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Twinky

Christian leadership

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Apologies if this is in the wrong forum, but i don't want the aggression of About The Way, and it's not really Open, either.

 

So: what is “Christian leadership”?  We have a Corps principle that says we should “go forth as leaders and workers in areas of concern, interest and need,” which is in itself a good principle, but it was twisted to suit TWI’s concerns, interests, and greed. We have the R&R bunch who’ve set themselves up as “leaders” of some other sort of TWI-clone.

As to Biblical suggestions, there are some qualities listed in 1 Tim 3, regarding “bishops” or “overseers” and “deacons,” which I’m including here because if I don’t include it, someone else will post it.

2An overseer, therefore, must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, self-controlled, sensible, respectable, hospitable, an able teacher, 3not addicted to wine, not a bully but gentle, not quarrelsome, not greedy — 4one who manages his own household competently, having his children under control with all dignity. 5(If anyone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he take care of God’s church?) 6He must not be a new convert, or he might become conceited and fall into the condemnation of the Devil. 7Furthermore, he must have a good reputation among outsiders, so that he does not fall into disgrace and the Devil’s trap.

8Deacons, likewise, should be worthy of respect, not hypocritical, not drinking a lot of wine, not greedy for money, 9holding the •mystery of the faith with a clear conscience. 10And they must also be tested first; if they prove blameless, then they can serve as deacons. 11Wives, too, must be worthy of respect, not slanderers, self-controlled, faithful in everything. 12Deacons must be husbands of one wife, managing their children and their own households competently. 13For those who have served well as deacons acquire a good standing for themselves, and great boldness in the faith that is in Christ Jesus.

We might note, or have noted, these qualities in church ministers, if we attend churches, and that might include – or might not – the most responsible minister, vicar, rector, bishop, deacon.  I suspect it’s highly likely that "leadership" is to be spotted in people who aren’t church officials.

What do you look for in a Christian leader?  What qualities, what actions?  Instead of saying what it’s not, what do we see, look for?  Maybe it’s the woman at church who quietly organises the flower rota – is she a “leader”?    The one who organises children’s fellowship – is s/he a “leader””

What of the person who doesn’t  have an assigned or chosen church role, yet s/he is the one who gets the neighbourhood cleaned up, gets the kids’ playground fixed, is a source of tea and sympathy when there’s a local disaster (flood, storm, accident).  What of the person who organises the night shelter for homeless people, or a soup run, or outreach to street kids or street (sex) workers?  What of a doctor or surgeon who sets the tone in his/her surgical practice?  What of debt counsellors?  Abuse counsellors?  Psychotherapists?  The person who sees a need locally or internationally, and starts fundraising , opening his’her own home, or takes other action to help meet that need?

Or, are we all leaders, in that our lifestyle - how we speak to and treat other people - is or should be a way of leading people to Christ?

So … What do you look for in a Christian leader?  What qualities, what actions?

Who epitomises a Christian leader to you today?  And why?

 

 

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Wish the "quote" function worked better -I know I set it up correctly - but no doubt people here can work out what's from 1 Tim 3 and what's from a less capable source.

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Twinky, thanks for starting this thread in doctrinal – and thanks for those questions!

I think Christian leadership is mostly about service as Jesus in Mark 10: 35 to 45   explains…and I believe there is no higher calling than service – whatever that might be – simply put, service is helping or working for someone.

I think as far as Christian leadership goes – whether in church or after church – a leader should lead by example. Leadership is about influence – about inspiring others…it’s walking the talk - - and I think the ratio should be 10% talk and 90% walk. As Paul, Silas and Timothy expressed to the Thessalonians ( please see I Thessalonians 1: 5 – 8 )  

5 because our gospel came to you not simply with words but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and deep conviction. You know how we lived among you for your sake. 6 You became imitators of us and of the Lord, for you welcomed the message in the midst of severe suffering with the joy given by the Holy Spirit. 7 And so you became a model to all the believers in Macedonia and Achaia.

== == ==

I’m not sure of the sequence, but it seems only natural that the Thessalonians first became imitators of Paul & company and then of the Lord – and after some time and genuine growth in living the Christian lifestyle they became exemplary believers. So leading by example can inspire others – who in turn will also lead by example.

I also wanted to say something about being a genuine Christian leadership “material”  :biglaugh: - -  no matter what your calling is in life. It should not be something you have to turn on when you’re around other Christians or when you want to witness to someone. It should not have to be something you turn on at all. It should be who you are.

Over the years, in working for different companies I have been around ordained ministers, church deacons, seminary students, etc. who are also in the work force. The exemplary Christians would make any church proud. But the ones that come to mind when I think of the type who operate on the turn-it-on-and-off-as-the-situation-demands protocol - - are more apt to cut corners on a process like in a preventative maintenance or security & life/safety checklist…or maybe they run a bunch of personal errands while they’re out of the office supposedly handling a company task on company time…or maybe pilfering supplies or old equipment left in storage "that nobody is going to miss anyway"...a principle of faithful in little - then faithful in much comes to mind Luke 16: 10 - 12 

10 Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much. 11 So if you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches? 12 And if you have not been trustworthy with someone else’s property, who will give you property of your own?

 

== == == 

 

So what do I look for in a Christian leader? I don’t look for Jesus on a stick – just someone who is authentic – not someone who is only interested in rendering eye-service for whoever else is watching them as they lead, administrate, serve, work, etc. – but someone who is intent on serving Christ from the heart Ephesians 6: 5 - 9 .

Edited by T-Bone
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Good post, T-Bone.

Authenticity  Yes. 

3 hours ago, T-Bone said:

...the type who operate on the turn-it-on-and-off-as-the-situation-demands protocol - - are more apt to cut corners on a process like in a preventative maintenance or security & life/safety checklist…or maybe they run a bunch of personal errands while they’re out of the office supposedly handling a company task on company time…or maybe pilfering supplies or old equipment left in storage "that nobody is going to miss anyway"

I can't even begin to think of Christians that should be doing this.  Lk 12:42ff seems on point, about a master finding his servant(s) doing the right thing.

Also, Deut 25, about giving proper value and not cheating.  Although this applies to physical weights, I think it appropriate to apply it to "the weight of time" and giving good value for what an employer is paying for.

13You must not have two different weightsf in your bag, one heavy and one light.g 14You must not have two differing dry measures in your house, a larger and a smaller. 15You must have a full and honest weight, a full and honest dry measure, so that you may live long in the land the LORD your God is giving you. 16For everyone who does such things and acts unfairly is detestable to the LORD your God.

I think that compassion coupled with vision for improvement is important for Christian leaders.  Compassion - everyone needs that!  Vision - because it's not just seeing a need, but having the vision to see a way through and beyond the need,so as to lift the needy person(s).  Also, the ability to communicate that vision, and get others enthusiastic and alongside.  "Communication"" isn't just words (especially not fancy words) but will include action that brings forth results (healed and helped people). 

Of course, nothing will go anywhere without a deep reliance on the power of God to energise, but that can't be seen directly, only by its outcomes - showing faith by one's works.

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On 5/8/2018 at 6:09 PM, Twinky said:

So: what is “Christian leadership”?

You gave some excellent examples of them: "What of the person who doesn’t  have an assigned or chosen church role, yet s/he is the one who gets the neighbourhood cleaned up, gets the kids’ playground fixed, is a source of tea and sympathy when there’s a local disaster (flood, storm, accident).  What of the person who organises the night shelter for homeless people, or a soup run, or outreach to street kids or street (sex) workers?"

I see it as someone who, even imperfectly, strives to live as God would have us live.  And, aside from learning the entire bible, we can look at two guiding principles that Jesus Christ pointed to: 1 - Love God above all else, and 2 - Love your neighbor as yourself.  In everything we say and do, if we can be sure they fit into these two principles, then we are on the right track.

Then, add to that, taking action to serve - and that isn't restricted to serving the believers in our own church group, that's people in our communities, and inspiring others to follow in that action.  Inspiring others is the key.  A leader doesn't tell anyone what to do, unless they are asked for suggestions.

It's interesting that there are secular speakers who describe how to inspire people to action, but not many church leaders.  One secular speaker in particular that I have enjoyed has said that a leader will say, "Let's do this or that", while a boss will say, "Go do this or that".  But whatever other actions are taken, a true Christian leader has to be living the love of God as described by Jesus Christ.

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