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Loving Leadership (5 of 5)

Mike Connell

LOVING LEADERSHIP

1. Introduction
· Headship – teaching on this subject stirs up reactions in both men and women!
· God’s order is for the blessing and benefit of the family, not an exercise for domination.
· Putting the principle into practice requires understanding the heart of God.
Jer 31:3 “I have loved you with an everlasting love, therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you”
· Lovingkindness (2616) – to bow to an equal, show self merciful, steadfast.
· Drawn (4900) – to draw along, draw out, handle, sow.
· Lovingkindness – generosity, personal involvement and commitment in a relationship above and beyond any legal requirements, steadfast love and devotion.
· God does not use His power to control us but extends love to influence us.
· 1 John 4:10 “We love Him because He first loved us” ie, God’s love so influenced our life it brought forth love and commitment and submission to Him.
· Ps 103:11 “As the heaven is high above the earth so great is His mercy to them that fear Him”.

2. Principles that empower man’s leadership
· Prov 19:22 “The desire of a man is his kindness” ie, that quality which makes a man desirable, longed after is lovingkindness. Harshness, authoritarianism, selfishness, all destroy a mans influence. Jesus – the model man – influenced people by His loving kindness, His mercy.

i) Principle of headship
1 Cor 11:3 “ The head of every man is Christ, the head of the woman is the man”
Headship – means:
a) Submission to Jesus Christ – to know, follow Him.
b) Assuming responsibility for leadership
Leadership:
· Having direction and purpose.
· Taking the initiative.
· Setting a personal example that inspires.
· Awareness of the needs and concerns of wife and children.
· Protection from destructive influences.

ii) Principle of bonding
Eph 5:31 “These two shall become one flesh”
· God’s law of bonding is activated whenever 2 people turn their hearts towards one another with desire and longing.
· Leave (2641) – to let go, leave behind, forsake all conflicting attachments. Man must let go all emotional and sexual attachments so he can cleave to wife.
· Cleave (4347) – to glue to, adhere to, join self to.

The bonding or cleaving process is activated by:
a) Sexual intimacy.
b) Turning heart consciously towards his wife through romance and intimacy.
Examples:
· Time together or common activity.
· Communication – sharing your heart – thoughts, feelings, (date).
· Sacrifice – giving something that costs you, Matt 6:21, (gifts).

iii) Principle of partnership
Gen 2:18 “I will make a help meet for him”
· This is a relationship where man and woman fit together perfectly and complete each other.
· Not co-dependent but distinct, different, fitting like clasped hands.
Application:
a) Accept and celebrate the difference in giftings, personality, backgrounds.
b) Share responsibilities according to gifting not culture.
c) Listen, don’t react to her concerns and needs.
I Ki 12:7 “If you will be a servant to this people and will serve them and answer them”
· Answer – to eye, to pay attention to, respond, show sensitivity to their needs.
· Note – 2 passages speak of man’s headship – both also speak of interdependence. 1 Cor 11:3, 11 and Eph 5:21-23
· A proud insecure man won’t listen because it threatens his leadership.
· Only as man listens to his wife can he be successful in all areas of life.
· Husband who acts independently – deceived by own pride, misses warning signs of destruction.

iv) Principle of honour
1 Pet 3:7 “…giving honour unto the wife…that prayers not be hindered”
· Do you want your prayers hindered? - (1465) cut into, impede, frustrate, neutralised?
· Honour (5099) – value, price, ie, show her respect and treat her as valuable.
· Honour – (i) give her special place in heart – (ii) communicate value to her.
Application:
a) Respect – listen to opinion; include in decisions, especially $’s; make her feel special; speak kindly; don’t compare or treat disrespectfully.
b) Manners – door open; walk together; seat; eye contact; hold hands.
c) Prayer support – practical help with home; children; encouragement and praise
d) Faithfulness – commitment to purity in mind, heart, speech.

v) Principle of lovingkindness
Eph 5:25 “Husbands love wives as Christ loved the church and gave Himself”
· Jesus did not use power over people but to demonstrate lovingkindness.
· Jesus draws people to follow Him because of lovingkindness.
· What makes a man desirable – lovingkindness.


Application:
a) Extending grace when there is lack or failure rather than judgement/criticism.
Col 3:19 “Husband love your wife and be not bitter against her”
· Pray for wisdom.
· Refuse to harbour anger, blame.
· Release forgiveness.
· Speak gentle words.
b) Speaking the truth in love.
Eph 4:15 “Speaking the truth in love we grow up”
· Be honest with feelings.
· Face issues one at a time.
· Talk through issues where necessary.
· Be direct.
· Don’t conceal important facts.
c) Practical kindness that meets her needs (Jn 13 – footwashing)
Matt 20:25 “He that would be great, let him be your servant”
· Small regular practical kindness.
· Give yourself – invest, costs you.