It's true that any organization needs leaders, and I would contend that the Church isn't any exception. I read a quote by J. Oswald Sanders that I think it worthy of mention. What's specifically impressive about this quote is that it was written (or at least copyrighted) in 1967. Sanders says, "If the world is to hear the church's voice today, leaders are needed who are authoritative, spiritual, and sacrificial." I would make the contention that it's when the Church doesn't have leaders who are authoritative, spiritual, and sacrificial that it fails at being what it was meant to be. What's interesting is that the loss of any one of these characteristics makes a person unfit for leadership in the Church. It's like a three-legged stool that loses a leg. Every leg is necessary for it to stand up.
- Authoritative. Nobody wants to follow a leader who isn't sure where he or she is going. Leaders who can't make decisions create stressful environments. By definition, a leader must make decisions on a consistent basis, otherwise he is just one of the followers.
- Spiritual. If a person is authoritative but not spiritual, the church will move off of its mission. Jesus gave His disciples some very strict instructions for what they were to do in His absence. A person who is not spiritual will lead people in the wrong direction!
- Sacrificial. The leader who does not understand this characteristic does not understand our Lord. Jesus was the model of sacrificial leadership when He gave up His life. In John 13, He stated that He was setting an example that was to be followed.
What are you thoughts? Do you agree with me? Are there any other characteristics that should replace ones listed here or be added to the list?