When leading a team, it is so important not to create an atmosphere of servant vs. leader, but, instead, to practice servant leadership.
In Mark 10:43-45, Jesus says, “But it must not be like that among you. On the contrary, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you must be a slave to all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life – a ransom for many.”
However, in today’s society, when we hear the word “leader,” we almost always think of someone who is powerful, who is dynamic, and who has it all together. But in this passage of Scripture, Jesus flips it around and tells us something completely opposite. He doesn’t say that who wants to become great should tell everyone else what to do or step on others to get to the top. He tells us that whoever wants to become great must become a servant to all.
So, how does this work? How do we effectively lead while serving? It starts by loving our teammates with the same love Jesus has for us. He didn’t serve out of obligation; He served out of love — a love so strong that He gave His life as “a ransom for many.” When we love those around us, we have their best interest at heart regardless of circumstances. We’re not concerned about how we look or if we get the recognition we deserve, so serving comes naturally because we are focused on the wellbeing of our team as a whole, not just on ourselves. Serving just to serve or to feel like a martyr isn’t the point. When we follow Jesus’ example and serve out of love, we find ourselves satisfied and our team unified.
Examine your heart today and reflect on how you’ve been serving others lately while you read Philippians 2:3-8: “Do nothing out of rivalry or conceit, but in humility consider others as more important than yourselves. Everyone should look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others. Make your own attitude that of Christ Jesus, who, existing in the form of God, did not consider equality with God as something to be used for His own advantage. Instead he emptied Himself by assuming the form of a slave, taking on the likeness of men. And when He had come as a man in His external form, He humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death – even death on a cross.”