I confess…I’m a people watcher. I often notice the maturity and leadership potential of a person by simply watching them. A few weeks ago in Malaysia, I watched students from Nepal, Myanmar, Philippines, Indonesia and other Asian nations who were studying at the school where I was teaching. Many students believe they are called to leadership. But the acid test to becoming a godly leader is not knowledge or ability, but servant-hood. From my observation, many of these students were passing this test.

Jesus made it very clear that leadership is synonymous with serving. Jesus Christ, the greatest leader who ever lived, told his disciples when they were vying for the top leadership spot on his team, “…whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave—just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Matthew 20:26b-28).

If someone comes to me and says he feels called to be a leader, I am not impressed with how much charisma he has or with his knowledge of the Bible. The real key to his ability to lead depends on whether or not he loves Jesus, loves His people and is willing to serve.

A few days ago, I met with a Christian leader who is older and much wiser than I am. He is known throughout his community because God uses him as a standard for righteousness. But what impresses me most is his attitude of servant-hood.

Leaders in the body of Christ are called to be servants. History reveals that leaders who do not serve become dictators.

Who has the Lord called you to serve today? He’s watching. Are you following His example?