The Definition of Christian Servant Leader Character




This book is dedicated to assisting Christian leaders and managers to assume the mantle of servant leadership, the God-directed and Godendorsed means for achieving the foundational mission requirements of Christianity, the Great Commandment and the Great Commission.

Servant leadership is the approach to leadership promoted by Scripture, and it provides the greatest opportunity to honor God and bless our employers. 

There are many approaches to leadership, but only servant leadership emphasizes the necessary balance between morality, mission achievement, and promoting the best interests of the key stakeholders (employees, clients, customers, and the community).

The dual foundation of servant leadership is stewardship (which is achieving the mission by using moral motives, means, and ends) and servanthood (which is promoting the best interests and needs of the key stakeholders).

Servant leadership manifests both religious and secular roots. There is a burgeoning body of literature that demonstrates the positive influence of servant leadership on a host of attitudinal, behavioral, and performance outcomes.

One key element of the discussion is to rebut the varied and conflictual stereotypes and misinformation regarding servant leadership. Two of the most common are that servant leadership is “soft” management or that servant leaders possess a martyr complex.

Servant leadership is love-based, but entails a 360-degree version of love that incorporates grace and accountability, forgiveness and discipline, and autonomy and clear boundaries.

One cannot be a servant leader and not achieve the mission and discipline the workforce. Secondly, servant leaders are not martyrs; they actively promote self-care and work–life harmony and balance.

In the pages to come, we will more fully define servant leadership in its full balance and harmony. By definition, servant leaders require Christian servant leader character.

What is Christian servant leader character? It is the holistic harmony of moral motives, thoughts, and behaviors produced by a life surrendered to and led by the Holy Spirit, thereby cultivating the attributes and life of Christ.

It is the foundation for enduring success in pleasing the Lord. Success without character is akin to a great house built upon a flawed foundation. Eventually the house collapses or is condemned, given the structural deficiencies.

The cultivation of Christian servant leader character is a true labor of love that requires a lifetime of grace, patience, and sacrifice. Christian servant leader character recognizes the foundational role of faith, as we cannot please God unless we are truly “walking by faith, not by sight.”

The way that we demonstrate Christian servant leader character and our love of Christ is by our obedience to his commandments, which is the basis for demonstrating the authenticity of our embrace.

We must make the conscious and deliberate decision to consecrate our lives to the Lord through willful acts of obedience to biblical moral principles and the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

This entails a measured and sustained integration and application of moral motives, means, and ends as the foundation for our reasoning, decisions, and behavior.

One of the main fruits of Christian servant leader character is godly wisdom based upon Spirit-led harmony and integrity. In order to realize growth as a Christian servant leader, we need to engage in an ongoing introspection and self-analysis of our motives, means, and ends supported by the insights, wisdom, and coaching of those that we serve.

We need to be able to ask the difficult questions concerning the true nature of our motives and possess the courage to penetrate self-deception and the inherent bias to disguise, rationalize, and externalize the truth.

The only means to accomplish this lofty goal is to embrace a higher power, that of the Holy Spirit. Only the Holy Spirit can overcome the sin and deception of the human heart.

Only the Holy Spirit can provide the accurate lenses through which to see ourselves in the appropriate condition, as God views us. Hence, when we engage in introspection, we must earnestly pray before, during, and after in order to see beyond the surface of our inner mental landscape and receive the spiritual “infrared goggles” to peer inside its dark corners and rooms.

The goal is to see the inner and outer world through the eyes of God, seeing him as he really is, thus enabling us to see ourselves and others as we are. The gift of accurate lenses, balanced with accurate “weights and measures,” enables us to serve God and others with a greater degree of integrity and effectiveness.

The accurate lenses provide the ability to resist fear, pride, and complacency - the great enemies of our faith. The development of accurate lenses requires time and patience, and there is always a degree of error.

One of our greatest temptations is to compartmentalize our Christian faith between the sacred and the secular, resulting in moral hypocrisy. In essence, the character-building process is a holistic, united, and integrated commitment to God-honoring obedience in all life areas.

This book focuses primarily on the workplace, but each section includes examples from and applications to other settings. Hence, we must “work out our salvation with fear and trembling,” with a moral unity only made possible by the dying of our flesh in every situation.

The first step in the character development journey is a genuine conversion of the heart, in which Jesus becomes our Lord and Savior with a genuine commitment from us to “die to the self.” It is important to grasp the humbling breadth and depth of the challenge in order to possess the requisite level of humility.



Be a People Person, Gery E. Roberts pg. 1-3


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