Several years ago an older lady died having lived each day pinching pennies to insure she was able to buy food, medicine, and pay her other bills. When she died, loved ones discovered she had hidden tens of thousands of dollars throughout her meager home.
Before you consider placing judgment on this lady’s choice to hoard her resources, recognize leaders are either reproducing or hoarding leaders. You can likely identify whether you or those around you are a reproducing or a hoarding leader. Think about the following comparisons and add your own to the list.
Hoarding leaders might think about or say some of the following:
- How can we keep them from splitting our class?
- I wish we could go back to the time when we knew everybody in our church.
- How can we get the church to meet our needs?
- I’m not sure why John Doe is teaching a class here. He’s only been a member here for five years.
- I know they need preschool teachers, but we really need some good members in our class.
- We painted our class and bought new chair cushions. Why can’t the children use another room?
- Why should we go to the women’s shelter? They aren’t going to come to church here.
- We have not had a new member in 10 years, but that’s okay. We really love each other.
- People know where we are if they want to come and join our class.
- Everything keeps changing. I wish we could just leave things alone so people know what to expect.
- I can’t get people to do anything anymore. I guess I’ll have to do it if no one else will.
- It is easier for me to do this than to try to get someone else to do it. After all, I can do it better.
Reproducing leaders might think about or say some of the following:
- When do we get to start a new class?
- Help me pray about who God wants to help teach the three year olds.
- Isn’t it great to get to know Fred and Barbara? We would not have met them if we had not helped start the new class six months ago.
- Your class is like a rocket ship—constantly sending out great leaders. Help me think of some ways to celebrate those members your class has sent out to serve in the other age groups.
- Did you notice how Michael handled problems that arose when our class helped remove yard debris and replaced the roof damaged from the storm?
- How do you think we can encourage our classes to serve in the community more?
- Tell me how things are going as you lead your class leaders?
- Do you have everything you need?
- How can I pray more specifically for you and your class?
- If you find this time meaningful, what do you think you could do with your class leaders?
- Let’s pray about who else might share your burden for the people who cannot attend Bible study on Sunday morning. Why don’t we both enlist two prayer partners to help us pray about what God wants us to do and who He wants us to invite into this process? Can we talk again next Thursday?
Jesus is the best model of a reproducing leader. He taught multitudes, discipled twelve, but he mentored three men. He spent time growing and sending out leaders. Moses’ father-in-law, Jethro, reminded Moses of the need to grow and send out other leaders. (Ex. 18) What about you? Are you reproducing or hoarding leaders?
“And what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, commit to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.”2 Tim 2:2 (HCSB)