Charisma vs. character
You can help Pastor Shi prepare a new generation of church leaders for long-term service.
I notice that Shun is discouraged. He has been struggling for too long. He desperately wants to serve God and has been working diligently at his church for over a decade. Yet, he has never been given responsibilities or opportunities to exercise his gifts. He has little to show for his efforts. He has lost sight of the big picture. No one seems to care about his personal development or aspirations. The joy has gone. Shun is burnt out.
On the other hand Pastor Wei is full of energy. Despite his lack of experience he was a popular choice to plant a new church. Unfortunately, conflict follows him wherever he goes. He is young, talented and confident, but immature. His lack of empathy and respect eventually alienated his team and congregation.
Equipped to serve
Both traditional and contemporary models of leadership in China are leader-centric. They emphasise charisma, authority and control. Rather than building up followers they build up leaders. Some pastors make all the decisions, no matter how small. Too often team members are prevented from using their gifts, acquiring skills or appreciating how their work contributes to the mission of the church. They frequently feel isolated and discouraged. Consequently there is little enthusiasm, cooperation or collaboration.
Faith building and sustainable growth requires humility, discipline and patience. We urgently need to introduce a Biblical style of leadership that emphasises godly character, service and collaboration. Above all we need to train leaders to disciple and nurture future leaders.
Leaders can encourage team members by reminding them how their work contributes to the overall vision. This enables us to focus our time and resources on fulfilling God’s call to serve him.
Equipped to lead
By making possible the publication of a Simplified Chinese translation of Relational Leadership: A Biblical Model for Influence and Service by Walter Wright you will help equip leaders to nurture others for the sake of the Kingdom.
For seminary graduates, this book will bring a new leadership perspective which emphasises character rather than charisma. They will be inspired to build up future generations of leaders by investing in those who work with and under them. They will be encouraged to empower others to grow God’s people.
Please pray that through the provision of this book, seminary and Bible college graduates in China will strive to be godly leaders in their churches.
Will you continue to support us as we equip pastors, preachers and teachers? Pray that I will faithfully build up the body of Christ in love.
Image: Last year a SparkLit grant made possible the translation and publication of a Simplified Chinese edition of The Call to Joy and Pain by Ajith Fernando and its distribution to 3,000 Bible college graduates.