Thursday, August 10, 2006

Leadership Summit

First: apparently there is no rift between my brother and I. He called a couple of days ago and there was no hint of anger or discord at all. Great big whew!

Today began the WCA Leadership Summit. 20 people from my church are joining tens of thousands of leaders from all over the world through a live simulcast in learning about all aspects of leadership and all aspects of leadership within the church. Going feels fraudulent to me, as I tend to think of a leader as the head of a department or ministry or the pastor, but certainly not me. There is that in me that aspires to leadership, but I find it a bit frightening to be considered a leader in the church. It is a grave responsibility and not to be taken lightly. That being said, there are things I want to teach/share that God has shown me, things that I see other women needing to know.

I have so many flaws that seem to me to eliminate me from a leadership role. The depression that I have admitted to, the health issues that cause such fatigue, an inherent laziness, my weight, my temper, and so many other things. I think of a leader as strong, confident, together. But when I think about leaders in the Bible, Moses, David, Paul, are all flawed individuals. Moses seemed to be a man lacking in confidence, yet God used him to lead the nation. David trusted God, yet he committed grave sin. Despite that he was called a man after God's own heart. Paul not only persecuted Christians before he was called by the Lord, he had such a problem with a fellow worker that the team split, yet God used him mightily and restored the relationship later on.

We expect perfection from leaders, and often show no mercy when they fall, but that is NOT what God does. God uses flawed people. However, sometimes sin does eliminate us from a futher blessing, as when Moses died without reaching the Promised Land. He got to look at it, but he didn't cross the river.

Anyway, I'm at the Summit and the first speaker actually says "Keep on leading". It could not have been more clear. I was considering quitting teaching, unsure whether I was really a leader, but I believe I need to pick up the book, study and prepare and plan for a larger group. I am also, once again seriously thinking about two things: prison ministry and homeless outreach. These two things have stuck with me for a long time, coming up time and time again. I'm not sure exactly what shape that should take, and since we don't have a ministry in place, I need to be prepared to put one in place if I am to mention this.

Still, Jesus talked about this in his sheep and the goats speech. Matt. 25:32-46, one of the most convicting passages in the Bible:

And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth [his] sheep from the goats: And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.

Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed [thee]? or thirsty, and gave [thee] drink? When saw we thee a stranger, and took [thee] in? or naked, and clothed [thee]? Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done [it] unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done [it] unto me.

Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not. Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee? Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did [it] not to one of the least of these, ye did [it] not to me. And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.

What makes the difference between the sheep and the goats? Everytime I read this or hear it read from the pulpit I hear Keith Green: "The only difference between the sheep and the goats is what they did and didn't do."

Well, I want to be a sheep. I want to be told "well, done". I want to hear "you've done it unto me."

1 comment:

Beth said...

I'm so glad you went to this. Sounds like it was right on for you at this time. And yes, you ARE a leader. All leaders are flawed, some of the greatest leaders are also some of the most flawed people. Flawed people who get out there accomplish way more than possibly (at least visibly) less-flawed people who sit home and criticize. Keep doing what you're doing.