Be a Shepherd, For God’s Sake!

by Andy Wood on January 31, 2011

in Leadership, Life Currency

Never has there been a higher call – or a greater need – for men and women of God with the heart of a Shepherd. 

The Shepherd leads.  He feeds.  He knows the sheep by name, and lays down his life for them.  His leadership arises from a heart that has once and for all died to all else but the lives of the sheep.  He cares for the ninety-nine who cling to the sound of his voice; yet he pursues with reckless abandon the one who, intent on finding his own way, is now lost. 

Be a Shepherd, for God’s sake!  And in so doing, be an overseer.  

Remember, you can never over-see what you aren’t seeing over.  Rise above your own sins, self-interest, and troublesome circumstances – then you will discern what is happening in the lives of other people.  Watch!  Don’t allow yourself to become oblivious to what is happening in their lives.  Remember, you don’t have to take your eyes off the sheep in order to hear from the Chief Shepherd.

Be a Shepherd, for God’s sake!  And in so doing, be a willing leader. 

Never reduce yourself to leading only out of a sense of dead obligation.  Never prostitute your leadership by becoming a mercenary.  Once you find your assignment from Heaven, embrace it.  Don’t get lost looking for something better.

Be a Shepherd, for God’s sake!  And in so doing, be a servant. 

Beware of the danger of the lust for money.  Remember, God – not the sheep – is your provider.  If your focus is on money, you can’t serve the people.  That is true regardless of where you derive your income.

Be a Shepherd, for God’s sake!  And in so doing, be an influence through example. 

Remember, sheep follow; goats are driven.  Beware of the danger of the illusion of power.  The Gentiles rule by lording it over others.  Jesus shed blood to establish a different kind of leadership.  Don’t cheapen His sacrifice by imitating the world’s insecure substitutes.

Be a Shepherd, for God’s sake!  And in so doing, be accountable. 

Live – and lead – as if you are prepared for the sudden appearance of the Chief Shepherd.  Your leadership and your life are ultimately accountable to Him.

Be a Shepherd, for God’s sake!  And in so doing, clothe yourself with humility. 

Only a man without God needs to exalt himself.  Your willingness to humble yourself releases the grace of God to you and through you.

Be a Shepherd, for God’s sake!  And in so doing, let God take care of your position among men. 

The more you pursue a higher position, the more you circumvent what He wants to accomplish – those acts of grace that can only be explained by the Spirit’s work in your life.

Be a Shepherd, for God’s sake!  And in so doing, give God your anxieties. 

You aren’t big enough to carry them anyway.  Yet all your fears, stresses, living contradictions, and multiple directions are nothing to Him.  Let Him love you by caring for all those things.  You will then be free to love those you lead, with all their anxieties.

Be a Shepherd, for God’s sake!  And in so doing, be alert to temptation. 

The Lion seeks Shepherds first.  But what temptations?  Start with the ones mentioned here: religious duty, greed, prideful relationships, fear, indiscipline.  Remember that every man – including the Shepherd – is tempted when he is drawn away by his own lust.  Rule your own spirit, or the sheep will face grave danger and will be scattered.

Be a Shepherd, for God’s sake!  And in so doing, be sober. 

Stay free from any attachments, entanglements, or intoxications that would prevent you from instant obedience or a quick response to the needs of those entrusted to you.  You are a Shepherd!  No one should be freer, more alive, or more awake.

Be a Shepherd, for God’s sake!  And in so doing, endure. 

It hurts sometimes to be a follower of the Chief Shepherd.  It hurts even more to be a leader for Him.  But your pain is not in vain.  And it isn’t the last word.  This is the day of the noise of battle.  But soon you will sing the Victor’s song.

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Give a shepherd’s care to God’s flock among you, exercising oversight not merely as a duty but willingly under God’s direction, not for shameful profit but eagerly. And do not lord it over those entrusted to you, but be examples to the flock. Then when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that never fades away.

In the same way, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. And all of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.   And God will exalt you in due time, if you humble yourselves under his mighty hand   by casting all your cares on him because he cares for you. Be sober and alert. Your enemy the devil, like a roaring lion, is on the prowl looking for someone to devour. Resist him, strong in your faith, because you know that your brothers and sisters throughout the world are enduring the same kinds of suffering.   And, after you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace who called you to his eternal glory in Christ will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.  (1 Peter 5:2-11, NET)

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Eric Chaffin February 1, 2011 at 9:19 am

This is powerful, powerful stuff. More quality teaching about leadership qualities in a few paragraphs than some “leaders” (yes, even spiritual leaders) accumulate in a lifetime. Thanks for sharing this.

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