I’ve been reading Frank Viola’s “Reimagining Church” over the last week or so. It’s been a great companion to go along with Brian’s message series (priests in the hood). The book also seems to apply directly to what I envision for our community groups at encounter (and beyond).
This morning I read Luke 22:25-26:
Within minutes they were bickering over who of them would end up the greatest. But Jesus intervened: “Kings like to throw their weight around and people in authority like to give themselves fancy titles. It’s not going to be that way with you. Let the senior among you become like the junior; let the leader act the part of the servant.
As community group leaders/facilitators/hosts I think Viola makes some great points about what we should avoid striving for and what we should strive for:
- in the gentile (secular) world, leaders operate on the basis of a political, chain-of-command social structure — a graded hierarchy. in the kingdom of God, leadership flows from childlike meekness and sacrificial service.
- in the gentile world, authority is based on position and rank. in the kingdom of God, authority is based on godly character. note Christ’s description of a leader: “let him be a servant,” and “let him be as the younger.” in our Lord’s eyes, being precedes doing. and doing flows from being. put differently, function follows character. those who serve do so because they are servants.
- in the gentile world, greatness is measured in prominence, external power and political influence. in the kingdom of God, greatness is measured by humility and servitude.
- in the gentile world, leaders exploit their positions to rule over others. in the kingdom of god, leaders deplore special reverence. they rather regard themselves “as the younger.”
I hope and pray that we’re all being leaders/facilitators/hosts that fit in with the kingdom of God model and not the gentile/worldly model that surrounds us everywhere we go. I also pray that each of us are encouraging our group members to do the same. By becoming servants to all, leadership will be a natural extension to them all.