I have served as a leader in many capacities, under different types of people and learned different aspects of leadership from each of them. As I study God’s Word, I recall lessons that I have been taught and lessons that I am still learning. One lesson stands out flagrantly clear:
As a leader, there is a difference between control and service.
This is such a simple concept, yet I feel like I am only now fully grasping it. Perhaps because I have been able to see all sides of leadership. I have said before that I did not wish to lead, I did not know how. However, I found myself leading. I was having a conversation with an older friend whom had willingly subjected themselves under my leadership. They thanked me for being a “servant-leader.” Sure, sure, no problem, haha. I didn’t know how to respond. I hadn’t fully understood what I was being thanked for, or what they thought they had learned from me. I was just doing what came natural to me and I felt like I had failed. I still don’t know!
But, looking back, I understand. I see where they were coming from. It wasn’t the title, it was my actions, my character.
I have met those who like to control. I have searched myself and asked God, Am I like that? Please, don’t let me be like that!
Where does the need to control come from? All I can gather, from what I have observed – fear, perhaps even pride, depending on the person/situation. So, maybe, I have been like…
I have been studying Proverbs 31:10-31 – what it is to be a virtuous woman. And, I realize that this passage was not written solely for women. No, it was written for all of God’s people, His bride. And, you know, His bride/His church, is called to serve.
“She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy.” Proverbs 31:20 KJV
This describes not only a virtuous woman, but any person of virtue, doing God’s will, His church, His bride.
I struggled for so long thinking, there’s no way I can be the Proverbs 31 woman, I’m a divorcée… How will I ever be a woman of virtue, of worth? But, when this woman, whom I respect told me one day, Sis, you’re a virtuous woman. Something inside of me broke. I wasn’t prepared to hear it. When another well respected woman told me, You’re doing a great job with your kids, after months of not seeing one another and finally catching up… I broke a little more.
You know how you struggle with things and you don’t tell anyone, because you’d rather put on a brave face than admit that you’re drowning – That’s me! But, God saw me. He put the right people in my life, at the right time, to say the right things, so I could break.
He is near to the broken-hearted and in our weakness He is made strong.