Track meets are the worst. Let me clarify. When you have two children running events at the bookends of the meet, and you are trying to entertain a four-year old and an 18-month old on concrete in 80+ degree weather for 5 hours with nothing but a soft pretzel, it’s the worst. It does give you a lot of time to observe. I overheard a coach prepping his young 4x200 relay team on their handoffs. “It won’t work without trust,” he said. “You’ve got to let go and trust she’s got the baton.” he said to the nervous novices. “And you have got to start to believe she will reach you to put the baton in your hand. But it’s all about trust.” Wow, I thought, what a great coach and a great life lesson. Then he finished by inspiring them with “If it drops – it’s all of your faults, so I will trust you not to mess this up too bad.”
I thought perhaps coach could’ve ended with the first part for the 10 year old’s, but I also thought about my constant challenge with delegation. I’m always so worried about the hand-off. In expecting for the baton to be dropped, I think I am guilty of never actually letting go long enough for them to take it and run. I couldn’t help but continue to watch the relays and pay close attention to that brief moment when both hands were on the baton. In all the handoffs in our roles, do we take the baton in a way that lets others know we have it? Do we signal our trust to those we hand it off to? When it drops, do we recognize our mutual responsibility, pick it up and keep running? When I consider all the fears I want to give to the Lord, am I trusting enough in Him to take it or do I just run past Him, never putting it in His hands? In a relay, you can’t succeed without passing the baton. Do we think we can do the same in leadership?