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By Dr. Walter Ghosten

To survive, organizations need responsible leadership. Our communities also need strong, accountable leaders as do our places of worship where responsible leadership is essential. Let’s take this thought a step further. Every family needs responsible parents. So, against this backdrop, the mass killings in our society are a tragedy and I am saddened by them. I hope that through responsible leadership in all areas of society, we can find a way to come together as a community to prevent them from happening.

Children and adults are killed every day needlessly by individuals who have a mental illness. Mental illness is not new to humanity. The Bible gives us plenty of examples of this darkness and tells the story of a man who suffered from mental illness. His condition was so severe that he was cast out of his community due to his behavior. A social outcast, the man took up residence in the graveyard on the outskirts of the Gadara community. He refused to wear clothes and cried out day and night while cutting himself with stones. He became fiercely violent towards anyone who crossed his path.

It was only when the man spoke with the Lord that it was discovered that his problem was a mental condition that only God could fix. The leadership of the city had not sought to help the man, but rather had thought that tying him up in a graveyard would rid them of his behavior and their problem.

Responsible leaders understand that human solutions can never overcome the power of darkness. Attempts to permanently restrain people’s dark behavior will always fail in the end, because only God’s love and sufficient grace can transform a life. No amount of external restraint or self-reformation will ever change their status with God.

When all human efforts failed, God was the only one who could help the man of the Gadara community. Leaders can thank God, that when it comes to answering their problems, suffering and pain, God’s answers often come in many unexpecting ways.

When leaders believe in God, they are empowered to be a blessing to others. For example, a parent’s obedience to God will improve the lives of their children by providing them with love, guidance, and discipline. Leaders’ obedience to God will help their followers thrive. A godly neighbor brings blessings that the whole community enjoys. And when one person in a business is heeding God’s words, the others in the organization benefit.

If you and I are obedient to the word of God as leaders, in whatever he calls us to do, that blessing is going to extend to people around us. So be responsible leaders, and Never give up! Never give up! Never give up!