This article appears in the Fall 2022 issue of the FCA Donor Publication. The FCA publication is a gift from our FCA staff to all donors giving $50 or more annually. For more information about giving, visit here.
Have you ever been awakened in the middle of the night a with a sudden thirst for water? You slip out of bed and tip-toe through the darkness to get a quick drink. Even though you know every intricate detail of your home, you somehow find a way to connect your toe with the corner of your couch. That’s when you scream, “OUCH!” Blame it on the darkness, or the fact you weren’t fully awake, but the pain can jolt you into a quick call for action and make you coherent in an instant. Next time: Light up the path!
Likewise, there are times in leadership when you will have a similar experience. You'll assume you know how to navigate a situation, sometimes very easily and quickly, only to be jolted into a hard and painful reality: there was something you needed to learn. It may happen when you are dealing with people, needing direction or to make a decision, or when you're sitting through an important event or business meeting. We can even experience these moments in our personal relationship with the Lord as we grow. All leaders encounter unexpected pains. It's what we do with them that matters.
Most of us learned to sound an alarm and say "OUCH" as babies, it came as natural as learning to walk and crawl. Showing our pain revealed our need for consoling, support and reassurance. As adults, we've typically outgrown how often (and how loud) we cry "OUCH," but as believers, we need to remember that a childlike faith is key to having a relationship with our Father. God wants to hear our "OUCH" so He can alleviate our pain.
Think of it like this: cry O.U.C.H. to
No matter where your leadership journey takes you and how high up the org chart you go, I'm excited to remind you that you'll always be a son or daughter of God. Your “OUCH” cries will get our Father’s attention. Not only does He hear us, but when we cry "OUCH," the Holy Spirit will be prompted to move in our direction.
HOW TO CRY OUCH
In Jeremiah 33:3, the prophet says, “Call to Me and I will answer you and tell you great and incomprehensible things you do not know.” We also see a cry for "OUCH" encouraged in Psalm 34:4: “I sought the Lord, and He answered me and rescued me from all of my fears.” Be encouraged that your cry for OUCH will be heard. Isaiah 41:13 says: “For I am the Lord your God who holds your right hand, who says to you, “Do not fear; I will help you.”
As you walk out your purpose as a leader, life can get complicated. You may face failures, disappointments, embarrassments or plain-and-simple hard days. But, stop and give the Lord your OUCH. First, acknowledge the fact you have hit a pain point and you don’t have the answer. Before you make a decision outside God’s will, honor Him by seeking His direction and the leading of His Spirit so you (and those you are leading) may overcome the unforeseen circumstances and hurdles you are facing. And last, when the path is clear and your "OUCH" is healed, stand on His promise from Proverbs 3:6: “In all your ways know Him, and He will make your paths straight.”
Father, thank You that You give us the strength and wisdom to overcome our unforeseen circumstances and hurdles. Please draw me closer to You through these struggles and learning curves. In Jesus’ name, amen.
About The Author:
Joy serves as the EVP of Human Resources at the Support Center in Kansas City, Mo., where she oversees hiring, payroll, benefit, HR policy and compliance for the organization. The mother of a former collegiate athlete, and as a coach, she understands and values the impact of the ministry of FCA. She and her husband have been married for 28 years, they have two adult children and reside in Kansas City, Kansas.