As I wrote in an earlier post, our apostolic assignment is two-fold: to see increase and transformation. We want to see an increase of souls won for God’s kingdom, and we want to see His kingdom’s influence increase on the earth just like Isaiah 9:7 says. His kingdom is a kingdom of righteousness, peace and joy, so we minister to see these things increase too. We want to see transformation occur as the people of the earth see who our God really is; then all the nations of the world come, as per Isaiah 2:1-4, to worship and be changed. This is the outworking of the Great Commission to disciple nations that the Lord Jesus charged us with in Matthew 28.

It’s a big call and a big mission, and it is going to take all of us. So how do are we going to do that? There are many answers, but one thing is sure: without leadership, nothing changes. I propose that a big part of seeing our apostolic mandate fulfilled comes down to us as individuals being the most effective leaders we can be. I believe that we all carry three tool bags that together make up our leadership effectiveness: a gift bag; a government bag; and a character bag. Some of my later posts will focus on each specific bag, but for now let me define them.

The Gift Bag is made up of our talents, giftings and abilities. Our competency. One way we grow in leadership effectiveness is to develop our gifts, or to ‘gear up’.

The Government Bag is about how we govern and relate with others. Our chemistry with those around us. It’s about teamwork, relationship, connection and community. Another way we grow in leadership maturity is to develop our team, or to ‘connect up’.

The Character Bag is our personality, our character and self-management. It’s a measure of our sonship or daughtership. A third way we grow in leadership success is develop ourselves, or to ‘grow up.’

Ultimately, our gift bag will get us somewhere. But our character bag will keep us there. Then our government bag will enable us to be empowered and multiplied in our effectiveness.

Stay with me as I look individually at each bag, and how we can ensure they each become full bags.

This post is part of a series on Leadership Essentials, which can be purchased in audio or video format here