November 13, 2016

Leadership Maturity Takes Time

Written by Boyd Bailey

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Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – November 13, 2016

He must not be a recent convert, or he may become conceited and fall under the same judgment as the devil.   1 Timothy 3:6

Leadership in the world does not automatically guarantee leadership in the church or ministry. In fact, if you are a new believer, you need not sign up for highly visible leadership in a spiritual environment. Your character more than likely needs sanitizing from the stains of sin. You do not want to bring into a leadership role any baggage that may burden you. Take your time and get to know the current leadership. Serve them and allow them to get to know you. It is tempting to jump right in soon after becoming a Christian. After all, you are so grateful and energized to do good works. Your business experience seems fitting for service on the board of a church or ministry, but this may the worst thing for you. There is the very real chance that your premature elevation to spiritual leadership will lead to pride and conceit. Why put yourself in a position to fail?

Be patient, and let leadership opportunities come to you. Serve in the nursery and love on little babies and children. Park cars, write a check, volunteer in the kitchen, greet people, or help stuff envelopes. The point is to crawl before you walk. Develop a reservoir of humility that can douse any flames of conceit. A new believer is not fit for significant leadership in the Christian community. It is neither fair to the person, nor to the people he is attempting to lead. Leadership in the church and ministry requires much more than passion and availability. It requires a seasoned walk with Christ that leads with grace, truth, and wise judgment that only comes through experience and maturation in the application of knowledge.

So there is a warning to those who are responsible for recruiting and placing leaders in roles of responsibility. Do not do a disservice to someone by assigning responsibilities to them when they are not ready. There is always room for growth and learning, but in situations requiring mature faith and character, be very prayerful and patient. It is better to have an empty leadership position than to have the wrong person filling a slot. Pray for God-called leaders to lead. Pray for leaders who understand the grace of God and the judgment of God. Pray for leaders who lead by example. Pray for leaders who lead by serving. Pray for leaders who point people to Jesus, not to themselves. Pray for leaders who will not superimpose slick sales techniques, but instead challenge people to look to the Holy Spirit for their direction and confirmation.

The temptation is to rush in and “lay hands” on someone too quickly. The needs are overwhelming, and it makes sense to draft a person who is highly successful in the marketplace. But why jeopardize the current wise and humble culture of leadership that has evolved over the years? There will always be another potential leader. Hold the qualification bar high for leadership in the church and ministry. Do not settle for anyone less than someone who is managing his own home well. God will raise up mature leaders in His timing. Quality is attracted to quality. Therefore, trust God for quality leaders who are full of the Holy Spirit. Keep developing and apprenticing those with potential, but let God grow them. A good rule is to know someone at least a year before you entrust them with significant leadership. Mature leaders are patient. Wait on God to send them your way. Mature leaders are worth the wait. Mature leaders wait for mature leaders.

Prayer

Heavenly Father, give me the patience to wait on the right person.

Application

How can I grow into more of a mature leader worth following?

Related Reading

Today’s reading is taken from Boyd’s most popular book: Seeking Daily the Heart of God, a 365 day devotional.

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It is better to have an empty leadership position than to have the wrong person filling a slot. #wisdomhunters #matureleadership

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