Leaders and Managers
And the LORD said to Samuel, "Heed the voice of the people in all that they say to you; for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected Me, that I should not reign over them." (1 Samuel 8:7)
The Israelites were to be a nation unlike any other. Every other nation had a king or ruler, but Israel’s king was to be God Himself! Still, the Israelites complained that they wanted to be like other nations and have an earthly ruler! As we read about the Israelites, we marvel at their foolishness. Yet we are prone to make the same mistake, choosing our human wisdom over God’s leadership.
There is much discussion these days about leaders and managers. According to popular teaching, leaders have the vision and set goals for people or organizations to follow. Managers handle the day-to-day marshaling of resources under their charge. In the Christian life, God is the leader of our lives, our families, and our churches. God sets the direction; He establishes the priorities; He provides the resources. We are the managers. We take what He gives us and do with it as He directs.
The biblical term for leader is Lord. As our Lord, Christ has the authority to reveal the direction for our lives. As Lord, He chooses our careers, leads us to our marriage partners, and helps us set our daily priorities. We are to be good managers of the mind, body, and spiritual life He gives. He is the Lord of our families. He knows what is best for our children. He knows how to make marriages strong. Our responsibility is to obey Him as He leads our families to Christlikeness. Christ is the Lord of our church. He takes responsibility for expanding it (Matt. 16:18; 1 Cor. 12:18). Only He knows what is best for our church. Our task is to faithfully perform the role He assigns us.
Do not foolishly trust in human wisdom and leadership as the Israelites did. Follow your Lord and trust Him alone.