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Posts Tagged ‘John the baptist’

Leadership is a powerful word. I am sure we can all think of ways that leadership has been carried out well, and ways in which it has been manipulated.

Leadership is no small thing.

The one aspect about leadership that is most forgotten is that leadership is about leading.

Leaders crave influence the most. They desire for their words to have weight; they want to know that what they offer has value.

Leaders are drawn to stepping up into directing roles. Leaders are often enabling situations to offer into.

Leadership requires the character traits of humility, wisdom, compassion, and integrity. I also believe that leadership requires the character trait of open handed leading.

John the Baptist is my hero when it comes to mastering this balance of leadership. He is always my go-to guy when I need a reminder of how open-handed leadership is done well.

What is open-handed leadership?

It is the ability to hold loosely to the ones you are leading. No one is a possession. No one is “ours.”

John the Baptist always made it clear that he was not the Christ. He was so great at directing everyone’s attention and reverence to Jesus. John freely confessed that he was not the Christ.

Do we?

There was even a time where John’s disciples were ranting to him that Jesus, and his disciples, were baptizing more than they were. The people were going out to Jesus instead. John responds by saying that they should. John reminds them that he is not the Jesus.

John came to lead the way to Jesus. This is the same truth for our lives as well.

I am hugely passionate about leadership. I am always drawn to the leadership role. I love soaking up knowledge that pertains to leadership. I will most often step up and pursue the directing role as well.

There is a tension and a balance that needs to be mastered when it comes to leadership. I always need to ask myself the question of, “where am I leading to?” Leaders most often struggle when it comes to the direction of leadership.

I confess to my own human flaws of struggling with the balance of leadership. I love influencing. I love offering. Sometimes I can forget to keep the focus off of me and on the one I am leading for.

I still struggle with jealousy when it comes to leading. I have also been the one ranting to God that more people are going to him than me. That’s just honest. I struggle with fears of having nothing to offer. I struggle with the fears of not being liked, and being made to feel foolish. These are some of my weaknesses wrapped around my love of leadership.

I have been learning a lot from John about the character and value of leading with open hands.

Leadership is about leading well towards him.

So allow me to ask you…where are you leading others to?

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The bible is filled with amazing stories of miracles and wonders. Jesus did incredible things. He healed the sick, and raised the dead; gave the blind person sight and the mute a voice.

Jesus was active. His abilities matched no other.

Homes and courts would overflow with people just trying to get a glimpse of him. People traveled from all over bringing their needs to place before him, and hear his words.

Jesus did illogically astonishing things.

I shake my head at the amazing things Jesus did; story after story of miracles and wonders. God’s abilities were seen very clear through Jesus. Nothing was impossible for Jesus.

I read some of these stories and wonder about the person who didn’t get healed by Jesus. Was there a person he did not touch or heal? Were there people he did not “come through for?

There is a harsh reality that I bet there was. There is a harsh reality that even today things happen that make us question God’s abilities.

This world is filled with things that happen and we wish God would do, or would have done, something.

There is a part in the bible that every time I read it I am left with the question of why? Hebrew 11 is a great chapter of incredible faith. However, it is also a sobering chapter of faith that would seem to cause a tension between what happens and God’s abilities.

Hebrews 11 talks about amazing people of faith. It goes on to describe people who had received back their dead raised to life, those who shut the mouths of lions, those who escaped the sword, and weakness turned into conquering power. In the same breath, there is a list of those who seemed to die by the sword, flogged, imprisoned, stoned and killed.

What do we do with the tension of when God seems to use his abilities and when he seems absent?

God is able.

He is also always doing things we do not see or can even grasp.

There are stories like Lazarus, one of Jesus’ closest friends, who was sick and Jesus waited to show up. John the Baptist, a man Jesus described as one of the greatest men who ever lived, stayed in prison while Jesus did not free him. Jesus, God’s own son, hung on a cross. Battered and beaten, Jesus hung on a cross.

Many mocked Jesus’ abilities to be able to save himself. They called out to him to pray and ask God to save him. Jesus never did.

Jesus never questioned the father’s abilities in the midst of his circumstances.

It is so hard to reconcile our circumstances and God’s abilities. It is easy to claim his abilities when they seem to be for us. What about claiming his character and ability when they seem to be absent and far?

Our circumstances do not reflect the way God feels about us.” Andy Stanley

How do your circumstances stir up in you thoughts and questions about God?

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I have been marinating on some tough questions for me lately.

Have you ever had those small whispering type questions that tug at your deep hearted places?

Those kinds of questions challenge me to the core in truth. They are questions that remind me who I am tethered to.

I am a person who gravitates toward leadership. I think I popped out of the womb leading. I love it. Leading is life giving to me. I love speaking and influencing through the outlet of leadership. As fun as leading is for me, it is also the area I need to keep myself the most in check.

Our gifts can be our curses as well.

I have been asking myself two questions:

1) Am I leading people to me or Him?

2) What does influencing without credit look like?

John the Baptist is one of my go-to guys when it comes to leadership. John was amazing at consistently directing people towards Jesus. He always handled the weight of his influence wisely.

Before Jesus arrived on the scene, John was talking about him. When asked about being the Messiah, John pointed to Jesus.

The minute Jesus came to the river to be baptized, John pointed to him. Every time John saw Jesus, he told people to follow him. John held loosely to his disciples and pushed them to follow after Jesus.

When John’s disciples complained to him about Jesus’ disciples baptizing more than they were, John responded that they should be. John never made himself greater than Jesus, but even stated, “he must become more and I must become less.

True character of leadership right there.

John wasn’t worried about credit or his numbers. John worried about people knowing and following after Jesus.

Am I?

We are all influencing and being influenced. We are all leading and following someone. I am constantly asking myself the question, “Am I following the one pointing me to Jesus, or the Jesus they are pointing to?

Influence is no small thing. There is a huge weight of responsibility when it comes to influence. It is very important to carry it well.

If I am leading people to me, I will fail. I am learning the simple fact that as I follow him followers happen.

I want to be a person who carries the weight of my influence well. I desire to be an open handed leader; always pointing to him in words and action.

Are you leading people to you are him? How?

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Leadership is a powerful word. I am sure we can all think of ways that leadership has been carried out well, and ways in which it has been manipulated.

Leadership is no small thing.

The thing most forgotten about leadership is that leadership is about leading.

Leaders crave influence the most. They desire for their words to have weight; they want to know that what they offer has value.

Leaders are drawn to stepping up into directing roles. Leaders are often enabling situations to offer into.

Leadership requires the character traits of humility, wisdom, compassion, and integrity. I also believe that leadership requires the character trait of open handed leading.

John the Baptist is my hero when it comes to mastering this balance of leadership. He is always my go-to guy when I need a reminder of how open-handed leadership is done well.

What is open-handed leadership?

It is the ability to hold loosely to the ones you are leading. No one is a possession. No one is “ours.”

John the Baptist always made it clear that he was not the Christ. He was so great at directing everyone’s attention and reverence to Jesus. John freely confessed that he was not the Christ. Do we?

There was even a time where John’s disciples were ranting to him that Jesus, and his disciples, were baptizing more than they were. The people were going out to Jesus instead. John responds by saying that they should. John reminds them that he is not the Jesus.

John came to lead the way to Jesus. This is the same truth for our lives as well.

I am hugely passionate about leadership. I am always drawn to the leadership role. I love soaking up knowledge that pertains to leadership. I will most often step up and pursue the directing role as well.

There is a tension and a balance that needs to be mastered when it comes to leadership. I always need to ask myself the question of, “where am I leading to?” Leaders most often get struggle when it comes to the direction of leadership.

I confess to my own human flaws of struggling with the balance of leadership. I love influencing. I love offering. Sometimes I can forget to keep the focus off of me and on the one I am leading for.

I still struggle with jealousy when it comes to leading. I have been the one ranting to God that more people are going to him than me. That’s just honest. I struggle with fears of having nothing to offer. I struggle with the fears of not being liked, and being made to feel foolish. These are some of my weaknesses wrapped around my love of leadership.

I have been learning a lot from John about the character and value of leading with open hands.

Leadership is about leading well towards him.

So allow me to ask you…where are you leading others to?

 

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