Easter is a time when we reflect on who Christ is and what he has done. His death on the cross and triumphant resurrection three days later is a sobering, powerful reminder of God’s mercy, justice and love for us.
Christ’s selflessness, humility, obedience to his Father’s will and willingness to lay down everything for us is both awe inspiring and humbling, especially as leaders.
Here are three ways we can practice leading like Christ.
1. Practice humility. In Philippians 2:8, we read that Christ was “found in human form,” and that “he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.” Christ laid aside his deity and became human, living a sinless life among us. He ordered his life to honor God and, in order to save us, he gave himself up to be crucified on a cross.
As leaders, we are called to practice humility daily. Regardless of our titles or positions, we are called to remain humble, obedient and eager to serve those around us. Just as Christ gave himself to serve others in accordance with God’s will, we can practice serving those around us and honoring our teams and leaders.
2. Forgive others. In the midst of the crucifixion, Christ called out, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do” (Luke 23:34). Despite the pain he experienced on the cross, Christ chose to forgive those who were hurting him. His death and resurrection made a way for us to have “redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight” (Ephesians 1:7-8).
When we experience conflicts or are spoken poorly of, it can be easy to hold grudges or have difficulty trusting others again. As leaders, we have to choose to forgive others as Christ did, regardless of how they have wronged or hurt us. By looking at Christ’s example, we can be reminded of the love he has shown us, in dying for us and redeeming us from our sins, and be empowered to forgive others.
3. Set an example. During the Last Supper before the crucifixion, Christ washed his disciples’ feet. In John 13:15-16, he told them, “If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you.”
As leaders, we are in a unique position of authority and influence. Our actions have the power to inspire or discourage others. Just as Christ demonstrated to his disciples how he wanted them to serve one another, as leaders, our teams will look to our example and watch if our actions align with our words. By practicing serving and loving others, you can demonstrate Christ’s love to your team and inspire them to do the same.
Christ is the perfect example of how to lead with authority, while loving and serving others in humility. As you take steps to be like Christ and strive to follow his example, make a point to ask God to help you each day. Set aside time to study his Word and ask for wisdom with how to best show Christ’s love to your team.