These are thoughts shared with the TPC ruling elders some years ago, but I have decided to make them public here with the hope others in church leadership will find them helpful.

Pastors are required to be leaders of men. They must shepherd the shepherds, helping ruling elders do their work in the congregation effectively. They must lead the session so the session can lead the church. But today, we face a crisis in leadership, both inside and outside the church. Those who have been entrusted with leadership often have a failure of nerve, and thus fail to take charge and act decisively. Would-be leaders fail to cast vision and then implement that vision. In our culture, when leaders do try to take charge they all too often do so in self-serving, arrogant, and short-sighted ways, acting as tyrant-leaders rather than servant-leaders. True leaders don’t just make decisions, they take responsibility for those under their authority and the decisions that affect them. Sadly, today, many in positions of leadership like its perks, but don’t want to be held responsible for anything. They blameshift, make excuses, or invent new ways of escaping accountability.