Getting back to leaders needing to trusting their followers. Let me try and iron that out a bit. When I first started leading a small group Bible study, I planned ahead by outlining my thoughts and my interpretation of the passage. I spent hours sorting out my thoughts. I was scared that if I didn't prepare enough or know the passage well enough or have all the answers, that the conversation would flop. If the conversation flopped, I was scared no one would benefit from it, and then they would never come back. I would be a failure.
So I came with my outline, explained my perspective, and waited for a reaction. (It's a lot like a blog!) The conversation was often like trudging through wet concrete.
Part of the problem was that I was leading out of fear, and not leading out of trust. I didn't trust those I was having the conversation with. I didn't trust their insights or their abilities to contribute to the conversation (to have a conversation!). I only trusted myself.
I only trusted that my insights would be the ones they would find valuable. I only trusted that unless I came prepared, they would leave empty-handed. I didn't trust that they could or would invest something themselves. It was an arrogant and fearful way to lead. And it didn't work.