Marks of a Servant Leader

“Who is the greater — one who reclines at table or one who serves? Is it not the one who reclines at table? But I am among you as the one who serves.” (Luke 22:27)

CEOs usually work on the highest floor of a corporate office. Captains typically reside in the largest cabin of the ship. Sales associates with the longest tenure often get to pick their schedules first. There isn’t necessarily anything wrong with these arrangements. But in the upper room, Jesus taught his disciples that biblical leadership is servant leadership.

I have been meeting with a group of guys at church on Saturday mornings to discuss theology and church leadership. We call it SALT for “Servant Leadership Training.”

At our last meeting, I shared a number of marks of servant leadership in the church. Which of these are being manifested in your own life? Do you see any areas that need improvement?

A servant leader is one who…

• Doesn’t wait to be asked or assume “someone else will do it”
• Is willing to make commitments and then to keep them
• Never tries to just “get by” but goes the extra mile
• Looks for nothing in return
• Considers no task to be too small
• Always respects authority, even when he disagrees
• Makes time for people and does not treat them as an interruption
• Learns to communicate in a spirit of patience and love
• Takes a personal sense of ownership in the work of the ministry
• Is a good listener – always on the lookout for ways to help
• Is willing to give up his rights to put others first
• Enjoys walking in the footsteps of Christ
• Doesn’t give up – even in the face of criticism or opposition
• Learns to delegate, but always in a spirit of humility
• Labors and toils with a smile, rather than in a spirit of grumbling
• Puts himself in the shoes of others and considers their plight
• Is quick to give praise and express appreciation to others
• When he receives praise, he immediately gives glory to God
• Ends well when it’s time to move on
• Remembers it is better to give than to receive (Ac. 20:35)
• Is willing to admit his mistakes and learn from them