Daily D – Luke 6:40
A disciple is not above his teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like his teacher. LUKE 6:40 (CSB)
Jesus teaches at least two leadership lessons here. One is about self-leadership. The other is about qualifications for leadership.
First, before we can lead others, we must lead ourselves well. This includes knowing what we are talking about and knowing what to do when and how. A few years ago, I was asked to teach material before a high-capacity group of leaders. The only problem was that I had seen that material precisely once. I had not lived with it and allowed it to sink deeply into my mind. I never want to make the mistake of saying Yes to something like that again.
I was the blind man leading the blind.
Second, our character determines our actions. A highly-regarded ministry leader was revealed to be a sexual criminal this week. This makes me sick to my stomach. True spiritual leaders lead like Jesus. They do not shear the sheep to multiply their wealth or devour them to sate their sinful appetites.
Let me quickly say this: I work with hundreds of ministry leaders every week. The above-mentioned predator is the stark exception and in no way representative of his peers. One local pastor I heard about this week is the rule. He is physically and emotionally exhausted to the breaking point from caring for the staff team and members of his church who are dealing with COVID and other problems. He carries their burdens as his own and feels the full weight of all their trouble.
Self-discipline and self-control are gifts we give ourselves. They empower us to live lives of integrity and wisdom. They keep us on the right path. They return us to the right path when we realize we have wandered off.
Self-discipline takes the right lead measures (Luke 6:12). Self-control improves our recovery rate when we wander or fail. Self-discipline ensures that we have a personal growth plan that makes us more like Jesus and that allows Jesus to shine through us. Self-discipline keeps us away from anything that would make us blind or cause us to lead others astray.
Let us be careful who we choose as mentors and partners.
Let us become the kinds of leaders others can follow with confidence knowing that we are bound for the Promised Land and not toward a bedroom or a bank.
I will live a life of self-discipline and self-control.
Our Father, make me a leader of integrity and character. I want to give all that I know about myself to all that I know about you. I want to grow in grace and truth in these two areas so that I may live with wisdom and power. Amen.
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Zechariah 13:9 “This third I will put into the fire; I will refine them like silver and test them like gold. They will call on my name and I will answer them; I will say, ‘They are my people,’ and they will say, ‘The Lord is our God.’ ”
Zechariah 9:9, 10 Rejoice greatly, Daughter Zion! Shout, Daughter Jerusalem! See, your king comes to you, righteous and victorious, lowly and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey. I will take away the chariots from Ephraim and the warhorses from Jerusalem, and the battle bow will be broken. He will proclaim peace to the nations. His rule will extend from sea to sea and from the River to the ends of the earth.
Ezra 3:12, 13 But many of the older priests and Levites and family heads, who had seen the former temple, wept aloud when they saw the foundation of this temple being laid, while many others shouted for joy. No one could distinguish the sound of the shouts of joy from the sound of weeping, because the people made so much noise. And the sound was heard far away.
Daniel 2:30 “As for me, this mystery has been revealed to me, not because I have greater wisdom than anyone else alive, but so that Your Majesty may know the interpretation and that you may understand what went through your mind.”