From Psalm 25, David’s words read:

4 Show me your ways, O LORD, teach me your paths; 5 guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long…8 Good and upright is the LORD; therefore he instructs sinners in his ways. 9 He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them his way…12 Who, then, is the man that fears the LORD? He will instruct him in the way chosen for him. 13 He will spend his days in prosperity, and his descendants will inherit the land.

Beneath this great military leader stems an attitude of teachability, as one of the dynamics of spiritual leadership is to be teachable.

In being teachable I have found there are two different versions: reactive teachability and proactive teachability.

Reactive teachability is when you are open to the wisdom, correction, and input of others. It means that when life’s circumstances thrust you into the unpredictable you seek to maintain a student’s perspective, grabbing on to what God is teaching you through such an experience.

However, proactive teachability is harder. It is transitioning yourself from a position of waiting on lessons and criticisms, to actually seeking and asking for them. I personally think proactive teachability takes a unique strength and is something that should be consistently modeled by the senior leaders of an organization in order to infuse a culture of teachability and humility throughout the ranks.

If you are a leader of an organization, pastor of a church, or teacher of a class, ask yourself some of these questions determining your teachability quota:

  • When is the last time someone freely gave me helpful criticism about the way I led, taught, etc.?
  • When I find myself in difficult situations, do I view them as opportunities to learn and grow as a person?
  • When is the last time I have proactively sought out feedback from those that I lead, teach, etc? (Note: Here is a Teacher Eval form that I use often.)
  • When is the last time I have purposely placed myself in a stretching situation with hopes to learn and grow?

~ by Dave Smith on May 16, 2009.

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