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July 24, 2012

Leading by Example

by LDI Global Missions

When Albert Schweitzer, the great humanitarian, was asked if he had any advice for parents about bringing up children, he said, “I only have three principles, three basic rules. One, you only teach by example. Two, by example. Three, by example.” It is the same pattern an effective leader should use.

I think that one of the great principles for leadership is found in the Scripture concerning our greatest example, “Jesus.” In the tenth chapter of Mark: “James and John, Zebedee’s sons came up to him. “Teacher, we have something we want you to do for us.” “What is it? I’ll see what I can do.”

“Arrange it,” they said, “so that we will be awarded the highest placed of honor in your glory – one of us at your right, the other at your life.” Jesus said, “You have no idea what you’re asking. Are you capable of drinking the cup I drink, of being baptized in the baptism I’m about to be plunged into?”

“Sure” they said, “Why not?” (Taken from The Message by Eugene Peterson)

Jesus went on to remind them that godless rulers throw their weight around and when people get a little power it quickly goes to their heads. He went on to say that it is not going to be that way with them. Whoever wants to be great must become a servant.

Jesus’ final word about this subject is the most profound when he spoke about Himself, “For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45, KJV).

In the final analysis, a leader cannot separate leadership decisions and actions from who he or she is as a person.


by Cleveland M. Becton

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