KEY THOT: The Lord is the perfect Model of shepherd-leadership. The goals of a shepherd-leader are different from that of secular-leader. The psalm tells us that our Shepherd-Leader does four things: (1) he satisfies the sheep’s hunger (“green pastures”); (2) he quench sheep’s thirst (“still waters”); (3) he revives the sheep’s mental and emotional well-being (“my soul”); (4) he provides clear moral directions (“paths of righteousness”).
In today’s language, we may summarize the four objectives of shepherd-leadership in terms of the personal and spiritual development of flock. They are (1) feeding them with God’s word; (2) helping them drink of the Spirit by learning to live by the Spirit; (3) encouraging them to look to God when they are discouraged; (4) giving clear directions on how to live a righteous life especially in the world of work, study and play.
What the church needs today is shepherd-leaders whose goals are directed at the development of the people, not just doing ministry programs or conducting meetings--in other words, mentoring. The role of a shepherd-leader is to help the people become strengthened in the Word, filled with the Spirit, revived in their souls and walking in righteousness. The people’s spiritual and personal development is the reason we have the programs. The programs are the means; the people are the ends.
Everything I do must have these four goals in mind: to strengthen the spiritual life of the people by feeding them with God’s word, giving them opportunities to drink more deeply from the wells of the Spirit; encouraging them to persevere when they are discouraged; and leading by personal example along the paths of righteousness. As the shepherd-leader, I must remember that people is the reason I do ministry programs. The reason I am passionate about Alpha is because Alpha helps people realize and release their full potential in Christ.
Father, help me to make Your people’s growth and development my goal as much as You have made my growth and development the goal. Thank You for the privilege of transforming lives through Christ. Amen.