Archives For hospitality

Loving the Stranger

July 5, 2016

While rounding a corner on a run in the United States the other day, I came across a Muslim women clad in a headdress and robes. I could see her cower off the sidewalk a bit as this white, American man came plodding her way in middle America. You could sense her apprehension and read her thoughts of “here we go again.”

I greeted her warmly, commenting on the beautiful day. You could visibly see her relax and the tension leave her body.

I’ve been in her position before. I too have been the foreigner in a land and culture which is not my own. I can relate to wishing I could change my nationality or accent in order to blend in. I wouldn’t wear my USA soccer jersey because of the perception of my nation in South Africa.

The Bible is full of leadership traits and characteristics. Many of these are not applied.

We all know of countless examples where leaders had a love of money, did not walk in sexual fidelity, or raise those dreaded “PK’s” (pastor’s kids, indicating they have issues in their family).

None of us apply all the leadership principles all the time. We are not perfect people.

But, are their some traits which we flat overlook?

I’d like to propose the two of the most overlooked leadership traits are found in a list of characteristics of overseers and deacons in 1 Timothy 3.

1. Gentleness (1 Tim. 3:3)
You will not find this in most leadership books on the market. Many consider gentleness to be weak while leaders are meant strong. If you think this is the perspective in modern times, it was much, much more in the male-dominated culture of the first century.