I think there is a common misperception that simple/house churches do not have leaders, do not want leaders, and are, by definition, leaderless. I suppose there is truth to this if our definition of leadership involves position, hierarchy, and title along with roles that prescribe leadership to only a few people.
But I would like to suggest that the purpose of the church ought to be to develop ALL believers into leaders. For this reason, I would say that simple/house churches are ALL about leadership. Furthermore, the problem in the past has been that, too often, we have limited the leadership development of others because there is only so much room for the few who are prescribed to lead from the top.
Think about what it is that ALL believers are called to do:
- To be salt and light in the world.
- To love neighbors sacrificially.
- To make disciples.
- To serve as priests.
- To be an example of the incredible wealth of God’s kindness and grace.
- To bring a song, a word, a prophesy when we gather.
- To be ready to share God’s word of grace with others in season and out.
- On and on and on.
By getting hung up on certain, particular leadership roles (apostle, evangelist, teacher) we miss the true meaning of what it means to be a follower of Jesus: it means to be an influencer. Oh yeah, that’s what leadership is.
Imagine when the Body of Christ reaches its potential of every member a leader in his/her own right, shining forth God’s glory in his/her unique way. What a powerful vision of a church that is unleashed to change a world!
Every member of the Body of Christ… a leader! Should we have any other vision and should we pursue any model of Christian life that does not set this forth as THE priority?