10 takeaways from new book 'Designed to Lead'

All Christians are called to be leaders, Eric Geiger and Kevin Peck write in their new book, "Designed to Lead."

The church, they write, “is uniquely set apart to develop and deploy leaders for the glory of God and the advancement of the Gospel.” In their book, Geiger and Peck cast a vision for the church in training and equipping leaders.

At the same time, "Designed to Lead" shows why leadership is essential in every believer’s life. Here are 10 takeaways.

1. Leadership isn’t what the world thinks it is.

“We must recognize that much of what is recognized as ‘leadership’ will not stand the test of time. In the end, all that is done apart from Him will be proven to be rubble and worth absolutely nothing.”

2. To lead means, literally, to die.

“Robert Quinn, a leadership professor at [the] University of Michigan, has joined others in pointing out that the origins of the word leader means to ‘go forth and die.’ The Christian life is not about trying daily, but dying daily. His life is revealed in us, with increasing measure, as we die to ourselves (2 Corinthians 4:11). We grow by continually ‘going forth to die.’”

3. The typical approach to ministry is detrimental.

“Church members, if a church is not careful, can subtly be taught that they are paying people to do ministry. … The Scripture never uses the term ‘minister’ to set aside a special class of people who serve other Christians. All believers are ministers.”

4. Pastors are laypeople, too.

“In the Scripture, the term "lay" comes from the Greek word "laosand simply refers to God’s special people. … Literally, your pastor is a layperson and you share in the clergy. Clergy and laity have been terms inaccurately used to create an unhealthy, unhelpful and unbiblical division in the Church.”

5. Every human reflects God.

“Mankind bears the Father’s likeness as any natural son or daughter would. There is no doubt our likeness has been marred by the effects of sin, but if you look rightly you can still see reflections of Him in every human.”

6. Failure can be passive.

“Overt evil is not the only way to miss the mark of leadership. … It’s easy to forget that the failure of Adam’s leadership in the garden was passivity, not aggression. Adam failed to cultivate the garden. Adam failed to keep the weeds out. The weed of evil crawled into the garden in the form of a serpent.”

7. Frail humanity can show God’s glory.

“God determined that He would use broken men and women, redeemed by His Son, to become ambassadors to the world. … He had every method at His disposal for bringing His will to pass. Yet, God chose to use mankind to bring glory to Himself. He designed for men and women to reflect the nature and character of God. He has chosen you and the people in your church.”

8. Leaders are called to reflect God’s glory.

“The first calling of every leader is to image God as faithfully and fully as a redeemed sinner can. This is the primary way we reflect the glory of God. … When we look at the leaders God has formed throughout the ages, we see over and over again that the Lord cares for their response to His holiness more than how many responsibilities they steward.”

9. Leaders are called to replicate.

“We are not called to simply be His disciples, but also to make disciples. … No matter how much influence we have, we are responsible for what we do with it. Either we are working to replicate worshippers of God, or we risk spending our entrustment multiplying a rebellion against God.”

10. Leaders are called to cultivate.

“In an age where leadership is often used to build self, to build platform, to build job security, to build wealth and to build power, Christian leadership is about giving one’s self away to God’s design and destiny for mankind for His glory in Christ alone.”

Eric Geiger is vice president of LifeWay’s Resources Division and senior pastor of ClearView Baptist Church in Franklin, Tenn. Kevin Peck is lead pastor at The Austin Stone Community Church in Austin, Texas. Learn more about their new book, "Designed to Lead," and download free resources at DesignedtoLead.com.

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