What Does The Bible Say About Leadership? - Being a leader at work

By Kris Seale on June 27, 2016

Whether or not you consider yourself to be a leader, there is always something to learn about leadership. In my view, no matter your position or your title, you’re a leader. Whether we like it or not, others are looking at us, observing our behavior – and if others are not watching us specifically, God is definitely watching us, and He expects you and me to exhibit leadership traits and actions that Jesus demonstrated.

In reading an article by Rick Warren, founding pastor of Saddleback Church and author of The Purpose-Driven Life, I discovered some Christian principles that will help all of us, as we consider how to be effective leaders – no matter where we currently are in life.

Identity: Rick Warren started his article by saying, “I must know who I am. To be a leader you’ve got to know who you are. All great leaders know their strengths and their weaknesses. We’re a bundle of both. Leadership is not ignoring one in favor of the other. It’s being honest about them. Good leaders don’t try to be something they are not. They are self-aware.

Jesus had no doubt about his identity. He said:

• I am the light of the world.

• I am the Son of God.

• I am the way.

• I am the truth.

• I am the life.

• I am the bread of life.

Jesus defines himself 18 times by saying, 'I am…' He didn’t let other people define Him. He defined Himself. If you’re going to be a leader, you must know who you are.”

Clarify: Pastor Warren continued, “You must clarify what God has called you to do with your life. The direction of your life is your choice. If you don’t like the direction your life is headed right now, change it. Nobody’s holding a gun to your head. Nobody’s making you a victim. Nobody’s forcing you to serve in the manner you’re serving.

Jesus knew exactly what God had called Him to do. He was a straightforward leader who established clear-cut goals. In John 8 Jesus says, ‘I know where I came from and I know where I’m going.’ Jesus had a clear purpose. He knew not only who He was, but what He was trying to do with His life. He truly was a purpose-driven leader. A leader knows that purpose and pursues it with passion.”

Motivation: Pastor Warren stated further, “Know who you’re trying to please. You need to settle the issue of motivation. You can’t please everybody. Just about the time you get one person happy, you’ll tick someone else off.” For me, the Apostle Paul said it best in the book of Colossians, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as though you were working for the Lord and not for people.”

Pastor Warren continued, “Jesus lived for an audience of One. His whole purpose was to please His heavenly Father. Jesus says this in John 5, “I only try to please the One who sent Me.” Jesus wasn’t trying to win a popularity contest; He just wanted to please God. That’s a lesson we have to learn as leaders. You’ve got to learn not to care about the opinions of others. You’ve got to focus on God’s opinion of what you’re doing. Don’t pay attention to those who cheer you or jeer you. Either one will sidetrack you.”

Concentration: Concerning concentration, Pastor Warren said, “Focus on what’s important. Leaders must focus on what’s important. Life is filled with things that will distract you from what’s important. Sometimes we can be distracted by good things as well. If Satan can’t mess up your life by getting you to do wrong things, he’ll mess up your life by giving you too many good things to do.

Jesus was a master of concentration. He focused his life like a laser. He refused to be distracted. Luke 9:51 says, ‘As the time drew near for his return to heaven, he moved steadily onward toward Jerusalem with an iron will.’ He headed toward Jerusalem to die on the cross for us. He did it with an iron will. He would not let anything distract Him from what was important. Settle on what’s most important, and God will use your life like you could never imagine.”

Meditation: Pastor Warren continued by saying, “Listen to God. Make listening to God a habit of your life. Jesus did. Prayer was a regular part of His life. The Bible tells us in Mark 1:35, ‘Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.’ If Jesus needed to get alone and listen to God, don’t you think that you need to? You need quiet times to reflect, renew, and recharge. You need time to just get alone, be quiet, and listen to God.”

It has been confirmed to me once again, we need to learn about leadership from Jesus. We have no better guide.

I would love to hear your comments on this blog - please leave one here or send me an email.

Blessings,

Kris

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