Servant Leadership, Effective Leadership – Bridging People Together


Part 1 Matthew 5:9

"Blessed are the peacemakers,

   for they will be called children of God."

As a child, I had a love for bridges. It always fascinated me that a bridge could take you from one land mass to another. When I was twelve, my family and I were on a trip and went across the Golden Gate Bridge. This was a magnificent journey for me. We took the tour, and I was fascinated by the history of the bridge. It was during this trip that I began to understand something about why bridges are so crucial to us.

The Golden Gate Bridge, like all bridges, was built for a single purpose. The motivation for a bridge ultimately is to save time and connect people. Why would we want to do this? Why go to all the expense of spanning a gulf to connect two land masses? The answer is simple. When you bridge something, you bring it together. So, why has it been such a challenge to bring people together in this age? I have a hypothesis for this disconnection. We all seem to dwell in our own echo chambers. If there is a dissimilar view that goes against our own, we strike out at this and try to shout it out of existence. There is a solution to this. We are all called to be peacemakers. In other words, we are called to bring together different people to work as one.

In Matthew 5:9 Jesus said, “Blessed are the peacemakers for they will be called children of God.”  Be the bridge that brings people together. Community is one of the things that is disappearing from the American culture. Without community, we are alone and vulnerable to life’s hardships. With hardships, people tend to strike out against others. The loss of community precipitates the feeling of isolation and strife. This, in turn, polarizes people. The anonymous nature of the internet gives our voice a fertile landscape to proliferate all manner of contention. I say this, if you are a follower of Christ use the interconnectedness of the internet and real life to deliver a new message. One that brings people together, if not in peace at least in cooperation. This cooperation is not without a price. You need to give it freely and without any expectations of payment. Apply this concept to your day to day dealings with people.

We are placed on this planet to work with one another to better ourselves and others. To this end, we are called to bridge people and ideas. This is a willful and conscious act. It may not seem glorious or easy, but it will bring benefits tenfold to your community. So, when you are the bridge you are bringing together something more substantial than a landmass; you are bringing together people. The enhancement of lives will naturally follow this.

Gary Stiefel Vienna