The headline on a recent news article on a popular media outlet read, “The Say-Nothing Strategy That Is Confounding Everyone.” While this is one posture we can maintain to defend ourselves legally, passivity is not the best strategy for the Christian man. It may preserve some semblance of self in the short-term, yet leaves us wanting in the future. In the end, this position is just another show of passivity in leadership for the world to see.
Consider what the Scripture says about passivity in leadership:
- So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin (James 4:17).
- If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every charge may be established by the evidence of two or three witnesses. If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church. And if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector (Matthew 18:15-17).
Like you, as a leader I have often wished I had done something: took a stand for righteousness, spoke up against injustice, shared my beliefs, or given generously to a person in need. But because of the pause—we invite passivity. And what follows the pause? It’s the voice of self-justification. Most of the time this voice of passivity in leadership begets more reasoning on why we “should not act” rather than why we “should.” So today: reject the passive pause. Do the right thing. Speak up and do something—even if the action is not entirely correct—because the one correct action you’ll end up taking is rejecting passivity.
This article is an excerpt from Vince Miller’s book, 7 Challenges Men Encounter.