It seems that more than ever before, there is a grand focus on leadership. There are books upon books written every year to teach you to become the next great leader. Twitter is all about gaining followers and leading the conversation in 140 characters or less. Leadership is important and we should all strive to lead with a positive example to those around us, but what about the lost art of following?
In essence, to be a great leader you must first be a great follower. The 12 Disciples spent three years of their lives day in and day out following Christ. They were learning to follow his teachings, commands, and example. Because they were first practicing the art of following, they were prepared to lead when the time came.
So how do we become great followers? Here are a few ideas:
Listen More Than You Speak – Surround yourself with people who know more than you know and have done more than you have, and listen. Listen to their stories, experiences, advice, and wisdom.
Give More Than You Take – Ask not what others can do for you, but what you can do for them. Find a Pastor or leader that you admire and ask them how you can serve them. You will gain so much from simply being around them and helping them with ministry.
Be More Than Do – The pressures of what you can do often overtakes the importance of who you are. Often we spend more time trying to do something great instead of being someone great. When your skills, talents, and abilities take you farther than your character and integrity can sustain, trouble lies ahead. Follow those who can help develop who you are as much as what you can do.
So who do you follow? Who are the influences in your life?