Do You Know the Ultimate Christmas Leadership Lesson from Jesus?

Encouragement for Pastors
Leadership Development
Spiritual Encouragement

A Christmas Leadership Lesson from Jesus: What the Ultimate Sacrifice Actually Involved

Do You Know the Ultimate Christmas Leadership Lesson from Jesus?

One ministry experience from my past has made me think deeply about the ultimate Christmas leadership lesson this year…

Some years ago, I traveled to the Philippines as part of a ministry team sent to teach and preach in Filipino churches. I spent four days in a small mountain town on the island of Mindanao. I stayed in a roughly 12′ by 14′ structure, elevated on posts. There were no windows, just openings in the plywood walls; no electricity and no running water. I showered at the town fountain, standing in my gym shorts pouring water over my head. I ate fish for breakfast. They saved the delicacy for me – the head and eyeballs. I ate fish for dinner. I slept under a mosquito net. I shared space with the rats, the lizards that hung on the walls, and the monkeys that ran through the roof.

In material terms, it was a step down from my middle-class life here in America. I drove into my subdivision, hit the garage door opener, pulled in, parked my car, walked into my air-conditioned home, laid on my sofa, hit the remote, and fell asleep in comfort. A big difference!

Think for a moment about Jesus. Imagine leaving all the comfort and perks of heaven and stepping down into this sin affected world. God the Son took upon Himself humanity. That’s moving down! He was born into our world. He was born to one of our women, in one of our stables, in one of our villages, in one of our countries, right here on Earth.

The early church leader and theologian, Augustine, sought to capture the essence of Jesus’ downward step with these words, “The Word of the Father, by whom all time was created, was made flesh and was born in time for us. He, without whose divine permission no day completes its course, wished to have one day for His human birth. The Maker of man became man that He, Ruler of the stars, might be nourished at the breast; that He, the Bread, might be hungry; that He, the Fountain, might thirst; that He, the Light, might sleep; that He, the Way, might be wearied by the journey; that He, the Truth, might be accused by false witnesses; that He, the Judge of the living and the dead, might be brought to trial by a mortal judge; that He, Justice, might be condemned by the unjust; that He, Discipline, might be scourged with whips; that He, the Foundation, might be suspended upon a cross; that Courage might be weakened; that Security might be wounded; that Life might die.”

Why did Jesus go so low? The answer is that He did it to lift us up.

He did it to lift us up from our failure to live as God designed and intended us to live.

He did it to lift us up to the fullness of life we need and only Jesus can give.

He did it to lift us up to eternal life (knowing and enjoying relationship with God now, and the completion, perfection, and total satisfaction of life in His presence forever).

This Christmas let’s remember that Jesus lowered Himself to lift us up. He made the ultimate sacrifice to serve those He loves. We are called to serve in that same way and that’s what makes us leaders like Jesus. This Christmas let’s lead in service as we celebrate our Savior.

If you’re a church leader, pastor, or the leader of a non-profit organization, are you looking for leadership training or team development help? Thanks to the backing of a generous foundation, LifeEquip is able to offer leadership and organizational training at highly reduced rates to meet the needs of smaller organizations. Some LifeEquip services include pastoral coaching, OLA, Everything DiSC, The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team, and Lead Like Jesus.


Free tips, sermon packets, blog posts & more...

* indicates required
Pick a Topic or Subscribe to All Posts

More Info & Resources:

Get blog updates + over 15 FREE SERMONS (& counting):

Blog Categories:

Blog Archive:

Glenn C. StewartPastor & Church Coach
Glenn C. Stewart has forty years of experience leading churches, planting a church, and developing leaders. He has served as an adjunct professor of theology and leadership at the Orlando campus of Palm Beach Atlantic University, and as the chairman of the board of a Christian college and seminary. Along with his degrees in Bible and theology he has a master’s degree in organizational leadership. Glenn has a heart for serving pastors and being a spiritual mentor.


Glenn C. Stewart
Glenn C. StewartChurch & Pastor Coach

Authorship Credentials:

  • Adjunct Professor of Theology and Leadership
  • Certified as a Human Behavior Consultant
  • Authorized Wiley Everything DiSC© Partner
  • Organizational Leadership Assessment (OLA) Partner
  • Certified Facilitator of Ken Blanchard’s Lead Like Jesus Encounter Groups
  • Certified Facilitator of CPP Personality, Career, and Organizational Development Assessments
  • International Speaker and Trainer


  • Work, Ministry & Community Outreach Support: How to be Optimistic

Work, Ministry & Community Outreach Support: How to be Optimistic

Connect, Lead, Equip: Community Outreach Support: How to be Optimistic - In Good to Great, Jim Collins wrote about Vietnam War prisoner, Admiral Jim Stockdale, who was tortured over 20 times during his eight-year captivity in the prisoner-of-war camp and had no guarantee as to whether he would survive.

  • How to be Optimistic as a Leader

How to be Optimistic as a Leader

Connect, Lead, Equip: What Does it Look Like to be Optimistic as a Leader? “Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead,” (Philippians 3:13, ESV).

Did you know 54% of pastors are frequently overwhelmed?

LifeEquip was founded to help reduce that percentage… Our Pastoral Life Coaching is proving to be a helpful solution. Financial aid funds may be available through the generous giving of foundation partners. Call to find out if you’re eligible.
Learn More About LifeEquip's Pastoral Support

Leave A Comment