Henri Nouwen says that Christian leadership is "downward mobility ending on a cross." Whoa! I’m not so sure I’m really cut out for that. I’ve always felt that it’s the call of every Christian to be a leader in the sense that they should be the influencers rather than the influenced. I believe that with the Holy Spirit this is something we are all capable of, but Nouwen’s definition is so much more intense than just being an influencer.
I went to my first “leadership” class last night. Mike Ayers is the teacher and I’ll have him for the rest of the year. My first impressions of him are really good. There were lots of things he talked about last night that were powerful, but the main thing I wanted to share today was this: He defined a leader as “A person with character and competence to influence people to God-honoring objectives.” He went on to explain that sometimes your skills/competence can take you where your character can’t keep you. I thought this was a great explanation, ’cause I’ve certainly seen people get into positions where they couldn’t handle things and their character was compromised. Then, it’s a real mess. That’s why all those TV preachers end up having affairs and stealing money and stuff. I wonder if it can be the other way around? Can your character get you places that your skills can’t keep you? I only say this ’cause I’ve also witnessed people who have really great hearts, that simply don’t have the skills to lead. Anyway, we’re going to be studying a method of leadership that comes directly Jesus’ life. As he trained and led the disciples, we will learn to lead others.
I’m also excited about these classes because Mike is a church planter. Since that’s something I wanna be a part of someday, I think he’ll be a great guy to learn from. I hope I can have the chance to sit down with him and talk about it all sometime during this next year.
Cosmological Argument – Since the world exists and something cannot come from nothing, God must exist.
Teleological Argument – Since the world is ordered and logically arranged, there must be an intelligent organizer. There must be a master architect since the world evidences intelligence, purpose, and harmony. Ps 8:3-4; 19:1-4 testify that creation itself speaks of God. The idea that this kind of organization could happen by accident (as Evolution proclaims) is like a tornado ripping through a junkyard and assembling a Boeing 747.
Anthropological Argument – There are things within man (intellect, sensibility, will, conscience, and inherent belief in a creator) which could never have found their origin in some “blind force,” therefore God must exist. Man is not simply a physical being, but he is emotional and spiritual – this speaks of God.
Moral Argument – If man is only biological, why does he have a sense of right and wrong? It must be from God. Man is different from all the rest of creation in this way. Recognition of moral standards are found in every culture, yet could never be attributed to any sort of evolutionary process.
Ontological Argument – This one isn’t as strong as the others, but it basically suggests that since every culture (all men) have had an awareness of God, then God must have placed that idea in humanity. Therefore, He exists. Anselm (1033-1109) was the first proponent of this view.
How does this affect me? As a youth minister, I get these kinds of questions/challenges all the time. I’d say it’s actually one of the favorite topics, among our students. I enjoy these conversations because these arguments are pretty strong and they can lead into some great evangelism-type situations.
(Info from “The Moody Handbook of Theology” by Paul Enns, pg 183-185)