Picture in your mind a bad leader or boss. We’ve all had at least one bad boss in our careers. Do you remember what traits they exhibited? 2,500 years ago, a prophet named Ezekiel nailed some of the traits of bad leaders when he railed against Israel’s spiritual leaders.
Listening to Pastor Tyler teach about those who influence us from Jude, he really got my attention when he spoke of shameless shepherds. He then referenced Ezekiel 34: 2-5:
2 “Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel; prophesy and say to them: ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Woe to you shepherds of Israel who only take care of yourselves! Should not shepherds take care of the flock? 3 You eat the curds, clothe yourselves with the wool and slaughter the choice animals, but you do not take care of the flock. 4 You have not strengthened the weak or healed the sick or bound up the injured. You have not brought back the strays or searched for the lost. You have ruled them harshly and brutally. 5 So they were scattered because there was no shepherd, and when they were scattered they became food for all the wild animals.”
The context was towards spiritual leaders, specifically the false prophets and priests. However it applies universally. It’s something we should watch in ourselves and those who want to lead. Particularly during this political season, we should look for these negative traits:
- Putting yourself before your followers (it’s not about you)
- Taking from them for your gain
- Ignoring the sick, weak, or lost
- Wielding authority like a dictator
This goes across the spectrum, doesn’t it? Politics, spiritual leaders, employers, and those around you. The opposite is also true; we should strive to be and choose leaders by these standards:
- Make sure those who follow you are taken care of before you are (in whatever capacity we’re in)
- Invest in them for their growth
- Lift the weak, help them get stronger
- Care for the sick, injured, and hurting
- Bring the ones off the path home
- Guide them with a gentle firmness
It’ll do more than make you a better leader — it’ll make you a better person. Do you have any areas you need to work on? Or stories about a bad boss? I had one sucker punch me once about 10 years ago. That was the only job I ever quit.