The Sunday gospel presents to us Jesus’ own definition of authority and obedience that which we need to consider as we deal in our ordinary events of our life. Revisiting the gospel, we witness how Jesus was tested by the Pharisees on his opinion about paying taxes with the authority. Actually, the gospel does not highlights its message about paying our taxes rightly (although the gospel of today may sound relevant nowadays especially on our obligation to pay our taxes), rather the gospel pinpoints about the authority of God over our lives. For God’s perspective, leadership is not all about “we” and our capacity to lead the people in our own standards. Leadership for God is all about repaying to Him what belongs to Him by simply letting ourselves to be directed by Him as we also do the same, i.e. directing the people towards Him.
God does not deny the fact that we must do our responsibilities for our State. What he doesn’t like in each and every one of us especially to our leaders is to deny His role as guide and as reminder once we do our duties for He is the source of good leadership. As I reflect upon these insights that I gain in letting the gospel speaks to my awareness, I could say that leadership nowadays is too far from its real essence and meaning, i.e. God’s leadership. Since from the beginning God made us aware that leadership is not all about self-glorification, but it’s all about guiding and directing people towards Him. Its root word “lead” would testify that authority of a leader should not be self-centered and egoistic; rather it should be people-centered and rooted on selfless love. In other words, repaying to God what belongs to God it is not only giving what is due to Him, but it is also all about leading and setting an example to the people guided by His example as the real essence of a genuine authority.
As I continue to reflect upon the gospel this is what strike me most; someday I will be given an opportunity to be in authority and lead. I should not always forget that a successful leader is God-fearing. Without the presence of God in an authority it will be useless and a failure. Indeed, the role of God in every authority is significant. Without His presence in every authority that we encounter in life for sure everything will be a great disaster and chaos just like what’s happening nowadays in our society.