leaders who care about their influence…

Today is my hubby’s birthday–its a big one–50. That means that we have been married over half of his life (lucky him <grin>) and he has been in ministry for about 30 something years–wow! that’s impressive.

There are lots of things I could say about how great he is and how blessed I am–all of which are true, but Ive noticed something lately that has me bothered and i want to compliment my husband because he has NEVER been guilty of what I’ve been seeing.

Leaders are responsible for their influence. We’ve all heard that and we need to take it seriously. In all the years I’ve been with Jeff, he has NEVER EVER been cavalier about his responsibility to lead well. We’ve had fun, we’ve worked hard, we’ve struggled with things, we’ve celebrated, we’ve cried, prayed and laughed and we haven’t done everything perfectly–who has?–BUT we have because of his leadership erred on the side of caution.

You may be wondering what I talking about and here’s the deal. I read big time bloggers who have large followings in Christian circles, and read things about how its funny to hide your lifestyle from one set of people and joke around about beer and alcohol or hear about leaders who ridicule others of the faith because they have different beliefs and convictions. Last time I looked we, who say we are Christ followers, are all supposed to be on the same team and we who have been given leadership roles, however large or small, are accountable for what we ‘teach’ and how we lead. Under the guise of being authentic I have read about “hiding things from one group” and changing how you act according to who you are with–where I come from that’s pretty fake and not authentic at all.

Jeff has taught me that even if something isn’t a struggle for me–i need to be very careful about treating it lightly because those who listen to me speak or read something that I write may have a completely different relationship with that issue. I have always enjoyed making people laugh but am I more concerned about getting the laugh than I am about influencing someone for Christ? That’s a question more leaders need to be asking themselves.

On my hubby’s birthday, in his honor, I felt led to give a call out for leaders to take their roles seriously and treat the influence that you have been given with great respect. If we don’t then Heaven help us when we are faced with the devastating results that can happen. Hezekiah struggled with dishonoring his leadership, Saul did and lots of others did also–they paid the price for their disrespect and I don’t want that for any of us.

May we be leaders who err on the side of caution and discernment. may we NOT be afraid to stand for living above reproach and  as Eph 5 says “be very careful then how you live, as wise not as unwise-making the most of every opportunity because the days are evil”.

May our words and actions line up–may we refuse to be one person in one setting and someone else when the company changes. May we be authentic and real without offending and cutting down and may we remember that we are all on the same team and our goal is to reach the lost with the love of JESUS.

My man has been committed to sharing his faith for more than 40 years and cares so much about his influence. I respect that and I am so grateful that I have gotten to share my life with him–the lessons I’ve learned have been invaluable. I love his authenticity and realness.

Pray for leaders you know and encourage them in how they lead. It is a privilege and a responsibility:)

Rachel