Leadership is not a substitute for shepherding.
Just so I’m clear, I love leadership, and I recognize the need for leaders in the church. One of the terms that irks me the most is “facilitator” because I know we need people who lead and don’t just facilitate. Someone has to be intentionally leading people from where they are to where they need to be. So I’m not anti-leadership.
BUT, leadership is not a substitute for shepherding. All the plans in the world, all the strategies, all the staffing, all the conferences attended, all the podcasts listened to do not mean much in the absence of one who doesn’t know his people and/or won’t sacrifice for the sake of the people (John 10:11,14).
Some questions I’m asking myself:
1) Are you known more as a shepherd or a leader? In other words, where do you stand at this moment?
2) Would you rather be known more as a shepherd or a leader? In other words, where is your heart? Does pride determine your leadership style?
3) How many times was Jesus referred to as a shepherd? How many times was Jesus referred to as a leader? Which of those references were made by Jesus in reference to Himself and which were made by others? In other words, where does the Bible place its priority?
Since it’s Easter week, Hebrews 13:20 is particularly timely on this subject:
Now may the God of peace who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, equip you with everything good that you may do his will, working in us that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.