What are the qualities we should try to develop in ourselves, as leaders, as we seek to become servant leaders like Jesus?
- Servant leadership recognizes that everything is the Lord's word - your career, your family, weekend trips, washing the dishes, watching your child's basketball game, and even baking cookies for a VBS party.
- Leadership builds the confidence of those you lead; good leaders instill hope in those they lead. Servant leadership trusts the work to God and allows Him to bring the results without our manipulation.
- Jesus-style leadership produces excellence - both in yourself and in those you lead.
- Good leaders honor the time of others. They are responsible and plan ahead. They have respect for those in authority over them.
Applying servant leadership to ministry does not mean you should do everything for the child.It does mean you do the servant tasks that make it possible for your children to be a group. You seek out the tasks and give the encouragement that makes it possible for children to express their own leadership. Your VBS group is not a showcase to display your programming and promotional skills - it should be a training ground where students develop their own skills and personalities under the guidance of a caring, loving leader.
When you are able to fully understand your role as a Vacation Bible School leader, you will be freed from the terrible strain of constantly trying to have a perfectly executed program for other adults to admire. That is not your primary responsibility. Your role is to allow the students to do things for themselves and help them, when they experience failures and disappointments, to do so without feeling they are failures themselves.
Some VBS leaders feel they must run a tight ship and have polished performances and slick promotion to be successful. To make this happen, usually the leader has to do things himself; that is not a truly successful leader. The successful leader is committed to being a servant who helps children develop their own leadership, even though the results aren't as tidy and impressive to the outside world.
The real key to leadership is to follow Jesus' example in leadership - follow God's will, be filled with God's Spirit, and be servant to all.