Mandolyn | Week 4

Leaders. Leaders. Leaders….

As I sit here on this cold Sunday afternoon, I feel like I’m at a loss for words this week.  It’s been a whirlwind.  Honestly, I’m just starting to process all that went on this week, so sorry for the verbal diarrhea as I process my thoughts… This week has been filled with great learning experiences, with a bit of laughter along the way.

The biggest thing to go down this week was that Benita, Natalie, and I worked a booth at Spirit West Coast (SWC) in Monterey, about 2 hours away.  We were selling some of the products we sell at the Freedom Store that benefit our International Projects, and it was the first time NFS has been at SWC.  Because it was the first time we had been there, and it seemed like the same people go to SWC year in and year out, many of the concert-goers had never heard of NFS or about modern-day slavery.  I had a great time making those initial connections, getting people excited about joining the movement to end slavery in our lifetime.  Being able to connect with people from all over America, learning about their individual talents and skills, and helping them figure out tangible ways that they personally can become active in the movement- that was energizing, for sure.

This week I was reminded of how privileged I am to have such great leaders that have been in my life, as I reflected on the sudden passing of my pastor, Pastor Ha, Yong Jo.  He was the founding pastor of Onnuri Church, and was truly one of the most awe-inspiring leaders I was an honor to serve under during my time in Korea.

Pastor Ha’s passing, and some interactions with some NFS staff, got me thinking about what a leader truly is.  What qualities do they have?  What do they say?  What do they refrain from saying?  Do they ‘stick to their guns’, or open for new ideas?  What are some common-thread traits that leaders have?  What drives them to be a leader?  What personality characteristics make a leader effective?  What can make a true-born leader ineffective?  What makes a leader?

As I wrestle that out in my mind, I can’t help but think of the person I am, the person I am becoming, and the leader I aspire to be.  What do I need to be/do/change to become the leader I am wanting to be?  I have begun researching some influential leaders, and started to read biographies about different presidents, civil rights leaders, religious freedoms leaders, and observing the leaders that I get to see everyday.  I want to analyse the common thread between them, or just the different qualities that made/makes them each effective, and see if there is anything that I can adopt.  I’ve set some personal goals for myself, things to start and/or work on to become an effective leader in this movement.  Some are small things.  Some are bigger deals.  Just continuing the ever-present refining process…. excited to see where this journey takes me.


One response to “Mandolyn | Week 4

  1. Mandolyn, I am excited for you also – to see where this journey takes you; I like being on the ground/foundation of something new – like being the first time for NFS to attend SWC this year. In regard to leaders – some are our heroes & some are not but the best ones (I have found) are the ones that are servants first & leaders second – i think that is what makes a leader great for sure… ♥


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