Spurgeon on Leadership (6): Nine Lessons on Casting Vision

1. Leaders and organizations must have a vision to survive and thrive in an ever-changing world. Spurgeon recognized the need for a new vision upon his arrival in London to serve as pastor of a declining inner-­city church. We must show our people the way forward.

2. Effective leaders are able to create and sustain a compelling vision for their followers. Spurgeon brought to his church creative leadership that extended throughout his thirty-seven years of ministry. He cultivated a biblical vision that inspired and moved his people.

3. Visionary leadership includes an effort to honor the best accom­plishments of the past while adapting strategies and adjusting goals to provide growth for the future. Spurgeon honored the great pastors who had served before him and built upon their accomplishments. He did not build himself up by tearing others down.

4. Leadership is the capacity to translate vision into reality. Spurgeon had a clear vision of his purpose and calling in ministry. His passion to preach the gospel became the springboard that launched his all-encompassing ministry. His was a gospel-centered vision.

5. A leader must gather around him godly people who share the vi­sion. Spurgeon surrounded himself with capable assistants and lay lead­ers who were able to help him implement the vision for his ministry. “A” leaders will look for “A” co-laborers!

6. A visionary leader is positive about the future because God has given a vision of that future. “In our Christian pilgrimage it is well, for the most part, to be looking forward. Forward lies the crown, and onward is the goal. Whether it be for hope, for joy, for consolation, or for the inspiring of our love, the future must, after all, be the grand object of the eye of faith.”

7. A visionary leader sets goals that enable his followers to accomplish great things for the organization. Spurgeon’s goals emanated from his clear calling to preach the gospel, a gospel that he believed extended ministry to the whole person. Spurgeon knew what the gospel was. He also knew that there were implications that naturally flow from the gospel as well.

8. Goals are a direct measure of a leader’s faith. Spurgeon’s faith en­abled him to anticipate great progress and advancement in the minis­tries of his church as he pursued his goals.

9. A visionary leader understands the importance of planning. Spurgeon said, “We believe in a God of purposes and plans, who has not left a blind fate to tyrannize over the world, much less an aimless chance to rock it to and fro. . . . We are believers in a God `who worketh all things after the counsel of His own will.'”

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  3. Dan Dugan   •  

    Spurgeon was more than a plowman preacher, his leadership still inspires leadership

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