I ’ve asked myself some questions about leadership lately. When asked to step into a leadership role, why do I want to lead? What is my purpose in leading? And who is my ultimate example of a leader?
The Lord has called his people to be leaders and to become more like Christ. Knowing this, the best example of leadership is Jesus. Jesus led his disciples by inviting and challenging them through encouragement, having character and competency of humility through his ability to be a servant, and having a heart posture to stay moldable in the Lord by going to him to have relationship.
Jesus was an encourager by inviting people in while challenging them to be better. I think of Peter because Jesus called on Peter and welcomed him in (Matthew 4:19). Jesus also challenged Peter by rebuking him to think differently in the hopes he would grow as the disciple Jesus knew he would become (Mark 8:33).
Jesus continually spoke about servanthood. He never said to be the best, to be the first; actually, Jesus’s tendency was the exact opposite. He washed the disciples’ feet (John 13), he rode on a donkey into Jerusalem (Mark 11:1-11), he served rather than being served (Mark 10:45), he performed miracles and healings, and he spent much time in fellowship—all examples of his servanthood.
The other part of Jesus’s leadership was his willingness to still be moldable and be discipled. He was discipling the people around him, but he knew the importance of going to the Father. He was wanting to first take the time to build his relationship with the Father before doing his ministry (Matthew 14:23; Mark 1:35).
If I find, when examining my intentions for leading, that my goal is to not glorify Jesus, it may be a time to reflect on my intention, my purpose, and who my example is. My goal must be to have more of Jesus, letting him transform me and walking more like him as a servant, humbled by everything he does in my life.
This article was also published in RCA Today, the Reformed Church in America’s denominational magazine.
A word from Jeff Allen,
lead coordinator for discipleship in the Reformed Church in America
This message from Jessica Harcarik challenges us to consider our heart posture and our motivation for leadership in the church of Jesus Christ. Jessica encourages us to consider our character (heart), our competency (skill), and to serve in humility following the example of Jesus.
Do you want to grow in the character and competency of Jesus?
Contact Jeff at email@example.com to take your next step in discipleship.
Jessica Harcarik is an elder at Faith Community Church in Littleton, Colorado. She is the youngest elder in the history of the congregation.