True purpose of leadership is to serve others

| February 9, 2018 | 1 Comment

Footsteps in Faith

Hodge

Chaplain (Capt.) Christopher Hodge
303rd Explosive Ordnance Battalion
8th Military Police Brigade
8th Theater Sustainment Command
SCHOFIELD BARRACKS — Success has several definitions, one of which is “the accomplishment of an aim or purpose.”

The United States tends to define success as the attainment of wealth or some sort of power (authority) that gives one influence over others.

This definition is a far cry from the success that Jesus speaks of in the Scripture. In fact, when speaking to his disciples about what greatness is in the Kingdom of Heaven, he states, “The greatest among you will be your servant” (Matthew 23:11).

I would say that this idea – that the greatest among us have been given authority to serve everyone else – has been lost.

One of the most profound examples of the big picture of authority and service in the Old Testament Scriptures comes in the story of Joseph (Genesis 37). In that story, a young Hebrew (Joseph) dreams he will be the greatest of his family and that they will all bow to him.

Being a not-so-wise young man, he decides to tell his family about this dream, which in turn leads to jealousy among his brothers. They plot to kill him, but instead decide to sell him into slavery.

Joseph finds himself going from favored son to slave. He is so faithful as a slave, however, that he rises to the top only to find himself falsely accused and sent to prison.

Once again, he finds himself rising to the top. After a series of events (over many years), he is promoted from the lowest of prisoners to the leader of all of Egypt.

Footsteps in Faith

Footsteps in Faith

Later, when a famine comes, his family arrives to buy grain in Egypt, which Joseph (their long lost brother) now controls. They find themselves bowing to him without realizing that it was indeed their brother. Providentially, Joseph gives them grain and saves his people from starvation.

The moral of this story is not that Joseph got to stick it to his jealous brothers, but rather that God had foreordained that Joseph would go through all of those trials to shape his character so that he could rise to become a ruler. And get this, it was not for his benefit at all. It was for the benefit of all the people in that region who would have starved if not for his wisdom and foresight to prepare.

Everyone wants power and authority, but very few people are willing to go through the fire of trials to develop the character needed to wield that power righteously. How many that do arrive forget they were called there to serve?

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  1. Kiffin Brown says:

    Hello Chris, Googled and found you. Read your article, good stuff. Hope you’re doing well. I’ve been on a binge watching Todd White videos. He’s somewhat controversial but I find him very inspiring to be more than I am. He might be an encouragement where you are too if you’ve not listened before.
    I’m still mowing grass driving at night. God is good. Take care and God Bless.
    Kiffin Brown

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