Sunday, June 16, 2013

Eric - Follow the Leader

Follow The Leader

I found myself surrounded by twelve children who were too young to sit with the infants, but too young to participate in the water balloon toss.  I was able to hold them off with two water balloons being passed back and forth in the circle. “Círculo” in Portuguese, I am learning along with the 4 year olds.  Once the balloons have broken and there is surprisingly few tears I have only moments before the children remember that I am also “Eric the Human Jungle Gym.” Between the age of the children (crianças) and the language barrier I’m at a loss for what to do next.  How can I work with these children when I can’t even communicate with them?

So we circle up holding hands and I begin to jump up and down in place.  The children follow suit and soon enough we are all jumping and they are following me around the sand yard between the church and the CICA School.  We make big monster steps complete with sound effects; hop on one foot, made funny faces and swung our arms like windmills.  There are pictures and video evidence of all of this that will be uploaded when we have a more stable Internet connection.  I have never had so much fun.

These games lead me to think about leadership in the church.  It was not long ago that I had much trepidation about taking a role of spiritual leadership at the Upper Room.  My feeling at the time was that I had little understanding of my own faith, especially while surrounded by those that were so articulate in their beliefs.  Beyond parroting words and phrases I heard from others it felt like a language barrier as foreign a Portuguese.  I decided to join the Steering Team despite my hesitations.  My feeling was that adding my voice to the leadership of the church was be good for the sake of diversity of opinions and I could learn some new phrases along the way. 

My place as a leader in the church does not depend on my mastery of the language of faith.  My journey with Christ is far from over and I have already learned so much.  My place as a leader in the church is not limited to working with children or those whose spiritual vocabulary is less than mine.  Leadership will come through following Jesus, learning my his example and imitating it as best as a can.  

1 comment:

  1. Wow! Awesome, I'm so proud of you and can almost feel the anxiety in my stomach, imagining if I was in that position! I often have to remind myself that Jesus says, "in our weakness, He is strong." I feel like I give him a lot of chance to be strong! :)
    It's good to hear what you are doing over there.
    Norma (aka, Norm)