Pitfalls of Leadership - Lesson 3

Pitfalls of Leadership (Part 3)

Two strategies to help you avoid pitfalls of leadership are to deal with temptation agressively and listen to your wife carefully.

John Iamaio
Pitfalls of Leadership
Lesson 3
Watching Now
Pitfalls of Leadership (Part 3)

1. Temptations

2. Church Activities verses Time with Your Families

3. Listen to Your Wife

4. Summary

  • Consistent time in the Scripture and close relationship with at least one or two other spiritual men are important elements of leadership.


  • Avoid taking the role of elder lightly and cultivate realistic expectations from yourself and others.


  • Two strategies to help you avoid pitfalls of leadership are to deal with temptation agressively and listen to your wife carefully.

Listen as Dr. John Iamaio, teacher and counselor, help us understand those pitfalls and how to deal with them. John is a licensed Christian counselor with the American Association of Christian Counselors. We are thankful for Dr. Iamaio's willingness to share these lectures with us. Copyright 2014 by Biblical Eldership Resources. Used with Permission. For more teaching on the topic of leadership, please visit www.biblicaleldership.com.

Pitfalls of Leadership
Dr. John Iamaio
Pitfalls of Leadership (Part 3)
Lesson Transcript

Let's go to our last three items and pitfalls before we get involved with lunch time, you guys. I'm just assuming you guys like to eat and like me. Yeah. Yeah. That's one of our pitfalls. I don't have that here, though. I mean, give me a number. The next segment here is session six. Another personal pitfall is that of temptations. And certainly, as you know, temptations abound in our day, obviously, when we're when I'm talking to men. Knowing what men think, when you hear the word temptations, you're not thinking about vacuuming the floor. You're thinking about sexual temptation, which is pervasive in our culture. And so that's one of them. Then there's also, as an elder, the temptation of power and control over people. I'm the elder, you are the surf. And that's sometimes the emphasis. We can give people popularity or self-promotion as another temptation materialism, money to impress people. And then you can say as a elder or church leader or just as a Christian, not just as as though you're lowered, but outside of the leadership area, a person can say, Well, I have so much and this is going to impress people. And that's certainly a pitfall itself. And we have to be careful when we're dealing with these temptations. And I wonder how many in this room have ongoing temptations that they've never shared with anyone, wife or anyone else. And I think that has to be answered. And if we had just a seminar on vulnerability, that would be something that we would all consider to be something essential. Now, you gotta be careful when you share your temptations with people. You don't got to someone, a visitor on church on Sunday and go, Oh, Bill, I just want to know, thanks for coming today and I want to share with you my temptations to steal.

And I want to talk to I want to talk to you about that. You know, he's he's probably not going to open up much to you if you do that. So he has to be wise in vulnerability issues. But the question once again, do you have anyone that you can share with concerning the temptations? This is a pitfall, man. Once again, I I'm not going to share my struggle with smoking. I'm not going to share my struggles with pornography or I'm not going to share my struggles with lying or stealing. Those are temptations that I face, you know, and I'm not going to tell anybody about them. Listen, you're setting yourself up for a dangerous fall, believe me, And you're setting yourself up for addictions. And let me explain what I mean by that. And I hope you understand what I'm saying. People just don't don't get into addictions are here's my position on that. You don't have to wrestle through this. Talk to the Lord about it in your own life. But when we lack emotional intimacy with someone, our hearts crave emotional intimacy because that's the way the Lord's made you and me to be able to connect with people, to be able to communicate with people. And when that emotional intimacy is not there, what you and I can easily do is to be able to run to an addiction with the idea that the addiction is going to help me to be overcome this matter of emotional intimacy, and it never does. So we go from addiction to addiction to addiction to addiction. But the real issue is not the addiction. So let's help the person with the addiction. The real problem is getting that person to say what really is going on in their heart in mind.

And believe me, after 40 years of counseling, I heard just about it all. Maybe you have to, but it's that intimacy issue. That leads people, I believe, often to addictions. I love at first Jan states Listen to these words first, John Chapter one. You know the verses you've probably excited first. John a number of times in Bible college or seminary or in your pastoral role. Verse three and four What we have seen and heard, we proclaim to you also so that you may have fellowship with us. And indeed our fellowship is with the father and with his Son, Jesus Christ. These things we write to you that your joy may be full. I love it, John says, I want you to get the. But the point is emphasizing here, here's this fellowship going on between the Father and you and Jesus in you and and your communion with God, sharing with God fellowship, Koinonia. You all know it, right? It's sharing with the father. But then also it's sharing with each other. And when that occurs, joy occurs in the Christian life. And when that does not occur, you're not in fellowship with God. You're not sharing with other people your heart. That's when addictions come knocking at your door. Be careful about the lack of intimacy. That's a pitfall for us. That's number one, By the way, on that, let me just recommend a book by Jerry Bridges. Anyone ever hear Jerry Bridges? I would encourage you to read Jerry Bridges on his book, True Community. He does a good job with that particular matter. Let's go to our second pitfall in this session, and that's the following. Another pitfall that we easily can get involved with is spending too much time with church activities and not enough time with our families.

You know something? When the people in your church, after you leave being an elder or being a pastor or a bishop, because they all have reverence, as you may know, if you study the New Testament that the same man with three different functions. But if you think that those people are going to remember you 20 years from now, you're you got a high estimate of yourself, something that goes something like this. Oh, yeah. That guy John, what was his last name? You know, the short guy with no hair. What's I forgot? Doesn't matter anymore. They're not generally going to remember you and I. But I'll tell you something. You're going to leave something. An ancestor in your ancestry. Your legacy was with your wife and kids. You need to make sure that you're spending a lot of time with them. And isn't that what wives complain about with us? Isn't that true? You're not spending enough time with us. You're so wrapped up in the work of ministry. And you see, if you're an elder, you love it, you love to organize and plan. Don't show that. You love to do that. I've got so many lists in my house. My wife says that. I've got lists telling me where my list are. I love planning and organizing and being in people's lives and working them through problems. And then my wife can be over here and my kids and the grandbabies, and I can easily forget them. We need to constantly be aware of that. Listen, our first priority under the priority of Jesus Christ is for you men and for myself to spend an ample amount of time with our wives and with our kids and grandbabies. Perhaps you need to do what I've done in the past week of necessity.

I've had to actually chart myself how many hours I'm spending in the work of church versus how many hours I'm spending with my wife or with the kids. It can be downright humbling, but it's something that we need to do. So the second pitfall. Not spending enough time. No, let let me just say this along this line here. And that's the matter of diversion, because I think we all need diversion. Obviously, we can get too much in diversions, but I think you need diversions. That's why I like that's why I like bow hunting and shooting deer. But you need some kind of diversion. This is somewhat of an offshoot of to here, but you need diversion. Some of us like chopping wood, and the people in Canada are probably like chopping when stacking what? I love stacking wood. Any human here, no matter You like stacking wood? I love stacking. There's something about it's like putting a log on another log. Nobody's asking you questions, you know, Nobody's telling you about any kind of the pressure. The pressure they're going through. You're just doing this, you know, for a few hours. You're doing this. Nobody's talking to you. It's a beautiful experience. If you've never had it, you should go out and get some wood and stick up for a few hours. You need to snag wood. It's some kind of diversion in your life. You need to be on an exercise program. This is a problem for elders or bishops or pastors. You need to be an actor. Some of human have an exercise in years. Shame on you. God has made you a physical being. You can be tall or short, but he's made you a physical being and he want you to move your body.

He wants you to exercise so that you'll be useful to him in ministry. And some of you need to be accountable. Once again, going back to the accountability factor, you need to be in some kind of an exercise program. You need some diversion to get you away from the people stuff. But right along with that, you need to make your family under God the number one issue. And then let's go to the third particular pitfall in this section. Now, the pitfall is that we're not listening to our wives. Okay, I'll see you later. I'm going to tell you my theological position on this. All of us men are afraid of listening to our wives. It's part of our falling us. And you know why? We're afraid to listen to our wives? Because we're afraid they're going to control us. And universally I've seen this, not that I've been throughout the universe, but I've seen this with 40 years of counseling men. We are afraid of having our wives tell us something because we don't want them controlling us. And that's part of our falling. This. We're afraid of our wives. I asked the kids in school how many of you girls would love to have? How many of you girls would love to have a man who tells you that they're depressed or they're fearful or they're angry and they want you to help alongside them how to deal with this. And all the girls are all excited. Yeah. That's the kind of guy we want. And all the guys are saying, Can't we leave the subject and go on to something else? I want to deal with this. I got to share my heart with my wife. I've got to tell her I'm hurting, and then I'm going to have to listen to her.

I understand the frustration and I understand the temptation of saying, no, I'm not going to listen because you're trying to control me and my wife's Native American. It comes from a very quiet, peaceful Native American home. First time I went to visit in North Carolina, it was interesting. In our home, it's noisy to say the least. Six kids. And we went. I went down. There was always noise and our home went down there. And I sat at the table and I was absolutely frightened because it was so, so quiet. And I thought the mother that is mother and father were having something against me, which they should have, but having something against me because I was so quiet. And when they said pass the bread, they actually passed it to each other in a nice, calm way. I took my wife up to my hometown in Fulton here in New York, and my brother, who's a pastor now, he said at the other end of the table, and when I said Mack, Mack and he played football, make pass me the bread and he take the loaf and he threw it at me, and everybody at the table is laughing and then the crying and then they're hugging each other. And then after that and my wife sitting there, she never experienced anything like this before. Everything in the big was quite easygoing, you know? But I had to learn. I'm still learning, man. And it's not easy for me by temperament or by culture to listen. I would rather talk than listen. And the Lord said to teach me to listen. And that's not easy. And I guess if I had a hand full of you guys on a group of you guys raise your hand.

Probably. Probably most of us are in that situation because as elders, we want to tell people what to do, don't we? But part of our ministry is to listen to them after the sermon. It's so important as well. Have you experienced that yet? People want to talk to you and we need to listen to them after we are done talking. Well, let me summarize here. And these three, another pitfall is temptations. We're all aware of that. Another pitfall is spending too much time with church activities. And the last one not listening to our wives. Listen, your wife, God gave you your wife and my wife so that we would have some wisdom. And if you're married to a wife like I am who has wisdom, you need to cherish that. Yeah, you guys and myself. Oh, we need to cherish that. Would you guys any amends from the elders here? That's right. We need you. We. We do bad job, but we need to cherish that.