Bahamian Baptist pastor Anthony Carroll made an impassioned call for pastors to avoid the pitfalls of leadership.
Speaking at the Baptist World Congress in Durban, South Africa, on Friday, July 24, Carroll, former president of the Bahamas National Baptist Missionary and Education Convention, said that, for pastors, “matters of leadership cannot be ignored.”
Heed must be paid, he declared, to the “direction of one’s life” because there are voices tempting the pastor to a life of ease rather than one of service and sacrifice, beguiling the pastor to give place to fickle hype and fame.
The pastor has “responsibility for the sheep of His pasture” and is “called to tend the flock of God.” There are pastors, he asserted, who lead others to question the “truthfulness, trustworthiness and transparency” of the Body of Christ. “Whether fair or foul, the ministry of the church of our Christ is under attack and those who serve as under-shepherds.”
Carroll claimed that pastoral leadership is distinctive. “Leadership is sought, but pastoral leadership is having been sent. Leadership is by popular opinion, but pastoral leadership is being open and responsive to the Spirit. Leadership is delegation to the devoted, but pastoral leadership is about a divine dialog.”
He said that, “within the realm of the secular, oftentimes, rather more often than not, the concentration is not the benefit of others; it’s about power and the acquisition of wealth.” Pastoral leadership, on the other hand, “has a depth within it that leadership elsewhere knows nothing about.”
Carroll presented Jesus as the “model for leadership” for the pastor. Jesus, he said, was “Kingdom-connected and Kingdom-committed.” Jesus “was resolute concerning His assignment and uncompromising about His relationship with the One who has given the assignment.”
Declaring that Christ “is the epitome of leadership with integrity,” he pleaded with pastors of the twenty first century not to “divorce ourselves from that which is foundational. We, who serve as leaders and those who will follow after, are but understudies, under-shepherds, if you please, of Him who is the Chief Shepherd.”
It is enough, Carroll said, “for me to take the Lord at His word.”
Video of the plenary worship service may be viewed on the BWA website at www.bwanet.org.
The congress, which has as its theme, “Jesus Christ, the Door,” continues from July 22 to 26 at the International Convention Center in Durban.
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© July 24, 2015