One of the great needs of our world is Christ-like leadership. It is very timely to be writing this blog on a day that Americans are deciding who their next President is going to be. What does transformational leadership look like? I don’t think we will find it if we look at the 2 main candidates in today’s Presidential race.
Transformational Leadership In Person
We will be able to find it in the pages of the 4 Gospels and see Jesus in action. This past Sunday, our message was from Mathew 3 which reports the ministry of John the Baptist and his baptism of the Messiah Jesus. Jesus’ submission to John’s baptism is his first act as an adult.
In this initial act, it is revealed what the adult Jesus will be like in the rest of the Gospel. The first thing Jesus does for the human race is go down into the deep waters of repentance and baptism. Jesus’ whole life will be like this. He didn’t have to repent because he had no sin to repent of, but he shared our sin-caused brokenness and suffering.
Frederick Dale Bruner writes:“It is well known that Jesus ends his ministry on a cross between thieves; it deserves to be as well known that he begins his ministry among sinners.” This is how Jesus achieves atonement for us. From his baptism in the Jordan River to his death on the cross Jesus stays low at our level, identifying with us at every point in our humanity. This at-one-ment with us in our humanity was essential for our salvation.
This is transformational leadership at its best. Jesus taught his followers that they were not to lead like the people in the world. They were not to lord it over others (Mark 10:42). On the contrary, “whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all” (Mark 10:43,44). Then Jesus pointed to his own life as an example of this kind of leadership (v.45).
Many of the shakers and movers of Jerusalem society missed Christ’s first coming, including the religious elite. Jesus’ kingly status and His deity were veiled in a human life of servanthood and humility.
The people who crucified Jesus didn’t realize what they really needed.
In the same way, we often don’t realize what we really need to bring us lasting joy and satisfaction, lasting meaning and purpose in our lives. Let me tell you a story……………..
One Christmas Eve the headmaster of a children’s private school was preparing his Christmas message. A dorm mother knocked on his door and explained that one of the children was upset because he didn’t get to go home for Christmas.
Following her to the boy’s room, the headmaster discovered the troubled boy under his bed. Standing next to the bed, he tried to converse with him, but there was no response. Finally he dropped to his knees and lifted the bed spread. Tear-stained eyes looked out. Instead of forcefully pulling the boy out, he dropped to the floor, crawled under the bed and held out his hand. Finally, the boy placed his tiny hand into the hand of the headmaster.
All of sudden, it dawned on the headmaster that he had his Christmas message. God stooped to the earth and gave His Son, Jesus. In our fear, loneliness and sin, the God-man crawled in beside us and held out not only one of his hands, but both of his hands on a wooden cross. This is transformational leadership.
QOTD: Are you practicing Christ-like and life-giving leadership in those areas you have responsibility over?