Skip to main content

Jesus as Servant-Leader

“When an organization’s vision stems from the innermost values and beliefs … it generates a tremendous excitement, a compelling spirit, and a passionate commitment… Enormous energy is … unleashed” (Stoner, Zigarmi, & Blanchard, 2003, p. 1). Jesus best exemplifies “…vision stem[ing] from innermost values and beliefs” (Stoner et al., p. 1).

Jesus generated commitment because “Knowing your purpose motivates your life… produces passion. Nothing energizes like a clear purpose” (Warren, 2002, p. 33). “’My food…is to do the will of him who sent me…’” (John 4:34, Today’s New International Version). Followers are freed to “feel … empowered to act independently and be assured that they are benefiting the organization” (Stoner et al., 2003), p. 1).

Jesus was credible. “Do What You Say You Will Do [is a] …commonsense definition of credibility … To be credible in action, leaders must be clear about their beliefs… know what they stand for” (Kouzes & Posner, 2002, p. 38). Jesus’ words were supported by miracles, healing, giving the Holy Spirit as guide.

Jesus empowered followers, evidenced in the Great Commission in Matthew 28:19-20. Earlier in ministry, he prepared them for the greater empowerment in Matthew 10:8. His default of trust was in God’s ability to work.

Jesus communicated effectively via stories and parables. In this way, “by talking story…degrees of separation between people melt away, creating new understandings across cultures and contexts” (Stanford-Blair & Dickmann, 2005, p. xv). This also breaks down the wall of separation between God and humanity (Ephesians 2:14).

As a servant-leader, Jesus laid down his life for his followers (John 15:13). Documented throughout the gospels is his motivation of compassion. We should each emulate such core values. Servant leadership speaks to the characteristics I hope my life and work model. Empowering communicators of vision, purpose, and credibility are most effective.

References

Holy Bible (2005). Today’s New International Version. Grand Rapids: Zondervan.

(Kouzes J M Posner B Z 2002 Leadrship Challenge)Kouzes, J. M., & Posner, B. Z. (2002). Leadership Challenge (3rd ed.). San
Francisco
: Jossey-Bass.

(Stanford-Blair N Dickmann M H 2005 Leading Coherently: Reflections from Leaders Around the World)Stanford-Blair, N., & Dickmann, M. H. (2005). Leading Coherently: Reflections
from Leaders Around the World
. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

(Stoner J Zigarmi D Blanchard K 2003 Creating Your Organization's Future: the Full Steam Ahead Field Guide)Stoner, J., Zigarmi, D., & Blanchard, K. (2003). Creating Your Organization's
Future: the Full Steam Ahead Field Guide
. San Diego: The Ken Blanchard
Companies.

(Warren R 2002 Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth am I Here Here For?)Warren, R. (2002). Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth am I Here For? Grand
Rapids
: Zondervan.


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Dancing with the Trinity

This is the sermon I preached at St. Timothy Lutheran Church on Trinity Sunday, 6/16/19. The text was John 16:12-15.
This is Holy Trinity Sunday. What comes to mind when you think of the Trinity—questions, confusion, a puzzle, a mystery? It seems to me that just when you think you have a bit of understanding, it all starts to unravel as you think of something else. This is a difficult concept to wrap our minds around. For centuries, the early church struggled with a right and proper interpretation and understanding as they formulated the doctrine of the Trinity.
The more I read, the more I see the wisdom of Dr. Jerry Christianson who taught The Early Church and its Creeds my first year of seminary. He explained the Trinity as a love relationship between the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Just as God is all about relationship, so too the Christian life is all about relationship: our relationship with God, our relationship with each other and our relationship with our community.
John’s gosp…

Come To The Light To Become The Light

This is the sermon I preached on Sunday, Jan. 6, Epiphany at St. Timothy Lutheran Church. The gospel text is Matthew 2:1-12
Now, this is a story we know. We’ve seen the scene of the wise men bringing gifts to Jesus so many times in so many pageants. Epiphany is a time when we celebrate the in-breaking of God’s light in God’s way. The Magi are drawn from the east to come and pay homage to the Christ child. There are many theories as to who the magi were: from Zoroastrian priests to astrologers to magicians to kings, while some believe that the Magi were simply a literary device utilized by Matthew. They may have been any or all of the above, but the point is that they were foreigners and gentile outsiders and yet, God spoke to them through a star, through the light and they followed that light. 
Unusual astral phenomena were associated with the birth of a new ruler according to pagans of the time. There were Jewish traditions as well connecting the hoped-for Messiah to the “star out of…

Thanks Jesus

This is the reflection that will be sent out to the people of St. Timothy this Thursday. This is not an easy text of scripture with which to grapple and I would like to hear your insights. Let's dialogue!


Gospel: Luke 21:5-19
5When some were speaking about the temple, how it was adorned with beautiful stones and gifts dedicated to God, [Jesus] said, 6“As for these things that you see, the days will come when not one stone will be left upon another; all will be thrown down.”
  7They asked him, “Teacher, when will this be, and what will be the sign that this is about to take place?” 8And he said, “Beware that you are not led astray; for many will come in my name and say, ‘I am he!’ and, ‘The time is near!’ Do not go after them.
  9“When you hear of wars and insurrections, do not be terrified; for these things must take place first, but the end will not follow immediately.” 10Then he said to them, “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom; 11there will be great earth…