Wednesday, May 13, 2009

"Baby Steps" Aren't Baby Steps to Babies

Have you ever heard a baby say, "Look at me, I'm taking baby steps!"? I know - babies walk before they talk real well. So what do we adults mean when we talk about taking baby steps?

Recently our Transition Team was discussing what "baby steps" could be taken by the congregation in order for us to move toward a more missional mindset in the church. As we were talking I was thinking - what would be easy for us to do? Later I realized that "baby steps" are small but never easy.

In fact, "baby steps" are more frightening to babies than adult steps are to adults. Have you ever noticed how a baby holds on to anything and everything when they are learning to walk. They have a fear of falling and don't like the pain of hitting the floor.

Leaders must remember this reality. Baby steps are frightening to anyone who has never walked before. If we are to help our followers to walk on their own we must hold their hand firmly enough that they know we will not let them hurt themselves if they are less than successful in their efforts. And we must offer enough encouragement that their courage will be strong enough to take the risk.

When was the last time you helped someone take some "baby steps" to venture out and try something new and different?

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