Yesterday we examined 10 characteristics of “spiritually plateaued leadership,” and today we look at six marks of the kind of ministry that results from it.
Here are six ways poor leadership often becomes a bottleneck to releasing God’s powerful kingdom on a world ready for change…
- Poor leadership needs to control all ministry. When leaders feel that all programs of the church need their approval, they have a very unhealthy understanding of leadership, the church, and Christ himself…But Christian leaders do not always know what is best for the church nor should they. As leaders they are to help the people of God connect with their Head and follow his lead, because our Father knows best.
- Poor leadership needs to filter God’s voice. Too often Christian leaders believe that other Christians are unable to understand God’s Word adequately. As a result, they become God’s interpreter, revealing what God meant to say, as though God doesn’t know our language, context, or challenges….
- Poor leadership promotes upper-class Christianity. For almost two thousand years Christendom has been plagued with a sinister doctrine that has corrupted all that the church should be and do in this world. It is the separation of clergy and laity…we still accept two classes of Christians in the kingdom, and this is just wrong.
- Poor leadership emphasizes knowledge at the expense of obedience. When leaders believe their role is teacher and protector of God’s Word, the church becomes more of an academic institution than a spiritual family on a mission…When we confuse knowledge with maturity, we allow for a congregation to take in lots of teaching without any accountability for obedience, and the result is less maturity, not more….
- Poor leadership sees church as a worship service more than a service of worship. For many people church has become nothing more than a Sunday morning religious event, and church growth means having more and more people attending the service. This is far removed from what the Bible teaches…Frankly, church services share more in common with The Tonight Show than they do with the New Testament.
- Poor leadership is lured by fame and fortune. Leadership in the church today has become a career path, and certain well-known leaders are the standard against whom others are measured. Leaders who are seen as successful enjoy special perks, which makes this kind of success in leadership even more enticing…However, lives of privilege are often corrupted, and these leaders are easily lured by fame and fortune. Usually such leaders expect to be served rather than serve others.
~ Neil Cole in Organic Leadership: Leading Naturally Right Where You Are, pp. 25-27.