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Intersection of Life and Faith

God uses leaders who are faithful

  • Whitney Hopler Live It Editor
  • 2001 2 Aug
God uses leaders who are faithful
You'll be called to be a leader at some time in your life and in some type of role - whether through your church, workplace, or somewhere else. Perhaps you're already serving in leadership.

Ultimately, you'll be most effective as a leader if you strive to be faithful rather than successful by the world's standards. God uses leaders who are faithful, and He wants to use you.

Here are some ways you can lead others faithfully:

  • Commit to discovering God's will, and helping to fulfill it through your leadership.

  • Pray about a vision from God - a plan for how He would like you and the people you're leading to be doing in the near future. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you discern God's vision. Once you know the vision, articulate it clearly and consistently to others. Commit to building your leadership decisions around the vision God has given you. Stay in communication with God so you'll know how He wants you to work toward the vision, and when He wants to give you a new vision.

  • Consider what unique talents God has given you, and ask Him which main one He would like you to focus primarily on so you can best fulfill His purpose in your life. Develop and use that gift.

  • Set your priorities to please God rather than anyone else, and base them on how well they will enable you to advance the vision God has given you as a leader.

  • Create "kairos" moments -- blocks of time that are full of meaning and potential for accomplishing God's vision for you and those you lead. As much as you can, try to relate everything you say and do to God's vision. Consistently motivate, support and encourage people you lead, and regularly challenge them by raising expectations of what you all can accomplish together. Listen to people as much as you persuade them.

  • Don't let crises derail you. Whenever a crisis occurs, don't abandon your vision. Instead, seek to advance the vision in the midst of the crisis, as best you can.

  • Mentor others by sharing not just your skills, but also your values and perspectives. Seek to build relationships with them rather than just train them. Display the fruits of the Spirit -- love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control -- in your life as you interact with people you mentor.

  • Above all else, make sure you're properly caring for your soul. Put your relationship with Christ first in your life.

Adpated from Better than Success: 8 Principles of Faithful Leadership, copyright 2001 by Judson Press, Valley Forge, Penn., 1-800-4-JUDSON.

C. Jeff Woods serves as executive minister for the American Baptist Churches of Ohio, a region comprised of more than 290 congregations.