Today, as never before, the church needs more leaders. Leaders totally consecrated to God and His cause. Leaders trained with the Christian philosophy of leadership to contrast with the politics and philosophies of labor unions and other secular organizations (see Matt. 20:25-28).
We need spiritual leaders loyal to God, to His church, and to the brethren. We need leaders with backbones, leaders who are able to stand firmly in defense of truth and justice, no matter what. We need cheerful leaders with vision and faith who are ready to move forward with the gospel message and defend God’s interests in spite of difficulties, obstacles, and opposition. We need leaders with spiritual discernment who are willing to defy any corruption, injustice, or abuse in our ranks in order to preserve our church “without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish” (Eph. 5:27, NIV). We need leaders who do not fear losing popularity while defending the interests of the Lord and His church with firmness and gentleness.
Now as never before, as we face last-day events and the rapidly approaching return of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, we need leaders who will be bold enough to defile the ease of a permissive, postmodern society while standing loyally on the principles of God’s kingdom. We need leaders of integrity who can exert a positive influence over our society and especially over children and youth—no strings attached. We need leaders who—no matter their age—will become role models for our youth and will inspire them to follow the greatest Leader of all times, Jesus Christ!
With the apostle Paul, we may ask, “And who is equal for such a task?” (2 Cor. 2:16). Paul himself—a leader worthy of emulation—says, “Not that we are competent in ourselves . . . but our competence comes from God” (2 Cor. 3:5). The requirements are high, but everyone who is willing to consecrate himself or herself in service to the Lord and His church will find the way to reach that competency from God. The following are some of the requirements:
1. A personal encounter with God and an intentional desire to do His will.
2. A sustained relationship with God through prayer, Bible study, and daily supplication for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit.
3. A personal commitment to the call through genuine revival and reformation.
4. A deliberate pursuit of excellence through self-motivation and professional training.
5. A correct attitude to accept ever-present leadership challenges, “never [to] be lacking in zeal” but serving “wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord . . .” (Rom. 12:11; Eph. 6:7).
6. A dependence on the Lord and a determination to support His church—no matter what.
7. A willingness to face opposition with a right attitude, keeping God in the loop and discerning everything through a prophetic lens.
Yes, we need more leaders with courage, integrity, and commitment. May we catch a vision from above as we read the following inspired thoughts for Christian leaders?
“God calls for cheerful co-workers, who refuse to become discouraged and disheartened by opposing agencies. The Lord is leading us, and we may go forward courageously, assured that He will be with us, as He was in past years.”1
“To stand in defense of truth and righteousness when the majority forsake us, to fight the battles of the Lord when champions are few—this will be our test. At this time we must gather warmth from the coldness of others, courage from their cowardice, and loyalty from their treason.”2
Leaders are wanted. We need more leaders like Jesus— with the vision of Jesus, the philosophy of Jesus, and the spirit of Jesus—to lead His church accordingly. Are you ready to accept His highest call and invite others to this kind of leadership?
1 Ellen G. White, Gospel Workers, 265, 266.
2 ———, Testimonies for the Church, vol. 5, p. 136.
Alfredo Garcia-Marenko has served as elder, pastor, administrator, departmental director, and editor, and is an international speaker with wide experience in youth leadership and family life. He is editorial assistant for the Elder’s Digest magazine in the General Conference Ministerial Association. Alfredo was trained as an associate trainer for the Million Leaders Mandate of John C. Maxwell and EQUIP®.