Even though I would never have said this, I’ve been believing that leaders are leaders because they’re the best Christians.
It seems like anyone who pursues God is eventually pursued by the church to be the leader/boss of a Bible study, ministry, event… something. Therefore, it follows that anyone who isn’t leading stuff isn’t a good Christian.
I’ve been put in leadership roles at every church I’ve belonged to because I read a lot of books about God, watch a lot of sermons, and am willing and able to perform a variety of tasks with success.
But I honestly thrive when I’m the leader’s side-kick or helper, and barely survive when I’m the main leader.
Most of the church leaders I’ve been around are in a frenzy to be the best Christian around to prove their worthiness to lead.
But what if being a leader is more about being created to lead rather than about being “the best Christian” around?
Maybe you guys already get this (because it’s all over the place in the bible in the verses about the members of the body), but it’s a really freeing thing to me to think that I don’t have to be a “leader” just because I’m genuinely in love with Jesus. I can be fully engaged with the body, in the role God has designed for me, and not lead a darn thing.
It’s also a huge load off if I do end up in any leadership roles in the future because I won’t have to strive to be more prayerful, giving, humble, righteous, loving, hospitable, etc… than everyone in the whole church.
Another thing this is impacting is the way I think about marriage. I’ve always thought that I’d have to find some sort of super-Christian guy to marry because I fancy myself rather spiritually mature. This meant that I’d have to find a guy who has more knowledge, experience, character, etc… than I have. Which is dumb for a lot of reasons – not the least of which that I’m a Complementarian who believes that husband and wife should complement each other. That doesn’t work so well if I’m just looking for a better version of myself.
When I look at the Rev (Pete told me I should quit calling him Pastor Pete because I’m allowed to call him just by his first name; he says that “Rev” is also a suitable substitution… as is P squared)…
When I look at the Rev, I don’t think he’s some sort of super-human guy who is better at everything the bible calls us to be than everyone else is.
But he is most definitely my leader/rev.
I also think BFF Shasta is another perfect example of this. There was this long time at church where everyone knew that Shasta loves Jesus, but because of her humility, they also viewed her as less spiritually mature (I’m so sorry and ashamed to write that, Shasta…you are far more spiritually mature in ways I can’t even emulate). At bible study, Shasta would ask questions that were honest and awesome, but that none of the rest of us would ask because such questions put you into murky theological waters and we didn’t want to be perceived as being less spiritually mature for asking them. Which is exactly what happened to Shasta. She’s so smart and has way more experience in the church than I have, but she never comes across that way because she’s humble.
She totally asked me to disciple her awhile back, and I was like, “Whoa. Hold on a sec there. Let’s not call it that. Let’s be accountability partners or something because I’m not spiritually mature enough to disciple anyone.”
But the truth is that a part of me thought it was good and right for Shasta to ask me to disciple her. Nowadays, I look back and realize that she was humbly leading me into the best friendship of my life. She wasn’t doing it by being like, “Hey! Follow me.” She was more like, “Hey! Lead me.” Which is SO different from the kind of leadership I’ve experienced in the past, but awesome because she led by being humble – just like Jesus. And I’m understanding my own arrogance so much more by being around her beautiful humility.
Thanks for leading me, Shasta 🙂