Great Leaders Know: Never ‘Command the Hand’

By Artie Davis

Green Thumb UpHaving someone offer to help you with a great vision is awesome, but patience while leading and waiting is crucial. If you get impatient or move too quickly,  you hurt people in the Kingdom and the community you are called to impact.

When God communicates a new or renewed vision to a leader, much too often they think the vision comes with a “Go now!” clause. It almost always does not! We have to allow the vision time to soak.

When you communicate vision, passion, and direction to those you lead, you have to allow the Spirit time to make the vision plain. Remember, it’s God’s vision (well, it better be!), so give the Spirit ample time to water the seeds you have planted.

If you move too quickly, and begin to “command the hand” — telling others what to do (hand) before they have had time to really believe (heart) and buy in to what you have said (head) — they may do what you ask for a short time out of guilt, loyalty, or feeling manipulated, but it won’t last! You have to communicate (head) vision, passion, and direction and keep sharing it until you want to throw up from being sick talking about it so much.

Someone asked me recently, “How will I know when they have caught the vision in their hearts?” The answer: when they offer you their hand and say, “This is awesome. What can I do to help?”

When someone finally sees and catches the vision God has poured into you and that you’ve poured into others, they will offer their hand to help. But if you command the hand before the vision soaks to the heart, your vision may become crippled and may even fail.

Don’t command the hand. Wait for it to be offered.

Source: Photo credit.

Artie Davis

Artie Davis wears a lot of hats and leads a lot of people. He's Pastor at Cornerstone Community Church in Orangeburg, SC. He heads the Comb Network and the Sticks Conference. He speaks and writes about leadership, ministry, church-planting, and cultural diversity in the church. You can find his blog at or catch him on Twitter @artiedavis.