In Spirit Blog

crowdSomething to reflect on at this special time of year when we remember the single most earth shaking event in human history – the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Consider the scene in the Garden of Gethsemane, the place where the Roman soldiers finally captured Jesus, led there by Judas, his betrayer. When planning the capture, there was a small problem of identifying their target. After all, how would they know which one was Jesus?

Of course, Judas had the answer “Whomever I kiss, He is the One, seize Him and lead him away safely.” Mark 14:44

This is exactly how it transpired. A large crowd arrived in the garden. Clubs, torches, shouting. Judas kisses Jesus on the cheek and the soldiers descend.

Have you ever wondered why the need for the elaborate plan to allow the soldiers to find the leader of the small band of disciples. They had traveled as a group all over Israel for three years. Many times they had visited Jerusalem. Jesus taught openly. Caused a bit of a stir several times. Was it not obvious which one of the 11 was him? Did he dress differently? Have a unique haircut, headband or special sash? Had the soldiers not seen him promoting his ministry? Taking up an offering?

In our day it is very common for leaders to be easily identifiable. Soccer captains wear a special armband. Hockey captains wear the “C” on their jerseys. Priests, bishops and other religious leaders often wear unique clothing, tunics or head pieces. Powerful business leaders often wear expensive suits and celebrities sport unique clothing and jewelry and both are usually accompanied by adoring entourages. Yet Jesus needed to be identified with a kiss. Why was it so difficult in that situation to find the leader?

Is it possible that the Son of God had no desire to stand out from the rest? Did he so identify with those close to him that it was near impossible to tell them apart? Great leaders it seems share this trait of sincere humility. I’m sure we can all think of one or more we have encountered in our lives. They don’t want the limelight and would prefer that others get more attention than they do. This is the secret of building a high performing team. When nobody cares who gets the adulation, the result is an empowered group of people who can do almost anything.

As you contemplate the wonder of God in human form, giving his very life for us, consider this – on the night that he was betrayed and captured, a signal was needed to enable his captors to find the leader. May we all have the privilege of walking with this kind of leader or perhaps become one ourselves.

John Matthews

Showing 7 comments
  • James Thomas Canali

    This makes me think of two situations, one in which I have observed as hockey and basketball leagues are in their playoffs.

    You can tell when a team enters into a flow, when each player is part of a whole, the ball or puck passes easily between them all, and eventually sets up each player in their turn to make the basket or score the goal. There is a rhythm, or rather a harmony that separates a great sports team from a team with great athletes who selfishly want the limelight. Teams with some of the best athletes are defeated by teams with connection, flow and team unity, simply because the power of a team is more than that of an individual. (The Avalanche seem to be finding that flow in the first two games of NHL playoffs).

    The second is at work, as I grow as a leader I need in one sense to be less identifiable at Starbucks. My growth in this next season will move from just excelling in my personal work to empowering the team to think and act like supervisors, like me, in the way they do business and make drinks and engage customers. My goal at the end of this season to have re-created my leadership skills in each team member, to establish that flow we see in sports teams.

    • B2E Group

      Awesome Jimmy. You are well on your way to real leadership. Creating others to replace you…

  • gerson

    Amen , God has called us to lead and to make disciple ..

  • k.noel

    it makes sense…..Gods Kingdom is not of this world. It usually is in direct opposite of the world we see living before us in society. Be in the world but not of it….

  • Jess

    Loved when you mentioned this at SEE Denver…I’d never thought of it that way, and it’s a beautiful part of Jesus’ story with his friends, and his “team”. Will be thinking on this, and how it can play out.. Agree with Jimmy on work being a great place to explore this.

  • Sarah Evans

    Wow this really makes me think of how I can do this with the people around me not just at work but at school also. As a photographer, the team that is around me I want to move like this.

    • B2E Group

      Welcome to B2E Group Sarah. It is great to have your contributions. We look forward to more.

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