Pastor (Dr.) Dan Reiland of CHURCH LEADERS prepared a very interesting article today about a few things that can negatively affect servant leadership. If one accepts that servant leadership means “leading for the benefit of others,” then it is easily understood, but not so easily practiced on a consistent basis!
Servant leadership isn’t a skill, but rather, the acting out of who we are. It’s our identity. It’s being who we are in Christ! In other words, it’s you and me being who God planned for us to be – children of God. Even highly effective leaders can fall prey to issues such as insecurity, envy and pride!
The CHURCH LEADERS article may be read HERE.
My brothers and sisters, the leadership so often found in the workplace of the world does not reflect servant leadership at all – which this writer would describe as “godly leadership” or “biblical leadership.”
When we are confident in our salvation and who we are in Christ, we can look at our coworkers – especially those for whom we have supervisory or operational oversight – from a uniquely Christian perspective. We can lead with their benefit in mind. As a leader, managing personnel and arranging everything in the workplace so you always look good to your boss, without concerning yourself with the other workers’ needs and desires, is not a biblical model of leadership!
There is nothing loving about being envious or prideful – and all the more so as leaders in the workplace or in the church as we interact with our brothers and sisters in Christ. As children of God, we are to edify each other and to seek the very best for each other.
Proverbs 16:18 (NKJV)
“Pride goes before destruction, [a]nd a haughty spirit before a fall.”
When I was in the USAF, we used to say “if you take care of the troops, the troops will take care of you.” I consider this to be a form of godly leadership and love, deferring to others first instead of being self-seeking – allowing God to lift you up in His timing and in His way. We don’t love others because we want God to love us; He already does! GOD IS LOVE.
1 John 4:7-8 (NKJV)
“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.”
Agape Love is the love of God – the highest form of love. Everything God does flows from His love. In our lives, Agape Love is in evidence not so much by what we say, but by what we actually do (e.g., faith without works is dead).
Agape Love is the type of love with which the Father loves you and me. It’s not based on emotion or what the other person can “bring to the table.” It allows us to fulfill the biblical directive to love our neighbors as ourselves (including our coworkers and those in the church). We are to always be mindful of others and seek ways to be a blessing to them without being selfish or self-centered!
Matthew 22:36-39 (ESV)
“‘Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?’ And [Jesus] said to [the Pharisees], ‘[y]ou shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: [y]ou shall love your neighbor as yourself.'”
The world needs confident, Christian leaders. Let’s stay grounded in prayer and worship, reminding ourselves daily who we are in Christ. We should never begin to think more highly of ourselves than we ought. Jesus is always our example!
Romans 12:3 (Amplified Bible)
“For by the grace [of God] given to me [Paul] I say to everyone of you not to think more highly of himself [and of his importance and ability] than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has apportioned to each a degree of faith [and a purpose designed for service].”
Praise Jesus forevermore!