Being a young, next-gen leader is a difficult calling:
- You think differently than your more conventional colleagues.
- YOU CHALLENGE, REINVENT, AND MIX IT UP.
- You buck traditional models of leadership and you’re constantly on the hunt for new ones.
- Many of your peers and elders in the ministry may not understand your calling.
Here is a couple things to keep in mind:
It’s important to see where other men have been.
- It is easy to stand on the sidelines and critique other people’s ministries. Keep in mind, you have not walked in their shoes or been where they have been.
- The mistake that too many young ministers makes is to assume to have superior knowledge over an elder in the ministry who has struggled to make something happen. If you honor those men and women who have tilled the ground before you, God will give you the fruit of their labors.
Your greatest asset as a leader will be your mentors.
- Every Man or Woman of God is a product of the ministers who have invested themselves into their ministries. There is nothing new under the sun and you are not unique from those who have mentored your life. For good or bad, the Pastors and Mentors of your life have touched your ministry. You have been affected by each of them. You have learned things to do and things not to do in your ministry by observing them. Your love and honor to them will determine the level of respect and honor that will be given to your own ministry.
Stay close to someone more experienced.
- We learn from those who are able to teach us. If you surround your ministry with people who are less experienced or knowledgeable than yourself, you will become “dumbed-down”. Find some ministers who are heavily involved in the areas of ministry that you feel called to work and begin to glean from them. These men and women are usually very open to teaching a younger minister the ropes.
- There is nothing worse than watching someone make a fool of themselves by having too much pride. Pride when it is not yet deserving is very hard for just about anyone to watch. If you stay humble, pride will never take you down. Humility is a character trait of nearly every great leader. Jesus Himself, is our prime example for humility. How can we who are His servants display anything other than the sincerest humility in our ministries.
Remember you have a lot of mistakes to make.
- And you will make them regardless of how hard you try not to. Mistakes are to be expected in your life and ministry. You are not perfect. You are not Jesus. You are going to make mistakes possibly daily. It’s what you learn from them that counts. If you make a mistake, correct the problem and move on. Don’ let a mistake bring you down or keep you from accomplishing what you know God has called you to do. The Bible is full of people who have made terrible mistakes. Only those who did not let God help them were destroyed by their mistakes. Keep trying!
Don’t let short range failures affect your long term goals.
- Keep your eyes on the finish line. If you fall, get back up. If you lose pace, get your footing and get started again. This race is not to the swift, it is to those who finish. God specializes in helping those who are determined to do something great for the Kingdom of God.
Remember, success is not a destination, it is a journey.
- There is no point in your life when you will be able to say, “I am a success.” Some do and soon find that their success was short lived at best. Success is not about temporary things. It is not about buildings, numbers, great messages or large followings. These all fail us. Jesus was able to gather followings of literally thousands, who soon became offended by Him and left.
- The culmination of your life’s work for God and the people whose lives have been changed for the better will determine your level of success.
- Keep your head up. Stay above the circumstances of your life and ministry. Put a smile on your face and stay as positive as you can about whatever situation you are in. Remember, you work for God. This is His work, not yours. We are simply labors in His vineyard. We are blessed not because of the results of our labors, but rather by the knowledge of knowing that we are laboring for and alongside the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. What a High Honor it is to be a part of His Ministry…