We were all born to lead. We can pretend that we are extras in life, just watching from the sideline, but God has strategically placed each and every one of us in leading roles. We each have a unique gift, talent, skill. We each have unique eyes watching and ears listening. And we represent the GREATEST leader of all time. He led in commitment, in service, in love. Jesus Christ spoke truth and forgiveness. He was on the ground getting grimy and showing that even he was not above doing the hard job; breaking down the walls of racism; walking with the sick, emotionally challenged, and socially forbidden; speaking truth to those who were rich and had great societal influence; and even teaching. Our Savior proved repeatedly that he, 100% God and 100% human, was not above persecution, dealing with temptation and even death. There should be no doubt as to what the hope is for our lives as leaders in this world; to pray, to learn, to practice love, patience and obedience, and surrender to God's purpose for our lives.
As a leader, prayer is essential. Prayer is the conduit for communication with the Father. As leaders we often find ourselves too busy to set time apart to pray. This is completely contradictory to the type of leader that Christ exemplified while walking this earth. In Luke 5:16 we see that Jesus "...often withdrew to lonely places and prayed." And Mark 1:35 says that, "Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house, and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed." Who is busier than Jesus was in his final 3 years of life? Yet the scriptures say that he often retreated to pray, even at times before the sun or in the midst of people asking him for so much.
As a follower of Christ, so as a leader, discipleship is commanded. Discipleship is learning, relationship, and exercising. This demands PATIENCE, a level of long suffering. The Messiah interacted, encouraged others to think, left love, taught even amongst the various unbelievers and sinners, and instructed others to act. Christ was focused on his purpose and patient when others didn't understand.
Leaders who follow Christ are ambassadors. An ambassador does not create his/her own purpose but represents a nation and a king or president; In this case "The Kingdom of God" and Jesus Christ. Are we as leaders a representation of the Kingdom of God and a representation of Jesus, his leadership, his commandments, his mission and vision?
Two ideas that sound wonderfully "heroic" but I struggle with the most, are being humble and surrendering. There is so much vulnerability in practicing humility. After all, I can't lead if I'm being ran over or taken advantage of, or not being listened to or obeyed, right? Wrong. We can lead because God has placed us in a place of leadership, but we can't rule. We are not called to "rule", Jesus is. We are called to lead. We can lead in any and all situations willed by our Father.
The question is: Are we embracing the leader that we have been called and created to be in this world? My prayer is that we gain more of God's influence in our personal lives and in our lives as leaders. I am preparing for the vulnerability this will create but I know and believe that we are protected and safe in the refuge of Him who has created us.
Posted on Fri, July 18, 2014
by Akeia Haddox-Rossiter