In last week’s post, we wrote of three traits of a fruitful leader. In this post, we’ll look at two more attributes of fruitful leaders.
Celebrate: What the pastor and church leaders celebrate affects the culture of the church. If it does not seem important enough for the leaders to recognize, members will not emphasize it. Therefore, they will not take up the cause. What gets recognized, gets emphasized, and what gets emphasized, gets recognized. Whatever you want people to engage in, celebrate it, recognize it – more than once, from more than one platform. When you believe you’ve celebrated enough, you’ve only just begun.
I believe you should celebrate all victories, big and small. If a Bible study class has been running three and has grown to five, celebrate. Celebrate from the pulpit and in the group’s classroom. Celebrate them in other settings. When a person comes to faith in Christ, celebrate. Not only celebrate the person coming to Christ, celebrate all those who have shared in that person’s spiritual life. Recognize all the Sunday School and VBS teachers who have had that person in class over the years. Recognize the co-worker who prayed for and shared her faith.
Celebrate everything you cherish about the gospel. Fruitful leaders understand living the gospel is not enough. Their calling includes building the gospel culture. Celebrating when others engage in gospel living builds God’s culture. Remember: What gets recognized, gets emphasized, and what gets emphasized, gets recognized. Celebrating is recognizing. When you recognize something enough through celebration, people will begin to emphasize it in their lives.
Grow from Within: New life is always a key to kingdom growth. On top of this, fruitful leaders understand that identifying and growing new leaders from within the organization produces God’s fruitfulness. The North American church model over the last few decades has become a hiring agency from outside the organization when looking for leaders.
Throughout scripture we see God raising up leaders from within. After Paul’s conversion, we see him always looking for leaders within the churches he planted. The disciples raised up, equipped, and allowed people in the New Testament church to lead so they could, “give themselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word.”
Acts 6:2-4 Then the twelve called the multitude of the disciples unto them, and said, It is not reason that we should leave the word of God, and serve tables. Wherefore, brethren, look ye out among you seven men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business. But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word.
When a church becomes a movement of people (God’s movement) raising up leaders from the inside becomes part of the culture, the environment, and the nature of the organization. One of the greatest ways to show people that you care as a leader is to empower them to lead out in ministry. Developing leaders from within brings greater benefits when others realize they too could be the next leader sought after. Raising leaders from within should be natural because those leaders already understand the nature, culture, and ethos of the organization.
Where is your church on raising leaders from within? Regardless of your position at church, what will you do this week to begin pouring yourself into others to raise up leaders?