“Obey those who rule over you, and be submissive, for they watch out for your souls as those who must give account.”
A lot of time, attention, and research have been devoted to helping men and women to become better leaders. Leadership has become a science and specialty amassing an unlimited number of references, resources, academic degrees, training, and conferences. While this emphasis on leadership is essential, it is only one side of the equation. There is no leadership where there are no followers.
Like leaders, followers need to be taught, trained, encouraged, and empowered to follow. We should not falsely assume that we know how to follow. Jesus spent His entire public ministry trying to recruit and sustain followers or disciples. The Lord was calling people to deny themselves, pick up their cross, and follow Him. Ultimately, His followers, would become leaders but not before they had proven their willingness and ability to follow Him. Following is a part of life, if you desire to be a leader you must be willing to follow.
Leading and following in the church of our Lord is more important than leading and following in any other organization. We have an aversion to submission. Christians don’t want to submit to one another not even to the word of God; no one is ready to submit to any authority. This is because we have equated submission with losing. We may say amen to the principle of agreement but say no to the principle of authority, as followers we have a multitude of tactics we use against submission.
Since leadership has been given the task to love and care for the flock, then it is important that we cooperate with them. Our response to authority reveals what we really believe about God’s sovereignty. When we rebel against the leadership of the church, when we refuse to follow them we are in effect standing against God’s placement of the leadership. Thus, it is a rebellion against God Himself. God has put authority structures in place for own blessing, so when we oppose the leadership, we are making a statement about our view of God’s work in our midst.
This leading and following is about our souls being saved! The Chief Shepherd left some under-shepherds to help lead His people on to glory! It ought to be perceived as a blessing to have somebody watching out for my soul. Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you. Be a joy to your leaders.
I Thessalonians 5.12-13 “We ask you, brothers, to respect those who labor among you and are over you in the Lord and admonish you, and to esteem them very highly in love because of their work.”
Pray for your leaders, If you are not praying for your pastor and elders, you are not doing your job, Prayer is essential, for there is a giant target on the back of each elder.
Garment of Praise
Monthly Insights for Spiritual Growth, Encouragement and Personal Victory.
Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations are taken from the New King James Version of the Bible.
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