Thursday, January 05, 2006

Leadership Principles

Today I was listening to a message by a pastor out of Lafayette, Louisiana, preached up here in the Detroit area, at a Youth Conference called Warweek. His name is Jacob Aranza, and he was preaching at the youth leader session of the week long event. He was talking about Biblical Leadership Principles. I won’t attempt to include a word-for-word transcript, but I will give a brief overview, hitting the main points. I don’t know much about Pastor Aranza, except that he is a former youth leader for years, and now pastors a large church, as well as planting new ones.

1. As leaders, we must be life-giving. We must be willing to pour ourselves into others. Does the way we live our lives stir people to live for Christ as well? Do we ignite a desire in others to follow God passionately?
2. The quality of life will be determined by the quality of relationships. And these quality relationships will cost us. It will cost us time, as we seek to make ourselves available to the person we want to “rub off” on us. I’ve heard it said this way: hang out with those with similar callings and giftings, or qualities. If you desire to be a prayer warrior, it helps to surround yourself with prayer warriors, etc., etc.
3. Quality of life is determined by how we solve conflict. When trouble arises, whether in your church, or youth group, or even at work, deal with it. Don’t hide it in the closet, so to speak. By dealing with the issues that we as leaders have to deal with daily, we also are saving ourselves a lot of headaches and stress.
4. You can’t treat all people the same. It almost sounds un-Christ like, doesn’t it? But let’s look at Jesus. He preached to the multitudes who just wanted another miracle. But he picked out 12 men to disciple, and then 3 out of the 12 that seemed to get special attention. He loved them all the same, but not all received the same treatment. Pastor Aranza spoke of the Parable of the Sower, and how some reproduced 30, 60 or 100 fold. Jesus then said, “He who has an ear, let him hear”. In Greek, the words “hear” and “obey” have the same root. Look for those who hear and obey, and pour into them. He said to watch out for the “spiritual leeches” who want to suck all the life out of you, and find the “spiritual investments” that want to do great things for God. By the way, this is a great way to change the precedent in your church of youth group. Those who do crazy things to win your attention will begin to see that it’s the wrong way to go about it, that they begin to see that being committed, faithful and obedient is how to go about it. Again, love everyone, just so no one thinks I’m saying otherwise.
5. Always honor, even those who are critical of us. Joseph’s brothers were very critical of him. Some of which he brought on himself, through a lack of wisdom about the sharing of his dreams. Yet, he was not critical of his brothers at all, and when the time was right, nothing but grace and mercy was bestowed upon them.
6. Trust is the bridge we must cross to carry truth to someone. The heavier the truth, the stronger the bridge must be. This speaks for itself.
7. Leadership is not an opportunity to finally be the exception; it is the privilege of now being the example. We are called on to be servants, our ultimate example of course be Jesus Christ, who “came not to be served, but to serve”. Don’t allow an attitude of superiority take root in your heart. You are a servant.
8. Finally, if God is with you, you don’t have to tell people; God will advertise for Himself. Stay humble, stay touchable. Enough said.
I hope that this is a blessing to you. And, by some slim chance that Pastor Aranza stumbles across this blog, thank you for this teaching, it has really touched me. God bless everyone.

P.S. Here is the address for the message so you can listen to it.
Click Here>


Henry Haney said...

Those are good- especially the last two. I know it's cliche' but almost all leadership experts say that we should never ask anyone to do anything we aren't willing to do ourselves. I think many people view the pastorate and full-time ministry as an opportunity to be the exception.

michigan preacher said...

That's the truth. God help me to always be willing to serve. We shouldn't ask others to do stuff we don't want to do. That goes for scrubbing toilets and running a vacuum on up.

Henry Haney said...

Let's don't get carried away now Bro.....scrubbing toilets?- LOL


I'll never forget my first day on the job at a retail store. I was hired as the "assistance manager." I was so excited, I showed up with my nice coat, tie, and shiny shoes. For my first task, the store mgr took me to the men's room-showed me the checkoff sheet of items that needed to be cleaned and told me to "git-r-done." (I don't watch Larry the cable guy but I am familiar with the phrase-LOL). After cleaning the bathrooms, then I was shown all the garbage cans that needed emptying.

Talk about reality check....that was about 10 years ago but it seems like yesterday ....ah the memories!

michigan preacher said...

You know, those are commodes in your neck of the woods, aren't they?- LOL

Henry Haney said...

Only for those of us here blessed with indoor plumbing. -LOL