May 8 2016 // The Plight of Qualification // 2 Corinthians 12:11-21

The Apostle Paul knew that churches must appoint and follow qualified leaders to flourish in Christ. But what constitutes a qualified leader. Paul lists qualifications for elders and deacons in some of his New Testament letters. And those lists reflect hard lessons learned in his own leadership experience. Qualification of leadership is not foremost about upholding a standard of conduct. Rather, it is about winning a hearing with people. Qualified leaders do conduct themselves uprightly, but only for the sake of building relational trust within the church. Leaders who no one trusts cannot lead, no matter how upright their conduct may be. The only way finally to win the trust of any people or person is to be mistreated by them and endure that sorrow all the way through--until laughter returns.