Connect, Lead, Equip: Jesus’ Example of Motivation in Leadership
“Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God,” (Hebrews 12:2, NASB).
Everyone knows that leadership and management are very demanding. Just to emphasize the point, let’s look at the obligations of a Community Outreach Project Manager job posting from Indeed.
Sample Community Outreach Project Manager Job Tasks:
- Manages and oversees grant-making and grant management functions of the BBF.
- Serves as relationship manager with community partners, including legal services providers, relevant government, quasi-government and other internal and external stakeholders and partners.
- Manages programs to integrate policy, service, and community collaborations to further the BBA’s strategic interests.
- Responsible for developing, monitoring and furthering synergy between BBA and BBF access to justice and community outreach programs.
- Monitors and reports on the use of the Special Funds and other BBF grants to the BBA.
- Oversees BBA and BBF volunteer groups related to access to justice and community outreach programs.
- Works collaboratively on diversity and inclusion initiatives.
- Collaborates with other staff members to promote access to justice activities and initiatives.
We are given opportunities in life to make a difference as leaders in our ministry and work roles. Setting an example of consistent motivation is crucial. The way we successfully run the race that God has set before us in life and leadership is by “fixing our eyes on Jesus.” This is because He is the chief leader. He is the one who has gone before and navigated the journey of life and finished the race. His perfect example shows us how to do it. He is also the resource we need (our helper who understands us and who provides for us the grace, mercy, and strength we need). Jesus’ life experience was not pleasant, to say the least.
The cross was the ultimate form of rejection. It was the cruelest torture known in His day. Prior to the actual crucifixion, Jesus faced hatred, rejection, loneliness, abandonment, mockery, beating, and misunderstanding. It all piled up together and resulted in His being put to death. We are told Jesus endured all that. He kept going faithfully doing what God the Father had for Him in His earthly life. In fact, we are told He scorned its shame. To scorn something was to treat it as insignificant, as if it had little impact or value. For Jesus to scorn the shame means He treated all the abuse, and all the rejection, even the crucifixion itself, as of little consequence. The pain it caused was insignificant when compared to the outcome of it all for Him personally. What was that outcome? Hebrews 12:2 states, “who for the joy set before him…sat down at the right hand of God.” The joy he worked toward was the completion of His life journey as well as the exaltation and reward of being in the honored place at the Father’s right hand.
Jesus got through the demands and pain of His earthly life by focusing on the joy of what He would experience when united with the Father in Heaven. As our chief leader, the example He left us is that we to are to look beyond our present difficulties to God’s promise of a joyful eternity in the presence of God.
Now, the only way that will pull us through is if we have a firm fix on what Heaven will be like. If it doesn’t hold any attraction for us, it won’t provide motivation to endure. If it isn’t something we desire, then why stay faithful to Jesus Christ?
In fact, the apostle Paul had a very realistic take on this. He said, “if we have hope in Christ only for this life, we are the most miserable people in the world.” If there is no hope of Heaven, of a better life beyond this life, he says, “Let’s feast and get drunk, for tomorrow we die!”
In other words, there’s no hope if we have no faith, so we should indulge ourselves. That’s a false view of life. Life as a follower of Jesus Christ means the best is yet to come.
What’s so attractive about Heaven? Heaven is a place of beauty and peace….
“And the twelve gates were twelve pearls, each of the gates made of a single pearl, and the street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass. And I saw no temple in the city, for its temple is the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb. And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and its lamp is the Lamb. By its light will the nations walk, and the kings of the earth will bring their glory into it, and its gates will never be shut by day—and there will be no night there,” (Revelation 21:21-25, ESV).
So, when the days are long and the tasks are overwhelming, we can follow Jesus’ example. Each day, whatever we face, we can always look forward to a heavenly eternity.