“…the leaders led in Israel,…the people volunteered” (Judges 5:2, NASB).
After a great victory, Deborah and Barak sang a song that included the above words. I find it significant that in reference to victory, they mentioned the leaders leading and the people volunteering, don’t you? I believe it’s a concept that would serve us well today.
Whether in the local church, a social organization, or a family, leaders leading implies strength of conviction. It also provides safety for those who seek wisdom and guidance from their leaders. When followers feel secure with leadership, they will also feel free to volunteer whatever they may have to offer—time, talent, devotion—regardless of personal cost.
When any organization operates under these guidelines, chances of victory are greatly increased. Of course, that premise works best when the leaders who are leading are submitted to the One who fought for Israel and enabled them to prevail. That same One fights for us today when our leaders are submitted to Him and leading accordingly, and the followers are selflessly volunteering whatever they have to offer in the cause.
Conversely, those who consider themselves leaders and yet are “doing their own thing” instead of pursuing God’s heart and purposes are not truly leading at all. The followers will then be led astray and lose confidence in their leaders, therefore holding back on volunteering and giving their best. Ultimately, failure and defeat are sure to follow.
Heeding the words of Deborah and Barak, may we as leaders truly lead as God directs us, and as followers commit to freely give our best in whatever trials or battles come our way. For we all follow a God who has promised to fight for us and to bring us to that place of complete victory.