A Reflection on Leadership

by Crystal Hurd

My leadership degree has provided me with great insight into what it takes to work with people and organizational infrastructures. That being said, it also deepens my sorrow when I see people who abuse power or engage in bureaucratic chess to accomplish things for personal gain. I personally believe that power is similar to money – it is not “evil” in and of itself, but the lust for it, the insatiable appetite for it can drive a person to do disgusting, terrible things. A quick review of history will illustrate just how far some individuals will go to grasp that power, and what horrible consequences will follow in the wake of these choices.

The best example of good leadership does not take place in stale boardrooms or on the chaos of Wall Street. It exists within the pages of our catechism, the Bible. Jesus walked among those who were less than reputable and he called out the religious legalists who attempted to prove he was not the Messiah. Yet Jesus was kind and gentle. The New Testament is rife with incidents in which Jesus could have easily chosen retribution, but instead chose love.  He shows the world that good leadership is exuding neighborly love and patience and self-control, characteristics which often run contradictory to the competitive, aggressive, Social Darwinist model that those who strive for management and leadership positions feel they must possess. Leadership is not about privilege, it’s about work, working and leading people en masse to build a better future and a better society. Good leaders motivate, not intimidate.  This is the premise for which I present my (mediocre) attempt at a villanelle.

A Reflection for Leaders

by Crystal Hurd

To bow and serve is to truly lead
Humility and wisdom must you seek
Lofty thrones may neglect common need.

The assiduous farmer expectant with seed
A towering guide yet patient and meek
To bow and serve is to truly lead.

Because empires are often nurtured on greed
Yet corruption and selfishness soon will they wreak
Lofty thrones may neglect common need

Dear Messiah – a legacy of love did He breed
Warm, gentle water over followers’ feet
To bow and serve is to truly lead.

Different gender and hue yet a hatred some feed
Oppressing, subverting all that are weak
Lofty thrones may neglect common need.

For leadership begins with a common creed
Value of all, with a voice to speak
To bow and serve is to truly lead.
Lofty thrones may neglect common need.

*****

Dr. Crystal Hurd is a writer, reader, public school educator, and adjunct professor.  She is happily married with three beautiful Terriers (adopted from local shelters).  She is a certified book nerd who loves to read and research works involving faith, literature, art, and leadership.  You can visit her webpage  www.crystalhurd.com , friend her on Facebook, (Crystal Sullivan Hurd) and follow her on Twitter:  @DoctorHurd and @hurdofficial.

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