Leaders create. If God is our example of leadership, we have to begin here. “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” Why? All creation is essentially the time and space for developmental relationships to form and God to share the extent of His glory in a relational context. While leaders cannot literally create “matter” from nothing, our primary objective is to create the time and space for people to grow and God to be glorified through deepening relationships. A recent review of the book, Out of Our Minds: Learning to Be Creative by Ken Robinson, captured the essence of the implication of following God’s leadership as creator,
The role of a creative leader is not to have all the ideas; it’s to create a culture where everyone can have ideas and feel that they’re valued. So it’s much more about creating climates. (http://www.fastcompany.com/1764044/ken-robinson-on-the-principles-of-creative-leadership).
That’s the main idea, now for those of you who are interested, here is some more on the theological foundation for creation as an essential part of leadership looking at Genesis.
The importance of relationship between God and man is contained in the concept of man’s creation in “God’s image.” This concept is quite unique in the creation narratives of the ancient near east. For example, while scholars love to point out similarities between the Babylonian story contained in the Enuma Elish, they miss the essential plot line which stands is stark contrast to Genesis. Having read the Enuma Elish (http://www.sacred-texts.com/ane/enuma.htm), the accurate summary I include below, sees the creation of man as an afterthought in the battle of god’s who are disturbed by wind and streams. The story is more about the creation of gods than the creation of the natural world and man in the context of an actual relationship. Gods, not man, are created in the image of gods.The same is true of the Egyptian accounts of creation (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ancient_Egyptian_creation_myths).
The plot line of Genesis 1-3 is essentially that a unique God, creates out of nothing, a good world of light, matter and life as an inhabitable environment for men to explore the fullness of being God’s image in His created world in an intimate relationship with God Himself. While this relationship was tarnished with man’s rejection of the goodness of God, God Himself commits to continued relationship with man for man’s own good and God’s own glory.
Back to leadership, there are a number of implications from the Genesis narrative for leaders:
- Men are not to be treated as tools but as individual “image bearers” of God.
- Creating and creativity are implied to be an essential part of what it means to be human in general and what it means to be a leader by implication.
- The starting point for leaders is to create the environment where the goodness of God and potential of people can be seen and nourished.
- Leaders do this by providing life-giving cultures, appropriate boundaries and their personal presence with their people.
That’s enough to chew on for now. More on creativity in future posts.
Previous post on creativity:
Plot Summary of Enuma Elish – When on High
1. Apsu (male, fresh water) and Tiamat (female, sea water) mingle and engender Lahmu (male) and Lahamu (female) who are silt deposits as well as Anshar (rim of the sky) and Kishar (rim of the earth. Anshar and Kishar engender Anu (Sky) who in turn engenders Ea-Nudimmud (who ends up as the ruler of fresh waters. Ea’s wife is named Damkina. Ea is created in the image of his father Anu.
2. The younger gods disturb Apsu and Tiamat who prefer lack of activity. Apsu plans to kill them. The younger gods learn of Apsu’s plans. Ea puts Apsu to sleep and kills him, also capturing Apsu’s advisor/vizier Mummu. Ea builds his house on Apsu.
3. Marduk is born to Ea and Damkina. His has four ears and four eyes and is generally superior.
4. Anu creates the winds and streams which disturb Tiamat and some of the other gods. Some of the gods remind Tiamat that she failed to act when Ea killed Apsu and defeated Mummu.
5. Tiamat creates monsters to fight against her enemies. The chief of these is Kingu whom she makes commander-in-chief and her consort taking Apsu’s place. She gives him the Table of Destinies (possibly tablets containing the future).
6. Ea learns of Tiamat’s plans. Anshar sends Ea to defeat Tiamat. Ea fails. Anshar sends Anu to speak to Tiamat. Anu chickens out. Anshar asks Marduk to kill Tiamat. Marduk agrees so long as he will be made ruler over all the gods.
7. Marduk (Bel) kills Tiamat. When she opens her mouth to swallow him, Marduk sends in the winds to keep her jaws open. He shoots her heart with an arrow. Marduk then subdues her army and captures Kingu. Marduk takes the Tablet of Destinies.
8. Marduk splits Tiamat in half dividing the waters above from the waters below. He removes her eyes and the Tigris and Euphrates are formed. He puts the appropriate gods in their appropriate star sites. Earth is to be the mirror of heaven. Marduk is proclaimed King of the gods.
9. Marduk decides to create humans (lullu – barbarians, savages, aboriginal humans) to serve the gods. Ea and the other gods shape humans out of the blood of the executed Kingu.
10. Marduk and the other gods create Babylon and the great temple Esagila.
11. The Enuma Elish ends with a Hymn to the 50 Names of Marduk.
- Genesis 1 is subversive (nelima.wordpress.com) A great post with excellent references.