One of my favorite chapters in the Bible is 1 Corinthians 13. It’s often referred to as the love chapter, and it says that even if we do incredible things in the kingdom of God but don’t have love, we are nothing.
I recently had the privilege of talking to Dr. Steve Greene, publisher of Charisma and of the Charisma Podcast Network. Not too long ago, he wrote an inspiring book about this very topic of love called Love Leads. And on my podcast today, Dr. Greene dives deep into how Christians can apply the principles in his book.
Too often we see pastors ousted from their positions because of scandal, or political leaders taking bribes for selfish gain, or businessmen fired and jailed for embezzlement. How can we as Christians approach leadership in a way that is truly led by the Lord?
Dr. Greene says it has everything to do with how we love. To quote the phrase he uses in his book, “If God is love, and I have not love, how then shall I lead?”
One principle Dr. Greene lives by is “Tough on standards, soft on people.”
“What I try to help people understand is there’s nothing wrong with being strong,” he tells me. “But you lead with love, and then you’re strong on what you believe and in what you expect. … I’m strong on standards. I’m strong on meeting company goals that, first of all, I report to owners. … But I’ll drop anything and everything to pray for someone.”
This doesn’t mean we don’t have bad days. But in those moments when we slip up and say something too harsh or don’t act in love, Dr. Greene recommends going to the person and saying, “That’s not who I am and that’s not who I want to be.”
That humility shows the people you’re leading that you genuinely care about them. After all, a healthy team cannot thrive on simply meeting high expectations and staying afloat with busy schedules. And before you think this principle doesn’t apply to you because you’re not a leader, allow me to remind you that there is always someone you influence. It could be your family, co-workers or friends at church—but there are always people we influence and care for.
“If you think about the subtitle of this book—’If God is love, and I don’t love’—fill that in with any blank. ‘How then can I run my household? How then can I be an effective parent? How then can I be an effective friend? How then can I be a friend of my producer, Atalie? If God is love and I don’t love, what do I have to offer her?'” Dr. Greene says. “Why would she possibly want to spend time with me and work as many hours as we do? It has to be more than just our work relationship. There has got to be a relationship based on spiritual love.”
I couldn’t agree more with Dr. Greene. I’ve read his book and truly loved the biblical principles he thoughtfully wrote about. I encourage you to read it for yourself. You can buy a copy of it by clicking here. And if you enjoy what you read, consider purchasing one for a friend. This book has the power to touch and change many lives.
Listen to my full interview with Dr. Greene and, while you’re listening, go ahead and share this article with your friends and family!