by Col Larry Simpson, USAF (Ret.)
“‘My food,’ said Jesus, ‘is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work'” (John 4:34).
What happens when the Christian leader stays true to the task and maintains focus despite signs of indifference or rejection? He finds satisfaction in a job well done and his efforts benefit those he is called to serve. The courageous leader who stays true to the task ultimately helps others become better people.
From a close reading of John 4 Jesus models leadership that bridges cultural divides and does not quit at signs of rejection. The Samaritan woman received salvation, a regenerated life, and a chance to point others to Jesus. There is much we can learn from this encounter!
- The leader keeps in the forefront why he is doing what he is called to do. Jesus responded to the woman’s initial rejection with a persistent offer. Not offended, nor hardened by rejection, the leader keeps to the task.
- The leader removes barriers for the good of the one in need. Jesus gave the woman the opportunity to confess her past mistakes. He did so without assigning condemnation or judgment.
- The leader’s satisfaction comes in doing what he is called to do. When the disciples offered Jesus food, He had no appetite for what satisfies the flesh. His satisfaction came from engaging this marginalized outsider and in crossing cultural barriers for the sake of a race of people who needed the message of salvation. The result was marvelous! Many Samaritans believed.
- Jesus went out of His way to encounter this woman. He modeled what a good leader does by making himself fully available, speaking the truth in love, spending time with people, and seeing lives changed.
Jesus was so committed to His service that, metaphorically, it served as His physical nourishment. What about you? Does your stalwart service satisfy you that much?
May your selfless service today be your satisfaction and nourishment.