Just as the human body, made up of so many different parts functioning together, is such an awesome wonder, the unity of the body can also present great dangers if it is not taken care of properly. The body is so interconnected that disease in just one small part of the body can threaten the life of the entire body if it is not treated. In this way, even the members of the body that do not seem that important, such as an appendix, can cause the death of the entire body. Many churches, ministries and missions are likewise either seriously damaged or destroyed by seemingly small problems that go unnoticed until they are too large to deal with.
It is very difficult for leaders who are devoted to vision and growth to give much attention to individuals. Leader-types tend not to see individuals anyway, but rather groups--they are almost always focused on the "big picture." Leader-types have trouble seeing the trees for the forest. Manager-types have trouble seeing the forest for the trees. This may be right for them to a degree, but if the leader-type completely looses touch with the personal nature of the venture, he will lead to places no one wants to go. Likewise, if the manager-type is not occasionally able to perceive the big picture, he may never go anywhere.
Paul the apostle is one of the quintessential leader-types in Scripture. It was not enough for him to be the apostle to a single nation, or even to an empire - he had to be the apostle to the largest people group on earth, "the Gentiles." Paul is one of the great studies in leadership, motivation and vision, yet he had the wisdom to support himself by one of the most mundane professions of his time--tent making. This man who visited the third heaven was also compelled to sit on the ground with needles and thread and make a humble, modest living. This contains an important spiritual principle-before we can soar in the heavens we must know how to walk properly on the earth. Those who are given to visions without earthbound responsibilities, will usually only have visions that never do anyone any good. Heavenly visions are given for the purpose of changing things on earth. We must be in touch with the mundane if our heavenly perspective is to be useful.
The Knights of the Order of St. John of Jerusalem, also known as "the Knights of Malta," are possibly without peer as the most effective, strategic and efficient military force in history. Since biblical times there have probably never been so few who have accomplished so much for so many. This little band was credited with saving Europe from Islamic conquest, and was composed mostly of noblemen from the great families of Europe. Yet, it was considered a part of the sacred duty of every member, even the Grand Master himself, to spend a good portion of his time changing bedpans in hospitals and nursing the sick and wounded-even those of their Moslem foes. They knew that God gave His grace only to the humble and they were devoted to making themselves the servants of all.
Jesus, the greatest leader that ever was or will be, had a different philosophy of leadership. The Lord was born in a stable, one of the most humble places on earth. He gave His life to the humble and raised up the humble to carry on His own mission and to be the leaders of His church. The Lord did need some time alone, or just with His closest circle, but He spent at least as much of His time with the common people, talking to them, healing them, even letting some of the lowliest touch Him and show Him personal affection. Regardless of how great our responsibilities are, if we lose touch with the common people we will lose the grace that enabled the Lord to use us in the first place.
Fear of punishment can be a motivator, and at times it must be used, as even the Lord does at times use it. Even so, tests consistently and overwhelmingly prove that the prospect of reward is usually a much more effective motivator than the prospect of punishment. Congregations also reflect this truth; those who are driven by the fear of hell or punishment will be a dreary, oppressed lot. Those who are motivated by vision, purpose and the prospect of their heavenly reward, will be dramatically different. The fear of punishment can get people to try harder, but accomplish less because of the effect that fear has on their abilities. Fear of punishment should always be the last resort in seeking to motivate people.
The Administrator will not necessarily get the results he wants to get, or even plans to get; he will get what he rewards. Regardless of how much emphasis, training and effort is devoted to efficient Administration, most organizations fail to ever achieve it because they actually reward mediocrity and penalize efficiencv. Without proper accountability the most inefficient departments will end up with the most people, the biggest budgets, the most prestige, power and influence. At the same time, the most efficient department which has kept its staff lean and effective, will actually lose influence, reward and a significant slice of the budget. If you want an efficient administration you must reward efficiency and penalize inefficiency and waste.
The Lord emphasized this same principle in His Parable of the Talents. He rewarded those who had used most efficiently and effectively what had been entrusted to them. He also held them accountable by returning to examine how they had all done with their responsibility. All of the Lord's parables disclosed vital truths to the kingdom of God. The Lord is very serious about having us make the very most with all that He has entrusted to us, and we will be judged by our results.
The most valuable asset we have entrusted to us as leaders is the people. We should know the gifts and callings of every person who is directly responsible to us, and be sure that those who are directly responsible to us know the gifts and callings of everyone who is directly responsible to them, on down through the entire organization regardless of how large it is. We should reward first those who are the most effective in drawing out the gifts and talents of their people. This is leadership in its highest form and it deserves the greatest reward.
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Copyright: 1993 by Morningstar Publications and Ministries. All rights reserved.
This article is published courtesy of "The Morningstar Publications and Ministries". If you would like to peruse more of Rick Joyner's articles, visit Morningstar's website. Clicklogo.
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