In order to be a successful leader, one must learn how to be a servant to those that he/she is leading. The word serve is not a bad thing, but in fact it describes what leaders should do: to furnish or supply with something needed or desired. A leader should be able to supply his/her people with what they need in order to accomplish the task at hand. A leader should also answer the needs of his/her people. This is very important because without this the people will dry up and wither away, and feel as if they are being short changed. Finally, a leader should provide services that benefit or help. A leader should never do anything to benefit or help themselves, but they should do all that they can to help and benefit their workers, their community, or those that they provide services to. Luke 22:26 But ye [shall] not [be] so: but he that is greatest among you, let him be as the younger; and he that is chief, as he that doth serve.
The Bible gives many examples of those that have served before they ever reached the office that the Lord had for them. The best example of this is David. David was anointed as king during a time that King Saul was operating as the king. When David was anointed he went back to doing what he was doing. He served his father Jesse by tending to his sheep. David did not storm the kings court, nor did he brag and boast to his father or brothers about the anointing that was poured over his life. Instead he just waited until he was called forth during the season that the Lord had appointed for him. When it came time for David to enter the palace, it wasn’t for him to rule, but it was a time of proving and testing. One must first know how to operate under the anointing for the position that the Lord has for him in order to occupy that place. It is said (by some Bible scholars) that David served in King Saul’s court approximately seven years. During this time David was learning humility, patience, strength, faith, and other characteristic traits in order to be fit for the destiny that the Lord has placed upon his life. Not once did the scripture mention that David tried to usurp King Saul’s authority by letting him know that he was anointed as king, and neither did David disrespect King Saul.
In the church today we have so many ministers/leaders that believe that they are suppose to tell the pastor what to do, and how often they should do it. So many leaders today are defiant to those that have the rule over them. They forget that they are suppose to submit themselves to those leaders in a manner of service, and not standing equal with those that are over them to watch their souls. (Hebrews 13:17)
One thing that David did for King Saul was that he ministered to him when he was troubled. It did not matter that king Saul had an evil spirit on him, David still ministered to him in a manner that refreshed Saul. (1 Samuel 16:23) The Lord wants to know how we will minister to those that he has placed over us before we move into a position of authority. Remember, we are being tested during this time.
There is a level of confidentiality that we must maintain when we are learning from our leaders. We will see their good and their bad, but the Lord wants to know how well we will hold some things in our hearts, and offer what we see to the Lord. The reason why the Lord is allowing us to see certain things is because he wants to know how well we can cover the anointing that is on the lives of our leaders. We know that love covers all sins and gossipers destroy bonds that the Lord has made (Proverbs 17:9), but this doesn’t give us a reason to cover those that blatantly sin before the Lord and continue to operate through deception. Because if we allow people to operate in sins that our Bible speaks against then the ministry isn’t blameless, and the Gospel has become of no effect. (2 Corinthians 4:3, 6:3).
The reason that we go through this is because the Lord wants to make sure that we are not trying to take what is ours instead of waiting for the Lord to place us where we need to be. We must be like Joseph and John when they said, “it is not in me, and I must decrease that he may increase” (Genesis 41:16; John 3:30). As you read though 1 Samuel 16 – 31 you will see that David had many opportunities to take King Saul’s life, but he respected the anointing that was once upon his life, and he respected the position that he was still occupying at the time. Each one of us as leaders will be tested with seeing will we try to kill our leaders when the Lord shows us their weaknesses, or will we humble ourselves, and continue to stay humble before the Lord by keeping them before us as our leaders. Now in today’s world we kill one another with our mouths by trying to defame one another, destroy one another character, and making ourselves look better than the other.
Through all of this David never sinned against King Saul nor the Lord. As a matter of fact, in 2 Samuel a soldier came to David to give him a report after King Saul, Jonathan, and their men were killed that David questioned him concerning how he knew this information. The man was an Amalekite, and he stated that he killed King Saul because he asked him to, and afterwards he stripped king Saul of his crown, and his bracelet and brought it to David. When David heard the news he fasted until evening for the people of God, but David was not pleased with the Amalekite’s eagerness to kill King Saul. This is what David said, “How wast though not afraid to stretch forth thine hand to destroy the Lord’s Anointed? And David called one of the young men, and said, Go near, and fall upon him. And he smote him that he died. And David said unto him, thy blood be upon thy head; for though mouth hath testified against thee, saying, I have slain the Lord’s anointed.” (2 Samuel 2:14-16) In all of this David still honored the man of God regardless of the state that he was in. People of the Lord lets make sure that we are allowing the Lord to establish us, and not we ourselves. Keep a heart of a servant at all times, and the Lord will exalt you in due season. 1 Peter 5:6