“There is a danger that threatens everyone in the church, all of us. The danger of worldliness. It leads us to vanity, arrogance and pride.”
“What’s all over your car?” Peter yelled as we rushed out of the house on the way to Mass. It appeared as if somewhere along my travels I inadvertently parked under the resting spot of the entire migration of Capistrano swans. No big deal. I drove through the nearby car wash and $5.50 later, it was good as new. The next day, I came out to find the same thing, actually worse. As I got in my car, scratching my head to remember where I might have parked since my car wash, a thump hit the passenger side window. I thought one of the kids threw a ball. Then another thump. A small brown bird was kamikazeing into my car and with every thump, leaving “his mark” all over the place. Terrified that I was in a remake of a Hitchcock film, I peeled out of the driveway. A simple google search revealed that during nesting season, some birds may see their reflection in a window and consider it an enemy, continually attacking it to protect their nest. The internet promised the bird would not hurt itself and in a few weeks’ time, the self-defense mechanism would subside. In the meantime, it also suggested I invest in a tarp.
I could not help but relate my avian attack to some of the team dynamics I observe in my work and if I am honest, in my own leadership. How often do I try to protect my nest by attacking the wrong target, or better yet, a non-target? How often do I go after the enemy, when it’s really catching a glimpse in the mirror that I do not like? How many times do I need to hit the glass wall and leave a mess, before I realize I have actually been neglecting the nest in my supposed pursuit of its protection? Thankfully for my car, nesting lasts only a few weeks. Can I say the same for my leadership?