On our recent trip home from visiting family in the USA, our flight was delayed at take-off, which meant that we would miss our connecting flight in Accra. When the announcement was made that we would now have a 12-hour stopover in Accra, I immediately connected to the plane’s WIFI, so I could Google “Airport lounges in Accra.”
If I was going to wait for a flight for 12 hours, I was going to wait in comfort: soft coaches, good food, great coffee, air-conditioning. As I was about to lean over to my wife, Jacqui, to show her the awesome idea I had, she leant over to me and showed what she had searched – “Top 10 things to do in Accra.”
Where I had looked for comfort to wait out the inconvenience, Jacqui had seen the delay as a challenge of how much of Accra we could see in those 12 hours.
So often, when we encounter a situation that we have no control over, our attitude is to simply wait out the inconvenience as best we can, all the while grumbling and complaining about how things are not going to plan.
But we, especially those in leadership, have a responsibility to change our attitudes. Friends, we need to see the challenge in the situation, we need to rise to the occasion and we need to say: “We can’t do that, but we can do this.”
Have our churches, our organisations, our country not been hurt by those in leadership choosing comfort over the challenge? How often have we stunted our own growth, or denied ourselves new opportunities, or fallen short of making wonderful discoveries all by our own attitudes? And what new experiences are waiting for us when we change our mindset? No, we cannot afford to choose comfort. And we need more leaders who will choose the challenge.
If Jacqui and I had taken my comfort route in Accra, the only story we would have been able to tell was how great it is that there are airport lounges for these inconvenient times. But Jacqui’s route turned the story into one where we got to experience a place we were never planning to visit.
We will always encounter situations where we have no control, our hands are tied or there is endless red tape. But with the right attitude, new experiences will open up before us, new opportunities will come our way and, friends, it may even be the better way around that very situation you couldn’t control in the first place.