Lately, the Lord has been teaching me on the theme of leadership. I believe we are all called to lead in some fashion, although, I have not always thought of myself as a leader. But, I know I am called to be -- God has called me to lead young women in the faith. Therefore, I must submit to that and not just lead, but lead well.
Last week, I came across a passage that I had previously read and marked in the margin "call to holiness in ministry." - "For an overseer, as God's steward, must be above reproach. He must not be arrogant or quick-tempered or a drunkard or violent or greedy for gain, but hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined. He must hold firm to the trustworthy word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it." - Titus 1:7-9
Then today as I finished reading 1 Peter, this passage struck me in regards to leadership - "So I exhort the elders among you, as a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, as well as a partaker in the glory that is going to be revealed: shepherd the flock of God that is among you, exercising oversight, not under compulsion, but willingly, as God would have you; not for shameful gain, but eagerly; not domineering over those in your charge, but being examples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory. Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” - 1 Peter 5:1-5
It's obvious to me that God wants to get my attention in the area of leadership! And I think yes, he is setting me up for success as I will soon step back onto a college campus and begin shepherding young women, training them up to be mature in their faith. But I also think he is giving me Truth to stand on as we head to New Jersey soon. With this move will come many changes. Tyler and I will have to choose a church to get plugged into, we will find a small group to get connected with, and we will be part of a new staff team with Athletes in Action at Rutgers. So what does all of that have to do with leadership? I think God is pruning me in my views of leadership and equipping me to find Godly authority to be under, as I step into a position of authority as a leader.
Pastor Mark Driscoll has a leadership coaching ministry that my husband recently signed up for. I listened to a short video of Pastor Mark's encouragement to leaders regarding Being In and Under Authority. As leaders, we need to be not simply in authority, but under authority as well. As Pastor Mark states, "It is an incredibly dangerous thing to be in authority and not under authority." He lists some questions we need to ask ourselves...
Who are you accountable to? Who do you submit to?
Who can course correct you? Who can rebuke you?
What could you be better at: being in or under authority?
I hope and pray that God will give both Tyler and I wisdom and discernment in the area of seeking authority to be under (church, small group, etc.), in addition to respect and respond with humility the authority placed above us (Athletes in Action). I also hope that this has encouraged you in one way or another.... maybe to step up as a leader, or to humble yourself and be under authority!
How are you called to lead? Are you leading to the best of your ability? Is God leading you as you lead others? Are you allowing others to lead you? Are you under authority while leading in authority?