PROGRAM D-8139

Jesus was a great leader because. . .fill in the blank. There are many characteristics that made Jesus the most outstanding leader who has ever lived. We’ve been looking at just a few of those, one example being that Jesus was a great leader because he always had time for little people.

His disciples wanted him to speak to a great crowd that had gathered on one occasion, but he said he had planned to preach in the nearby villages. He took time from a hectic schedule to walk a long way and heal Jairus’ little daughter. He stopped in a crowd to find one woman who had touched him and heal her blood disease. He saw a short little man in a tree and asked to have dinner with him. Jesus focused on individuals—and it didn’t matter who they were. They were all important to him.

Don’t you think that sometimes we are caught up in the “star” mentality—we only want to be involved in something with lots of people and big numbers? I have often said that of all the wonderful opportunities God has given me to minister, my favorite is Sunday mornings with my small class of women, Sisters in Christ, who have become such a wonderful support group for me. It can become an ego trip to focus only on the numbers in the crowd. Often the greatest blessing comes in the small groups.

The same principle holds true on our jobs. A successful sales person is one who spends time with the small clients as well as the large ones. Those small sales can grow into big ones later on, and they’ll stay with you if you pay attention to them when they’re small. But many sales people only want to deal with the large-ticket customers.

Think about your own work habits and attitudes: Do you tend to ignore or disregard the behind-the-scenes people? I think of one of our Board members who is a very successful lawyer. One of Steve’s most outstanding attributes—and I’m sure one of the reasons for his success—is his attention to the little people. They aren’t little to him and he always has time to talk and care about their needs.

It is a mistake to put people into “big” and “small” categories. Jesus never did, and that’s one reason that we are all so attracted to him. I’m still amazed and grateful to think that in the midst of this huge universe, he knows my name, he talks to me, and he always has time to spend with me. Shouldn’t we have the same attitude toward others?

Wherever your path takes you today, ask God to make you conscious of every person along the way and to help you treat them all as very special and very important. It’s one of the most important characteristics of a great leader—just like Jesus.