Don’t look for leaders


by Steve Cordle


“I can’t find anyone in my group who will become a new leader.”

It’s not an uncommon sentiment to hear: I can’t find leaders. So give up trying to find leaders. Instead, start to develop new leaders.

It might be tempting to wait for a new leader to emerge: to hope a mature believer starts coming to the group, or a volunteer suddenly steps up. But if we take that approach we might end up with the wrong person in leadership. Like Samuel choosing Saul, we might choose someone who looks good, who seems to be a leader in other contexts, but in the end, they might not lead the work of the group very well.

But as Joel says, cells can be “leader breeders”. That’s because they give us the opportunity and context to develop them.

How? First, pick the person in your group (of your gender) you think is most open to growing spirtually. Do some individual discipling with that person a set period of time. There are many ways to do 1-2 discipling. One simple way is to use Neil Cole’s Life Transformation Group approach, which features reading large portions of the scripture then answering several application/accountability qusteions each week, while praying for lost people. It is simple, requires no teaching ability, and get people into the Word.

 Then, as that person grows, start giving him/her small,specific tasks in the group ministry. Lead a prayer or ice breaker, make some calls, plan something. Just give bite-size chunks of ministry and be sure to debried them later.

As the person grows spiritually, and gets a taste of ministry, then you are in a position to formally challenge him/her to become an apprentice and do the church’s equipping track. Your percentage of “yes” responses will be much higher when asking a developed person than an undeveloped person.


Can you share some ways you develop people spiritually and practically?

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