LEADERS ARE NOT PERFECT, BUT WHOLE

Psalm 32: 8.

I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye.

God does not expect leaders to be perfect, but to be whole.  Have you appreciated the enormous deferences?  To have integrity means to be whole, as in a whole number.  Despite his or her human frailties, a leader can effectively guide those who follow.

 

Psalm 32;8, reminds us that leaders must closely observe the flock for its needs and problems.  God expects spiritual leaders to serve as guides.  A guide gets a person or group safely to a planned destination.  The Hebrew word for a guide ‘(Madrich’ or ‘Moreh Derech)’ gives us several clues as to what God expects from those He uses as leaders.

 

  • A guide is a spiritual head who unites and directs people in their way with God.
  • A guide takes people on the straight path that leads to fellowship with God.
  • A guide gives accurate and godly counsel to those who need it.
  • A guide leads with gentleness and trustworthiness, making others feel safe.
  • A guide bases his or her direction of the Spirit and the Word of God.

 

One of the most powerful events in the life of Jesus is when he washes his disciples’ feet in John 13. When he is finished, he says to them, “You call me teacher and Lord, and you are right, for so I am. If I then, the Lord and teacher, washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.”

Jesus, of course, isn’t just talking about feet. He’s talking about servant leadership. Great leaders focus on serving and helping those who follow them. Great leaders serve others.

Now before the feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that his hour has come that he should depart out of this world unto the Father, having loved his own which were in the world, he loved them unto the end.

 

  • And supper being ended, the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray him;
  • Jesus knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands and that he was come from God, and went to God;
  • He riseth from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself.

 

After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded. Peter was watching, fascinated, as Jesus bent down to wash His disciples’ feet. This was unusual, even strange, to see a teacher washing His followers’ feet.

 

If Jesus Christ is willing to humbly and unconditionally serve His followers in a lowly human task, those disciples should follow His example and be willing to perform even the most unpleasant tasks for their brethren and mankind.

 

Peter was watching, fascinated, as Jesus bent down to wash His disciples’ feet. This was unusual, even strange, to see a teacher washing His followers’ feet.

 

If Jesus Christ is willing to humbly and unconditionally serve His followers in a lowly human task, those disciples should follow His example and be willing to perform even the most unpleasant tasks for their brethren and mankind.

 

What was Jesus doing? Surely it was beneath Him to abase Himself in this way. As Jesus moved from one disciple to another, the room probably quieted. All eyes followed Jesus’ every move. The disciples shifted their positions to watch Him lift the pitcher of water and pour it into a basin.

 

Carefully, systematically, Jesus moved from disciple to disciple, washing each man’s feet. Peter looked on transfixed, scrutinizing Jesus’ every move. Peter suddenly realized it was his turn.

As Jesus bent down to wash his feet, Peter blurted out, “Lord, are You washing my feet? John 13:6? Then comes he to Simon Peter: and Peter said to him, Lord, do you wash my feet?

 

Apparently, Peter was the only one who openly questioned and protested his Master’s actions. Jesus answered and said unto him, what I do, you will not know until God send to the disciples His Holy Spirit. Only later would they comprehend the spiritual significance of this act of humility and the symbols Jesus instituted during that evening’s Passover service.

Of course, Jesus was referring to the Holy Spirit’s revelatory power, which would eventually guide the disciples’ understanding John 16:13 However, when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will show you things to come.

Also, enabling them to grasp the spiritual meaning of this physical act. Later they would understand that this ceremony signifies the Christian’s humble service to God, His Church, and mankind.Again, Peter protested that Jesus should never lower Himself to the undignified demeanor of a servant: “You shall never wash my feet!”

Jesus Christ calmly responded, “If I do not wash you, you have no part with Me” John 13:8.  Peter’s next saying mirrors our human tendency to overreact: “Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head John 13:9. Simon Peter said to him, Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head.

Our Savior then informed Peter: “He who is bathed needs only to wash his feet but is completely clean, and you are clean, but not all of you” John 13:10.   Although you call me Lord and Master, you say well, for so I am. If I then, Your Lord and Master, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.

For I have given you an example, that you do as I have done to you. His disciples wouldn’t understand until later, Jesus spoke of becoming spiritually cleansed, which would happen through His shed blood and death for the sins of humanity.