First, you live the life and do the stuff you talk about. Bobb Biehl has taught me that credibility is gained by 3 threads, results-time-character. Results are simply what is seen. People generally listen not because of what you know or what you did, but because of what you are currently doing. Character is what you are. No one is perfect and everyone has flaws. Time gives us the ability to see those things, both good and bad, that helps us filter counsel from someone. It is the ability to be over consistent.
Three threads -- results. That is a key and it takes time to develop. I haven't seen all the results I want, but I have seen some results. We have planted our church. We have helped plant three more. We have adopted an assessment process. We have developed some leadership within our own church, but not as deeply or effective as we would like. Results take "time." But that also goes with the last sentence. "It is the ability to be over consistent," which is character. Interesting. My preaching goes in waves. Sometimes I think it is fantastic, but it will fade over a period of time to where I don't even like to hear myself preach. The answer is character, to dig deep and not be willing to accept less than a good sermon. Building character would lessen the fading periods and might even make them disappear. This is also true with leadership development. What builds character? Time with God and time with passionate, truthful, mature friends.
"Character is what you are. No one is perfect and everyone has flaws. Time gives us the ability to see those things, both good and bad, that helps us filter counsel from someone." What is he saying here? I think he is saying that everybody gives good and bad counsel because everyone has some character flaws. Getting to know them helps you to discern the good counsel from the bad. The problem is we don't always know good from bad counsel as it leaves our lips. I know also that I take things less personally than I used to. My feelings still get hurt but not as badly so hopefully it doesn't taint my counsel as badly as it used to.