The True Measure of New Testament Leadership, by Ed Underwood
With so much nonsense being trafficked in Christianity today concerning leadership, I wish these theoretical-lead-the-church-like-a-business writers and consultants would try to look at spiritual leadership from a New Testament perspective. The ones God uses to lead us in the Way never make it about themselves.
Like Paul in 1 Thessalonians 2:7-8!
Something wonderful happened to me the day my firstborn child, Aimee, came into the world. For the first time in my life, I had totally selfless thoughts. Suddenly, I was holding in my arms someone who meant more to me than, well … me. At that moment, I knew that no sacrifice would be too great for this little girl I had just met but instantly cherished. Before I could become too proud of how dear she had become to me, I placed her in the arms of her mother. From the moment Judy began to nurse our baby girl, I knew they were experiencing a bond I would never know and could never experience.
If you’re thinking of the birth of your child and your love for them or your father and mother and their love for you, then you are picturing the role of an authentic spiritual leader—a parent. Paul reminds his readers of the selfless motives of the team he brought to Thessalonica by describing their role. They were parents to their disciples, as gentle as a nurturing mother and as firmly encouraging as a concerned father.
That’s the measure…
So who are the people in your life the Lord Jesus is asking you to lead in His name? Remember, it’s not about them following you; it’s about you selflessly leading them to follow Another. His name is Jesus.
“But we were gentle among you, just as a nursing mother cherishes her own children. So, affectionately longing for you, we were well pleased to impart to you not only the gospel of God, but also our own lives, because you had become dear to us” (1 Thessalonians 2:7-8).
Question: Do you have a story of someone who led you well? I’d love to hear it.