Today's Leader Connection focuses on "the Message of the Cross," one of Life Action Ministries and Revive Our Hearts twelve Cutting-Edge Commitments.
I'll never forget the day. It was just another Thursday—like hundreds before—and I was teaching my Bible study leaders in preparation for the groups they would lead. A leader named Jessica asked a question about a procedure I'd explained clearly—or so I thought.
You've heard it said that there's no dumb question. But in that split second, I disagreed. My answer came out snippy. The irritated tone of my voice communicated volumes. As we moved on to sing and pray, the conviction of the Holy Spirit fell like an avalanche.
I silently considered assuring the Lord I'd do better next time. But I couldn't. I was being directed to jump off my "high horse" and run to the cross.
Leadership at the Cross
- The cross is where a leader admits pride.
- The cross is where a leader admits self-sufficiency.
- The cross is where a leader admits her true nature apart from Christ.
- The cross is where a leader admits her desperate need for Jesus.
- The cross is where a leader confesses and cries out for forgiveness.
- The cross is where a leader dies to self.
The word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God (1 Cor 1:18). Jesus didn't consider the cross foolish. He willingly laid down his life (John 10:18) to gain something far greater—life eternal. The irony is that choosing death produces everlasting life and the free-flowing resurrection power of Christ.
Leadership Around the Cross
Leaders often get tripped up here. We're afraid to admit our sin to others. The pressure of living up to imaginary perfect standards is too much. We buckle before we reach the cross and instead choose to protect our reputation. In resigning ourselves to try harder without the cross, we elude the power of Christ and settle for flesh-empowered ministry.
My Leadership Do-Over
What happened next after I sinned against God and Jessica? God's grace wooed me to the cross. I interrupted the meeting to rush to my hurting leader. With an affectionate embrace, I whispered, "I was wrong. Please forgive me." Jessica's unspoken response was a huge smile.
Only God can mend the offended one's hurt, but He often uses the humility and repentance of the offender to start the process. A humble act of obedience by running to the cross restores us to a right relationship with God and with others.
I have had more leadership do-overs along the way, but each one has led me to experience increased fruit and fellowship with the Savior. Jesus said it himself in John 12:24,
"Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit."
What step of obedience will you take for a leadership do-over?