Tt is a blessing to be a leader who can mix truth with grace. Indeed, a good leader mixes truth with grace to gain more followers!
“And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father), full of grace and truth” (John 1:14).
The glory of Jesus Christ is in his presentation of truth with grace. Truth without grace is dangerous. Truth without grace would have eliminated most of the followers of Christ.
In the same way, most Christians would not make the mark if God dealt with us based on only the truth.
Let’s face it, how many Christians really do what God tells them to do? How many Christians walk in love and forgive one another?
If the Church were to wipe out its mistake-laden members, most churches would be empty. King David described it well in Psalm 130:3.
“If thou, Lord, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand?”
How to use a mixture of grace and truth
Jesus knew the truth about Judas but he mixed it with grace. Jesus could have moved on Judas because he knew the truth that Judas was a betrayer!
Jesus allowed Judas to benefit from the grace of God. The Bible says in John 6:64 that, “For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were that believed not, and who should betray him.”
He mixed truth with grace to give Judas a chance but Judas ended up destroying himself.
Sometimes you have to allow people to destroy themselves if that is their destiny. Do not be in a hurry to prove anything.
People will either straighten out or destroy themselves eventually. Sometimes when people come to you with accusations against others, what occurs to you is, “This accusation may be false. If it is true and I confront this person, he may deny the accusation. I will just leave him to the grace of God and to time. If he is destined to destroy himself he will. If he is destined to straighten himself out, he will!”
*Jesus knew the truth about Peter but He mixed it with grace. Peter was open to satanic and worldly influences. Jesus knew that but He still worked with Peter. Jesus did not disconnect from Peter.
But he turned, and said unto Peter, “Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.” (Matthew 16:23)
Jesus knew the truth about Peter - that he slept at prayer meetings. But the grace of God allowed Jesus to continue to work with Peter. Jesus overlooked Peter’s frailties.
“And he cometh unto the disciples, and findeth them asleep, and saith unto Peter, What, could ye not watch with me one hour?” (Matthew 26:40)
Jesus knew the truth about Peter that he would let him down but He still worked with him. Jesus did not disconnect himself from Peter. He rather forgave Peter.
“Jesus answered him, wilt thou lay down thy life for my sake? Verily, verily, I say unto thee, the cock shall not crow, till thou hast denied me thrice.” (John 13:38)
Jesus knew the truth about Peter; that he would leave the ministry and backslide into secular work. After all the training that Peter had received, he abandoned the ministry and went back to fishing. Jesus did not change the plans He had for Peter.
“There were together Simon Peter, and Thomas called Didymus, and Nathanael of Cana in Galilee, and the sons of Zebedee, and two others of his disciples. Simon Peter saith unto them, I go a fishing. They say unto him, We also go with thee. They went forth, and entered into a ship immediately; and that night they caught nothing.” (John 21:2,3)
All these bad things about Peter were true, but the glory of Christ is in the glory of truth presented with grace. And we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the father, full of grace and truth.
In the end, Peter turned out to be a great leader of the Church. That is what truth mixed with grace can do!
A good leader always combines a mixture of truth and grace when dealing with his followers. I have many sons and daughters in the ministry who have turned out well after a mixture of grace and truth had been applied to their lives.
Truth without grace would have eliminated many of the wonderful ministers and leaders who work with me today.
However, a mixture of truth and grace will allow some of your followers to straighten out and become great ministers.
Culled from The Art of Leadership
The writer is the founder of the Lighthouse Group of Churches