and see if there were additional spiritual applications and principles to be learned from the natural science of climatology.
The word climate comes from the Greek word “Kilma”, which refers to the inclination of the sun. It is defined as the long-term effect of the sun’s radiation on the earth’s atmospheric layers. The foundation of the climate is then the atmosphere, and the atmosphere is determined in a region by the combination of average temperatures and the amounts of precipitation that a particular region receives. This atmospheric condition when consistent over time will have a tremendous effect on the climate. Simply put, sustain a certain atmosphere and create a particular climate.
Here is another fact that is very important. The climate defines the kind of life that it can sustain. Particular climates allow for certain creatures to survive, even thrive within its environment, while others either adapt, exit, or become extinct. Changing the climate can be traumatic. Ask the dinosaurs.
Now let’s make spiritual application.
When attempting to fulfill a vision we often face resistance because our vision requires the creation of a new climate. Perhaps the existing climate cannot support the vision that we have and, therefore, we must produce change in the climate. When resistance comes, and it always does, we can allow it to become personal which leads to a sure sequence of failure, or we can focus on sustaining the atmospheric condition that will eventually alter the entire climate to a suitable environment for accomplishing the vision that God has given us. Don’t fight with people! Create an atmosphere and sustain it. People who are not intended by God to be with you will migrate out and those who are will adapt to the new climate.