Leadership#4. “I must decrease.”

Leadership#4. “I must decrease.”

Jesus, Lord of lords and King of kings, hardly needs my input on macro-politics to achieve anything. But here I sit, expert above the rest, believing that the world would be a better place if it but took heed of my wisdom.

I dare not implicate my few readers in my sin of know-it-all-ness, but I do invite you to consider the implications of a world run solely on the ideas of one single man.

We know that Alexander the Great, Julius Caesar and Genghis Khan (and many others of lesser stature) did actually try to pull it off. But even they, as impactful as their lives were upon us all, are mainly unknown to the average High School student—unless resurrected from dusty history books.

How is a man of God to see his place in leadership in this world? Can one person make a difference?

When we look at New Testament, we are struck by how little is said about the personalities that fill its pages. Biographical sketches are so brief, that one could hardly be blamed for not recognising the apostle Paul, even if you were expecting him for dinner.

This, of course, is deliberate. The dearth of self-glory found in Jesus’ disciples is indicative of their character and mission. The same mission that John the Baptiser stated as his, and the mission that you and I must hold to: “Jesus must increase, but I must decrease” (Jn.3:30).

The Christian leader must get out of God’s way. Yes, Christian leaders are here to lead, and lead they must. But given that even our purest motives are best held as suspect, we do well to start by questioning them.

The worth of a leader is in the message lived and taught—The Gospel! The leader models and shares this “one idea” that transforms individuals and nations. All other ideas, plans, solutions, and opinions get in the way of the mission. Therefore, Paul said, “For I determined to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ, and Him crucified” (1Cor.2:2).

Everything that a church leader says is of no practical use unless it comes from a life that is being drained of self, while filling with Jesus. Because:

“All flesh is as grass,
And all the glory of man as the flower of the grass.
The grass withers,
And its flower falls away,
But the word of the LORD endures forever.”
Now this is the word which by the gospel was preached to you” (1Pet.1:24-25).

John Staiger

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