Leadership: Humility and Compassion

Have you ever been shown compassion when you expected to be verbally kicked? Has someone ever humbled themselves before you at a time when you least expected it?

Have you ever been humble or compassionate when dealing with another?

Great leaders are both. Perhaps someone once showed them both to you.

Some people struggle so hard to get things right. They just cannot seem to get beyond their circumstances for whatever reason. Sometimes they just make mistakes on top of whatever else they have going on.

I watched this play out recently with a person that really needed encouragement. He had goofed. In his mind, it was yet again another reason to be troubled. It was yet another failure on his part amongst other struggles he was trying so hard to work out.

I truly love the way the situation ultimately played out. The good Christian man he was dealing with was humble enough to say that he had made a few mistakes too. I was impressed! I have rarely heard that man admit so openly that he makes mistakes.

I must say that this admission was very powerful to the person that had goofed. It made all the difference. In recognition of admission, I jokingly asked the forgiven if we needed to put a nail in the wall as a reminder.

I hope that these awesome leadership qualities of compassion and humility rub off on the younger man. I definitely hope it left a lasting impression.

Consider the compassionate reception of the prodigal son.

And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him. And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son. But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet: And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry: For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry.
Luke 15:20-24

He got the homecoming he never expected! He was just looking for an improvement over his current circumstances – hungry and slopping the pigs.

The fear of the LORD is the instruction of wisdom; and before honour is humility.
Proverbs 15:33

God hates pride. Humility comes before honor. We must learn to be humble, and we must teach humility. It is a hard thing to humble ourselves. Perhaps after we see another do it for us it’s a little easier to comprehend. Perhaps it becomes a more attractive quality, and we may become more inspired to seek it.


Today’s challenge is to ask God to give you the discernment to know when you need to hold another accountable, and when you need to show compassion and humility.

Accountability is important. However, at times there is much more to be gained by letting a person know that it is okay to be human than could ever be gained by expecting perfection.