On Mushrooms and Men {...thoughts on leadership...}

There's an aspect of leadership that mirrors a mushroom.

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                                                                                                   (my own photography)

Mushrooms have the ability to take an otherwise toxic substance, and turn it into a food source. 

May I just make the observation that jealousy is toxic?  That bitterness is toxic?  That a lack of honor is especially toxic in this culture?  As a leader, particularly a spiritual leader, you will find yourself pouring your heart, time, tears, and years into people who quite suddenly and mysteriously will begin to treat you as a peer.  And what is more, they not only stop appreciating the investments made into them, they start subtly undermining your efforts and downplaying your decades of service and experience.  They move on to the next new noun:  the next "shiny" person, place, thing, or idea.

This happens either because a) They want to be the leader, and have become competitive and jealous, or b)  You said or did something that did not please them.  You went off-script...their script.  Somewhere things reached a point when you had to lead and had to say something true that offended them.

And, just like that, all your input, your time, your track record will mean very little anymore.  Welcome to leadership, friend.  You can count on it.

People are that fickle.

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And mushrooms are more closely related to humans than plants, in their DNA structure!  

You, too, as a leader, can actually thrive in a toxic atmosphere of petty "stuff".  You can turn all of it into food for thought through your study of Scripture.  You can metabolize it into messages that carry a yoke-breaking anointing.  You can feed off of the negativity...when you have to...when it seems that's all there is, all around you...and you can transform it into productivity and praise.  

To a true leader, opposition is fuel.  It isn't our favorite fuel, it isn't what we'd pick for ourselves in the cafeteria line, but when it is served up...

...we sure can eat it for breakfast.  Like a boss.