Humans are a strange but compassionate species. We are an amalgam of spirit, social relationships, and awkward behaviour. Our lives are made hopeful by infinite opportunities for love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Love is said to be the greatest of these.
We subscribe to the words of Kahlil Gibran in The Prophet: “The smallest act of kindness is worth more than the greatest intention.” The spirit in which an act is done permeates the whole nature of our person. Love is freely and wilfully expressed in action when it comes from the heart.
People need to be understanding of one another. We cannot be afraid to speak the truth, even when we would rather not. To be truly kind, we must forgive those who hurt or wrong us. We believe that reciprocating compassion makes us worthy.
Leadership is an act of love. The leader as lover embraces the power of passion and harnesses its energy to the needs of the nation, community, and people. It is essential to the human condition to nurture the capacity for compassion in both leaders and team members. The object is collective well-being and harmony. Sharing a sense of contribution and belonging is uplifting.
The challenges of leadership are not insignificant. Fortunately, many public servants love their jobs and have the passion, ethic, and humility to succeed. At times, the task is daunting, or frustration results from stalled progress. Take heart from this alternative perspective of leadership.
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves: who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small doesn’t serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.
We are all meant to shine, as children do.
We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.
It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone!
And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others!
Nelson Mandela spoke these words at his 1994 presidential inauguration. He wanted us to better understand our gifts as leaders. You are called to carry his words of inspiration on your marathon of hope.