Matthew 20:26-28 “But it shall not be so among you:  but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister; And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant:  Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.”

As the American Continental Army set up winter camp at Valley Forge, they realized that its harsh location was a necessary evil.  General Washington acknowledged their difficult situation in his General Orders from December 17, 1777: “These considerations make it indispensably necessary for the army to take such a position, as will enable it most effectually to prevent distress & to give the most extensive security; and in that position we must make ourselves the best shelter in our power—With activity and diligence Huts may be erected that will be warm and dry—In these the troops will be compact, more secure against surprises than if in a divided state and at hand to protect the country.”

As they would “endure hardships” as a part of “the sacred cause in which they [were] engaged”, he made them an important and noble promise:  “He himself will share in the hardship, and partake of every inconvenience.”  He would live among them.  He would face the difficult conditions alongside of them.  He would not ask them to do anything that he would not do himself.

In writing these words as a part of his General Order, he brilliantly and sacrificially codified servant leadership.

As Christians in America today, we must practice a form of leadership different from that of the world.  We must not use our positions to gain, but to spend and invest.  We must not use our positions to be served, but to serve.  We must not use our positions to gain glory and honor, but to deflect glory and honor.  We must be willing to share in the hardships of those other servant leaders among us and to partake in every inconvenience.  In doing so, we will harness the type of leadership that General Washington so powerfully practiced and that Christ so vividly modeled.

PLEASE PRAY FOR CHRISTIANS TODAY TO FOLLOW THE LEADERSHIP MODEL OF OUR FOREFATHERS AND OUR SAVIOUR.  By sharing in the hardships of those around us, we provide a powerful reminder of the amazing sacrifice of Christ.