Leadership and Main

Inspiring a Generation of Community Leaders to Make the Turn from Ordinary to Extraordinary

Interceders

One of the more tedious and strenuous parts in the development of this blog was to pick a name. A name that would let the mission, vision, and beliefs of the project build off of it. I went through several concepts. I struggled to find something that stuck. I spent a lot of time consulting friends who are creative, making a list of possible titles, revising that list, and narrowing down that list. Then you have that moment. The one that sticks, Leadership and Main.

The name was generated out of a play on intersection. Deeper than that, an intersection on Main Street America. A place where quality leaders are needed now, more than ever. Leaders who work tirelessly towards a common vision to build, maintain, and improve the standard of quality of life for others and the world they live in.  

Many communities have wayfinding signage. This is signage that is designed to help guide visitors when they arrive at a point of decision and may not know where to go. A place where they must decide to turn left, turn right, or go straight. We are fortunate today to have GPS on our phones and in our cars. They make it easier for us to decide which way to go.  It guides us. The challenge for us in leadership is there is not always a GPS handy to tell us the right direction to go.

In mapping out this week’s topic, the word interceder came to mind. In fact, I am still not sure this is a legit word, but I liked it. It stuck! According to Webster’s Dictionary, the word Intercede means, “to intervene between parties with a view to reconciling differences.” So according to them, an interceder would be someone who intervenes between “parties with a view to reconcile differences.”

To be honest, I really did not care much for their definition. It did not really fit what was on my heart.  Therefore, we will work with the Leadership and Main definition of interceder, a privilege that comes with writing your own blog!  For our purposes, an interceder is “someone or something in your life that has redirected your journey.” They were in the passenger seat with you when you did not know where to go. They got you where you needed to go.

Here are three thoughts on interceders:

Others Interceded For You

We have all had a mentor, teacher, coach, pastor, friend, spouse, parent, or any influencer that was with us at one or more of those critical intersections. They redirected our journey. If it were not for them, we could have missed the turn all together. We could have just blown through the intersection and kept going down the same old road.

Here is what we know about these interceders. They are usually more familiar with the intersection than we are. They know the area. They have wisdom. Wisdom is generated through experiences. Their experiences may have taken them down the wrong road, sometimes the right road, got them stuck at the light, or they missed the turn all together. They meet us right where we are. Right at that red light that has us stuck at disappointment, discouragement, depression, struggle, indecisiveness, addiction, you name it. They told us what we needed to hear, not what we wanted to hear. Whatever the intersection may have been. They can guide us to the Extraordinary Way.

Sometimes Interceders Are Something

Do not forget this. Interceders may not be people. Something may intercede your life. A moment, a circumstance, a crisis, a decision, a wakeup call, a near miss. It could have been the loss of a loved one, an injury, a health scare, a financial issue, or the loss of a job. The intersection may have broken you, but gave you the grit you needed to be able to make a comeback and to get to where you are today. As hard as it was to walk through that something, you made it. You are better for it today.

Maybe it was a positive something. The birth of a child, the moment you found Mr. or Mrs. Right, paying off that mountain of debt, opening the new business, launching the church, the affirmation of seeing the lightbulb turn on inside that student, the conversation at the barber shop, or the promotion that moved you into a position where you could use your influence to better others and the world you live in. That something inspired you to be more and do more.

You Will Intercede For Others

You have had interceders positively impact your life. Now it is your turn. Your debt is due. You have been through the intersection. You are familiar with the territory. Now it is time to be that interceder for others. As a community leader, the opportunities are endless. There are people in your community that are sitting at the same intersection you were stuck at, you made the wrong turn at, or you blew right through. Community leadership is “the ability and willingness to use your influence to better others and the world you live in.” The critical word in our definition is willingness. We all have the ability. The question is, are you willing to be that someone who redirects someone else’s journey?

As we wrap up. The Extraordinary Way can be the longer, more challenging route. Your cell service may not work as well. The GPS may be stuck rerouting. There are fewer places to stop and ask for directions. This route requires going the extra mile. Granted, this route is more rewarding. You make a greater difference here, a bigger impact. Bettering others is one of the noblest things you can do. It is a journey not worth taking alone. We need to bring people with us.

Not a huge milestone by any stretch of the imagination, but today we celebrate ten blogs! Grateful to each one of you who have read, shared, and provided encouragement. There were days where I was not sure Blog 001 would get done! On that note, I wanted to give a quick shout out to Don Baker and Josh Mathews with the Hangin with the AD Podcast. They are doing an extraordinary job as community leaders and using their influence to better others and the world they live in, athletic administration.

They invited me to be a guest on their Podcast this past week. The episode will be released this week. Through their invitation and some really good questions they asked during the interview, it helped me reflect on “The Why” of starting this blog. For the prior nine weeks, I have had my head down working from blog to blog. The questions they asked helped me think through the concept of the intersection of ordinary and extraordinary and inspired this topic. Thanks guys! Follow our social media channels this week for the link to the episode when it becomes available.

Ordinary to Extraordinary Intersection

Who is someone who was an interceder in your life? Where would you be if they were not at that intersection with you?  Have you expressed your gratitude?  If not, forward this, tag them in a post on social media, let them know. What are those somethings that served as an interceder for your life? How can you be that interceder for others?

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