Be responsive to your pastoral leaders. Listen to their counsel. They are alert to the condition of your lives and work under the strict supervision of God. Contribute to the joy of their leadership, not its drudgery. Why would you want to make things harder for them? (THE MESSAGE)
We don’t need to look too far to identify examples of poor leadership in the church. That can cover anything from slack organisation to bullying, from boring sermons to not answering emails or phone calls.
But there is such a thing as poor ‘following’ as well as poor leading. In some cases, substandard leaders are the way they are because the people they lead are making the already hard job that much harder. Church members have a better chance of flourishing under good leadership. Then again, church leaders have a better chance of leading well when those they lead help them along the way.
This doesn’t mean leaders blame followers for their own failings. Nor does it mean leaders must demand unquestioning obedience. Leaders are not to be dictators, but they are still leaders who have to weld together very different people to work towards a common goal. No church or non-church group or workplace can flourish if they are mere loose associations of independent individuals. Leadership is necessary.
And so leaders need to be extra diligent in ensuring their leadership is wise. And those who are led need to be extra careful to make sure their ‘following’ is equally wise.
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