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Books for those in ministry organizations who desire to take their leadership, teams, governance, and ministry effectiveness to the next level.

13 Mar '14

How our motives in ministry impact how we lead in very specific ways

Posted by T.J. Addington in leadership motivation, motives
We often don't think about this but the motivation of leaders directly impacts how they lead, how they treat their staff and how they deal with difficulties. Motives are powerful in their implications.

Consider how we lead. If my underlying motivation is to build something for myself I will lead selfishly. What I do will serve my purposes, my goals, my vision and my kingdom. If, on the other hand my underlying motivation is to contribute to the Kingdom of God, I will lead unselfishly because it is not about me but about God and His purposes. Unselfish leadership always takes the spotlight off of us and shines it on Jesus alone. It is all about Him, not us. If you want to know the motivation of a church or ministry just look at how much attention is focused on the leader and how much is focused on Jesus.

Consider how we treat our staff. If my underlying motivation is to build something for myself I will use people, control people and manipulate people to achieve my ends. If on the other hand, my motivation is to build God's kingdom, I will empower people, release people, seek to help people get in their lane, use their gifts and see people flourish. Selfish leaders use people for their purposes. Unselfish leaders release people to become all that God designed them to be. If you want to understand if a leader's motivation is more about them or more about God, simply watch how they treat people!

Or consider how we deal with difficulties we face. When our underlying motivation is to build something for ourselves we become angry and frustrated because our efforts have been thwarted. Those problems become personal because our plans are threatened. If on the other hand, our goal is to build the kingdom of Jesus, we will trust Him, believe in faith that He will intervene and leave our frustrations with Jesus. How leaders respond to difficulties is a pretty good indication of whether their agenda is theirs of God's.

It is clear that our leadership motivation makes all the difference in our leadership. Unfortunately, too much leadership in the Christian arena is more about us than about Him.

(Written from Berlin, Germany)