Here is a startling observation.
Nowhere in the Scipture are we told to develop leaders.
Yet leaders for the church is one of the crying needs of our generation, in fact, of every generation.
It seems in Scripture, that the assumption is that leaders will be developed in the natural process of making disciples. Out of the many who are discipled, there are some who will emerge with a leadership call and gifting upon their lives. These individuals will need to grow and mature, but their leadership will be recognized first, and then, it will need to matured. Here’s another way of approaching the issue:
Ques. How do we start emerging leaders down a development track?
Ans. Disciple all with an eye to a few.
Ques. What do we do with the few?
Ans. Four things,
- We identify them. Hint: there were hundreds that followed Jesus but he chose 12 and trained them as leaders.
- We train them. Hint: Jesus challenge them to be WITH and FOLLOW him.
- We release them. Hint: He eventually sent them with others (cf. Luke 10) to do what they saw him do.
- We resource them. Hint: He sent them his Holy Spirit to empower them.
Ques. How do we do these four things?
Ans. First, we pray.
Ques. Okay, we pray. Then what?
Ans. We pray some more. Then we begin to develop systems from the Scripture for
. developing men and women to their maximum potential for God.
Ques. What do you mean “from the Scripture?” Why wouldn’t we want to utilize some
. proven system “off the shelf”, something built on someone else’s experience?
Ans. Had you ever noticed that the Scripture nowhere tells us to develop leaders
. before you read this page? Didn’t you just assume that leadership development
. programs in churches, maybe big churches, were somehow built on Scripture?
. How much actually evidence do you have that that assumption is true?
. If we can be so easily duped into thinking that leadership development
. programs are different from discipleship why should we have any confidence in
. the programs themselves?
Ques. I still don’t get it. What is the difference between a discipleship process that
. looks for emerging leaders and a leadership development program that tries to
. develop leaders?
Ans. I guess we will just have to examine the Scripture and see.
But here is a short suggestion.
Passion for the process comes from not doing what others have done, or tried, or “seen success with” but in discovering what we have become convinced of is a truly biblical process followed by Jesus and the apostles.