The Five Habits of Effective Church Leaders
Carl J. Hoosteter
In his research of leaders, both historical and contemporary, author Robert Clinton found that few leaders actually finish the race well. His two books, The Making of a Leader (NavPress) and The Mentor Handbook (Barnabas), explain that finishing well could be defined as a life that until its end is increasingly more in love with Christ, more committed to His service and more devoted to godly leadership.
What causes a leader to continue to grow, to stay on track and to finish well in life and ministry?
Five Habits of effectiveness. Effective leaders learn to become intentional about their character growth and formation. In this development of a leader we can make three general observations:
1. God develops a leader over a lifetime;
2. God uses people, circumstances and ministry assignments to shape the life of a leader; and
3. Leadership plateau is often indicative of a growth issue within a leader’s life.
To help us become more intentional about our health as leaders, let’s explore five insights from leaders who have finished well.
1. Healthy leaders are lifelong learners. Leaders pursue three types of training: personal training, (personal growth, projects, personal research); informal training (workshops, seminars, conferences); and formal training (continuing education, degree programs).
2. Healthy leaders are committed to serve and develop others. Be alert to potential leaders in your sphere of influence (II Cor. 1:3-4; II Tim. 2:2).
3. Healthy leaders have a dynamic view of life and ministry. There are three key elements to a personal mission statement – biblical purpose, values and vision.
4. Healthy leaders experience repeated times of renewal. Effective, godly leaders develop intimacy with God, which in turn overflows into all areas of their ministry. The essential ingredient of leadership is the powerful presence of God in a leader’s life and ministry. Leaders incorporate the spiritual disciplines into their walk.
5. Healthy leaders have a life perspective. God brings along many destiny experiences to shape a leader’s ministry. Leaders manifest a growing awareness of their sense of destiny.