Depending on the context, leadership can assume various definitions. Nonetheless, every definition recognizes the role played by a leader. Leaders act as guides in helping themselves as well as others in doing the right things. The existing definitions recognize the role of a leader in setting directions, building an inspiring vision, as well as in creating something unique and new to those whom he or she leads. There exist various philosophies of leadership. Most of these philosophies assume the theological and the biblical perspective. Theology is a wide field; it encompasses various subjects including leadership. According to Wagner (2016), there is a biblical perspective on everything not only the spiritual matters. The theological perspective of leadership entails leadership development, education, ministry effectiveness, as well as its satisfaction. Paul, in his second letter to Timothy, recognizes the criticality of multiplication of capable leaders to the mission of the church. He notes the charge to reproduce leader and illustrates a leader in the faithful gospel ministry as an athlete, a soldier, and a farmer. Paul's conclusion of this chapter of his second letter to Timothy recognized the need for leaders to obtain the salvation in Jesus Christ which provides the eternal glory (Verse 10). In this letter, Paul stresses the much-needed relationship which entails the training and development of the gospel leaders. Training and development of leaders is key to the effectiveness of the mission.
The book of Ephesians 4:11-16 also defines the individuals tasked with equipping the ministries and help in driving leadership development in the church. The verses give a clear definition of the roles played by the apostles, the evangelists, the prophets, the pastors, and the teachers in equipping the saints for the work of the church. Nonetheless, the Bible does not give the how perspective on how these individuals ought to undertake the ministerial work. Paul, in his Epistles, gives various categories of development on how these individuals can make use of their positions as leaders to influence development. Some of the categories he outlined include life and doctrine (1st Timothy 4:16) and the practice of the ministry (1st Timothy 5:1-2; 2nd Timothy 2:2). Thus, the strategy of leadership development should always be to raise up other leaders for the ministry services and guide them to live out the gospel in their everyday life while leading others through the guidance of the healthy doctrine and best practices. There exist different needs that ought to be filled by leaders. Deducing from the letter of Paul to Timothy and Titus, there exist three tiers of service in the church. The tiers include the members, deacons, and elders. Thus, the development can be structured to suit every category of these tiers. On the other hand, the development can also be based on the lanes above which include the life, doctrine, and the best practices. These lanes can be applied to the church across the tiers. Nonetheless, it must be noted that the development of leadership is a crucial component in the well-being of the church.
In the book of Mathews 19:14 Jesus said: "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these." Thus, the size of the Church does not matter for Jesus made it open for all. Every individual who is willing to join and be part of the church should always be received with open arms for the Kingdom of heaven belongs to all.
Types of Ministries
The church comprises of various ministries such as hospitality, teaching, outreach, music, and counselling. The hospitality ministry takes care of the needs of the church. The ministry is responsible for organizing and executing potlucks, working in the church offices, and in making bulletins. The teaching ministries are responsible for teaching and preaching to the church. The teaching ministry includes the Sunday school teachers, pastors, and religious educators. The teaching ministry in the church help in developing the required leadership mentality through bible exposition and formation of faith among the congregants. The outreach ministry minister to the community of the church as well as to the world. The outreach ministry consists of the missionaries who travel the world to deliver the gospel of Christ. The music ministry uses music in praising, worshipping, and preaching the gospel. The music ministry includes the praise bands, the vocal and handbell choirs, and the piano playing teams. Lastly, the counselling ministry help in ministering to the emotional or mental health of individuals. The counselling ministry includes the councillors, therapist, and other spiritual directors.
A church leader needs to have desired characters such as simultaneous teaching and learning, leading by example, good communication skills and must be visionary. Thus, considering these traits, the church will need five different types of leaders. The first type of leaders include the Sunday school workers and the ministry leaders who volunteer to steer the operations within the church. The second type includes the part-time evangelists who partially support themselves to deliver the gospel. The third type comprises of the pastors and other individuals who do full-time ministries. The fourth type includes the national evangelists who get paid for the Christian ministries. The last type includes the theologians and Christian writers who have international influence.
Strengths and Weaknesses
The strengths of this leadership development strategy include being open to the community, gives every individual the opportunity to get involved and participate, the demystification of faith and service to the church, and many more.
Despite giving opportunities for all, not every individual can become a leader. For the Bible says in the book of James 3:1 that "Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly."
The program is unique for it gives an opportunity for all. Every church member, both the young and the old have equal opportunities of becoming leaders of the church, for God chooses the leaders.
Program to Recruit, Train, and Place Leaders in Ministry Positions in Your Church
Recruiting, training, and placing leaders in the ministry positions in the church involves a seven-step approach which includes inviting individuals to learn with you, guiding them through the required processes, encouraging those who are gifted in certain areas such as music, develop those individuals who show most interest in the program and have the best attitude to serve and be taught, evaluate honestly, encourage consistent participation, and reproduce naturally from the seriously qualified individuals who have shown competency in their service roles to the church and community.
Inviting individuals to learn with you: This is the first step of the program. The invitation creates the first impression and gives an individual a special feeling of becoming part of something bigger. People who are invited to a cause always dedicate themselves and work harder to prove a point. Invitations are also important since we tend to relate to those who in one way or another are similar to us. Thus, those already in the mission will invite those who have a potential of becoming dedicated.
Guidance through the process: This is the second step in the process. The invited individuals are taken slowly through the leadership process to watch and observe. Guiding the invited members through what takes place in the process will help them decide on whether they want to continue or not.
Encouraging those with gifts at certain tasks: Those with talents in areas such as music are encouraged to keep doing it as love hearing being told when doing great.
Develop those individuals who show the most interest in the program and have the best attitude to serve and be taught: Those with enthusiasm and passion for learning makes great leaders when they graduate from the program.
Evaluate Honestly: This is the most critical stage as it involves the feelings of the individuals. Thus, the stage requires one to be gentle while redirecting people from where they do not qualify and unable to accomplish the given tasks. The written records of evaluation must be kept to offer guidance to the people on the areas where they need to improve.
Consistent participation: Every member in the program has to show passion for their consistent participation because it is only through practice that we become perfect.
Natural reproduction in the qualifications and competency of the individuals: This is the last step in the process. Today, churches go after the sound minded individuals to assume the leadership roles such as the worship leaders. Nonetheless, it must be noted that any member of the church can be appointed to such positions. However, the individuals must first be evaluated for their decision making as well as administration abilities. Thus, this stage helps in the identification of a team of leaders who will be vital in obtaining the required consistency, quality, and growth. These individuals will assume the leadership positions in various capacities and work towards connecting other members of the church through listening, encouraging, and sharing life with them.
How to Keep Leadership Development Ongoing
Keeping the leadership development program ongoing requires the leaders to be consistently be motivated. The program will run consistently to ensure there is an active onboarding of new talents. The ministry will put strategies in place for the development plan as well as processes where the existing leaders, as well as the recruits, are engaged at both the ministry and at a personal level. The engagement will be accompanied by a personal assessment of their leadership skills and their mutual insight on the roles played by the ministry in the society.
The training of these individuals will be consistently done through mentoring and coaching by the established leaders who have undergone through the program. The ministry will endeavour to retain the leadership development efforts of the best individuals who have undergone through the program. These individuals will help to train the junior recruits and guide them through the ministry culture and processes. The ministries will develop a retention program where the leaders will be provided with the guidance and support needed in the developing their talents as well as experience within the church.
There will always be an open door for the new leaders into the ministries. The existing leaders will be requested to refer, recommend, or invite their friend into the program. The use of these mechanisms will help the program receive members with the right mentality and the will to grow and develop. The strategy will also help in picking the right individuals as some may already be having mentors within the program. Thus, it will be easier to guide, train, and evaluate such individuals to place them in the right leadership positions.
Clinton, Robert. The making of a leader: Recognizing the lessons and stages of leadership development. Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., 2018.
Geiger, Eric, and Kevin Peck. Designed to lead: The church and leadership development. B&H Publishing Group, 2016.
Sosik, John J., and Dongil Jung. Full range leadership development: Pathways for people, profit, and planet. Routledge, 2018.
Tinsley, Taunya Marie. "The church as a multicultural sports team: A model for ministry leadership development for God's coaching staff." PhD diss., United Theological Seminary, 2016.
Wagner, Wendy Elizabeth. ...
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