With fear and trepidation

Photo Credit: Matt Hamm via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: Matt Hamm via Compfight cc

There’s a reason that I rarely post to Facebook, avoid Twitter, and have never started my own blog. It might seem strange that I now am blogging about my avoidance of the social media bandwagon, but frankly I am terrified to throw my ideas out in public for the entire world to peruse, review, and critique without the ability to have a face-to-face and preferably one-on-one conversation about them.

The thing I most loved about my graduate school experience was sitting around the conference table having passionate debate with people that I could still consider colleagues and friends at the end of the day.  My experience reading discussions online hasn’t replicated this experience. I find that (some) people tend to throw out niceties and manners when they arrive in cyberspace and rather than having sensible discussions about differences of opinion they attack, point fingers and resort to name-calling.

The fact of the matter is that, even were the entire world kind and gracious, I don’t really like drawing attention to myself.  Most people find it odd to learn that I’m an introvert as I don’t mind teaching in front of a classroom or even a stadium full of people. While being in front of people isn’t a problem, talking about myself rather than my subject tends to be difficult. So we arrive again at my hesitation to post personal reflections that the entire world can see.

So, what do I do? I submit my name for consideration as a Spring 2014 blogger for the Intersection. (Yes, I am aware that this might mean I’m crazy!)  Even as I type this first blog post on the CECS Intersection, I do so with a bit of trepidation.

And yet, I choose to post these thoughts because even more than I dislike the vulnerability of this discussion that is open to the world, I love to converse about the intersection of my discipline (leadership) and our Christian faith. I find myself having this conversation quite frequently in recent weeks…

  • With our commencement speaker as we waited in line
  • Standing on a curb in the bitter cold wind (Why didn’t we move inside?)
  • At the car lot with a (really helpful and kind) salesperson

It seems that just about everyone is interested in a conversation about leadership.  And though many people are surprised to hear that leadership is my academic discipline (or an academic discipline at all), I’m pleased that it is the kind of discipline that most people feel they can converse about. So, I’ve decided to move the conversation online. And though, I’d like to keep the conversation pleasant and lighthearted, I fear it may occasionally (next week, for instance) dip over into the controversial or difficult. Still, I’m willing to risk it so that we can all be a part of this conversation about what it looks like to lead as followers of Christ.

And maybe, just maybe we can do so without forfeiting kindness, graciousness, and civility.

 Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone. Colossians 4:6


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Emily Row Prevost

Director of Leadership Development at East Texas Baptist University

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One thought on “With fear and trepidation

  1. Good comments, Emily! I can really relate! But I think I always thought you were such a outgoing person! Your humility is admirable! Good examples! And I Like the scripture at the end!

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