Words for the Vineyard - Leading from Behind

Leading from Behind with Humility and Honor

Our Lord is calling us to lead from behind with humility and honor. It almost seems like a contradiction at first glance. When I think of a leader, I usually imagine someone charging out front. Going before the people to show them where to go. That is a true picture of leadership. But the image that our God wants us to grasp is leading the way and style of Jesus. The living, breathing, first born of all creation, the exact representation of our Father. So how is He telling us to do this? Jesus didn't lord over the people His rulership and commands although He had every right to. He didn't use force or impressive, coercive speech. He didn't bribe or make faulty deals. He shared His words of life with all that would freely listen and receive. He sacrificed so many ways but one was that He modeled humbling Himself in complete obedience and honor to His Father and the ones that he was given. He showed honor to the most unlikely characters during his ministry. He has certainly continued this pattern for thousands of years! The proof of that is the person on the other side of this screen being called by His voice into this amazing journey of following Him. Wow, thank you precious Jesus.

Humility is defined as the freedom from pride or arrogance; the state of being humble or low. C.S. Lewis said "humility is not thinking less of yourself but thinking about yourself less." I like that one. Bruce Wimberly has said "humility is just believing God."  There's simplicity and also a conscience decision in that statement.  We get to choose to be humble and simply believe Him. (1 Peter 5:6, James 4:10) Accepting what God has spoken about us as His beloved children, heirs to the Kingdom, deeply loved and the apple of our Father's eye. We are the ones He deemed worthy for such an extravagant sacrifice of pure love. We can argue with that or humbly accept that He is higher and greater than us so, He must be correct in His judgments. When we truly find ourselves walking in humility, we will do the only thing that could come next... honor.

Honor is more than just a thing, it's an action word. As a noun, honor is defined as high respect or great esteem. Honor as a verb means 'to regard or treat (someone) with admiration and respect : to regard or treat with honor to give special recognition ; to live up to or fulfill the terms. If we are really grabbing this reality with both hands, honor is going to be as natural as breathing. Honoring God and people will be the byproduct of our simple believing that God has bestowed on each of us an incredible gift of mercy and grace. You are not going to lock eyes with a person that God is not actively, passionately loving. Today, our team prayed that our eyes are coated and saturated with His vision and perspective. When we see clearly, the actions will follow closely behind. Accepting Abba's love does something in you that you can't contain it just for yourself anymore. You were created to let the rivers of living water flow out of you!

A few months ago I shared a word on a Sunday about the cycle of humility going before honor and honor coming before glory.  As we continue to submit all that we are and all that we have to the Lordship of Jesus Christ, it leads us to honor Him and that inevitably causes the glory of God to be manifest for the world to see. Oh how we long to see the Lamb receive the glory He rightly deserves. From every life.... Yours is the Kingdom, Yours is the power and Yours is the glory forever and ever, amen.
  • What do you need to submit to the Lordship of Jesus/ How do you feel the Lord asking you to humble yourself to receive from Jesus today?
  • How can you actively honor the Lord and others this week?
  • Where do you see the glory of God in your life?
Sit in His presence. John Wimber used to say "The power is in the Presence." Be confident that you can go boldly before His throne of grace to receive from Him.
Honor Him by your own personal worship time.  

Can't wait to be with you all Sunday! May our lives be thin places where heaven and earth meet. He loves you.

For His Glory,
Rachel Burnham 
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