Though in our society everyone uses the term “leadership”, Jesus instead spoke about servanthood. He actually forbid his followers from emulating either the domineering style of leadership common among Gentile nations (Matthew 20:25-28) or the self-promotion that he observed among Jewish leaders of his day (Matthew 23:5-12). What he taught was not modeled on anything his followers had seen before.
In trying to follow Jesus’ way of humility and service, within our congregation we do not have positions of prestige and power, or titles that distinguish us from one another. We do recognize, as Paul loves to describe it, that we are like parts of a body with different roles of service that we offer to one another. A person’s influence is limited to the willingness of others to listen and follow, not because that person has the power to demand anything. Consequently, only in our submission to one another do we recognize the giftedness and authority of God in our brothers and sisters.
We all need to learn from others. This happens when we submit ourselves to the mature guidance of those who shepherd us. There are many men and women at DF who are willing and able to offer counsel and spiritual care. The shepherd you will listen to is the one you choose for yourself, so we encourage you to select your own shepherd(s). If you are unsure who that might be for you, Greg, Shane, or many others can make suggestions.
There will be others you can shepherd and encourage through the wisdom gained from your experiences. Our life in the body of Christ is both giving and receiving, so pick those from whom you want to learn and be ready to help those who might look to you.
When we need to make decisions that affect us all, we use a discernment process that welcomes everyone in the congregation to participate. We attempt to prayerfully discover with one another how God is directing us. This is not decided with a vote, but in reaching a consensus together. This does not mean we reach unanimity, but that in humility we acknowledge that the Spirit of God works more in us all than in any of us individually. Sometimes we need to concede that others may be discerning God’s leading more than ourselves.