28 We proclaim him by instructing and teaching all people with all wisdom so that we may present every person mature in Christ. 29 Toward this goal I also labor, struggling according to his power that powerfully works in me. (Col 1:28-29, NET)
36 When He saw the crowds, He felt compassion for them, because they were weary and worn out, like sheep without a shepherd. 37 Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest is abundant, but the workers are few. 38 Therefore, pray to the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His harvest.” (Matt 9:36-38, HCSB)
Psalm 78:72 says of David, “He shepherded them with a pure heart and guided them with skillful hands.” If you only have leadership spirit people will like you but only follow you so far because you don’t produce results. If you only have leadership skill people will admire you for a season but will eventually feel used by you because they don’t feel valued. David was an effective leader because he developed his leadership spirit and skills.
Pastors and Leaders don’t need to be called, they can volunteer:
1 This saying is trustworthy: “If anyone aspires to be an overseer, he desires a noble work.” (1Tim 3:1, HCSB)
And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” Then I said, “Here am I! Send me.” ~ Isaiah 6:8
This is a deeply personal journey for me…
Because sixteen years ago, in 1999, I was on my first Christian retreat. I was a junior in high school facing a blank future plan. I had broken my leg and been knocked out of my main area of ambition: soccer. And my faith was just a personal endeavor of reading the Bible and talking with God. And God showed me what church REALLY was meant to be—bold, life-changing, relationship-building, world-changing church…and I wanted to volunteer to create more of that. I wanted more of that for myself. And I told God that if He would let me work for Him full time, I was committed…to be a core volunteer.
As the years progressed, I joined a small group. I joined a church that helped me get some practical faith under me. I started reading books on the Christian life. I eventually began volunteering at a youth group in town. And then a friend handed me a book and took me to a conference: 21 Qualities of a Leader, and Catalyst 2001 where Andy gave the talk: Challenging the Process. Finally, it hit me, I was called to be a leader. I was gifted as a leader. I could become a great leader if I would simply apply myself to the task. Let me let you listen to a little of what I heard that day…
Are you a leader? Check all that apply in your past, present, and potential future:
- ¨ have younger siblings
- ¨ married or plan to marry
- ¨ have kids or plan to have them
- ¨ supervise people at work
- ¨ mentor or coach a sports team
- ¨ lead a team at church
- ¨ teach others
- ¨ speak from a platform
- ¨ lead a band
- ¨ coordinate a group project at school
- ¨ lead a team of workers to build or fix something
- ¨ manage a business
The truth is, whether you recognize it or not, you are a leader. You would not be here if you were not gifted with abilities that make you stand apart and give you influence over other people’s lives. The question is, how are you going to develop and use your gifts? Let me suggest a plan to you…
You ARE a leader! What do you do about it?
7 “LORD my God, You have now made Your servant king in my father David’s place. Yet I am just a youth with no experience in leadership. 8 Your servant is among Your people You have chosen, a people too numerous to be numbered or counted. 9 So give Your servant an obedient heart to judge Your people and to discern between good and evil. For who is able to judge this great people of Yours? ” 10 Now it pleased the Lord that Solomon had requested this. (1Kgs 3:7-10, HCSB)
Another account of the same events: 1 Chronicles 2:2-12
19 I have fully proclaimed the good news about the Messiah from Jerusalem all the way around to Illyricum. 20 My aim is to evangelize where Christ has not been named, so that I will not build on someone else’s foundation, 21 but, as it is written: Those who were not told about Him will see, and those who have not heard will understand. 22 That is why I have been prevented many times from coming to you. 23 But now I no longer have any work to do in these provinces, and I have strongly desired for many years to come to you 24 whenever I travel to Spain. For I hope to see you when I pass through, and to be assisted by you for my journey there, once I have first enjoyed your company for a while. (Rom 15:19-24, HCSB)
Why Was Paul so Effective at Spreading the Message and Starting Churches?
I would argue that it was because He had extensive LEADERSHIP training. He was trained by the leadership of the nation of Israel – the Pharisees. They were effectively coordinating the efforts of the synagogues throughout the nation and training teachers. He had the same gifts as the other apostles, but He had leadership training that allowed Him to be more effective. That along with his ambitions and specific directive to take the gospel to the Gentiles, gave him a HUGE impact in the early church.
I want to get you started developing your gifts by introducing you to the greatest leaders in our day. This is a journey where I want to introduce you to some of the greatest men and women who have lived in the generation before ours. It is their legacy we need to carry forward successfully.
Leaders who taught me personally: John Maxwell, Jim Dornan, Bill Hybels, Andy Stanley, Tommy Nelson, Tim Elmore, Jerry Falwell, Mark Miller. Also men like Steven Covey, Bono, Craig Groschel.
It’s my hope that once you’ve gotten to know them, you’ll seek out the leaders in your own generation and get to know some of them personally: Steven Furtick, Ying Kai (Training for Trainers), Leaders of the church movement in India and China, and Kevin Phillips (For All Mankind Movement).
And it’s my hope that you’ll one day be the leaders who others are learning from because you are changing the world in a way that will dramatically impact future generations of the church.
Let’s begin by reading about leadership every day this month:
Read 1 Quality of a Leader from 21 Qualities of a Leader – John Maxwell book – $2.99 Kindle edition
Unequipped Leaders Fail and then Quit
Almost everyone leads in a number of capacities throughout their lifetime…and those who are highly-committed to seeing God’s work in the world expand almost always find themselves compelled to lead others. In my experience, most passionate Christians lose their passion over leadership issues…not over a failure morally or a failure to stay close to Jesus. They try to lead others, they fail to get them to change or move much, and they conclude that they simply are not cut out to lead others. To make much kingdom progress, we MUST raise up lots of leaders who lead large teams effectively. I can only lead 1-2 teams. There are dozens needed to make church all that it can be.
Levels of Leadership:
You are a leader. The question is, how effective are you? And what level do you lead at?
- Model the Way
1 Timothy 4:12 ESV – Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.
- Motivate Others
- Mentor Others
- Multiply Leaders and Churches
Check the leadership skills you feel you know well:
- ¨ you listen well as others speak
- ¨ you can help people resolve conflict
- ¨ you are good a motivating people to take the appropriate action to improve their lives
- ¨ you teach effectively in a classroom setting
- ¨ you can lead a group discussion in a way that engages everyone and challenges them
- ¨ you can communicate in a compelling way from the platform
- ¨ you can lead a team meeting effectively
- ¨ you can identify different personalities and manage people differently based on their temperament.
- ¨ You can effectively recruit and engage people to serve
Spiritually leading people requires more than an Intimate Relationship with Jesus AND Bible Knowledge. It requires good leadership—relational wisdom and logistical planning. We must study and learn the art of leading people the same way a doctor studies and learns the science of the body to be an effective physician. Sometimes the smallest, most unspiritual details will hinder an amazing opportunity for life change.
For example: You can rent Titans stadium and have Billy Graham speak to 60,000 people, but if you don’t plan for good follow up interactions to connect new believers to churches, you have greatly reduced the long term impact.
Is that the person’s fault for not being committed enough, or our fault, for not making the next steps easy enough? Yes and Yes. Good leaders take responsibility. We build the most effective systems possible, engage the most people possible, and constantly improve to get more.
Also, sometimes the slightest change in your behavior or a church system can cause the spiritual impact to be a TON higher.
For Example: You can take the gospel to a remote tribe that has never heard about Jesus, but if you don’t take time to understand their culture and explain Jesus in a way they can relate to, you are probably going to create more confusion than life change. Leaders understand and communicate using culture. It’s a logistical skill, not something that’s overly spiritual.
Like the iphone. There are thousands of phones on the market now…but the iphone effectively served the most people. We want to build churches that are as attractive and effective as the iphone. If we build a phenomenal product that no one uses or a phenomenal church that no one attends, we have not failed, but we could have done better. And people’s eternal lives are at stake. We MUST do better.
Is Leadership just a nice way of saying manipulation?
Good leaders don’t manipulate, but leaders can be manipulators. They may use the same or similar methods, but good leaders make change easy and accessible in an authentic way. Manipulators push change upon people without considering whether the change is for the person’s benefit or not. Most of it is bound up in the attitude of the heart of the person leading others.
Leadership impacts everything. Leadership principles are universal. These changes don’t just make you a better church person. They apply to work and make you a better employee or boss. They apply to how you lead the family and make you a better parent.
- · Challenge existing processes, create new and better ones and make church more effective.
- · Challenge people to make key changes in their lives.
- · Collect people and put together teams that take on great tasks and build strong relationships.
- · Raise up and empower others to do greater work than they were capable of themselves.
- · Use their influence to get people engaged in major cultural issues and initiatives.
Difference between leadership and management:
- Managers ask, are we using our time efficiently? Did we get a lot done?
- Leaders ask, are we pursuing the right goals? Did what we accomplished lead us the way we really want to go.
- Managers are concerned with climbing the ladder quickly. Leaders are concerned with whether or not the ladder in leaning against the wall we want to climb.
- The world needs BOTH leaders and managers. We must learn both skills. But don’t assume that if you are good at one, you’ll be good at the other.
Explore Leadership through the Catalyst talks below…
- · Challenge the Process
- · Enable Others to Act
- · Model the Way
- · Inspire a Shared Vision
List the 5 most influential people in world history…
And make a list of the 5 most influential people in the world today.
Additional Thoughts from Great Leaders:
Seven Habits of Highly Effective People
- · Be Proactive: Responsibility = Response Ability = we choose how we respond to every crisis.
- · Begin with the End in Mind
- · Put First Things First
- · Seek First to Understand, Then to be Understood (Empathetic Listening)
- · Think “Win/Win”
- · Synergize (seek creative answers and solutions)
- · Sharpen the Saw: Renewing the physical, mental, social/emotional/ and spiritual aspects of our lives.
- The ultimate destination to a mature person is not a movement from dependence to independence, but beyond independence to interdependence.
21 Qualities of a Leader
Leadership is the capacity and will to rally men and women to a common purpose and the character which inspires confidence – Bernard Montgomery, British Field Marshal
- · Character
- · Charisma
- · Communication
Developing excellent communication skills is absolutely essential to effective leadership. The leader must be able to share knowledge and ideas to transmit a sense of urgency and enthusiasm to others. If a leader can’t get a message across clearly and motivate others to act on it, then having a message doesn’t even matter. – Gilbert Amelio, President and CEO of National Semiconductor Corp.
- · Competence
- · Courage
- · Discernment
- · Focus
- · Generosity
- · Initiative
- · Listening
A good leader encourages followers to tell him what he needs to know, not what he wants to hear. – John Maxwell
- · Passion
- · Positive Attitude
A successful man is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks others have thrown at him. – David Brinkley
- · Problem Solving
- · Relationships
People don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care. – John Maxwell
- · Responsibility
- · Security
You can’t lead people if you need people. – John Maxwell
No man will make a great leader who wants to do it all himself or get all the credit for doing it – Andrew Carnegie
- · Self-Discipline
- · Servanthood
- · Teachability
- · Vision
John Maxwell: 5 Levels of Leadership https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aPwXeg8ThWI