A Note from Chris Adams: Though we are early into 2016, we might already be facing some leadership challenges and frustrations. What do you do when serving becomes difficult? Read this post by Linda Lesniewski, Women’s Minister at Green Acres Baptist Church in Tyler, Texas and consider how you will approach the next hurdle in ministry.
I recently came upon a passage of Scripture that brought back sweet childhood memories. Numbers 6:24-26 says, “Yahweh bless you and protect you; may Yahweh make His face shine on you and be gracious to you; may Yahweh look with favor on you and give you peace.” When I read this, I heard the words and the melody of our church’s benediction instantly in my mind. And, as a result, I spontaneously sang to the Lord. “The Lord bless you and keep you. The Lord make His face to shine upon you. And be gracious unto you; The Lord lift up His countenance upon you, and give you peace, and give you peace.”* I love the memories that flooded in of the congregation singing this each week before we dismissed to head our separate ways.
In Scripture, God instructed Aaron and his sons to offer this blessing to the Israelites. It’s reassuring to know that our priest, Jesus, offers this same blessing of peace to us today. We read of it in John 14:27: “Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Your heart must not be troubled or fearful.” This peace is invaluable to us as leaders in many ways.
One especially important way is that we set the spiritual atmosphere for those we lead in much the same way mothers influence the atmosphere of the home. Children look to their moms in a crisis to interpret the circumstances. In much the same way, the women we lead will turn to us to determine if “everything is OK.” We, in turn, must seek the Lord for His input as we make decisions, address challenges, and seek direction.
God provides everything we need as leaders, and one significant resource is His peace! His face is shining upon us. He’s blessing us, keeping us, and is being gracious to us at all times. Let this peace be a constant in your life as you lead, and you’ll begin to notice its reflection in the lives and faces of those you lead.
What is your usual “plan of action” when the frustrations of leadership overwhelm? How do you keep His peace at the center of your ministry? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!
Linda Lesniewski is the Women’s Minister at Green Acres Baptist Church in Tyler, Texas. She is the mother of four young adults and the grandmother of six little girls. She is a contributor to the book Transformed Lives: Taking Women’s Ministry to the Next Level published by LifeWay. She has authored A Little Book About Knowing A Big God for children, Women at the Cross, published by Revell, and Connecting Women: A Relational Guide for Leaders in Women’s Ministry, published by Baker Books.
*The Lord Bless Thee and Keep Thee, B. B. McKinney, Copyright, 1940, by the Sunday School Board of the Southern Baptist Convention.