BE A SERVANT LIKE JESUS
There are many leadership lessons we can learn from Jesus. One of the most important is servanthood (Mark 9:35; 10:42-45; John 13:1-17; Matthew 20:25-26). Servanthood is more than an action – it starts with a humble heart attitude. Jesus humbled Himself to become a man and served us by dying for us (Philippians 2:8).
One of our biggest difficulties in being like Jesus is dealing with our self-centeredness and selfishness. We think about ourselves first. What is due me? What do I deserve? Who has wronged me? What makes me happy?
The best leaders are first of all servants. The army looks for men who can take orders before they can become officers who give orders. No one can be a good leader for Jesus until he first learns to be a good follower of Jesus (Matthew 16:24). God must come before self, serving must come before being served (Matthew 6:24; Luke 16:13).
Don’t look for a person who can lead to put in a position of leadership. Instead, first look for someone who can serve. They become the best leaders. God’s requirements for church leaders have much about serving others, but nothing about being able to lead (1 Timothy 3:1-7; Titus 1:5-9; 1 Peter 5:1-4). The word “leader” is in the Bible 6 times, but “servant” 900 times! Jesus didn’t teach His followers how to lead, but He spent much time teaching them to follow. Jesus didn’t invite Peter, Andrew, James and John to become leaders, but to be followers of Him. The best leaders in the Bible didn’t seek to lead, just to follow and serve: Nehemiah, Moses, Paul, David, Esther, Peter, Gideon, Isaiah, Joseph and others.
A godly leader must give up his or her personal rights to find greatness in service to others, just like Jesus did for us. We are all to be servants, and probably we will all say we are servants. However, how do we respond when someone treats us like their servant? Does our pride rise up, or do we do what we can to serve them?
Leaders for Jesus are to build into the lives of others. We are like the coach of a sports team. The coach is there to help the players be all they can be. The players aren’t there to build the reputation of the coach. As church leaders, we to build up the Body of Christ. We are to serve the people, not expect the people to serve us. It’s the same for men with their families. God puts us in leadership to serve our wives and children, not to have them serve us. If we want to lead like Jesus, we have to become like Jesus. And Jesus was a servant.
Would your family say you are a servant who does what is best for them before thinking of yourself? Or would they say you put yourself first and expect them to serve you? Would God say you are a servant leader? When is it hardest for you to serve others? What can you do to become a better servant?
cto Rev. Dr. JERRY SCHMOYER
Christian Training Organization
(India Outreach, Spiritual Warfare, Family Ministries, Counseling, World View)
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