Be an Example: Embracing Leadership and Breaking Norms


Introduction

In a world where gender roles and societal norms often limit the potential of women, it is crucial to challenge these constraints and encourage women to step into leadership roles. The story of Deborah, a prominent figure from biblical times, serves as a powerful example of a woman who defied societal expectations and embraced her calling as a leader. Deborah's story teaches us valuable lessons about courage, wisdom, and obedience, and it inspires us to break free from the limitations imposed on us by society.

Challenging the Norms: Deborah's Journey

Deborah lived in a time when women were not considered suitable for leadership positions. However, she refused to be distracted by the prevailing norms of her society. In today's world, men are also often told to "sit down and shut up," but it is essential for men and women to rise above these societal norms and embrace the unique qualities that make us who we are.
Deborah's story resonates with the current discourse on toxic masculinity. It is crucial to understand that masculinity, when rooted in godly principles, can be a force for good. We must reject the notion that masculinity is inherently toxic and instead recognize that both men and women are called to be leaders, each with their own unique strengths and abilities.

Breaking Barriers: Women in Leadership

In our modern society, women have the opportunity to lead in various domains. It is essential to acknowledge that every position within our churches and organizations should be open for leadership to both men and women. However, there is one exception - the eldership of the church. The Bible states that an elder should be the husband of one wife, suggesting that this specific role is reserved for men. This does not diminish the value and importance of women in leadership; rather, it highlights the unique calling that God has placed on men.

It is crucial to note that the Bible also affirms the role of women in preaching and prophesying. In the last days, both men and women will prophesy and preach the word of God. This demonstrates that the availability of leadership roles is open to everyone, regardless of gender. As women, we should embrace our calling to teach and lead, recognizing the gifting and anointing that rests upon us.

Embracing Leadership: Men and Women Alike

Deborah's example teaches us the importance of stepping into leadership roles and embracing the responsibilities that come with them. It is not enough to wait for someone else to fulfill our purpose. Whether we are men or women, God has called each of us for such a time as this. We must not let fear or doubt hinder us from taking the next step toward fulfilling our leadership potential.

If God has spoken to you about leadership, do not wait for the perfect moment. Deborah did not wait for someone else to step up; she took the initiative and seized the opportunities that God presented to her. Likewise, men and women in our churches today should not hold back from pursuing leadership roles. Whether it is teaching a life group or serving in a specific capacity, we should take the necessary steps to move toward our calling.

The Qualities of an Example: Purity, Faith, and Love

Deborah was not only a leader but also an example to those around her. Her speech, wisdom, conduct, love for humanity, faith, and purity all served as a model for others. We, too, can be examples of these qualities, regardless of our gender. In our churches and communities, we should strive to be examples of purity, faith, love, and integrity.

The apostle Paul, in his letter to Timothy, emphasized the importance of setting an example in faith, speech, conduct, and purity. These qualities are not limited to a specific gender; they are applicable to all believers. We should not allow others to look down on us because of our youthfulness or gender. Instead, we should demonstrate through our actions and words that we are followers of Christ.

Overcoming Challenges: Stepping into Leadership Roles

Stepping into leadership roles may come with challenges and obstacles. It is essential to acknowledge that the journey towards leadership requires a process. If you feel called to teach a life group or take on a leadership position, take the next step and inquire about the process involved. Seek guidance from mentors or church leaders who can help you navigate the path toward fulfilling your calling.

Women, especially, should not hesitate to step into teaching roles. The gifting and anointing that rests upon them should be embraced and utilized. If you have been waiting for the right moment, now is the time to act. Start by seeking guidance and understanding the steps required to fulfill your calling. Do not let fear or uncertainty hold you back from becoming the leader God has called you to be.

Conclusion

Deborah's story serves as a powerful reminder that women can break free from societal norms and become influential leaders. It is essential to recognize the value of masculinity when rooted in godly principles and to embrace the unique qualities that each individual brings to leadership roles. As men and women, we should step into the responsibilities and opportunities that God presents to us, being examples of faith, wisdom, and love. Let us strive to be leaders who inspire others to fulfill their purpose and make a positive impact on the world around them.
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