We have all seen leaders that were super talented and fail. Why? Of course there are numerous reasons, but often the root of this is found in three areas. For a leader to have long term success, these areas must be developed on a equal basis.
1. Life Maturity. All people go through life, and there are always various events to help us mature. These events are often painful and difficult, but produce strength of character and maturity. This is why elders are to be older. There is maturity with old if the person has processed life well. Much of what a leader does is difficult. You are dealing with hard demands, and complex situations in which there is no manual on step one or step two. You have to use wisdom because all situations are difficult and all people are difficult which causes all dilemmas to be first time encounters. Life maturity is the strength to move forward in the face of opposition.
2. Spiritual Maturity. We have seen great leaders in the church fall. Often this is a spiritual maturity issue. The tank ran empty, and the leader acted out. Instead of allowing the Spirit of God to work through them, the leader worked through himself until there was nothing left to give. Of course there are those who practice the spiritual disciplines, but for what purpose? These are not practices in and of themselves, but provide a base for serving the Lord. We reject a monk mentality. There has to be a strong connection to the Lord for ministry to take place long term.
3. Ministry Maturity. Someone might be strong in the other areas, but cannot function well in a congregational context. There are skill sets for those who lead in the church. Can you develop structure, can you handle criticism, and can you mentor others around you? These are all skills that people must develop in our churches. It can be basic phone calls to encourage, to preaching, to being a peacemaker. But this are not always inherent skills, but must be developed. This is why mentoring and education are the keys in successful leaders in the church.
All of these three dynamics are in play for successful leaders. Of course all leaders will be stronger in various areas, but unfortunately the weakest area can sabotage one’s ministry for the Lord. All must be given time and attend for growth to happen.
- The End Result to Lads to Leaders
- Joint Service of Two Congregations
- Church Leaders Living Through Business
- Review of “Why We are Bad at Picking Good Leaders”
- Review of “Leaders Who Last”