Interesting that just before this passage, Paul writes "So then let no one boast in men".This lines up nicely with a rebuke for those who want to mimic an American 'leadership' style in the HBR article "The Authenticity Paradox" (I'm not sure if the link is permanent). I'm glad none of the ministers at my church fall into this trap: all are authentic in a very Australian way...mimicking no one.
I don't see the concept of 'leadership' as used these days in Paul's passage. 'Leadership' is very much not of the church of God. Sure there are teachers, pastors, elders, servants, administrators, ministers...all are ministers in some way. But none would be characterised as 'leaders'. Archons in that day.
It is concerning that the language of the 1980s in evangelical churches, which emphasised ministry: very inclusive, accessible, and directly connected to Christ's mission, has morphed into a worldly concept of 'leadership' that implies, if not promotes, separation, division, and worldly prestige. It also leads to people being passivated and not participating in church life. After all, they have a 'leader' (a 'leader' other than Christ...who calls himself a servant).
Indeed, even in business, where 'leaders' are created by a set of contractual relationships, scholars such as Henry Minzberg say there is too much leadership, and not enough "communityship" (Google it). In the church above all we are about 'communityship' and participation through mutual ministry. Let's reflect that in our language and eschew the puffed up distortion that the world's thinking encourages "For the wisdom of this world is foolishness before God".
Sunday, February 1, 2015
I was going to do some posts on this blog on 'leadership' in the church, but as I scrolled down, I came to the only comment, and instead re-present it: