Apostolic Perspectives #4 - Followship & Humility
So he, trembling and astonished, said, “Lord, what do You want me to do?”
Then the Lord said to him, “Arise and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.” (Acts 9:6)
Someone once said. "You can tell a Pharisee; you can't tell him much, but you can tell him!" Paul's first lesson in this dramatic encounter with Jesus was a lesson in followship and humility:
"Lord, what do you want me to do?" This sounds like Paul was ready to do whatever his Lord commands. Notice that the Lord asked Paul to follow delegated authority.
"You will be told what to do".
We don't mind taking orders directly from the primary leader; in Paul's case, The Lord himself. The challenge arises when we have to follow instructions from someone to whom the primary leader has delegated responsibility.
Delegation Properly Understood
Delegation entails entrusting another person with a task for which the delegator remains ultimately responsible.
"A leader who avoids delegation cannot possibly hope to complete effectively all of the tasks on his to-do list." - Saunders
How Followship and Humility Work
"...you will be told what you must do.”
A basic profile of Paul's life before his encounter with Jesus will reveal that he was a man of significant stature. He was very proud of his achievements and family background:
Though I also might have confidence in the flesh. If anyone else thinks he may have confidence in the flesh, I more so: circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of the Hebrews; concerning the law, a Pharisee; concerning zeal, persecuting the church; concerning the righteousness which is in the law, blameless.
But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ.
Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ (Phil.3:4-8)
The above passage of Scripture reveals something very important about followship and humility: Followship is a choice not a feeling. Humility is a choice, not a feeling.
In every instance where Paul demonstrates humility, he chose to do so.
He chose not to base his confidence in the fact that he was circumcised eight days after he was born. (This would be a major notch in his self-righteous belt).
He chose not to base his confidence in his nationality. (Israelites prided themselves as the chosen people).
He chose not to base his confidence in family legacy. (The first king of Israel was from the tribe of Benjamin and Paul was named after him!)
Paul chose not to base his confidence in his academic achievement. (Becoming a Pharisee was the equivalent of receiving one's doctorate).
Followship and humility in the Kingdom is rooted in a clear understanding of the Lordship of Jesus and the principle of delegation.
May you excel in grace and humility as you faithfully follow the Lord in those whom He has chosen to give responsibility to lead, and may this in turn sow the seeds that will make you an exceptional leader.