My wife jokes with me about how I was as a teenager. You see, Katie and I dated in high school and in college. There are very few people in the world who know me and my history like she does. I was a singer in choirs and solo events and if you ever got the chance to watch me back then, I was all about me. It was all about how I could manipulate the gift God had given me to reflect nicely on myself.
It has been a long journey to get from that cocky kid to where I am now. First let me say, I am not there. I won’t get there on this side of heaven without being seen through Jesus-colored glasses. I have been in situations in leadership where I have let my ego or my feelings about something I have created get in the way of what’s best or God’s direction for something we should be doing. My journey in this has landed in John 3:30 that says,
He must become greater and greater, and I must become less and less. (NLT)
My humaness tells me to puff up myself more and more and Christ tells me to become less and less. I have found myself in the way of something God wanted to accomplish through me, but because I was too much, He chose to do it another way.
As I was praying about this recently, not just for myself but other leaders, I felt God leading me to this:
Get off your high horse and wrap the towel around your waist and wash some feet why don’t you!
The leader that models Christ’s servant leadership isn’t perfect. It just means they are living the tension of the struggle between ego and letting go, between becoming more and becoming less. Those who don’t recognize the tension don’t think there’s a problem.
My prayer for myself and all of us is this:
God, help us to become less and less and may you become more and more. Amen.