By Josh Kerby
A servant leader, the phrase gets tossed around a lot, but what does it mean to be a servant leader. I think we all have a pretty good idea of what a leader is. A leader is someone who is in charge, instructs others, and guides a group of individuals to success. A servant is someone who is typically hired by someone to perform domestic duties. A servant leader has qualities from both a leader and a servant, but a servant leader isn’t either of these. Let’s take a look at what a servant leader looks like.
When I think of a leader, I see him standing in front of a group. He will stand out because he stands in front. I think a servant leader is hard to spot. He is with the group. He will instruct from within. You will find him doing the same tasks as everyone else. In fact, a servant leader will be doing the lowest of the tasks, the most undesirable tasks. He does these because he wants to serve his group. As a servant leader is doing his tasks, he instructs and leads others to do the other tasks. When Jesus washed his disciples’ feet, it was significant. The lowliest of servants only did this task. Jesus rose from the table in humility to wash his disciples’ feet. The greatest of all people to walk this earth, the one who had great crowds following Him, and the one who was called teacher did the lowliest of tasks and washed His disciples’ feet. Jesus knew what a servant leader should look like.
Another excellent example of a servant leader was one of my managers. He continually did the least desired tasks that were supposed to be done by the staff. Cleaning the bathrooms was the least desired chore to do, but night after night I saw him cleaning the bathrooms and instructing us to do the easier chores. He did this chore while still leading and doing his manager tasks. He made this decision to keep morale high and to serve us. He was being a servant leader and not just a leader.
A servant leader will sit in the ashes with his group. He will get to know his team more sincerely. He cares deeply for everyone he is leading. Jesus was great at this. He cared deeply for His disciples. I would imagine that He would sit there and listen to His disciples; He would encourage them and help them along their journey. I don’t see this in a typical leader. A leader is task oriented; only focused on what needs to be done. A servant leader is also task oriented but chooses to focus on the hearts of his followers first. A servant leader is concerned for their followers not only physically, but emotionally and spiritually as well.
There are a lot of leaders out there, but there are few who would be considered a servant leader. It doesn’t take anything special to be a servant leader. All you have to do is make the decision to be a servant leader. Make the decision to think of the group before yourself. Decide that you are doing the lowliest of tasks and let the others do the fun and easier tasks. Decide that you will be standing with your group and not out in front. A servant leader lets the group get the fame and glory. Make the decision to care for your group and get to know them. Make the decision that you are apart of the group and you are willing to do the tasks that you are asking them to do. Step up this week and be a servant leader. Be the servant leader that everyone will want to follow. Be a servant leader that leads from within.
Subscribe to our weekly blog updates
To Our Blog
You'll receive an email whenever we publish a new
post like this. We promise we won't spam you.