The lesson our leaders must learn

Mike Baird and Barack Obama (CREDITS: Kate Ausburn, Whitehouse via Flickr)

At this moment in time we are witnessing a change in the leadership of the Premier of NSW and the President of the USA.

Both offices are positions of power, and both roles provide a powerful influence.

This makes it a good time to reflect on what Jesus thinks about leaders and leadership.

When one of his disciples tried to climb up the leadership ladder to grasp authority, Jesus said:

“You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Mark 10:42-45)

This ‘servant leadership’ runs against the grain of the world, which encourages people to climb the ladder of power, even if it means treading on other people’s fingers.

Yet, in his most famous sermon, Jesus made it clear that this is not the way things should be.

Instead, “Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.” (Matthew 5:5)

Those who will inherit God’s blessing will be the ones who recognise that Jesus is king, and who follow Jesus’ leadership in serving others, as meek people, not as arrogant.

This is a very difficult thing to do in public office, and this is even more reason why we should be active in praying that our leaders recognise that the ultimate leader showed meekness and majesty as he willingly died for those he came to save.

After all, “God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.” (1 Corinthians 1:27)