divineinsight:BY HUMPHREY MTANDWA
Sometimes we expect so much from those that lead us that we forget they are man like us. James was taken by Herod and the church did nothing until he was dead. The believers in those days could have assumed since he was among the three closest to Jesus, nothing would happen to him. Some say the top is the loneliest place and those that lead have a weight on them that those under them seem to ignore. Every person assumes those that lead are superhuman and because they admire and adore them, they can’t imagine their idol being weak or frail in anyway. The leaders trying to live according to the expectations of those under them of being perfect become self-involved and this hinders them from executing their responsibilities well.
Many leaders become entrapped in this facade of being perfect that they can’t reach out for help or even acknowledge when they err. Many of those who lead are broken because they do not have anyone to relay their issues to because as leaders, they fail to come to terms with their shortcomings or weaknesses leading to isolation.
Peter was also jailed by Herod but because the church had lost James before, they began to pray until Peter was released. We as believers have a responsibility towards those that lead us and we need to realise that those we assume are superhuman can make mistakes as much as we do. Leaders are supposed to be accountable. The moment a leader is consumed by how those he leads regard him as being above them, he loses the sense of who he is and at times fear of being considered weak makes him hide the fact that they may need help.
Paul confronted Peter at one time because he was acting as a hypocrite. Paul understood if he did not deal with the issue at that moment it would cause further confusion among the brethren. He corrected Peter which helped not only Peter, but the brethren present. As believers at times we overburden our leaders because we assume they can’t err, but we need to accept that in every person there is room for error as long as they are on this earth. So if we know there is room for error we judge every action they make according to God’s Word.
Only in Africa is it a crime to demand accountability from leaders. The government is elected by the people. Before the elections the leaders are very meek and humble but just after, they become defensive and at times in fear become unreasonable. They accuse every person who challenges them or who points out their errors as an enemy.
Leadership is a burden, but when the burden is shared it becomes a beautiful experience. A good leader learns from his weakness and covers them by surrounding himself with people who have strength in his areas of weakness. Those people become a fail-safe for him. Peter got to a time he acknowledged that Paul was a strong teacher of the Word.
Being open to one’s flaws and others strengths and helps leaders become more accountable. African leaders should not fight people when they point out weaknesses in administrative systems. The top is a lonely place to those that choose to ignore others.
l Humphrey Mtandwa is an anointed minister of the gospel and teacher of the Word based in South Africa. He has written several books including The Enoch Generation, Truthfulness and Theophany. He blogs at mtandwa.blogspot.com and can be contacted via e-mail or WhatsApp on +27 610286350.