Recently, I was asked to do some leadership training/teaching for a women’s group. On my own I feel completely inept to take on such a task, but as I look into God’s Word I see that Jesus displayed leadership very clearly. He has given us a beautiful example of leadership to follow.
If we want to be a great leader, we need to look to our Savior. We need to follow hard after Him (and His heart) and the result will be that our leadership will come from a heart of love to those we are leading.
Here are a couple of the things Jesus did to show us how to lead:
Jesus knew that the most important thing about being a leader, was serving the people you are called to lead.
Mark 9:35 Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, “If anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last, and the servant of all.” NIV
Note that Jesus tells them this because they were arguing about who was the greatest! Some things never change huh? I would have taken this opportunity to give them a talkin’ to and probably called them selfish little brats. Instead, Jesus tells them something that makes them think about their motives and He shows them what their true priorities should be.
Matt 23:11-12 The greatest among you will be your servant. 12 For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted. NIV
Leadership is not about greatness, it is about humility and serving others.
Another leadership cue we take from Jesus is that He knew when to say no.
John 11:2-6 3 So the sisters sent word to Jesus, “Lord, the one you love is sick.”
4 When he heard this, Jesus said, “This sickness will not end in death. No, it is for God’s glory so that God’s Son may be glorified through it.” 5 Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. 6 Yet when he heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed where he was two more days. NIV Quite clearly, Jesus’ answer was no, He would not drop what He was doing and come. But, He had a plan they did not understand.
John 11:14-15 14 So then Jesus told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead, 15 and for your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.” NIV
John 11:40 40 Then Jesus said, “Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?” NIV
John 11:43-44 43 When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” 44 The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face. NIV
By Jesus saying “no” they were able to see the glory of God through Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead.
Sometimes we need to say no. If we don’t, we will be completely out of the will of God and others will not see the glory of God.
The immediate need is not always the greatest need. As leaders we need to have discernment about what we commit ourselves to. We need to know if the Lord is directing us or if He is telling us “no” or “wait.”
There are many opportunities to do good things, pray about which good things the Lord would have you do. Our priorities need to be in order, or we could run ourselves ragged doing “the work of the ministry” all the while missing God’s will in our life. And we could end up missing the opportunity for God to receive the glory He so rightfully has due Him!
“Woman-UP” Follow hard (after your God) and lead soft (with love)!