by Sam Fletcher
My struggle throughout each and every semester has always been the mundane and the consistency of sixteen weeks out of the year. It can be slow and frustrating, and sometimes I would just like to be done. If every student who is in school is being honest, then they would agree that school is not the highlight of their day or week or month. It is not for me. It can really be taxing! School is about character and building on the knowledge that you have as a student. Every great leader is a good student. The character aspect of school is about doing what you do not want to do.
If I’m being honest, school has never been a particularly favorite hobby but it has taught me so much about discipline, diligence, and excellence. As a millennial, I tend to focus on my feelings. I do not want to do what makes me feel bad. School is that thing! School has provided me an opportunity to grow in discipline. The hardest thing about school is that it never goes away when you are in it! When one week is done, here comes another the next. School has provided an opportunity for me to grow in diligence, in that, when I get to it early, the easier it is!
School can be frustrating, but I guess, it is on purpose!
Sam is a 3rd-year Bachelor of Arts in Christian Leadership student, and a graduate of theExperience internship. He currently serves as the Student Ministries Assistant for Manna Church, Fayetteville/Fort Bragg.
We are honored and privileged to be hosting a Q&A Alumni Lunch with Dr. Kathleen Patterson on Saturday, October 20! Dr. Patterson is known for her pioneering research on servant leadership, and her expertise and wisdom in this field will greatly benefit leaders today.
Looking at Jesus Christ as the basis for servant leadership, one could say that the concept of servant leadership has actually been around for centuries. But academically, servant leadership has emerged in the last thirty years, largely due to the research and discoveries of Robert Greenleaf. Even more recently, Dr. Patterson has been at the forefront of this leadership development; she describes servant leadership primarily as the leader being a servant first, then being a leader. A key distinction between servant leadership and other leadership approaches, is that the focus of the leader is on their followers, rather than on financial profit or organizational goals. True to the oxymoronic nature of the “Jesus way,” where humility leads to greatness, tithing leads to prosperity, and the least is the greatest of all, servant leadership places emphasis not on the followers serving the leader(s) but on the leader(s) serving their followers.
Dr. Patterson is currently a professor in the School of Business & Leadership at Regent University as well as director of Regent’s Doctor of Strategic Leadership program. In addition to being certified in Leadership Practices Inventory, Patterson directs Regent’s annual Servant Leadership Research Roundtable. She has won several awards such as Faculty of the Year and Chancellor’s Award, and she is involved with numerous leadership associations, The Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership and International Leadership Association, to name a few.
For more information on Dr. Patterson and her development on servant leadership, click here.
To reserve your spot for the exclusive Alumni Q&A Lunch with Dr. Patterson, visit www.GCD.edu/alumni
Saturday, October 20, 2018 | 12:00-1:30pm
$5 Admission (includes lunch)
Manna Church, Chapel (5117 Cliffdale Rd, 28314)
Childcare provided (lunch not provided for children)
Registration closes October 15
article by Rachel Choi
GCD School of Leadership
This school consists of the Certificate in Church Leadership, Certificate in Christian Leadership, and the Associates, Bachelors, and Masters of Christian Leadership. This school focuses on equipping students who are interested in leadership in any context, whether that be in the church, non-profit organizations, or wherever the student feels called to lead. The courses for this school are aligned in four specific disciplines: Biblical and Organizational Leadership, Biblical Studies, Theology, and Practical Ministry. Students interested in this specific school will be required to complete 30-120 credit hours depending on their program and they will be required to fulfill GCD’s Christian Service requirement. Some of the Bible and theology courses in the undergraduate School of Leadership include Introduction to Theology, Hermeneutics and Old and New Testament Survey, but also this school includes more specific classes on leadership such as Collaborative Teams and Innovation, Social Entrepreneurship, Ethics, Mentoring and Coaching, and Introduction to Organizational Leadership.
“Leadership is a complex and passionate process that involves the influence of a leader on a group to achieve a common goal. The leader has to employ his time in working for a present that builds the future. This level of understanding requires the ability to look beyond the horizon and to consider the skills, tools and changes that are required to reach that vision of the future. There are not a specific set of traits and abilities to be a leader, these varies depending on the circumstances. Leadership is a process that is getting more importance with the time. In my opinion, all the changes that are having place in the world are demanding leaders with character and emotional intelligence.”
“Also, I am passionate about the issue of emotional intelligence. I remember several occasions when I thought how useful it would be if a certain leader realized the power of doing things with the rest of the group, leaving behind his ego and personal interests. At the time, I did not have the knowledge of the ‘right way’ of doing things, but I thought there had to be another way of leading a team. The world would be quite different with spiritually mature leaders. I feel fortunate to have the opportunity of being in GCD Master Program because it is giving me the tools and the knowledge to go further and to become a better individual and an effective leader who works and acts in a way that honors God.”
People are always looking for someone to follow. We are sheep in a pasture looking for a shepherd. We may find a shepherd in the President. We may find a shepherd in our parents, or boss. As Christians, though, we recognize Christ as the ultimate shepherd. As He says of Himself in John 10:14, “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me.”
Christ as a leader exemplified three traits — compassion, charisma, and confidence. It was through these three traits that Christ led his disciples to advance the Church.
To lead someone we must be able to show compassion. In Matthew 15:32 Christ says And Jesus called His disciples to Him, and said, “I feel compassion for the people, because they have remained with Me now three days and have nothing to eat; and I do not want to send them away hungry, for they might faint on the way.” If our students, employees, peers, etc. believe that we do not care about them, they are less willing to follow. Compassion also builds trust. If someone believes you care for their well-being, then they will respond more positively to feedback and critiques.
Charisma is the passion and power behind a leader; it is what draws people to them. Christ had an infectious spirit. Thousands of people would come great distances just to see Him and hear Him speak. Others quit their jobs on the spot to go and follow Christ. Matthew 4:20, speaking about the disciples, tells us, “Immediately they left their nets and followed him.”
Christ is a perfect example of confidence. He was assured in what He was teaching. Even as a young child He had no problem being bold and confident. In Luke 2:46-47, we read that “After three days they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. And all who heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers.” As a 12 year old He was bold enough to stay behind and lecture the elders at the temple.
Christ was a compelling leader. He inspired others and gave value to those who felt worthless. Christ did not think little of His people; He made them feel important and encouraged them. He led with compassion, charisma, and confidence. His leadership impacted nations and saved souls.
Isaiah 40:11 Like a shepherd He will tend His flock, In His arm He will gather the lambs And carry them in His bosom; He will gently lead the nursing ewes.
Transformational Leadership from a Christian Perspective
What is transformational Leadership?
Transformational Leadership is a type of leadership used to grow and transform a community. It is a process where a leader can connect and interact with their followers and transform their lives by increasing the level of morality and motivation. This type of leader focuses on the mission of the organization by motivating their followers through role modeling the vision, challenging each individual to grow and ask questions, considering the needs of the individual, and inspiring the employees through motivation to reach their fullest potential. Often this type of leader is charismatic and enthusiastic since they are focused and passionate about the mission of the organization. In the Christian world, an example of a transformational leader would be a worship pastor who motivates the worship team to improve their skills with different ways of rehearsing or performing. A transformational leader would be someone who encourages a person to become better for the sake of the whole team, like a mentor or an accountability partner.
A transformational leader is a good listener who does not judge your situation but encourages you to keep going and tells you to never give up. This is a leader who is focused on the mission, calling, and vision of the organization.
In Manna Church and Grace College of Divinity (GCD) we are blessed to have different transformational leaders who encourage us, the youth, to work hard for our dreams and to not give up on them. They motivate us to not quit and keep pushing through until we reach our calling as a group and as individuals as well.
A great example of a transformational leader from the Scriptures is Abraham; was one of the best transformational leaders in the Bible. He became a great transformational leader by creating a vision, having courage and confidence, caring about people, and having a strong sense of justice. The founder of the Experience, Shawn Withy-Allen, GCD and Manna Church’s Christian internship program, often says, “Teamwork makes the dream work.”
Ever since Jesus’s time we have had transformational leaders. Let’s be transformational by actively advancing the Kingdom of God in both our personal and professional lives while inspiring others (transforming them) to do the same. If you want to learn more about leadership and how to become a transformational leader, you can do so here at GCD through the Associate of Christian Leadership, Bachelor of Christian Leadership, or the Master’s of Christian Leadership Programs.
What is a Christian Leader?
Successful leadership is not about being tough or soft, sensitive or assertive, but about a set of attributes. First and foremost is character” — Warren Benni
At some point in your life you will be required to lead something or someone. It may be a group project in school or an assignment in the workplace. Whatever it may be, you will have a defining moment to step up and be a leader. To do this effectively you must know 5 key traits of a fruitful Christian leader
Traits that a fruitful Christian leader needs are:
Positivity/optimism—– hopefulness and confidence of the future
Integrity— doing what is right when no one is looking
Communication— the ability to convey a message clearly
Confidence—-a feeling of self-assurance arising from one’s appreciation of one’s own abilities or qualities
Humility—- modest, not arrogant or prideful, not lacking in self confidence (humility is not to be confused with insecurity)
“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.”
— Abraham Lincoln
WHY DO WE NEED THESE CHARACTERISTICS TO BE GOOD LEADERS?
To keep your team on the right path you must be optimistic even in the face of opposition. When you are thrown a curveball you react in a positive manner to keep your team spirits high. As a leader you must be the one most excited about your project and vision. Your team’s energy is always one level below your own.
You must also have integrity. As a leader you will be held to higher standards, you will be living in a glass bowl. If you do not have a good moral compass and sense of integrity then you will not be respected. Without integrity your promises hold little value.
Confidence is key to leading. To cast a vision or purpose effectively you must have confidence in yourself and the direction you are going. At the same time humility is essential. Without humility confidence simply becomes pride or arrogance. No one wants to follow an arrogant leader. Humility however does not mean that you must be insecure. You may acknowledge your skills and talents without bragging about them. Arrogance and insecurity have no place in leadership.
Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves
Finally you must have good communication. Everyday you use different communication skills. Whether it is through phone calls, social media, or face to face you will communicate with someone everyday. Good communication is helpful when you are trying to accomplish a task or cast vision to a group. Without the necessary communication skills you will lead everyone into chaos and nothing will be accomplished.
1 Timothy 4:12–
Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.
Anyone can and will be a leader. You will face a situation when your character will be tested and you will be required to lead. In such situations these 5 basic character traits will be a key foundation for your success.
“No man can climb out beyond the limitations of his own character.”
— John Morle
Written by Belle Szalkowski