A day set aside for expressing gratitude is a special day indeed.
Enough space does not exist in any blog post to express every area where we are thankful. One thought is sure; we are thankful for our God and you.
Our prayer is that this holiday is a special time spent with friends and family, one day among many to reflect on the blessings of life and give thanks.
From all of us to all of you…
Seek responsibility and take responsibility for actions.
Leadership involves responsibility. The higher one goes in leadership, the greater the responsibility. As many have said, the greater the responsibility, the fewer the rights.
We could say we live in a culture where taking responsibility is not an acceptable practice. We could also say we live in a culture where the common practice is one of blaming others.
The problem is not cultural. This practice has been in place since creation. When questioned by God about eating the forbidden tree, Adam blamed Eve (and God for the woman given to Adam). Eve blamed the serpent. We have not changed much as people in the twenty-first century.
Leadership seeks responsibility and takes responsibility for their actions.
It is an interesting and powerful thought to consider: leaders give credit to the team when there is victory, but take full responsibility when there is defeat.
Rarely do we find such integrity and leadership. Yet, when leaders seek responsibility and take responsibility for their actions their influence grows. The result? People will follow!
To improve is to work at making someone or something better.
Athletes practice daily to improve their skills. They work hard to get better.
Professionally, people enroll in continuing education classes in an attempt to improve their abilities at whatever level needed. We should desire to be a learner, improving our minds and abilities.
Spiritually, we follow the teaching of Paul in being renewed daily. Doing so improves our abilities to fulfill God’s will for our lives.
From a leadership perspective, our role is to lead in ways we can improve others. Our leadership must not be about us. It is about others. It is about leading them down paths of improvement.
When we improve life spiritually, the physical side of the equation cannot help but improve. We improve the lives of others when we:
…share the hope found in Christ,
…point to the reward of heaven,
…and teach application in word and deed.
We all need to improve. The challenge is learning to understand how we improve ourselves in the greatest way by improving the life of others. Think Souls!
Before we dive into today’s post, we must realize that the depths of this subject cannot be covered in a few articles.
Hopefully, we can examine a few prayers from scripture by leaders of God’s people and learn from the relationship they exemplify with God.
Prayer is an avenue by which communication with God occurs. We often consider our approach to God as significant to understanding prayer. We base this on the instruction to the apostles who desired to learn how to pray (Lk. 11:1). We lift up the prayer of Solomon (1 Kgs. 8:22-53) or David’s expressions throughout the Psalms.
We can certainly learn a needed reverence in approaching God’s throne to speak. Without doubt, He is to be revered and lifted up by our hearts through the words from our lips.
We should remember that these examples are not the only prayers found in scripture, and they were not intended to provide a formula to be used in every prayer.
Prayer signifies a relationship and leaders need to understand more fully the relationship represented through prayer. More next week…
“Change can be scary, but you know what’s scarier? Allowing fear to stop you from growing, evolving, and progressing.” Mandy Hale
Why does the idea of “change” create such fear on the part of so many people? One possible answer is the idea that change brings something negative or bad. The idea is also associated with the tendency of introducing liberalism.
We do not condone or promote unbiblical or inappropriate change. The idea of change, however, can be a positive, powerful, and necessary approach to growth. As expressed, it is possible that our fear of change hinders growth and progress.
Change is biblical. The idea is expressed in the term – repentance. There must be a change of mind that implements a change in action and direction. God intended this change to be a part of the Christian life.
If we consider change from a methodological or philosophical point of view, without wading into areas that are unbiblical or inappropriate, we might be looking at the greatest way to produce growth and progress.
Our fear of change must not stifle us from achieving all that God can do through us.
A strange feeling exists when we are caught between a rock and a hard place? This idea was expressed by Paul in his letter to the church at Philippi.
To go on and be with the Lord was far better in Paul’s eyes. To remain on in the flesh had benefit for the church. Paul felt torn between the two, thus, caught between a rock and a hard place.
The middle brings interesting thoughts to mind.
There are those who are caught in the middle between two friends.
There are children who are in the middle, born between two siblings.
There are followers of Christ who, religiously, walk in the middle of the road, neither one side or the other.
Spiritual leaders may find themselves like Paul, desiring to be with the Lord, but realizing the necessity to remain on in the flesh for the benefit of the church.
However, leaders cannot afford to be in the middle of the road regarding God’s word. Leaders need dedication and confidence to move others from point A to point B.
Leaders must be technically proficient.
On the surface, we would assume if someone is in a leadership position, they would naturally be proficient. Sadly, this is not always the case.
There are two primary areas where this principle has direct application.
First, leaders need to know their job. They need to know what they are supposed to do. Imagine the challenges of a leader who does not know their job responsibilities, or will not allow others to do their job. The result of either is disastrous for the overall production of the group and task. Proficiency occurs when leaders know and fulfill their job.
Second, leaders need to be familiar with the job responsibilities of others. Unless leaders know the job responsibilities of others, and provide accountability for the work, progress becomes dependent on leadership to carry on the work. The result creates conflict and a lack of productivity.
From a spiritual perspective, a good description would be sheep without a shepherd. However, when everyone knows their role and works to fulfill it, the church of Christ functions according to the descriptive body defined in Scripture.