“Some soldiers also questioned him: “What should we do?” He said to them, “Don’t take money from anyone by force or false accusation; be satisfied with your wages.”” (Luke 3:14, HCSB)
Don’t take money from anyone by force or false accusation; be satisfied with your wages. Have you noticed that few people today are content with their wages? Business models all work on the principle of making more and more and more. Companies are squeezing every interaction for revenue. The name of the game in the world of business leadership is, “The Bottom Line!”
This is why we, as servant leaders, can learn little from modern business leadership. They stand on a different foundation. For the servant leader, we walk upon the solid ground of the towel and the basin, being content to be the slave of all. Jesus called us to be last if we wanted to be first. He called us to focus on the eternal, not the temporal, knowing our reward is in Heaven, not on Earth.
Discontent drives modern leadership. If people aren’t unhappy with a situation right now, it seeks to create unhappiness for the express purpose of changing the way life is done, thus shaping that person into the image today’s leader believes is better, all the while failing to check and see if the person was already happy to begin with.
We see it all the time in everyday life. Wages aren’t sufficient. They should be higher. Benefits must include more. All the while, the costs of goods are affected by the increase in wages and benefits, increasing to the distress of those very same people. It is a perpetual cycle that eventually breeds cynicism.
Enter Jesus who tells these Roman soldiers who have surrendered to His love and leadership to be content, be satisfied. Whatever they are paid would be enough if they would discipline their hearts and choose to use it wisely. And there is the crux of the matter. Discontent believes there should be more so I can consume more. Like little kids in a candy store, that longing for more can never be satisfied.
Instead, as servant leaders, we are to be thankful for what God has given us through whatever source He has given it. Choosing to live in satisfaction is a sign of gratitude to God for all He has and does provide. It is a powerful statement to those following us!
Willing Worker Wednesdays are dedicated to explaining the core realities of servant leadership – the Biblical principles and methods used by God’s faithful people throughout time. They further reflect the lifestyle of Jesus, the King of kings and Lord of lords as He walked on this earth announcing the Kingdom of God had arrived. These brief lessons are written by Dr. Matthew Lee Smith, Executive Director of Eagles In Leadership, and come from his extensive ministry within the local church, in higher education, in church consulting and as a Biblical author and leader. He welcomes your comments below.