Leadership Skills Required to Help Others


This is 2 of 3 articles on Leadership Skills Required : Personally, To Lead Others, and to Help Others. You can find the first article here. The third will be published next week.

Introduction

It is a great responsibility to lead, direct, and care for God’s people. We must remember we are stewards of our flock. They are God’s people that He has entrusted to us.

A church is to be a place of healing and restoration to maturity. The goal is healthy and whole Sheep! Our focus is to pastor these people and turn them into disciples.

Today I want to talk about the role of a Shepherd (Pastor) or Counselor.

Matthew 9:35-38 (NASB) Jesus was going through all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every kind of disease and every kind of sickness. Seeing the people, He felt compassion for them, because they were distressed and dispirited like sheep without a shepherd. Then He said* to His disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. “Therefore beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His harvest.”

Verse 35 – Jesus was having a great ministry here! He was having large group meetings and great healing services – “healing every kind of disease and every kind of sickness”

He would have had the ultimate ministry in the west: TV shows, meetings in arenas, book deals, etc. This is the height of ministry in the West – but evidently it was not what was important to Jesus.

“The spiritual health of the people you lead proves the authenticity of your ministry.” – Frank Damazio

(Luke 4:18-19 NLT)  “”The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, for he has appointed me to preach Good News to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the downtrodden will be freed from their oppressors, {19} and that the time of the Lord’s favor has come.”

Spiritual leaders will be effective when they treat everyone with respect, kindness and honesty—in the same way they want to be treated. Spiritual leaders must preserve the dignity of those they shepherd. Here are some tips on what to expect and what to do when making disciples. 

1. Don’t Be Shocked When Christians Fall

Falling is a regular occurrence. Nobody is perfect. Let’s encourage those that fall to get back up. Expect it and then be surprised when it doesn’t happen.

When people fall, let’s treat them like God does us. When we repent, He forgives us and helps us to get up again. Let’s treat others the same. Let’s be a church that when someone falls, we are known for reconcilling them back to God and their calling. 

Proverbs 24:16 (NIV) for though the righteous fall seven times, they rise again

There’s a proper way to do this. We don’t ignore their sin, but bring them to repentance, help them work through consequences  and restore them. We truly believe they came come back if they want too.

The Bible is full of this principle. Moses was a murderer, God raised him up to be a deliverer. David fell many times and was also a murderer, but God said he was a man after His own heart.

Be Quick to Forgive

Yes, there are consequences, but we don’t withhold our fellowship based on it. Do we make those that have fallen do penance before letting them back in to our heart and fellowship? We forget that it is the grace of God that we are where we are at.

Matt. 6:14-15, “For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.”

Do we accept people back quickly? See the good in others over and above their faults. Treat them like you want to be treated in the same circumstance.

2. Don’t Categorize People

Luke 19:2-10 (NIV), “A man was there by the name of Zacchaeus; he was a chief tax collector and was wealthy.  He wanted to see who Jesus was, but being a short man he could not, because of the crowd.  So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore-fig tree to see him, since Jesus was coming that way.  When Jesus reached the spot, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, come down immediately. I must stay at your house today.”  So he came down at once and welcomed him gladly.  All the people saw this and began to mutter, “He has gone to be the guest of a ‘sinner.'”  But Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord! Here and now I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount.”  Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham.  For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost.”

We love labels. For some reason, when we can put a label or a category on a person, we think we now have the whole situation figured out. Avoid labels. These include: “those sinners”, “those unregenerate reprobates”, “he’s sexually immoral”, “a worthless alcoholic”.

When we categorize people we are in effect saying, “Well, they can’t be reached or helped”. As a result, we in effect try to take ourselves off the hook by putting a label on a person implying they are hopeless.

Everybody is UNIQUELY created by God and has great potential. We need to realize that they have fallen under the power of the Devil and he is making mince meat of their lives. But a good leader also recognizes that Jesus is stronger and can redeem the person. 

Be slow to judge and quick to bring others to restoration.

3. Be Flexible In Your Methods of Ministering

Do you know the story of the “The Samaritan Woman at the Well” found in John 4:7-19. This is a perfect example of ministering to people based on where they are at – flexibility. Jesus got to know the woman and made her feel comfortable first before sharing who He was with her. Here is the story.

John 4:7-19 (NIV) When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Jesus said to her, “Will you give me a drink?” (His disciples had gone into the town to buy food.) The Samaritan woman said to him, “You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?” (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans.) Jesus answered her, “If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water.” “Sir,” the woman said, “you have nothing to draw with and the well is deep. Where can you get this living water? Are you greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well and drank from it himself, as did also his sons and his flocks and herds?” Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water so that I won’t get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water.” He told her, “Go, call your husband and come back.” “I have no husband,” she replied. Jesus said to her, “You are right when you say you have no husband. The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have just said is quite true.” “Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet.

Jesus adjusted His methods based on the situation and person. He was so good at this and you see Him doing this in all of the gospels. 

We need to learn to work with Holy Spirit and be this flexible and aware of what is going on. This will help us mature people faster.

We need this because people grow at different rates and different things motivate them to grow. We can teach them information but transformation occurs at different rates.

4. Avoid quick or short answers to tough issues.

Avoid giving quick, short answers. It shows we have never lived through that circumstance our self. Life is complex and simple answers rarely walk.

The Bible has answers for life. But many times painful to walk out. It takes wisdom to apply the Biblical principle to our lives. We believe in the power of God to change. We help people to apply God’s word where they are at and not just quote verses.

Here is an example. It is easy to say, God wants your marriage to prosper. But what if the wife gets saved and her husband refuses too? You may have to work with the wife a long time to teach her how to live in this situation.

Because of wrong decisions made, it can take time to help people get over the consequences. A good counselor will walk through the consequences with them.

5. Create a safe environment allowing trial and error

We all need a place to practice. This allows team members to become proficient in their gift. Don’t be afraid of failure. To do something new always involves failures. Spiritual leaders who recognize this are will let others fail so that they can experience success.

Allow people to disagree with you, too. This shows respect for the others. You are trusting others to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit along with you. 

6. Show Faith in People and Praise Often

Be quick to praise and encourage others. Leaders are optimists and instill hope in others. 

7. Honestly handle Feedback

Leaders need to know how to give and receive feedback. Feedback is not useful unless it is given and received with the proper motives. 

Trust is the key element. When we get feedback, assume that the giver’s motives are right. Assume they want to help and not hurt. Listen carefully and don’t immediately discard their statements. There is often truth in every comment.

8. Adhere to Biblical values

It helps people when they know and follow Biblical values. The counselor points out these values and how to apply them.

In teaching values, we need to emphasize that they need to be applied consistently. Biblical values inconsistently applied produce inconsistent results.

You as a leader must consistently apply Biblical values consistently too. As you lead the way, it encourages others to do the same.

9. Trust the work of the Holy Spirit in their Lives

It is not our responsibility to make people change. We can only open the door to the way, but we cannot make them walk through it. 

It is the responsibility of Holy Spirit to convict and guide people. Trust in Holy Spirit that He knows best how to mature people. Trusting Holy Spirit is foundational to the survival of any ministry.

Categories: Leadership

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