This particular sunny summer morning found me on our front porch before the family woke, reading, praying, thinking...
My mind went back to my early days in ministry and my frustration over not being handed the keys earlier. I had so many good ideas! I knew what was wrong with this community, with these people. Especially those older ones who seemed to stand in the way so much.
Didn't they realize that if everyone just did what I thought we should do, the whole thing would be better?
Yes- the arrogance of youth.
We live in a world where grey hair, rather than being coveted as a sign of wisdom and experience is actually dreaded and dyed away in an attempt to emulate youth. Crazy.
The problem is, no one has bought into this upside down value system more wholeheartedly than the young. Believe me, as someone who felt he had to plant a church, largely in response to not being handed the keys, I get the impatience. I also get the importance of handing off leadership to gifted, qualified YOUNG people as early as possible.
But here's the thing- as someone who regularly invites people in their 20s into the role of elder in our community, I can say truthfully that while age is often a consideration, the real issue is maturity, and maturity shown in particular ways.
So- "When can I LEAD?"
The answer is simple.
When your love for us outweighs your impatience with us and your anger that we aren't already like Jesus.
And when you know it's Him we need, not you.