Recently I have been thinking about what it means to be a good leader. There are many good books about leadership, lots about vision and authority. We need those books to motivate us. But I was thinking the other day about the weak things of leadership that God works through, the humble things, the things that people don’t always see. I have been thinking about my time as a leader in doing student work and I have gathered some of my thoughts together onto this blog post. I am going to ask 6 questions. Mostly asking 6 questions of myself, but I hope it will help you too.
1. Are you on your knees in prayer?
Leaders who don’t think they need to pray are probably not leading well. When I don’t pray I know I am not leading well and I am consumed with the worries of the world.
Prayer is the Christians vital breath. If you are a leader of CU or small group then the best place you can be is daily on your knees in prayer. Pray for your committee, for the CU, for your small group, for your church and for yourself. When you feel discouraged, sad, unmotivated then come and prayer to our Father who knows we are weary and can fill us with His Spirit. Come to the throne room of God and seek the Father through His Son, come and enjoy Him, come and cast your anxieties on him, come and rejoice when things are going well, come and weep into his bosom when things are hard. As a leader why would you not settle your gaze on Christ through prayer? There is no better place to be. You don’t always have to pray on your own, although its good for your soul if you do spend some time doing that. But prayer in community is encouraging. So come and bid for others to join you.
2. Do you weep for the lost and the broken?
I was astounded when looking at Acts 20:17-38 about how much Paul cries. Paul is filled with tears, tears through sharing the Gospel, tears through correcting others, tears over other Christians and churches. Paul weeps. As leaders we can be full of tears. As leaders we can weep over the lost and the broken. A few times I have seen an elder in my church stand up and through tears he speaks about the Gospel or speaks about the lost. Its powerful. It shows great sincerity and shows what you care for from the heart. Are you a leader that weeps for the lost? Imagine if you stood up in front of your friends and had tears in your eyes because your coursemates don’t know Jesus. Or because your friend is suffering. I want to be a leader who isn’t afraid to cry.
3. Do you admit you are weak?
Most the time as leaders we think we have to be strong all the time. We feel like we have to live up to expectations that are just not realistic and if we carry on with this superman approach we will just burn out. Leaders need to admit their weak, they need to admit that they get weary and they need rest. When as leaders we admit that we are weak then we will rely on God more, we will allow him to minister to our hearts, we will come to him in humbleness and weakness, we will be far more patient with those around us who are weak also. Remember Moses was weak and the Lord used him. Don’t be afraid to show your weakness or that you are dependant. The world tells us that we should be individual, but we know that as Christians we are utterly dependant on Jesus and on each other (the church).
4. Do you tell the Gospel to yourself daily?
Whats the first thing we must do with the Gospel? Believe it. Daily we need to minister the Gospel to ourselves. We have to get into scripture and read about Jesus. We are a forgetful people and it’s the reminder of what Jesus has done for us and who we are in Christ that will warm and remind our hearts again. Do you tell yourself the good news of Jesus Christ everyday? Do you joyfully seek read the scriptures and drink deeply from the well of God? When the devil tells you lies, do you tell yourself the truth? You need to. As a leader you need to tell the Gospel to yourself.
5. Do you have a friend telling you the Gospel daily?
Church community is so important. We need to tell each other the Gospel daily. As a leader you will spend most your time pouring out all you have and its easy to get proud or discouraged. So you need to have other Christians telling you about Jesus. Do you have friends pointing you to the cross? You need them. You need honest friends who won’t be afraid to rebuke you and then minister the balm of the Gospel to your wounds. Do you have a friend telling you the Gospel daily? I have a group of friends that do this and I need them to do that for my sanity and growth in Jesus. Find friends who wont flatter you, but will be honest and speak of Christ to you.
6. Do you care about numbers or people?
It’s tempting to mark your success by numbers. I get sucked into this often. If your success is based on the number of people coming to events or the number of people who you have shared the Gospel with then you will be discouraged quickly. Let your ministry not be about numbers. Let it be about people. Who cares how many people came to an event? Lets work with who came and minister to them. Lets love people not numbers. Your ministry will be more enjoyable.
Those are just some of my thoughts. I know there are probably lots more and there are loads I have missed out on. But these are the things I have been thinking about. I would love to hear what you think and any more questions you would add to this!