Flexibility vs. Double-Mindedness

This Intentional Leadership focus emanates from several ministry leaders and pastors seeking input of how to handle certain challenges they are facing as they lead their congregations. In the heart of a leader, there is a clear understanding of where God is directing and guiding. Throughout all of scripture we can plainly see that God births vision and direction into His leaders. We also see that each leader learned to be flexible in how to achieve the God-given vision, yet was not double-minded. This brings us to the question, “What is the difference between flexibility and double-mindedness?”

James helps us to understand that a leader who is double-minded is also unstable. It is evident that an unstable leader is also an ineffective leader who will be incapable of achieving the goals at hand.

Consider two illustrations which help us identify the difference between the weakness of double-mindedness and the strength of flexibility.

Picture yourself standing in the middle of a room. To your left is a table with cups of coffee. To your right is a table with cups of tea. You step to the left to get coffee. After a few steps, someone suggests that you try a cup of tea, so you step to the right for a cup of tea. As you near the tea, another friend expresses that most of the people in the room prefer the coffee, so you once again change and step back to the left. If you continue in this fashion, you will never get anything to drink and simply be going back and forth in the middle of the room.

Now picture a tall palm tree growing upward toward the sun. Strong winds come from the south and force it to bend to one side. After that storm has passed, another comes with winds blowing from the north. Again, the tree submits to the force of the wind as it bends toward the other side. Though the tree bends with great flexibility in the winds, it continues it growth upward, into the direction it was created to go. This is the characteristic of flexibility for which a leader must strive.

Leaders who are flexible learn to bend with current situations while continuing to move toward the God-given goal.

What goal has God placed in your heart? Has double-mindedness kept you from moving toward or achieving that goal? Learn to be flexible with challenges while continuing to reach for the goal.

Gary R. Linn

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  1. Becky Pucher says:

    Enjoyed this so much. Great illustrations to help explain the difference between flexibility and double-mindedness. Thanks for your faithfulness to encourage and equip childrens workers. Blessings!

    1. Gary R. Linn says:

      Thank You, Becky!