A blueprint provides the exact details for building any structure. The greater the detail, the better the opportunity for a long lasting structure. The same is true in leaders.
Last week we talked about the necessity of the foundation being right. Today, we need to focus on the idea of following the blueprint.
This may not sound like much of a point, but think about the situation for a minute.
If someone is going to be a leader, they must be a good follower. Jesus exemplified this principle, as did the apostles, and many others have today.
If we are unable to follow the details of the blueprint, then will our leadership be successful?
Jesus called people to follow Him before sending them into the world to lead others to Him.
When someone decides they know a “better” way than following the plan of our Lord, problems are on the horizon.
The better we are at following the blueprint our Lord has provided for our leadership, the greater our success will be in the kingdom. Take the time to listen, learn and lead.
As you may know, I travel quite a bit. If I am not traveling overseas, I am domestically. Traveling has its ups and downs, good and bad.
I find a number of applications for leadership during the times I travel. For example:
There is always someone new to meet. I find it fascinating getting to know a variety of people around the world. It is a good indicator that the people we are leading are going to have a variety of personalities.
Patience is needed for every trip. There are times I would love to experience the Star Trek transporter and just be there. However, look at the great lesson I would miss that is most needed to help me develop as a leader.
I have opportunity to think. A number of issues challenge us everyday of life. Some of those issues can be resolved quickly without much thought, but I treasure the times when I travel because I have time to think about the more difficult issues.
These are only three that stand out. Take a trip and see if the lessons help your leadership.
To endure carries a depth of meaning on several levels. To endure also has a great deal of meaning from a Biblical standpoint. Not only are we commanded to endure, God also encourages us with the benefits that come eternally to those who endure.
From a leadership perspective, enduring can be very challenging to endure. To endure literally involves bearing up under the load. It goes far deeper than being patient.
While we are to be patient in all things, endurance takes us to a level that challenges our ability to hold on, and hold on longer than we can imagine. Endurance is more than a sprint, it is the marathon.
A couple of thoughts might help us endure when the road presents these challenges.
One, remember the adage; “if God brings us to it, He will see us through it.”
Two, God will not allow us to be tempted beyond what we are able to bear (1 Co. 10:13).
Three, we must not forget, no matter how difficult, it is only temporary.
With some perspective, we can endure knowing our God is in control.
Satan’s attacks are destroying the faith of many. How to face this situation and overcome has plagued the minds of leaders for centuries.
As we have mentioned, the most prevalent way to meet Satan head on is by knowing how he attacks. Here is where leaders must rise up and guard the faith of Christians.
One specific area Satan has used to destroy the faith of Christians is materialism. I have seen the affects of materialism in my own life and in others.
The struggle is not one that exists only in the United States. I have seen this issue in every country I have visited around the world.
The desire to have the “things” of this world is epidemic. Sadly, it creates other sinful attitudes and issues.
We can easily develop envy, jealousy, greed and idolatry.
I wish there was one piece of advice that would provide the answer, but there is not. Leaders must set an example and seek ways to assist others who are struggling.
Perhaps the first step would be to spend time seeking God’s help. More to come next week…
“Anyone can hold the helm when the sea is calm.” Publilius Syrus
Several spiritual parallels can be made to this thought, i.e. it is not difficult to have faith when life is going well.
The challenge to faith (holding the helm) is continuing to believe God is in control and involved in our lives, looking out for our best interest, even when life is not going well.
This thought is even more significant when dealing with our leadership. The spiritual nature of leadership will face numerous storms while holding on to the helm.
Disbelief in our vision and goals will exist among those who are following.
Jealousy begins to consume dissenters who doubt our motives.
Gossip, slander and malice will spread to discredit our leadership.
Attempts will be made to discourage and stop progress.
These are only a few ways the storms will blow against our leadership, even when we are leading with a godly, Christlike spirit.
Hold the helm, remain strong in the faith, keep our eyes focused on Jesus, and continue to lead.
A blueprint provides the specific dimensions for constructing everything from a tool shed to a mega complex or high rise.
The purpose of a blueprint is to provide every detail to make certain the structure will last.
What kind of blueprint could we use as leaders to ensure our leadership will be long lasting? The answer is the Bible. From this incredible book we find several areas we will consider each week to construct biblical leadership.
All blueprints begin with the foundation. Only when we build on the right foundation will our leadership carry a lasting influence.
Paul clearly points out there is no human who has the power to lay the kind of foundation needed for lasting leadership. Only in Jesus will we find a foundation upon which we can build the kind of leadership that will endure (1 Corinthians 3:11).
From His example we learn the nature, qualities, and character of the leader God desires and designed for us today.
This example is one we must follow and we will look at over the weeks ahead.
Prayer seems to be a given when it comes to spiritual leadership. We know about prayer. We study about prayer. We talk about prayer. We teach about prayer.
However, do we believe in the power of prayer?
As with most of you, I can attest to numerous times God has answered prayers in powerful ways. I have seen Him answer in unexpected ways that went beyond my request.
I am thankful for the avenue of prayer and I desire to have the kind of faith to know God will continue to answer my requests.
I guess the struggle for me is dealing with the temptation to doubt when the various trials arise to challenge my faith in God’s power to answer…yet again.
When it comes to prayer, there is no magic formula, special words, proper position, or time of the day that makes a difference.
For Christians, prayer is about the simplicity of a humble heart that trusts God to answer in His time, in His ways, and in our best interest.
We may not always understand, but praying without ceasing is the foundation to powerful leadership.