Answer: The Leader. Forgetting about Adam and Eve… By definition, a leader must be ‘in front.’ But… the follower, I’m here to tell you… is someone that ‘must be reckoned with.’ All followers are not equals. They don’t stand in a straight line, shoulder to shoulder. No…No. Several may stand together, several more may follow further behind, and even some… well… they walk in circles. Surely you’ve encountered some of those in your career.
My point... there are ‘leaders among the followers.’ They are, technically… co-equals, but for some reason, usually God-given…. One will stand out over the rest. If he were to standout…enough of the time, a lot of the time, and show his/her superior ‘following traits,’…well then, he will be, soon… recognized as standing out among the rest. And soon, then…
He will become, let’s say… a junior leader. He has proven himself capable of leading others, even though… in simple ways, and small ways…and, then later… in more complicated ways. The LEADER is ‘always looking’ for someone to stand out amongst the rest.
Remember God told Moses to select the ‘best from the rest,’ to help you in judging… or leading. As told to us in Numbers 11:16 – The LORD therefore said to Moses, “Gather for Me seventy men from the elders of Israel, whom you know to be the elders of the people and their officers and bring them to the tent of meeting, and let them take their stand there with you.
Some followers are better than other followers, just as… some leaders are better than other leaders. Some followers will be elevated, over time… as leaders. Some, or most… will not. They are destined to remain… followers.
Remember the parable of the talents… found in Matthew 25:14-30 – A rich man delegates the management of his wealth to his servants, not unlike we find in today’s stock market. He gives five talents (considered as a large sum of money)…To the first servant, two talents to the second, and one talent to the third. Two of the servants earn 100 percent returns by trading with the funds (talents), but the third servant hides the money in the ground and earns nothing. The rich man returns, rewards the two who made money, but severely punishes the servant who did nothing.
God has given each of us a wide range of ‘special gifts’… and He expects us to utilize our gifts in ‘His service.’ God does not expect, nor want, us to set our talents aside, failing to use them, or failing to share them… with others who don’t have as many talents. Just as the three servants… we are not give gifts of the same degree, or value.
God rewards those servants that ‘follow His instructions.’
The return God expects of us is commensurate with the gifts we have been given. Those who are given more, then God expects more from them. Those given less, then… less is expected. The servant who received one talent was not punished for failing to achieve the five-talent goal; he was condemned because he did nothing with that which is was given.
God has given us many assorted gifts… including numerous skills, abilities, family and business connections, social status, educational achievement, and much more. The point of the parable is that we are to use whatever we have been given for God’s purposes… for His Glory, not our own. The severe consequences to the underachiever is meant to warn us…. Not to waste our God-given talents.
We all have “special blessings and gifts”… and a good leader will LOOK for those qualities in his/her followers, and magnify on them.