Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Tim Keller on the one thing a leader needs

"But the main thing we need in order to be leaders is unusually mature character.

Robert Murray McCheyne was reputed to have said to ministers, "What your people need most from you is your personal holiness." That is right. The single most important thing a leader needs in order to lead is holy, loving, Christ-like character.

M'Cheyne was a young Scottish minister who died in 1848. He preached his last sermon on Isaiah 60:1-"Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon the. He went home to bed with a fever, and a week later died. After his death they found a letter in his bedroom, and it in part said this:

"I hope you will pardon a stranger for addressing you a few lines. I heard you preach last Sabbath evening, and your sermon brought me to Christ. It was not anything you said, but it was what you were as you preached. For I saw in you a beauty of holiness that I had never seen before. You were about the glory of our God resting on the Saviour and I saw the Saviour's glory rest on you. That brought me to Christ. (Quoted in D. MacMillan, 'The Lord is my shepherd')

Thesis: a Christian leader leads from character before skill. Character is far more important than skills in Christian leadership"

Redeemer Urban Church Planting Manual, Page 61

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