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The Theology of Leadership

A Doctrinal Statement Submitted to Dr. Roger Ball Phoenix Seminary Scottsdale, Arizona

In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for MI 503

by Troy A. Griffitts 24-June-2007

WhatisLeadership ChristianLeadershipistheprocessbywhichmenandwomencalledbyGodgiveservantdirectionand humbleguidancetoabodyofbelieverstowardacommongoalusingBiblicalprinciples.Leadership isthemanagementofheavenlyresources,includingpeople,talent,andtime.Leadershipis commissionedbyGodandshouldbecelebrated(Number27:1523).Leadershipshouldnotbetaken forgranted;itisaprivilege,notaright.Leadershipisagiftandloanofresponsibility.Itistemporary responsibilityofpowerwhichshouldnotbeabused.Leadersarereplaceable(ISamuel16:1).

TheMandateforIntegrity BiblicalleadersmusthaveGodlycharacter(ITimothy3).SinceBiblicalleadershiprequires submissivefollowers,thisplacestheleaderinapositionoveravulnerablesubmissivestaff.Inthis ordainedrelationship,theintegrityoftheleaderisintegraltothesuccessfulsymbioticoperation betweenleaderandsubmissivestaff.Aleadermustbetruthful,honest,andfaithful(Exodus18:21)to warrantsubmissionfromfollowersandtoprotectthemfromabuse.

ThePurposeofBiblicalLeadership GodcallsandhasgiftedeachChristianwithatalenttoserveinthekingdomofourLord.God appointsleaderstoutilizetheseskillsbyorganizingministryopportunitiesandcreatingjob descriptionstowhichagiftedbelievercanplugin.AleaderinvitestheBodyofChristtoparticipatein theGreatCommission(Ephesians4:16)andinworkwhichbuildsuptheBodyofChrist.Aleader

equipsthesaintsandenablesthemtofulfilltheirministry.Itisaleader'sjobtounleashthesaintsto theministryoftheChurch.Aleadermustdoallthisinlove,asaservant;notasalord(Luke22:25 27).

StylesofLeadership Differentleadersaregiftedwithdifferentstrengthsintheirstyleofleadership,butdiverseoccasionsin ministrycallfordiverseleadershipstyles.Ononeendofthespectrum,andseldomnecessary,a dictatorialextrememightevenbewhatisneededinanextremesituation.Thisisobviouslynotthe idealforregulardaytodayministry.Aleadermustnotbecomeknownforalwaysandalonemaking allthedecisions.Asofterincarnationofthefirststyleseestheleaderstillmakingthedecisions,but notovertly.Theleadercanoftengentlysteerstaffcovertlyinlove.Anotherstylewhichcanoftenbe usefulinahealthyteamisaLaissezFare,handsoffpolicy.Iftheleaderhastrainedandraisedup otherleaderswell,andinstilledinthemacommonvision,oftenlettingstafffigurethingsoutontheir owncanbeablessedlearningexperienceforthemandusefulforcontinuedgrowthandhealth.This styleofleadershipcanshowaleaderhoweffectiveonehasbeeninremovingoneselffrombeingthe bottleneckinministryandiftheministryishealthyenoughtocontinuebeyondthetermoftheleader. Aleadershouldalwaysremaininthetrencheswithstaffworkingalongside.Thisnecessaryendeavor bringsthedangerofenvelopingtheleaderandtakingawaytimefromleadingothers.Often,whenthis happens,theleaderwillembraceacasualstyleofleadershipresultinginunstructured,andunplanned ministry.Finally,inoursociety,itisalsoappealingtoimplementademocraticstyleofleadership.

Thishastheadvantageofnecessarilyinvolvingtheteamindecisionmaking,butcanbogtheworkers downspendingunnecessarytimeinthemanagementprocess.Whilemostpeoplewillsaytheywould likeavoteinthedecisionmakingprocess,oftentheyarenotwillingordonotdesiretoinvestthetime necessaryresearchingtheoptionstomakeawisedecision.ThisiswhyGodhasgiftedsometobe leaders.

Servanthood AllChristiansarecalledtobeservants;theleaderisnoexception.Christcommandsandexemplified servantleadership(John13:117).Aleadershouldaskpermissionandnotpush.Aleadershouldnot holdontocontroltootightly.Don'tdemandsheepfollowyou.

LeadingandDecisionMaking Decisionmakingisaprimaryfocusofleadership.LeadingGod'speoplewillrequiremakingdecisions whichrequiresensitivepreparation.Decisionmakinginherentlyinvolveschange,andinacommunity wherereligiousconsistencyisastronghold,changewillnaturallycauselongtimepatronsinitialunease. Attimes,decisionswillbesoweighty,theirresultwillinvoketransformationofinternalperspectives. Thesekindofdecisionsoftentakeyearstoaccomplishtheirobjective.Aleadermuststayfocusedand notimmediatelychaseeveryideawhichinitiallyseemsgood.Decisionsmustbemadebygoalsand valuesdrivenfactors.Obviousmoralgatescanfilteroutmanychoicesimmediately.Thegoodofthe unsavedandtheBodyofChristmustalwaysdrivedecisionmaking.Finally,cultureswithintheteam

mustbeweighed.SometimesadecisionmaybegoodforonegroupwithintheBody,butwouldbe detrimentalwithinanothergroup.

Leadingrequiresmanycoreprinciplestobefollowedtoobtaineffectiveness.Asstatedearlier, integrityisthecornerstoneofasuccessfulleader.Whentheethicsofaleaderarecompromised,their staffwillseethemastheiradversary.Aleadermustneverbetrayanyone.Earningtrustcostsan enormousamountoftime.Losingtrustcanoccurinstantaneously.Anotherpitfalltobeavoidedisthe appearanceofusingone'sauthoritytoachievepersonalgain.Otherswilloftenfalselyperceivethis whenitwasnevertheintentionoftheleadertodoso.Jealouslyforthepositionoftheleaderiseasily stirredinmankind.Itmustneverbetheleaderwhostirsitup.Itisoftennecessarytoimplement ethicalsafeguardsinareaswherealeaderknowstheyareweakandmaysuccumbtothetemptationto abusetheirpower.Aleaderishumanandattimeswillfail.Whenthishappens,theymustnever coverupfailure,butinsteadconfessitopenlyandaskforgiveness.Thisdemonstratesthebehaviorthat theleaderexpectswhenstafffail,anddemonstratedhumilitywillhelpalleviatejealousyand resentment. [Notes: TheauthorityofBiblicalleadershipthedarksidecanbeaddressedbythis. 1. youhaveauthorywhichisdelegated.(Num27:15;Eph.);notabsolute. 2. BiblicalauthorityandLordshipare2verydifferentthings.Donodominateorlorditover. Onlyguide,coach,etc.

Rememberjustificationforpersonalvalue. Truthfulnessprecedestrustworthiness.(Eph4:1416,2532) AllpowerandauthoritycomesfromGod(Rom.13:1).UseitforHisglory.Don'tabuseanyonein anyway.ItisanabuseofthepowerandauthorityofGod.Letyourholypowerbeguidedbythe integrityofGod. ManyplayersandmanygiftsandallareimportantbecausetheyareonGod'steam.Don'tdevalueany ofGod'steammembers(1Cor.1314). ThedrivingforceoftheBiblicalleaderisGod'sagenda.(Eph4;Matt28)Evangelismand discipleship. Feedbackisalwaysnecessary. Servanthoodismustforeveryone. Integrityiseverything.Speakthetruthinlove. Leaderstalk(phil2:114;1cor4:12) Leader'scommunicationchallenge.Aleaderwillalwayshavemoreproblemstodealwiththenthey havetimetoaddress.Communicationishuge! Mustalwaysinthebackofmindassumewecantakeastepforward Highlyvaluefollowers. Mustalwaysfosterunityofteam.Ifnot,thiswillviolateteamintegrity. Whentheteamfragmentsoveralackofintegrity(trust),nolongerhaveBiblicalleadership. III. BiblicalleadershipisthefunctionofleadingpeopleandresourcestowardaChristlike

destinationviaaChristlikeprocess. Getassessment. Developatheologyofincrementalchangeforyouandothers.It'saprocess. AllowforGodgivencreativity(1cor12:47,11). Listeningisamust(1Cor11:17;4:16).Receivefeedback.Repeatbackwhattheyaresayingtoyouto clarifyandshowattentiveness.Keepfeedbackconfidential.Remember:searchforallthenecessary facts,notjustoneperspective. Good,better,bestassessment.Prioritize.1)avoidallsinoptions;2)whatarethepossibleGodly options;ranked?;3)Whatdoeseachoptioncost;4)Lawofexpedience;howquickcanwegetthis done? Exod18:13Mosesjudgingallthepeoplehimself.

ManagementSystems Giveauthoritywithresponsibility. 3LevelsofGodlyauthority:

God Moses Peoplehaveauthoritytogiverespectofauthority(???)

] GeneratingLeaders

Successfulleadershipministriesrequirethegeneratingofnewleaders.Foraministrytobothhave longevityandefficiency,onepersoncannotbethesolepointofresponsibility.Iftheleadertriesto accomplisheverything,burnoutwaitsinthewings,otherswillnothavetheopportunitytoexercise theirgiftinservicefortheLord,andtheministrywilldiewiththeleader.Afullyintegrated mentoring/discipleshipplanmustbesetinplace.Mentoringrequirescaringforpeople.Adiscipler mustlookforthegoodingrowingmentees.OftenthezealofaSaulcanbechanneledintotheworkof aPaul.Wemustbewillingtocomealongsideandencourageandaffirmthepositivetraitsinpeople andhelpthemgrow.Wemustmodelholymatureministrytoourteam.Thementormustspend everydaylifeandexemplifyloveandsacrificeforthesheep(Philippians2:130).Aleader/mentor mustshowstrongcommitmentinloyaltytotheteam(ICorinthians12:12;Ephesians4:16),showing grace(IITimothy2)infailureandconflict,disagreeingwithhonorandrespect.Developingnew leaderscostsasteepinvestinothers.Ourtimeisapreciousthingandwemustdeterminebeforehand tospendourtimeinvestinginwhoGodhascalledtoworkalongsideusinministry.Raisingup leadersoftenrequiresrecruitment.WemustseektotrainandappointpeopleGodhasappointed.He doesnotcallustoministeraloneandwemustlookforthosewhomHeiscallingtoleadalongsideus andshareresponsibility.WemustliftupourindividualteammemberstoourLorddailyinprayerand askGodspecificallyforhelpinwhichindividualsofourteamneedgrowthandassistanceinlife.This willhelpusgrowtoloveourteammoredeeplyasweconsidertheirneedsandmakethempartofour relationshipwithourLord.

TrainingLeader EverybelieverisSpirituallygifted.Trainingisavitalpartofbeingagoodleader.Someindividuals aregiftedforataskasaworker,andothersGodhasequippedtoleadastheyperformthosetasks. Theselatterindividualshaveboththegiftofserviceandleadership.Nomatterthegifting,Godequally valueseverybeliever(ICorinthians12:6)andwemusthonoreachoneassuch. [Notes: Mentoringrequirestraining.Godcommandsit.Skillsandcharacter.(Act13:13)Createjob descriptions.Delegate:giveresponsibilityandauthorityaway,withaccountability(Titus1:5).Can includetheresponsibility(function)withouttheauthority....bothrespandauth.Neverdelegate withoutregularaccountability.Don'tassume;doublecheck.Delegatespecificboundaries. Mentorviasupervision.1)whatgetsinspectedwillgetdone;2)supervisetaskfromadistance;give space,butnottoomuch;3)superviseattitudeaswellasfunction;4)viaaffirmation Mentorvialawofencouragement:1)wordsthatencourage.2)noteofencouragement;3)recognition Makeplansforothers.Planexperiencesandmakethemavailabletoothers. ]

Organization Aleadermustorganizefortheteam,butforunitytoexist,cooperationmustbehighlyvisible.The leader'sorganizationshouldnotbeseenasdictatingthedirectionfortheentiregroup.Organization requiresplanning,andplanningshouldbedoneopenlywithfeedbackwelcomefromall.The

organizationprocessshouldcreategoalsandobjectivesfortheteam.

Auditing Aleadermustbeintimatelyintegratedwithpeopleandtheprocess(Ephesians4).Asaleaderserves alongside,dailyopportunitiestoaudittheperformanceofothersisanaturaloccurrence.Oftenthere areoccasionswhichlendthemselvestotemptation,andanofficialauditingsystemwillencourageand admonishstafftoremainpersonallyholy.Internetmonitoringsystemsandselfevaluationsare examplesofmechanismswhichcanspurteammatesontoloveandgooddeeds.Inevitably,the auditingprocesswillrevealshortcomingsandsometimessin.Aleadermustbewiseindealingwith eachspecificcase.Aleaderwillbenefitbystayingsilentwhenpeopleconfess.

Change Oftenwhenownershipandtimehasbeeninvestedintoaproject,changeisresisted.Thisresistanceis anaturalandgoodthing.Regularly,newcomerswillcomeintoaprojectandwithoutthehistoryand backgroundtoguidethemsuggestthatthingsshouldbedonedifferently.Theleaderhastheintimate experiencewiththeministrytoknowmostnewsuggestionshavebeencarefullyconsideredortriedin thepast.Itisatasktobeundertakenwithgentlenessandsacrificetotakethetimetoexplainthe historyofwhythingsarenotdonethesuggestedway,andtopurposelymaintainanatmospherewhere suggestionsarestillwelcome.Thisisoneofthehardestpartsofleadership,tobalancingthedesireto

involveothersandaccepttheircontribution,andtoalsomaintainthequalityofthetask.Havingsaid this,aleadermustalwaysrememberthatalladvancementischange.Allchangeshouldnotbereject, andnonebeforeacarefulconsiderationofthesuggestion,especiallywhenthesuggesterofferstoown thetask.

Grace Graceisthekeystoneofallsuccessfulministry.Teammatesmusthavegracewitheachotherandmore soleaderstoteammembers.

Encouragement Biblicalleadersmustdemonstratea'topdown'compassion.Biblicalleadersmustalwaysgrowintheir capacitytobepatient.Teammatesmustfeelvaluedandthattheirworkismakingadifference.Itisthe leadersjobtoacknowledgetothemthevalueofwhatGodhascalledthemtodo.

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