When you think of a good leader, who comes to mind?

We live in a vacuum of leadership of all kinds. People are paving the way in our government, our schools, our churches, and throughout our culture. And while we have plenty in leadership roles, there are few who model strong character, responsibility, and accountability. Just because you are a manager doesn’t mean you manage well. Even though you are a director of a department, unless you lead with integrity, it is only a title.

So why do we have such poor leaders in these roles? I believe it is because those whom God has called to lead have not chosen to step into their calling. In fact, if you were created in God’s image—and you were—then it is your responsibility to be a leader where He has placed you. This goes for your workplace, your homes, and in every sphere of your influence. We need you, saints, stepping into the leadership roles you were created to fill because the values and standards of the Kingdom of God are within you.

Jesus: Our Example of Leadership

Jesus not only came to break the chains of sin and death, but He also came to earth as a living example of how He has called His disciples to live. He taught us to love, care for others, cultivate lives of dependence on the Father, and He also taught us how to be great leaders.

“Then James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came to Him saying, ‘Teacher, we want You to do for us whatever we ask.’ And He said to them, ‘What do you want Me to do for you?’ They said to Him, ‘Grant us that we may sit, one on Your right hand and the other on Your left, in Your glory.’ But Jesus said to them, ‘You do not know what you ask. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, and be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?’ They said to Him, ‘We are able.’ So Jesus said to them, ‘You will indeed drink the cup that I drink, and with the baptism I am baptized with you will be baptized; but to sit on My right hand and on My left is not Mine to give, but it is for those for whom it is prepared.’ And when the ten heard it, they began to be greatly displeased with James and John. But Jesus called them to Himself and said to them, ‘You know that those who are considered rulers over the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you shall be your servant. And whoever of you desires to be first shall be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.’”

Mark 10:35-45, NKJV

So, how can we pursue this charge Jesus calls each of us to? Let’s look at seven lessons I have learned about godly leadership.

7 Important Lessons About Leadership

1.   A Leader Serves Others

Jesus’ life on earth was the epitome of servitude. He showed us that good leaders in the Kingdom of Heaven must learn to serve others.

When you are entrusted as a leader, you are called to serve those you lead. By sharing the gifts and talents God has given you, you assist your team in their work, their needs, and their growth.

2.   A Leader Anticipates Needs

Jesus knew His time to fulfill the will of the Father was coming. And in knowing that, He prepared His disciples and taught them to plan ahead.

Do you know someone who, when they add to a conversation, seems to be on an entirely different page? We have a deacon at First Baptist Church of Glenarden who is a stellar leader, but sometimes, it makes no sense when he adds to the topic at hand. And do you know why? It is because he has the incredible ability to consider the future of our decisions. He can look down the road, five or ten years, and reveal the ramifications that may result from our planning. He isn’t questioning our decisions; he is our ally in the planning.

Questionable leaders think in the moment; good leaders think ahead.

3.   A Leader Takes Initiative

One steadfast quality of Jesus is that, regardless of what everyone else is thinking, doing, or saying, He continued moving in the direction of God’s prompting.

Looking back over my life, I can see how every situation I experienced prepared me for the role and positions I am in today. Growing up, I was a quiet kid that many would not consider a leader by any means. Yet, God strategically placed me in roles such as Senior Patrol Leader in Boy Scouts, an active Junior Usher Board participant, and the United Voices Choir President. Little did I know, these opportunities laid the foundation for the kind of leader God would call me to be.

A good leader moves when no one else does. They continue moving regardless of the opinions of others. Whatever you are battling, know that God is using it to lay the foundation for His calling for you. Keep moving forward, seeking God’s will, and applying whatever God is teaching you.

4.   A Leader Models Character

Jesus is our perfect, living example of exemplary character. In fact, he is all that we should strive to be, especially in leadership.

The problem with many of today’s leaders is that they don’t exhibit character. Many lack patience, humility, love, and honesty.

I attend meetings almost daily, and most of the time, I represent the largest church body in the room. However, you wouldn’t know it because I don’t walk in with fanfare. It is my desire to carry the humility of Jesus because everything I have is because of Him.


Be careful not to exuberantly display your talents for all the world to see. Seek God first, be aware of how He is molding your character, and humbly submit to that. Be encouraged that He is transforming your heart and your actions to reflect the face of His Son.

5.   A Leader Seeks To Bring Out the Best in Others

Jesus constantly challenged and encouraged His disciples to grow and learn from Him through parables, corrections, and deeds.

When you are a leader, it is your sole responsibility to call out the gold in others. Whether in secular or spiritual environments, you are to help them be their best and do their best, essentially helping them to be all that God has called them to be.

Many people played a significant role in helping me become who I am and continue to be today. Two pastors, Pastor David Durham and Bishop L.N. Forbes, spoke into my life when I was a traveling evangelist. Their spiritual words of knowledge ignited something within me that I didn’t even realize was there, and it was then that I truly considered becoming a pastor. (Truth be told, I didn’t want to be a pastor; I wanted to travel from church to church, preach, grab my coat and my check, and leave!) However, God has other plans because He awakened my passion for helping people to spiritual maturity.

Be mindful of how you speak to those you lead. Don’t hound them about each of their deficiencies. Instead, speak life, hope, and the promises of God over your team and watch them flourish!

6.   A Leader Covers Those They Lead

Jesus covered those in His discipleship circle, even when they did the opposite of what He was teaching them.

I am reminded of the story of the Prodigal Son in Luke 15. This son demanded his inheritance from his father, who was alive and well and squandered it for wicked living. When he came to the end of all that he had, the son ended up working in a pig pen. Finding himself ashamed, the son decided to go home. His father didn’t yell at, punish, or ridicule him. He grabbed a robe, ran to his son, and covered him. His father acknowledged that he had made some questionable decisions without exposing him.

When you are a good leader, you avoid humiliating and exposing your team. Instead, you cover and protect them.

The truth is we all have things in our lives we want to keep hidden. Yet, Jesus, like a good leader, covered us and the baggage of our sins. He took our place on a cross and said, “I’ve got you covered.”

A good leader leads from a place of mercy and grace.

A Leader Solves Problems Instead of Highlighting Problems

Throughout His ministry, Jesus was a problem-solver while teaching those he led to do the same.

If you are hired by a company and you continue bringing problems to your boss with no solutions at hand, what good will you do? Leaders, be mindful to highlight a problem and bring solutions to the table!

Jesus is a perfect example of this. You see, Jesus identified the world’s problem of sin. He then solved it by going to the cross and dying for us, ultimately defeating the sting of death and offering us freedom in Him.

What a leader, teacher, and friend we have in Jesus.

Leaders, seek God and allow Him to mold and lead you as you lead others. And may we continue stepping into the life God has called us to – one that brings heaven to earth.

For more on leadership, check out Pastor Jenkins’ sermon, Important Leadership Lessons.

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