By Jeff Faull
Defining your leadership style is a difficult assignment. There is what you think you would say, what you could say, and what you should say. I am certainly not a typical type A leader, and do not possess some of the traditional leadership gifts seen in strong leaders. However, when pressed by commitment, deadline, and the work of honest self-assessment, I believe I can reduce my leadership definition to two concepts.
There is the power of following and the power of standing.
Simply put, the extent of my capacity to lead anything or anybody is directly related to the extent of my willingness to listen to Christ and follow him myself. That is the only place true spiritual leadership lives. I have learned (and I am constantly relearning) the only thing I have to offer those who would respond to my leadership is my own greater devotion to followership. Every other avenue of leadership development is a dead end without that pursuit. Consequently there is no better way for me to grow as a leader than for me to grow as a follower. I can only say “follow me” as I follow Christ and his words.
The second concept is the power of standing. To persevere and to endure creates leadership capital. There is great joy in “still standing,” and knowing that he is able to make me stand, and to make me stand again even when I fall. In this way, God has allowed me to lead for 24 years in the same church.
As much as I would like to reveal some great, profound, and little-known leadership secret, it all boils down to following and standing.
That is why I resonate with Paul’s words to another leader:
Prescribe and teach these things. Let no one look down on your youthfulness, but rather in speech, conduct, love, faith and purity, show yourself an example of those who believe. Until I come, give attention to the public reading of Scripture, to exhortation and teaching. Do not neglect the spiritual gift within you, which was bestowed on you through prophetic utterance with the laying on of hands by the presbytery. Take pains with these things; be absorbed in them, so that your progress will be evident to all. Pay close attention to yourself and to your teaching; persevere in these things, for as you do this you will ensure salvation both for yourself and for those who hear you (1 Timothy 4:11-16, New American Standard Bible).
Jeff Faull serves as minister with Mount Gilead Church, Mooresville, Indiana.