A periodic leadership lesson…
Some seek to lead with a strong hand, harsh words and threats in order to get what they want done. That approach, over time, is not only increasingly ineffective, it requires more and more harsh words and threats. Furthermore, in is an approach that is contrary to godly values!
Apostle Paul addressed Christians “masters” in Ephesians 6:9 and gave this advice to them as leaders: “stop your threatening, knowing that He who is both their Master and yours is in heaven, and there is no partiality with Him!”
So when Apostle Paul appealed to Philemon for mercy on behalf of the runaway slave, Onesimus, this was his approach…
“Though I am bold enough in Christ to command you to do what is required, yet for love’s sake I prefer to appeal to you… in order that your goodness might not be by compulsion but of your own accord… Yes, brother, I want some benefit from you in the Lord. Refresh my heart in Christ! Confident of your obedience, I write to you, knowing that you will do even more than I say.” (From Philemon 8-22)
No threats… No strident words… instead, an approach that I have called “steel under velvet!” Hey, it’s much more effective and Christlike! Leaders would be much more effective if they would “lower their voice” when giving directives to their subordinates! In those instances, “style is just as important as substance” … and for Christian leaders, it is more godly and reflects better their Christian values!
Lord, help me always to behave like a Christian when I lead others!