How often do you hear your pastor talk about being a servant leader? I am sure that most of you probably do not hear about being a servant leader too often. I think one of the reasons why you don't hear much about the topic is it requires work. The definition of being a servant means just that, to serve others. As Christians, we are called to serve others, whether it be those people in our Church or the community. When we represent Christ, we are called to be like him.
Do you remember when Jesus washed the feet of his disciples? Bear in mind that in the time Jesus lived in, most everyone wore sandals. When you wear sandals, your feet become exposed to the elements. Your feet are exposed, they get filthy. Someone that washed feet back in the day was the lowest form of a servant. Of course, no one wanted to wash others feet, that was disgusting work. So why on earth would Jesus want to wash the feet of his disciples? This behavior wasn't becoming of a King, but more as a low-level servant.
John 13:12-17 NASB So when He had washed their feet, and taken His garments and reclined at the table again, He said to them, “Do you know what I have done to you? 13 You call Me Teacher and Lord; and you are right, for so I am. 14 If I then, the Lord and the Teacher, washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. 15 For I gave you an example that you also should do as I did to you. 16 Truly, truly, I say to you, a slave is not greater than his master, nor is one who is sent greater than the one who sent him. 17 If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them.
Why should we be a servant leader?
If you look at the passage I showed you from John, Jesus explains the importance of being a servant leader. We humble ourselves when we are a servant to others. Just look at the example that Jesus set for us to follow. How can anyone be in any Godly leadership position and not be a servant leader? If you are not willing to put others above yourself, then you are not following Jesus' example.
Being a servant leader means that you lead by example. It is impossible to set a good example if you follow the mentality “do as I say, not as I do.” Others should see our servant hearts without you expecting a pat on the back. The whole point of being humble is to raise others up. You cannot raise others up when you stand above them. You can only raise others up by getting down in the trenches and promoting Christ-like behavior.
Servant leaders need not preach to others by throwing out Bible verses. If you want to gain the loyalty and respect of others, serve them. Not only serve them but do it in a way that your light shines for everyone to see.