Kingdom Leaders and the Word
Study it through, Pray it in, Live it out, Pass it on. Leighton Ford
Jesus reminds us that it is the seed of the Word of God the Kingdom worker plants that springs forth in the life soil of an individual (Mark 4:14). Peter reminds us that we have been born again by the seed of the Word of God – “… since you have been born again, not of perishable seed but of imperishable, through the living and abiding word of God…” 1 Peter 1:23 ESV
A mark of a Kingdom leader is that they saturate their life and leadership with the Scriptures. Not in a proof text, Post-it note kind of way – “Ooops, I’d better add a verse to this so that it sounds more spiritual.” Rather, they have so embedded themselves in the Word of God that it naturally flows from them as they live and lead others to accomplish mission for the glory of God.
Note in the above quote that the first three steps regarding saturating our life and leadership with the Bible are internally focused. We study the Word, not in a purely academic sense, but rather, with an eye towards applying it to ourselves and then to others.
Next we pray over the Scriptures with a meditative, contemplative attitude, expecting God to speak to us personally. He will speak to our current situations and challenges, directing our paths and helping us sort out His voices from the cacophony that that surrounds us. In Isaiah 30:21 (ESV) He promises, “And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left.”
Next in the ministry of the Word is that we have to apply it to ourselves before we share it with others. It was Howard Hendricks who said, “If it does not work at ‘home,’ don’t export it!” Hypocrisy is by definition not living what you instruct others to be or do and Jesus had much to say about hypocrites – none of it positive!
Lastly, having studied, prayed and personally applied the Word, we now share it with others. We align our leadership with God’s ways and seek to bring glory to Him, knowing that we will give an account for our actions at the end of our days. Hebrews 13:17 (ESV) says, “Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you.” And James gives Kingdom leaders this sobering reminder, “Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness.” (James 3:1 ESV)
Thus, we do humbly serve the King and seek to advance His Kingdom by honoring His Word in our life and leadership. Are you seeking to saturate your life with the Word? Are you pursuing knowing Him and abiding in Him by meeting Him daily in the Scriptures?