9 responses to “Do you Consider Yourself a Leader?”
And a good leader will show his wounds so that people can learn from a leader’s struggles not just his strengths.
I heard somewhere that a leader in the world is He who is served by many, but that the leader in the church is He who serves many. Paul stated that it is the will of God that the father will treasure for his son, and not the son for the father. God called Moses for the people of Israel not the other way around. Last time I check a sheperd don’t lead his sheeps by going in front of them but by coming after them from behind. Thank you Angel for this subject. For there is something fundationally wrong in the new testament church about leadership. In my humble opinion (may God have mercy on my soul) the problem lays upon our definition of ministry. I’ll share mine with you and Dennis. Neh. 2:10 “But when Sambalat the Horanite, Tobias the amonite oficial heard of it they were deeply disturbed that a man had come (not to build the wall) but to seek the good of the people of Israel”; 2Timothy 2:10 “For I endure all things for the sake of THE ELECT, so that they can obtain the salvation which is Christ Jesus with eternal glory”. my point: In the work of the ministry the key is not How much you love God, but How much you love people! Its not about the call, its not about the vision, its not about the ministry, its not about sucess and its not about reputation. It is about loving what God loves the most people. For God loves people more than anything. By the way; God has call upon us not to be sucessful but to be faithfull (Mother Teresa). I don’t know about leaders. But this I know I have been fatherless since I was nine. Godly loving fathers we need. I hope there is one out there who can pastor me. I truly needed.
I think servant leadership as the norm for pastoral ministry needs to be discussed and examined before it is assumed as a starting point for church leadership. Men and women view servant leadership differently. Men identify with a servant leader as a leader who serves. While most women experience a servant leader as a servant who tries to lead. As a result, most men recognize women first and foremost as servants and not real leaders. Therefore, it is critical that we value the experience of women as explore how liberating Jesus Christ’s message really is. When Jesus Christ declares that his disciples are no longer servants but friends, he is speaking a word from his heart! He is declaring a new relationship.
Jesus said, “This is my commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this that one lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends, if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you” (John 15:12-15).
The emphasis for most people is on the statement, “Greater love has no one than this that one lay down his life for his friends.” However, Jesus is not speaking here of his death as an atoning sacrifice in which he laid down his life for the sins of humankind, for our redemption. He is speaking of his death as a voluntary surrender for the good and well-being of those he loves. I believe that the rest of the passage is as important as the first part. Although redemption has happened the church still needs to proclaim the risen Christ because the world just doesn’t get it! Jesus is calling us into a new relationship. “No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you.” Jesus was clear in his message! We are to love one another so that God’s friendship can be known to the world. I believe that this idea must dominate the relationship between pastors and their congregation.
In fact, the term “servant leadership” was coined by Robert K. Greenleaf in 1977 with the publication of his highly influential book, Servant Leadership: A Journey into the Nature of Legitimate Power and Greatness. Greenleaf’s inspiration for servant leadership did not come from Scripture. Jesus is merely a role model like other great men in history. Greenleaf claims that servant leadership is “an enterprise for confident individuals one’s leadership is self-contained.” I would contend that such servant leadership is not really concerned with the needs of others, but concern for one’s own abilities in stressful situations. As a result a servant leader is often much more than goal-oriented; he seeks to be in full command, planning every detail of the church. And the congregation is relegated to simply carrying out his vision.
When pastors view themselves as “indispensable leaders,” they demonstrate more faith in themselves than God. This paradigm places more importance on what the servant leader does than what God has done for the world in Jesus Christ. It isolates the pastor from the congregation and takes ministry out of the hands of the people. But friendship exalts the power within each person to be free to love. Friends do not obey each other, friends love each other into being. And because love is the end in itself, friends are relational and not task-oriented with each other. Such leaders see people as whole human beings who are made in the image of God. Indeed, no vision for the church or the means to accomplish it’s mission supersedes life together in faith, in worship, and in service.
I also think it is interesting to note that when the Apostle Paul wanted to assist church leaders in selecting qualified leaders, he did so by providing a profile of character-skill sets (1 Timothy 3/Titus 1).
While these qualities are core to any New Testament ministry, they don’t represent a complete list for all times. (Acts 6) The following profile offers insights and suggestions for the training of ministry leaders. How Do You Compare?
1. Sustains Personal Wholeness
· Displays self-awareness, self-directedness and self-improvement toward growth goals on personal, spiritual and professional levels.
· Takes godliness seriously in character, integrity and credibility.
· Practices boundary-keeping. (Proverbs 25:28; Galatians 5:6)
2. Expands as a Model Disciple
· Conducts self to honor God in service to family, ministry, community and world.
· Assumes self mastery follows being mastered by God’s Spirit, Word and purposes (Luke 9:23)
· Fosters growth in self and other.
· Bends will to Christ. (1Tim. 2:15)
3. Stewards Biblical Wisdom
· Draws on resources of biblical, historical, and theological study for cultivation of commonsense insights relevant to contemporary life-circumstances.
· Lets wisdom rise from observation, conversation and life.
· Love Word, Loves Author (2 Tim. 2:2; 3:16)
4. Connects with People
. Displays a communicational style expressed in sensitivity, clarity, confidence and conviction while also affirming biblically derived values of human dignity, diversity, justice and integrity. (Colossians 4:7-18)
5. Reads Leadership-Needy Situations
. Matches leadership-needy situations—opportunities or threats–with decisiveness, resourcefulness, innovation and resolution, inviting input, skill, and creativity from others. (Acts 6:2-4)
6. Expresses Dynamic Ministry
. Acts out of biblical and theological foundations to express call and giftedness with the affirmation and authority of a known community.
. Knows value of gift-role-influence style-passion mix at personal, family, church, community, societal, global levels.
7. Engaging World with Solutionary Heart
. Faces contingencies with reflective decisiveness.
. Suspends judgment until facts are in from those closest to threat or opportunity.
. Gets outside insight from family, mentors, team.
. Motivated for a better world and better selves. (Neh. 6:3,11-13
8. Investing in the People
. Replicates healthy growth patterns in lives of others by capitalizing upon opportunities to be an improving influence.
. Makes mentoring a lifestyle value, a means and end of worthy ministry.
. Give permission habitually.
. Celebrates living. (2 Timothy 4: 11-16)
9. Orchestrates Resources as a Purpose-Keeper
. Consistently directs structures toward fulfillment of biblically-derived ministry goals. Expresses prayerful dependence upon God in all phases of strategic planning, implementation, evaluation and refinement. Asks: Why. (Acts 11: 25-26)
Thanks Dennis. What a biblically sound way to comment on this point. Indespensable Leaders. To think that I am IT! foundational, indispensable and ireplaceable. To the point that I am the church and the church is me. Nelson Pacheco’s Ministries! come on there is something very wrong.. I believe in the Man of God. I believe he is precious, valuable and a very important part of God’s work. I respect him, appreciate him and care for him in every way and I believe he ocupied a very godly place in God’s kingdom. But its time to find the way not to re-difined him, but once and for all difine him and his ministry according to sound doctrine based on biblical thruth. For this issue is a very ugly one. The situation “I speak in general terms” is completely out of control my Bro Dennis. There is no need for godly character is not required or the need to follow the requirements given by the Apostle Paul in 1st and 2nd Timithy and Titus or perhaps there is no true reverent fear of GOD in us. Thank God there is hope! because we all know that the last move of GOD is a purifying one; for Christ is coming back for a bride (church) withou wrinkle or stain! Amen!!!
At the end I believe that the real problem is not so much the ignorance of those leaders who stand upon their own definition of leadership and not upon one supported and sustained by biblical thruth; but more than anything the real problem is the sad ignorance of a congregation or followers who they themselves care not for sound doctrine and so they don’t have the capacity to hold accountable anyone who stands in front of them proclaming anything that looks like the Gospel. We most become to be like the people of Berea before is too late. But first we most be like them, a community who truly cared about the message (the Gospel) more that about the messanger if you know what I mean my Bro.
I know what you mean, Pacheco. But I think you underestimate the extent to which congregations are influenced by their leader’s vision, values and virtues (even vices — wittingly or unwittingly). A leader’s disproportionate span of influence demands they be rooted at the core.