Depth vs. Breadth – A Leadership Strategy

March 25, 2010

Depth vs. breadth. I had mentioned in an earlier post about how “Depth vs. Breadth” is a key value here at Life Action. We believe that if we take care of the depth of our ministry, then God will take care of the breadth of our ministry. Well, Michael Hyatt has a post on his site that addresses this very well. I would encourage you to read his post. (Click here)

Following are a few highlights:

“So much of the activity I see among leaders today is focused on reaching the masses. ‘Successful leaders’ speak at big conferences, host popular television or radio shows, publish bestselling books, or write successful blogs. Their goal is breadth. They want to extend their influence to as many people as possible.

Jesus had a much different leadership strategy. His goal was not “reach” or popularity. Instead, Jesus focused on true depth and long-term impact. To achieve this, he had a four-pronged leadership strategy:

1. He taught the multitudes.

2. He mobilized the seventy.

3. He trained the twelve.

4. He confided in the three.

The older I get, the more value I see in going deeper with a few. Leading the masses may feed my ego, but it won’t guarantee an impact that will outlive me.”

It is so much more impactful to go deep with a few, than just to “hit the surface” with many. If you are truly interested in creating life change that lasts, then prayerfully choose a few people to invest your life in for periods of time.

4 responses to Depth vs. Breadth – A Leadership Strategy


    B G – Thanks for your answer.

    From your “position” and “Tradition” your research does make sense.
    When I was in “Leadership” it made sense to me as well.
    I could make a good case of how important “leadership” is to the body.
    Especially the part about “Obeying” and “Submitting” to your “Leaders.” 😉

    After leaving “The Religious System” in the early 90’s,
    through much pain, tears and “Spiritual Abuse,” 😦
    I started to ask different questions and receive different answers.

    Seems, in my experience…
    “Leadership” = exercise authority = lord it over = abuse = always

    Had to go to Jesus directly, no longer having trust in man. Jer 17:5.

    Found out…
    It’s the things you learn after you know it all that really counts.

    What is popular is not always truth.
    What is truth is not always popular.

    At one time I spoke about Jethro, Moses and appointing leaders.
    But, now when I read that, I see Moses messing up again. Huh?

    Yea, Moses messed up so often he never makes it into the “Promised Land.”
    I find it humorous how “Leaders” use Moses as an example of “Leadership.”
    Why? Because, Moses didn’t last, he didn’t “overcome until the end.”
    Seems most in “Leadership” don’t last. The stat’s are horrible. 70% FAIL.

    Seems Jethro, moses father-in-law, was a priest of midian (midian = strife).
    For the most part, the midianites were not frindly towords the Isrealites.
    Jethro, shows up in the wilderness, tells Moses to appoint leaders,
    then disappears, never to be heard from again. Hmmm?
    And the rulers of thousands, rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties,
    and rulers of tens, seem to disapear, never to be heard from again. Hmmm?

    From my research, and God forbid, I could be wrong,
    Moses “never” asks God if he should appoint “leaders.” Oy Vey! 😦

    Moses listens to Jethro, who is NOT a Hebrew Priest, and NOT God.

    In Exodus 18:19 Jethro says to Moses…
    Hearken now unto my voice, I will give thee counsel…

    Exodus 18:24
    So Moses hearkened to the voice of his father in law,
    and did all that he had said.

    Check that out for yourself. I could have missed something.

    I do see “Leadership” a little greater today.
    Jesus said “You have “ONE” master/leader, the Christ. Mat 23:10.
    Jesus also said, “You can’t serve “two” masters.” Luke 16:13.
    Jesus is the “Head” of the body, the church. Col 1:18.

    If you’re interested, I have looked at the “leaders” of Heb 13,
    and came away with something in addition to what I was taught.

    Blessings in your search for truth… Jesus.



      Good afternoon Mr. Amos,

      We may have to agree to disagree :-). I am convinced that godly leadership, that is submitted to Christ and that has a love for those being led, is important to the advancement of the Kingdom of Christ and in this vein is good. I do realize that authority has been and is often abused and how that must grieve our Lord. I am sorry for your hurt and saddened for those that caused it. I do think that the lust for power has caused great damage in this world and is something that we must continually guard against.




    Seems one of Jesus’ stratagies was to teach “His Disciples” NOT to be called “Leader.”

    Just wondering how you reconcile the use
    of the word “leader” With what Jesus said in Mt 23:10.

    The word “leader”seems like a “high place.” Yes?

    Jesus always took and recommended the “low place.” Yes?

    Jesus humbled Himself, made himself of no reputation
    and took on the form of a servant.
    Php 2:7

    Jesus, in Mat 23:10, told His disciples “NOT” to call themselves
    master/“leaders” for you have “ONE” master/”leader” the Christ.

    King James Version –
    Neither be ye called masters:
    for one is your Master, even Christ.

    The Interlinear Bible –
    Nor be called leaders,
    for one is your leader the Christ.

    Phillips Modern English –
    you must not let people call you leaders,
    you have only one leader, Christ.

    Today’s English Version –
    nor should you be called leader.
    your one and only leader is the Messiah.

    The Amplified-
    you must not be called masters ( leaders )
    for you have one master ( leader ) the Christ.

    Jesus told His disciples not to be
    called “leaders” and none did.

    Ro 1:1 Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ…
    Php 1:1 Paul and Timotheus, the servants of Jesus Christ…
    Col 4:12 Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ…
    Tit 1:1 Paul, a servant of God…
    Jas 1:1 James, a servant of God…
    2Pe 1:1 Simon Peter, a servant…

    His disciples “all” called themselves “servants.”
    None called themselves “leaders.” None? None.
    None called themselves “servant-leader.” None.

    If Jesus instructed “His disciples” NOT to call themselves “leaders”
    and someone calls themself a “leader”
    or thinks they are a “leader;”

    Are they a “disciple of Christ?”

    Just wondering. Be blessed.



      Good afternoon – thank you for your comments!

      As you state we are to be servants and to esteem others as greater than ourselves. A foundational understanding of spiritual leadership is that first and foremost you are a servant of Christ and a servant to those He has called you to shepherd. Leading (shepherding) in God’s economy is all about serving. The Lord clearly sets out the fact that we are to have leaders beginning with the establishing of the husband as the head of the family, Jethro’s advice to Moses to establish others under him, the leaders of the various tribes of Israel and in 1 Timothy where we are admonished to pray for our rulers and where he says it is good to aspire to the office of overseer which is definitely a leadership position, where again in Titus is talks about an overseer to Hebrews 13:7, where it says, “remember your leaders” and Hebrews 13:17 where Scripture say, “Obey your leaders..”, and so on. In my research, in the passage you mentioned it is referring more to the term rabbi or instructor, but Jesus was not forbidding the use of the term in all cases, but was forbidding them to be used as the Pharisees did – to wrongly exalt themselves out of foolish human pride.

      So – from my research and understanding, it is a noble thing to aspire to the position of leadership in God’s Kingdom if you are Spirit-led and your motivation is to exalt Christ (not yourself) and to make yourself a servant to those you lead (I prefer the term “shepherd”).

      than make sense?

      Thanks again,