Leadership and Encouragement – Part 2

Barnabas A Biblical Model/Example of An Encourager

Barnabas is perhaps the most famous encourager in the New Testament.  In fact he embodied encouragement so much that the apostles changed his name from Joseph to Barnabas, which means “son of encouragement.”

From the life of Barnabas I want to give you five characteristics of an encourager:

1.  Encouragers are givers. In Acts 4:36-37,  Barnabas sells his land and gives money to the apostles.

  • Encouragers do something tangible to encourage others.

2.  Encouragers are supporters. In Acts 9:20-27,  people are questioning Paul’s conversion and Barnabas steps up and brings him to the Apostles.

  • Encouragers have the ability to look beyond someone’s past and accept them for who they are in Christ.

3.  Encouragers are helpers. In Acts 11:21-24 Barnabas helped the young converts get established in the faith.

  • Encouragers are NOT critical, but helpful to others.

4.  Encouragers look for partners. In Acts 11:24-25, when the Gentile church is really starting to grow, Barnabas leaves to find Paul.

  • Encouragers are more interested in meeting needs than getting credit.

5.  Encouragers are forgivers. In Acts 15:36, Paul and Barnabas split ways over whether to take John Mark with them on their next missionary journey.

  • Encouragers are forgiving people who give others a second chance.

Remember, people want to follow encouragers!

Who is the Barnabas in your life/ministry? Who are you a Barnabas to?

I believe in you and appreciate you.  Together we are building the Kingdom of God in Virginia.

Leaders and Encouragement – Part 1

Leaders are encouragers!

James Kounzes and Barry Posner, two of the most respected experts and authors on the subject of leadership say that, “Encouraging the Heart is one of  The Five Practices of Exemplary Leadership.”

In their book Encouraging the Heart, Kouznes and Posner have identified “Seven Essentials to Encouraging.”  I am going to simplify and modify the 7 Essentials for the purpose of church/ministry application.

1.  Set clear standards – communicate very specifically to the church what God has put into your heart to do.  It’s encouraging to followers when the leader clearly communicates where he is leading.

2.  Expect the best – verbalize your belief in people – people tend to live up to our expectations.  It’s a prophetic declaration of their God given potential.

3.  Pay attention – as the leader constantly be looking for those who are being faithful to the vision/ministry.  It’s  attention for the purpose of acknowledgment.

4. Personalize recognition – acknowledge for the purpose of appreciating the individual.  Individual acknowledgment increases personal  involvement.

5.  Tell the story – as the leader tell how someone in the church/ministry is helping you to accomplish your vision/mission.  When you publicly communicate how someone’s partnership is making a difference, you add value to them.

6.  Celebrate together – publicly testify to how God is using the people in your church/ministry, this brings unity and shared joy.  Celebration also fuels momentum.

7.  Set the example – be an encourager, model what you want your church to become.  You can’t delegate encouragement!

Encouragement is essential to Kingdom accomplishment!

As the leader you should be the primary encourager.  Remember, what you sow you reap – as you encourage others, it encourages you.

I appreciate you and believe in you.  Together we are building the Kingdom of God in Virginia.