Leaders or Servants?

“Our job is not to train leaders, but to train servants,” said Dr. Raymond Edman, when he was the president of Wheaton College.

Most people expect colleges to turn out leaders at graduation, Dr. Edman realized that the world needs servants more than it needs “leaders.” Many people desire leadership, fame, and success, but few desire servanthood.

Servanthood is a central theme of the Bible, for the greatest servant of all is Jesus Christ. Jesus was not only the greatest leader of all time, but He was the greatest servant of all time.

The Bible tells of the time when the mother of James and John asked Jesus to give His word that her two sons would be leaders, and be given the highest places of honor in His kingdom. She wanted her sons to have position, prestige and power, but Jesus was quick to tell her, and the disciples with him, that their concept of power was all wrong.

That’s when Jesus gave them – and us – a new definition of power, when He said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and those who are great exercise authority over them. Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you, let him be your servant. And whoever desires to be first among you, let him be your slave—just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many” (Matthew 20:25b-28).

One leader got it right, when he said, “Rank is given you to enable you to better serve those above and below you,” said General Bruce C. Clarke, USA, Ret.

Men are drawn to leadership, and for greater ways to exert authority over others. But as children of God, we must realize that true leadership is servanthood, as exemplified by Christ,“who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men” (Philippians 2:6-7).

Please go to our website, fjm.org, or phone 1-844-FJM-FOOD. Learn how you can join our team of servants here at Fred Jordan Mission, on Skid Row, in downtown Los Angeles, as we seek to be God’s hands extended to “the least of these.”

Willie Jordan (Mrs. Fred Jordan)