You’ve probably heard the quotation before, “Lead, Follow, or Get Out of the Way. Pretty bold statement. The quote is widely attributed to Thomas Paine but most scholars disagree because the quote doesn’t appear in any of his writings. However, it is attributed to General George S. Patton and the former Chrysler executive Lee Iacocca. Both are known for their leadership in the middle of chaos; Patton, World War II, and Iacocca, the floundering Chrysler company. Something about the audaciousness of the statement appeals to me. Maybe it’s because of the determination and the “in your face” nature that the proclamation declares.
I don’t see it as a “mean” assertion. There are times to be assertive even though many living in church world seem to live out the 11th Commandment, “Thou Shalt Be Nice.” Well, there are times to be bold in your leadership…to feel the weight of decision-making…to be so convinced of purpose and direction that you repeat Iacocca’s words to those who are part of your team. “Lead, Follow, or Get Out of the Way.”
Jesus wasn’t “nice” to Peter Mark 8 when He said, “Get behind me, Satan!” he said. “You do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns.” He was teaching his followers that “… the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and after three days rise again.” Jesus was direct and to the point, because to get misaligned over His purpose and direction would have been catastrophic. There are times for you to be bold in your leadership. Is this one of those times?