- Who am I at the grocery store, on the golf course or with my family?
- Am I that same person that’s professing Gods love and truth while I’m on the platform?
- Am I honest when a cashier makes a mistake and I owe more money but conveniently forget to tell her?
- Do I return the shopping carts?
- Do I leave unwanted groceries in the wrong aisles?
Those are only some of the many questions that as leaders we need to ask ourselves.
Because as Christian leaders, our integrity is everything.
When we teach a Bible Study, speak from a platform or lead in any capacity, our lives become an open book. People are curious about leaders. I think they want to know what unique encounters and life skills they have developed to make them a leader. Numerous times I’ve had women come up to me and say: “I’ve been watching you for years.” Yes, that knocks the wind right out of me. It’s a harsh reality to recognize that as we’re leading we’re being watched. And leading means that we are representing the character and image of our Heavenly Father. That’s a high standard and calling. One that we cannot take lightly.
Representing our Heavenly Father is a high calling.
When I first became a Christian I lived a double life. One life of a mother, wife and professional who sometimes did and said things behind closed doors that I did not want the world to see. Yet on Sunday morning and Bible studies I was the one with the big pearly, white tooth smile with not a care in the world. But over the years heartache and tragedy have wiped the duplicity out of my life and I don’t have the energy to be two people. Now what you see is what you get.
I’ve also come to realize that I reflect the beauty and glory of my Heavenly Father. The Bible states it clearly:
I have given them the glory that you gave me” (John 17:22).
Wow, that can make your heart pound can’t it? It crystalizes the fact that whatever I do, and wherever I go, I represent the love, kindness, grace, mercy, peace and forgiveness of our Glorious Heavenly Father.
In the early years of my Christianity, once I recognized my duplicate life, I wore a cross on my coat lapel. For years, every time I felt the urge to be unkind, I touched that cross and it reminded me that the situation was not about me, but about representing the King of King and Lord of Lords.
So we do have to ask ourselves a lot of questions.
- How am I representing the Lord of all Creation?
- Am I honouring Him by my behaviour and actions?
- When I encounter people will they know without a doubt that I have the qualities of Jesus Christ?
- Will my behaviour make a Kingdom difference? When I leave that room or event, will I leave the fragrance of Christ?
As leaders these questions need answers. What is one thing you need to bring out from behind closed doors so that you don’t live a life of duplicity?