Being a leader is hard work. It requires you to be strong when others aren’t, make tough decisions, and stand for what you believe is right; but we are all called to be leaders. A leader is simply one who leads a group, pretty basic stuff right? What this looks like is simple, yet complex. That’s one of the things that never ceases to amaze me, how simple God works to do incredible things. Ephesians 2:10 says, “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” You see, we were specially designed by God, made in his image, he gave us abilities and talents that are unlike anyone else. He made us, but we have a calling that he gives each of you, use what he has given you to do good works. Those good works are simply serving others, treating others as you want to be treated.
We are never promised an easy life. It’s the hardest thing to fully comprehend, even when we trust God, life will still throw sucker punches our way. These are the moments where we feel like everything is against us, the world is trying to tear us down, but we need to remember that God is for us. Our live may not be smooth sailing all the time, but it does mean that God will turn our situations into lessons. Lessons that we can then turn into wisdom for the future. This wisdom will allow us to lead others because we have walked hard roads before them. The thing about leaders is, many people refuse the call of leadership in their life. We live in a world where being passive is okay, that it’s okay to let someone else change the world. This is such a sad truth, this is the reason why we see so many people wanting a change, yet never saying a word to make it happen. People are okay with sitting back because it’s easy. You don’t have to take a chance if you just stand back and hope something will change, but history never remembers the people that stood back, history remembers the victors. It reminds me of the rich young ruler found in Mark 10. It’s the story of how Jesus met a rich young ruler on the road and offered him the ability to become a disciple with Jesus, all he had to do was leave his riches behind. The man couldn’t give up his possessions, so he walked away, stood back and never reached his potential. Mark didn’t even write his name, because the young ruler wasn’t important, he chose to not make a difference and be forgotten. I want to spend the next few paragraphs to encourage you that you need to stand up, that you have the ability to be remembered for living like Christ and make a difference. This is the introduction to a series I want to spend the next month talking about, how we can be effective leaders. The first step is what we will talk about today, you need to lead.
We live in a fallen world.
This is pretty clear to see. Every day it seems like there’s a new shooting, new speeches breathing our hate, more ignoring of our world crumbling around us; there’s a problem. The problem is that we are surrounded by sin, a world blinded by the lies of the enemy. So what do we do about it? Most just ignore the problems or escape into their own source of media, but we need to stand up. You need to choose to stand, to make a difference, because God has called us to do more. This is why we as humans love hero stories, we love to see a simple person choose to fight against the world that is trying to kill them. You have stories like Batman, a man who had the world steal his innocence, but chose to drive out the darkness in the city. You have stories like Katniss, a woman who was surrounded by an Orwellian society, but chose to fight the evil in power. These stories are in fiction, but they still stir something up inside of us. We see a world that is dying around us, and we have to make a choice. Will we just be another face in the crowd, let the world tear us down? Or will we rise above, and fight against the lies of the enemy? Imagine if Martin Luther King Jr. just stood back and did nothing against the world that treated African-Americans like objects rather than people. I don’t want to live in that world, thankfully, we live in a world where he stood up and chose to fight back. We live in a fallen world, and when we stand up, life will be hard, I don’t want to sugar coat it, but when we choose to live the way God’s word tells us to, we fight back against the fallen world around us.
In order to be a leader, all you have to do is be yourself.
God created you, the real you. Not the image you try to put on, but who you really are. You don’t have to have a special criterion to lead, you don’t have to be specially trained in some area, all you need to do is listen to the Holy Spirit and follow him. I look at when Jesus chose his disciples in the bible. He didn’t pick the guys who knew all of the laws or the people that were the most athletic, he chose people who had a heart to serve others. They were fishermen and tax collectors, people that didn’t have much experience yet they were chosen by God. These men went on to be the most influential men in the bible, writing most of the New Testament and creating the early church. God wants you for you. He doesn’t give you a purpose because of the experience you may have or how many Instagram followers you have, God wants you. Live like Christ, follow the word and live by it daily. God wants you, because there is only one of you in this world. No one else is the same, even if you are a twin or a quintuplet, there is only one you. The world needs you.
Swords are forged in fire.
Being a leader is a tough job, but it is so rewarding. One thing that always helps when I struggle or have to walk through a difficult time, it’s that God uses everything for his will. Look at the way swords are forged, they are put through intense heat and fire beaten into shape by a mallet, and the end product is a powerful weapon. As you lead, you will make mistakes, you will try things and sometimes they may fail. In those experiences you are made stronger and can move forward to better things. That’s why you need to try things. Get involved serving in your local church, build your strength as a leader in a place that you can be surrounded by biblical principles. Work towards making yourself better by reading the word daily, praying, and surrounding yourself with people who have gone before you. When you go through hardship, remember that it will strengthen you to become something more than you are. It will be hard, but that’s exactly why we need you. Most people will choose not to lead, but you have the strength to survive the fire when you are following Christ.
Leadership is hard, but it is so worth it. I’ve been able to see just how incredible it is to serve others. When you lead you get a chance to help people move into freedom, that’s why I love writing this blog each week. I get a chance to give you insight into what I’ve learned, and I’m still learning myself! You have a chance to make your life mean something, to help others be more than they thought they could, and there’s nothing better than seeing that. Whether you are leading in ministry or in your career, you have the ability to live like Christ and lead others into their full potential. Leadership requires hard work, but it is so worth it. Being a leader is hard work, so step into leadership with confidence knowing it will make all the difference.
You are a leader.