Updated on January 13, 2017
What it means to be a leader…
Leadership is more than standing in front of a room and declaring something. You’re reading this post. You’re looking to increase your skill, get some direction, or you’ve found yourself in a position of leadership and a bit overwhelmed. Whatever the reason, you’re here. Using the book of Acts to break down the elements of leadership provides us an example of an organization built from the ground up.
As a woman in leadership, you face even greater obstacles. There aren’t many women with successful, long-term careers who are sharing the information. The challenges can be great, so we each keep our head down, our eyes open, and are just trying to get through. Add being a Christian in a secular leadership position and your support system shrinks even further. Do not be afraid. Acts provides us a small group of men faced with complete unknown circumstances trying to build a high-impact organization. Sound familiar to your situation?
The disciples found themselves seemingly without a leader when Jesus ascended to heaven. They didn’t know what was to come, so they did what they knew: they gathered together in prayer. Tossed here and there as their understanding of Jesus’ purpose and actions went from teacher, to sacrificed, to buried, then resurrected, then ascended, there was no clear map as to what came next. Within a matter of days, the landscape of their faith experienced life-altering experiences. You might find yourself in the same situation. Your boss comes with a broad vision that falls under your purview to make happen. Or the organization goes through a reorganization leaving everyone a bit shaken and wondering what comes next.
Take heart. The Bible gives us more than spiritual guidance. The book of Acts shows the development of the church through the development of its leaders. Take a step back and look at the organization of the people of God. Spanning thousands of years, God had led His people with clear purpose and conviction. Using broken human leaders, He consistently builds His church. Leaders emerge, leaders go by the wayside, and the purpose of the Lord moves forward.
Whether your organization is small and local or globally-impacting, by focusing on the fundamental aspects of leadership, you can better understand your leadership and the path to move your organization forward. In the weeks to come, we’ll unfold the layers of Acts to learn more about the most enduring, long-term organization the world has ever known: the people of God.