When I was in the states, I had a great conversation with someone about how as Christians we should strive to “be ourselves.” I really appreciated the encouragement because so many times in ministry I feel the pressure that it would be “more appropriate” to fit into the stereotype that many create in our cultures, churches or even the groups of people that we hang around.
Someone “being themselves” can be a deterrent to a group whose leaders have a definite goal that they are trying to produce with a group of people. This is actually different than the biblical principles of leadership where each individual Christian should be striving to follow Christ. When someone is following Christ and are therefore part of the “body of Christ,” we don’t have to worry about not getting where the “group” is going. The Lord gives us different gifts to use to make the “body” strong. (Now you are the body of Christ, and members individually. – 1 Corinthians 27) We are not competing against each other or other groups. We experience the joy of using our gifts to serve Christ and others. This should be a positive experience not one of striving and trying to make things work. The Pastor’s job as a leader is to guide and shepherd the group, to be a servant leader, not one who is “forcing” or “driving” the people to go in a certain direction.