By Israel Gaither ~
If you are a leader who is serious about making a difference in your role, I suggest you consider the why of your purpose and the responsibility you have been privileged to engage in.
As a believer, you are gifted with a task that is too noble to describe merely as a profession. You are in a place to serve the purpose of God. You are an influencer not only for the good of your organization or firm. God has called you to participate in the renewing of your country.
Leaders in the grip of faith, who understand that they possess a sacred trust, are a powerful force in society. You must have a clear understanding of who you are and the high value of what you do. You are not deterred in spite of subtle – or blatant efforts to push the presence and voice of Christian belief to the margins of our culture.
There are three fundamental principles to which, with God’s help, I try to remain faithful.
I Must “BE”
I want my life to honor god. I have been give life in order to discharge a God-intended purpose. I want the principle of ‘being,” as a man of faith with all that it means, to be evident in the way I live in lead. I want to be authentic at home and in public. I understand that I must be before I attempt to do the work to which I have been called. “True North” for me is leading from a God-centered and ordered life.
I Must Live in Community
This is a never-to-be-forgotten principle. No matter what I do or where I arrive in my profession. Life is never just about me. That is the non-conventional view of life. In this postmodern period of “me” and “my rights,” serving for the sake of others seems absurd. It is dismissed as an antiquated notion from another time. But this moment in America (and for other countries of the world) calls for leaders who are intent on making their lives count for a higher purpose. We serve from a conviction that every sector of community can band must change.
It is time for a new model of leadership to emerge that gives flesh to biblical truth. You and I must prove that faith in God does not fracture, but embraces; that such faith does not create confusion, but cares and demonstrates compassion. We serve to prove that there is such a thing as a leader who can be trusted precisely because of his faith.
I Must Remember the Higher Purpose
We do what we do for an outcome that is larger than we could ever imagine. It is for more than personal or organizational profit. We are invested in something that holds more value than a product. There is a bottom line that is more critical than landing on the surplus side of the ledger. I do not live for material success; although I do not belittle those who achieve it and who understand the stewardship responsibility it bears.
As a leader under God, I am called to help others believer they too can achieve. There is a deeper intention for the one who lives and leads for God.
Israel Gaither, retired National Commander, The Salvation Army. This post is an excerpt from Non Profit Leadership in a For-Profit World: Essential Insights from 15 Christian Executives. (Standard 2011).
You have an opportunity to be an influence in the life an another leader. Christian Leadership Alliance invites you to join the CLA community of mentors via the Outcomes Mentoring Network. As a Christian leader you have something to give to the next generation of leaders. Don’t miss this moment in time to make a difference.