You’ll have to forgive me for stating the obvious.
It’s just that the last time I checked, “the best of men are merely men at best.”
We are all perfectly imperfect regardless of the title printed next to the name on that business card of ours.
So why are we often so shocked and disillusioned when exposed to a leader’s humanity?
I mean seriously though— what did we expect to find?
Did we really believe those in positions of power are without their problems?
The reality is, if we’re not careful, we can easily make the mistake of placing unrealistic expectations on one another — especially on those that have been put in positions of leadership.
This reminds me of a time years ago when I had the privilege of being part of a congregation when they were holding a pastoral search. The search committee had gone to the church with a survey asking the people what characteristics they wanted in their new leader. After compiling everyone’s wants and wishes, was it any wonder the committee came back from their search just weeks later dejected and completely unsuccessful? They returned with a response along the lines of: “church, we hate to break it to you, but the leader you’re after simply doesn’t exist. The leader we believe best fits the description you gave is none other than Jesus himself!”
You see, I can’t help but wonder if maybe the reason for much of the disappointment in our lives, is that we’re holding people to a set of unrealistic expectations?
The reality is, we can so easily forget that our fellow friends with leadership titles are as fundamentally flawed as we are. Maintaining that they live to a standard of perfection is unreasonable, and quite frankly, a little misguided. Not to mention, it will unavoidably lead to some form of dysfunction and disappointment eventually.
So maybe what would do us all some good is to give each other the appropriate amount of space and grace to be human.
I mean, if the apostle Paul once had to learn to boast in his weaknesses, and allow God’s sovereign grace to cover all of the inadequacies of both his life and leadership, why would we think it would be any different for us?
I don’t know.
It’s just that, what if the reason God uses broken humanity to lead us on His behalf is to ensure that we never make the mistake of looking to a man to fulfill the place that God wants in our lives?
You see, though leadership is put in place by God, it is not put there in place of God!
At any rate, my point is that everybody’s messed up; there’s no title, platform, or pulpit big enough to shield people from their humanity.
So who are we to condemn in others that which we condone in ourselves?
I mean, who would any of us be if it weren’t for the grace of God?
As Paul once penned, “but by the grace of God I am what I am.”
It’s as simple as that.
We are who we are, not by the grit, nor by the greatness, but by the grace of our incredible God.
So the next time you’re tempted to pick up a stone or two and throw them in the direction of someone else, “let he who is without sin cast the first stone”.
‘Cause after all, nobody’s perfect — right?