Imagine the scene from the last supper. Before Jesus broke the bread and took the wine, He washed His disciples’ feet. Why did the King of kings and Lord of lords humble Himself and wash their feet? He was setting an example of servanthood. Jesus wanted His disciples to know that serving others is vital for many reasons.
- Servanthood drives a vision that inspires people. Jesus knew the original 12 had a big mission. The mission wasn’t too big for God, but the 12 disciples needed to spread the gospel with the right attitude. An attitude of humility and service.
- Jesus served people in such a way that it was life-changing. Jesus gave the Great Commission. The gospel needed to be shared and spread. Jesus gave the His disciples an example of how to live out the gospel while telling others the good news.
- It always makes us feel better to help others. Taking your mind off of your own problems and focusing on someone else’s needs fills our soul and gives us strength to carry on. It makes our problems seem smaller compared to how big our God is.
Philippians 2:7 says, “he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.” We all need to model Jesus’ behavior and lead by being a servant. Leadership isn’t new; it has been around since time began. In our culture today, people want to be in leadership because they want to be in charge or feel important. Jesus flips the script and shows the importance of servant leadership. Jesus talks about leadership in the gospel of Matthew.
But Jesus called them together and said, “You know that the rulers in this world lord it over their people, and officials flaunt their authority over those under them. But among you, it will be different. Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you must become your slave. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Matthew 20:25-28 NLT).
In Christ, the goal is not to grab power but to serve.
Some essential characteristics of servant leaders are:
- They value people: Servant leaders value people for who they are and are made in God’s image. Whether great or small, young or old, thin or fat, each person is made in God’s image and has intrinsic value.
- They have humility: Servant leaders are always promoting others over themselves.
- They listen: Servant leaders listen well to gain insight and understand others.
- They trust and can be trusted: Servant leaders are trustworthy. They exhibit trust in others and are reliable.
- They caring: Servant leaders are caring and display kindness to others.
If you are seeking to lead others to Christ, start by serving them.