God’s Economy for Leadership
I recently attended and was subsequently certified as a consultant on some state-of-the-art methodology for assessing and developing leaders, employees, and students. While there is much I could say about this training, let me summarize it by stating the potential for it to help our partners, be they local or global, is high not to mention the applicability of this within the confines of The Chapel itself. Overall, I am very optimistic at the potential value of this; thus, my willingness to get this training while on vacation. Some would say that is not really a vacation, but the warm, sunny weather in Charlotte before and after the sessions said otherwise. Be that as it may, as I was going through this training several thoughts came to mind on some aspects of biblical leadership particularly as I was reading Proverbs 29. It is a noble thing, an honorable thing, and even a good thing to aspire to places of leadership whereby one is influencing the future through the lives of others. However, when we do so we need to keep certain things in mind for if we do not, the outcome may be much different than what we envisioned.
So, the question for today is do we have a solid appreciation for what God's Word says about leadership that is reflective of His heart? In my opinion this question is not only worth exploring, discovering, and understanding but also it is essential to do so. While one can glean much on leadership throughout God's Word, I chose to limit the following comments to a singular chapter in Proverbs—the 29th. This particular chapter has 27 verses that seem to go back and forth as it relates to what a fool does or is, and what a wise person does or is. Sprinkled in between are the consequences of being a fool or being wise. Each verse taken on its own has immense value, but is there a theme, a common thread running through this chapter—perhaps. In fact, I think so. As a result, I would like to share that in the remaining words of this blog.
As it relates to being a leader in, among, and on behalf of the saints, there are basically five things we must not forget and five things we must remember. If we aspire to be righteous and upright as a leader, then you and I must not forget that:
1) Evil is pursuing and awaiting me at every turn (verse 10)
2) The wicked in this world will hate anyone who aspires to such things (verse 27)
3) Many will try to exploit me (verses 12, 26)
4) My fears aim to trap me (verse 25)
5) My pride will cost me and others (verse 1)
When reflected upon, these should cause us to be alert, sober, and honest with ourselves as to our own weaknesses and susceptibility. As formidable as these five realities are in their ability to take us down, thankfully they are not the whole story. In God's economy, there is another reality that we must remember. In fact, from this particular chapter in Proverbs there are five things we need to always remember:
1) My love for godly wisdom produces joy and peace (verses 3, 8, 11)
2) When my leadership is just and fair, it is successful (verse 4)
3) My humility as a leader and as a person brings honor (verse 23)
4) God blesses leaders that reveal and revere God's heart (verse 18)
5) When I trust God, I am always secure (verse 25)
May you and I remember these realities as they relate to leadership that honors God for they are powerful! However, may we not forget the previous realities of the world for they are strong but they are not insurmountable.