By: Elena Abe
Sometimes, I get so engrained with my responsibilities here at OSU, that I forget the good (and different) work God is doing on other college campuses
I spent my spring break at the University of Washington (UW), and had the privilege of observing God’s hand in the Epic Movement and Intervarsity Christian Fellowship there. As I spoke with my friends about their struggles and triumphs in ministry, I felt God softening my heart and changing my view on leadership for His Kingdom.
Leadership is in my blood. I held officer positions all throughout high school and had no problem stepping up to help someone in need. When I entered college, I knew I wanted to be a leader in some capacity. God has blessed me in that, leading me to be a youth group leader at CKC and the worship leader at Epic.
However, during my spring break trip, God also revealed to me that leadership had become an idol; I identified myself as being a leader more than a follower of Christ. I found value in self-worth in being in a higher position and controlling the direction of my ministries. I took a lot of pride in my “spiritual maturity” as evidenced by my work at CKC and my influence at Epic. Furthermore, I felt responsible for making sure my friends were growing spiritually. This “responsibility” soon became a heavy, and impossible, burden to carry.
Through my quiet times in His Word, God revealed my faulty thinking. In 1 Corinthians 3, Paul reminds the church that he and Apollos, respected leaders in the church, and everyone else has been assigned his own task in the body of Christ, “I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow” (vs. 5-8). In the end, if people grew closer to God, I couldn’t take credit for it because I had nothing to do with it! Paul even rebuked the Corinthian church (and me!), saying not to boast in human leadership (vs. 21).
As we near the end of the year and look to Fall 2012, we need a new group of students who have the heart to serve. God doesn’t call all of us to be up-front leaders, but He does call us to step up, take a risk for Him, and be a leader in some capacity. God just wants those who want to be faithful to Him and want to help others experience His love.
So I challenge you to pray and ask God to show you an area in our ministry, or even in your dorm or apartment, at your job, or an organization where you could lead others to Jesus. You don’t need to be spiritually mature or have been walking steadily with the Lord for a certain amount of time to be a leader. God is sovereign enough to work through your failures, inadequacies and mistakes, if you offer up yourself to be used by Him. He can still use the broken pieces of your life in a powerful way.
Remember, you are not responsible for anyone else’s growth, and He can turn your mistakes into something good that glorifies Him—just read about those God called to be leaders in the Bible or talk to anyone of the leaders on campus. God doesn’t call the equipped, but He equips the called.