For Servant Leaders, the question becomes, “Where do we place our trust and hope?” There are going to be many times during our season of leadership where our decisions will reveal the answer to this all important question. Have no doubt about it. There will be many times when we take a stand and face the fear of negative consequences or we’ll be tempted to rely on our own self-accumulated resources and efforts as our source of self-worth and security.
The world we live in fuels the fires of pride and fear. As much as we might want to believe that we can find security, safety and meaning in acquiring more and better goods and services, the absolute truth is, we can only find security, safety and meaning in a relationship with God. If we place our trust in the unconditional love and promises of God, we’ll find a never-ending supply of what we need to live and lead as Servant Leaders.
We live in a performance based society. Our performance is constantly being evaluated by those with whom we interact. At least once a year we go through a performance evaluation process. Our salary increases are called merit increases. Do we merit a raise based on our performance? Exemplary performance can lead to more money, promotions and more responsible titles.
Accepting the reality of God’s unconditional love and promises is a struggle for us. With a performance–oriented mindset, it’s hard to grasp that God’s unconditional love for us is not premised on our performance. It’s promised for our acceptance and response to it. His unconditional love and promises are very specific, meant for us personally. Surrendering our reservations to His love can be one of the hardest things we’ll ever do. Look at these following promises:
“For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” –Romans 8:38–39 (KJV)
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” –John 3:16 (KJV)
To lead as Servant Leaders we need to learn to love as Servant Leaders. As Servant Leaders, if we do not love God, we cannot love the people we lead. Nothing but the love of God will compel us to cheerfully go through the difficulties and discouragements we experience as leaders.
All individuals need to be heard; they need to be praised; they need to be encouraged; they need to be accepted. As Servant Leaders, we need to practice these expressions of love. Why? Because we express our love for God by loving those He puts in our path. Think about all of your interactions with people within the past 24 hours. If how you treated them is a reflection of your love for God, how much do you really love God?