Sunday, August 30, 2009

Leadership in the Church

I never cease to be both pleased and amazed at the method and inspiration with which leaders in the LDS Church are selected. I was part of that process this week and feel even more grateful to know that God is at the helm.

Being a Branch President, I was invited along with other Priesthood Leaders to have an interview with the visiting Authorities from Salt Lake City. They interviewed 60 or 70 of us with the intent of finding who the Lord desires to be the two new Stake Presidents. Our lives and service were explored, but most important, we were each asked who we felt the Lord would have to lead us. The names we gave certainly had a bearing on the decision, but then these humble leaders took the matter to the Lord.

Having thus become a bit more familiar with the local leaders they had a bit more to place before the Lord as they sought His guidance. Long exposure to this method, affirms to me that we are truly led by inspiration. Never have I felt that the Stake President I then had was not the perfect person for the job. Not that any of them were or are perfect. They're not. But they were called by God to labor in his vineyard with talent and humility that made them wholly adequate to be instruments in His hands.

None of them desired the position. None campaigned or lobbied for the post. Neither were they coerced to accept such a burden of service and stewardship. All of them had burning testimonies of the truth. Each only desired to serve where the Lord needed them. None of them accepted without knowing of the sacrifice required to so serve and each of them accepted anyway.

One of the most beautiful things I've ever observed in this wonderful process was a Stake President, who upon his release from his highly visible, "important" calling of leadership, was called next to teach a class of rowdy boys in Primary. He served with just as much distinction, care and diligence in a tiny Primary class as he did leading an entire Stake of the Church. To him and the others. It never was about where you served but how. What a gift it is to be led by people such as that!

All that is required is to be willing to serve the Lord and let Him direct the affairs of the Ward or Stake. No special education, no remarkable gift for language, organization, or leadership, no amount of experience or dynamic of circumstance can substitute for the simple humility of letting God take charge of their lives and guide them in paths, He directs. Such are the men chosen today, whom I shall gladly follow.

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