The Risks of Leadership in Church

I have been writing this for several weeks, taking bits and bits from articles that I have read, scriptures that I have read and making sure little by little that it is made understandable for those who are “leaders” or praying about leadership in the near future….Many have asked me “How do you put up with it? (the backstabbing, the “target on your back”, the negative comments, etc) Read below for an explanation….

If you ever plan to be a leader or already a leader now, in any situation, it will always involve risk. There is no way around this. Leadership requires us to be  open to go where no one else will go, do what others won’t do, become what others will not be, and say things what most say can never be done at the risk of failure. When I think of a person out of Scriptures, Nehemiah was a perfect example of a leader.

After hearing the news of his people, Nehemiah had an emotional meltdown. He was so deeply burdened that he cried, fasted and prayed for months over the situation. But Nehemiah was unable to allow his emotions to become public.  He was expected to keep his emotions hidden. Nehemiah knew if he allowed his sadness to be seen in the courts of the King, he would risk everything. Possibly even his on life. So, Nehemiah prayed to God, “Grant me success today by making the King favorable to me…”  (Neh 1:11)

As Nehemiah met with the king, he couldn’t hide his sadness any longer and the King took notice. The King asked Nehemiah, “Why are you looking so sad?” The scriptures tells us that Nehemiah was terrified as he approached the king and shared his burden. On top of his sadness and courage to share the problem, Nehemiah had the guts to ask the king for help. While, this may not seem too risky to you, it could have cost Nehemiah his life.

Nehemiah was willing to take a risk in order to help his people find meaning, wholeness, healing, and purpose in life. He was wiling to “ go a different way” and lay it all on the line for the sake of progress. Whether you lead a small business, or a large corporation you must be willing to take risks for the sake of progress. If there are no RISKS, there cannot be not GROWTH.

If you lead a church, risk is simply part of the calling. As with Christ, when you pick up the title of leadership, you lay down your desire for safety and a life of easy. Those who are leading churches and feel it is a safe place to work until you retire, think again. Without risk there can be no forward motion. Without a willingness to risk, you will be a “blind man leading the blind”

Here is a saying you can remember for the rest of your life: Those who never try to do anything great, never have anything that lasts a long time. Those who are against risk, who love to play it safe and “go with the flow” within their corporation or church, need to resign and find something more fitting to that mellow method. To move forward is to encourage GROWTH and that will always require risk. If we fail to lead people in GROWING,  is the same as to leading them to mellow living (go with the flow), going off the main course, and ultimately spiritual death.

Why I mention this? Because too many leaders are resigning for the same reasons. Instead of jumping into leadership, maybe you need to ask yourself the biggest question of all “Am I REALLY in?” or “Am I here temporarily?”


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