Stepping Up to Leadership

July 23, 2023

Solomon: Stepping Up to Leadership


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I remember being 18 years old and terrified at the thought of being a leader. I was painfully shy and dreaded the thought of public speaking. But those fears, as with so many others, turned out to mean nothing. After years of open doors and stretching experiences and people walking alongside me, leadership became a part of who I am. No one is more surprised than me!


We really don’t know how Solomon felt about himself when he was coronated as Israel’s next king, but that didn’t seem to matter. God had called him and a nation that God loved needed him. Leading is not about ego or privilege or perks. It’s about obeying God, lifting others up, and advancing God’s work. At the local church level, in fact, there is a direct correlation between the number of volunteers in leadership roles and the ability of that church to grow.


Fortunately, when the moment came to lead, Solomon was willing. After years of working with volunteer leaders in churches, I have found that it is not a lack of skills that holds most people back. It’s simply unwillingness. Sure, it would be easier to sit back and let someone else lead. But there are so many opportunities around us for making a difference. Maybe you have attended a small group for a long time. What about leading one yourself now? Or teaching a class or coordinating an outreach? We all have our own excuses and insecurities, but Jesus’ church and a lost world still need people who are willing to lead.


Solomon, thankfully, did not have to do this alone. He had the power of the Holy Spirit. At his coronation in I Chronicles 29 he was anointed with oil. That action symbolized the enablement of the Holy Spirit that is now promised to us as followers of Christ. Our weaknesses and self-doubts do not change the fact that God can still use us. King David got it exactly right when he prayed in 1 Chronicles 29:12: “In your hands are strength and power to exalt and give strength to all.”


Jesus’ church needs people who, like Solomon, are willing to go from being helpers to being leaders. It all starts, of course, with the approval and blessing of pastoral leadership. But don’t wait to be asked! If you have trusted character and can work with people, make yourself available. Listen to the guidance you are given and take advantage of the leadership training that is available to you. Just don't be like me when I was young, letting my fears make my decisions for me. With God’s help, who knows how God could use you to lead!


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