What is involved in becoming a leader? There are so many great leadership training courses that it is hard to choose the right one. In my case it was a matter of "on the job" training" through my experiences as an athlete, Marine, Sales Manager, Used Car Manager, CEO and leader in most of the projects that I have been involved in during my life. And then, there was the following.
The following involves being able to come under the training of another leader and learn the obvious do's and don'ts. In Viet Nam we had multiple Lieutenants lead us and only one was a true leader, the rest were just appointed the rank. One of them almost got us all killed. In sports, I will always remember Coach Capes, a former offensive lineman and very large man who without pads on would take us on in blocking and tackling drills. He certainly led by example, and we were undefeated because of his mentality.
But where I learned the true qualities of leadership were from Jesus. He said this: Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last, and servant of all. He said this in leadership training for his twelve Apostles to provide them a formula to lead. Servant leadership gets more out of people than any other form of it because it is not just a short term hype or intimidating folks to follow.
As we were growing the recovery ministry at North Atlanta Church many years ago, I would prepare a topic for the meeting, get the donuts (even then they were "live"), drive the van to pick up the folks and drop them off, clean up and oh I forgot - I would make the coffee too. It grew and grew and grew and during it other folks volunteered to do those other things until all I had left to do was prepare a topic.
Funny, 32 years later we are still doing the same thing and it is still working. North Atlanta's ministry is still going, we are still growing, and as long as I lead I will remember these elegant words from the Apostle Paul (who spent a quick 3 days in God's leadership training) in the Book of Galatians:
Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.
It is never about the leader, it's always about who the leader is following. And when we follow Christ as a leadership example, that is as a servant of Him and mankind, it all keeps going, and it all keeps growing, and we ever decrease in stature as He increases in our message.
Follow The Leader? You know we will and as always the donuts remain "live"!
P.S. Just this morning one of our folks called and said he was now an assistant manager at Dunkin Donuts and will bring the donuts free on Mondays. If it's about Him it always works!
Glenn is an ex-Marine Viet Nam vet who is also a recovering alcoholic, clean and sober for 30 years. He has been involved in start up and ongoing recovery ministry at North Atlanta Church and Campus for the last two decades. He has a passion for outreach and to spread the message that the answer to lasting and fulfilling recovery from addiction is in a relationship with Jesus Christ. He and the ATB team are available to assist in your questions or needs on an individual basis and will do so maintaining complete confidentiality. You may e-mail him at email@example.com.