Shadows and Light 04: Chaos

This is #4 in a series on Shadows and Light in Leadership. We who are trusted with leadership have the power to project either shadow or light. That is a huge responsibility! We’d better make sure we are doing all we can to give light.

But that is easier to aspire to than to actually do.

Because there’s lots in our world that goes wrong. It looks like chaos:


Financial loss




These are things we don’t want to happen. We naturally take steps to avoid them, and we do what we can to control things. That’s what rules and procedures are for.

But if we think we can control everything we will put a deadening shadow into our leadership.

  • Like “helicopter parenting.” Do we really think we can eliminate every potential risk for our kids? Over-protective parents end up emotionally smothering their children. It often ends up with kids breaking away with rebellion.
  • Or the company that takes safety precautions to an extreme. Countless hours of meetings that drains productivity, ridiculous procedures that hamper a company moving forward.
  • Or leaders described as being a “control freak.” Who wants to be on that team?

Over-concern about limiting the natural chaos of life ends up stealing life. With an overemphasis on control we lose creativity and joy. In fact for something new to emerge the old may have to end. And that’s chaotic. But then creativity most often comes out of re-organizing chaos!

So what can we do to minimize this shadow in our leadership?

Relax … there is a good God at the centre of the universe who wills good and blessing even out of chaos. In fact, He began the world with chaos, out of which emerged good. Do you trust Him? Then take your sweaty hands off that steering wheel, and let Him drive! It just might be Him allowing chaos in order to create something new.

Whenever you enter into a phase of life that you can’t totally control, take your spiritual pulse. Is your heart still confident in your heavenly Father? Or does your pulse pound with anxiety?

There is a difference between knowledge and belief. Knowledge would be mental assent that God is good, loves you, and is in charge of the universe. But rising anxiety could indicate that what you actually believe in the deepest part of your heart is that chaos is king, and you are on your own.

Your heart may need some training on this one.

Your turn: 

How do you handle chaos?

Would people say you are a “control freak”?

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