Reflections on Chapter 5 of Spiritual Leadership by Oswald Sanders.
Someone has aptly stated that “we are all leaders.” In the broadest sense this is true. Each of us exerts some degree of influence or leadership within certain groups – siblings, family members, peers, co-workers, etc. Simply because the circle of influence might be small does not negate the importance of good leadership. As a matter of fact, in those groups, where people are known in a more intimate measure, the importance of the entire scope of godly leadership qualities may become all the more important.
“Can you become a leader?” It is a thought-provoking inquiry. On one level the probe deals with “become”. Previously Dr Sanders approached the puzzle of, “Are leaders born or made?” He went on to deftly assert, “Surely both.” Numerous examples can be sited of men & women who, for whatever reason, took it upon themselves to “become” leaders. It happens in the secular world & often brings tremendous benefit. It happens in the sacred realm & often (but not always) brings heartache & tragedy. Sometimes people step up into a role of guiding others into pursing the things of Christ. We applaud that when those involved comprehend their role & do not violate sound & set New Testament principles. Paul admonished the designated spiritual ministers, “apostles… prophets… evangelists… pastors… teachers, to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up…” (Eph 4:11-12 NIV) The work of The Church that needs to be accomplished in our world cannot be done unless we all recognize & practice the concept Paul spells out here.
The more I think about the question the more I feel the focus for me is “Can YOU become a leader?” Can I develop into the leader God wants me to be? There is no doubt that when I surrendered to His call that I was undeveloped. I was uneducated in the Scripture & life in the Spirit, unrefined in social skills, painfully bashful, unaccustomed to true fellowship among godly people, reluctant to speak in small settings let alone before a congregation. I was the last one anyone would see as a leader.
I involved myself in an array of training & activities in an attempt grow into a Christ follower who could lead others. In some dimensions there has been some progress; in others aspects there has been little growth & it is often marked by stagnation. Can I become a leader? Not a person that people acclaim, but a servant like Paul speaks of, one who will “Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.” (2 Tim 2:15).
Dr. Sanders goes to some length to provide a list of questions in this chapter for me to ask myself. The queries get right to the heart of the matter in view.
I guess that is what God is really wanting anyway… to get right to the heart of the matter.
Lord, I need to ask myself these questions rather frequently.
Lord, I need to ask You to get right to my heart. Lord, I need to ask You, Can I Become a Leader?
Lord, with a lump in my throat & a tear in my eye, with humility deep inside, I’d like to become this for Your Honor & Glory.