Ultimate Supervision

Recently, I began a new position as a student supervisor in my office. As you might imagine, I’m incredibly excited (and slightly terrified!) about this new role. To prepare us new supervisors for the coming Academic Year, my department thought it a wise idea to send us to training. Not only did I take away great wisdom about how to manage myself and others, I gleaned a kernel of truth about the nature of God.

Our group leader asked us all a series of questions about supervision. “What is the source of your authority?” was one of them. For our purposes, answers included our college, our departments, and our own supervisors – generally, the established institution. Me, being me, took this though to an entirely new level.

What is the source of our authority? The LORD.

More so than my office or place of higher learning, God has given me this role as supervisor over my team. Since our Father in Heaven is the source of all authority, any authority granted on Earth must come from Him. “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.” (James 1:17 ESV). We are stewards of His gifts (see 1 Corinthians 4:2).

In this training, supervision was defined as “getting your work done through others.” I probably don’t even need to make that connection for you; the work of God might be described in exactly the same way. God gets His work done through us. What an ultimate privilege as Christians!

God the Father created us to fill His good purposes: to glorify Himself so we might enjoy Him forever (Westminster Catechism paraphrase). Though God often needs to correct our behaviors and attitudes, though He might give us assignments and tasks we resent, our obedience to His perfect will is necessary for the work of the Kingdom to be carried out.

In no way do I want to trivialize the workings of God with a corporate business analogy, but what a comfort to remember that, in the LORD, we have a perfect supervisor that wants, desperately, to use us in His work. Amen, and let’s get busy!

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