This post is part of our Sunday Series titled “Articles of Faith.”
We investigate leadership lessons from the Bible.
See the whole series here. Published only on Sundays.
Do you feel like your leadership has a sense of purpose to it? Do you feel like you do what you do for a reason. Even when times are difficult and you have to lead others through misery, rejection, downsizing, or worse, do you walk with an internal feeling that something is guiding you?
And if so, is this likely to be reassuring to you? Or, does it feel like shackles?
Or do you feel that everyday is a clean new blank page with no “invisible code” at hand. Do you feel that you are absolutely free and unencumbered to lead with no strings attached? Do you think that nothing is in control of you?
And if so, does this offer the reassurance that freedom brings? Or does it make a lonely journey sometimes more frightening?
Rate Your Feelings
When you hear these words, what comes to mind? Are you feeling more positive or negative with these words?
The words can be comforting to some while being highly agitating to others. It all depends on your point of view, your belief framework, and your level of faith in a God who you cannot see. See these three over-simplified ways that can describe how people feel toward having a divine authority in control of their actions and their roles within leadership:
Many people feel strongly that God is walking them through their life at every stage. Even more, they feel that God is with them in every moment, every heartbeat, and every blink of an eye. He watches over them and is at the ready to be their counselor. He is there to help them with their leadership when they ask Him.
On the other end of the spectrum, there are those who reject the “master puppeteer” concept and reject the notion of a universal force ready to help. They may even think that if there is a God or universal force, that it only serves to punish and smite. There is no help at all for their leadership role.
And in between these two realms is a place where people think that God helps with the big stuff, but doesn’t necessarily get too involved with the small stuff. He’ll be available for some leadership issues if really, really needed.
The Bible and Leaders
For those who understand the Bible to be a perfect source of direction, they can find many lessons that God is actively working in the lives and roles of leaders every day. In fact, people are told to pray for their leaders to a personal God who actually listens. Leaders can also get a sense of direction from God.
As Bobby Clinton points out in lesson number 7 (of 7) in his paper Leadership Lessons— Seven Major Lessons Identified, leaders actually get a sense of destiny.
Effective Leaders Evince A Growing Awareness Of Their Sense Of Destiny.
A sense of destiny is an inner conviction arising from an experience (or a series of experiences) where there is a growing awareness that God has His hand on a leader in a special way for special purposes. This typically happens along a three-fold destiny pattern: destiny preparation, destiny revelation, and destiny fulfillment.
That is, a leader is usually unaware of preparation items as they happen, but in retrospect can reflect and see how God was preparing for a destiny. The sense of destiny deepens as God begins to unfold more clearly life purpose,role, and strategic guidance. And finally some or all of the destiny is fulfilled. Leaders become gradually aware of a destiny with God as He continues to shape them over a lifetime.
A leader ought to be sensitive to destiny shaping activities in his/her past and present, and be anticipating their future implications. This awareness informs decision-making reflecting partnership with God toward fulfilling that destiny.Why Important: No Biblical leader greatly used by God failed to have a strong sense of destiny. A strong sense of destiny will buttress a leader to persevere toward a strong finish.
Abraham, Joseph, Moses, Jesus, Paul. Joseph, Moses, and Paul vividly demonstrate the threefold pattern of destiny preparation, destiny revelation and destiny fulfillment.
Pray for Your Company
Here is some guidance from PrayForLeaders.org on what to pray for at your company.
They recommend the following:
Ask your company officers and employees to join together in an intercessory prayer for the welfare of your company, customers, vendors, marketplace and one another. (Jeremiah 29:7)
1. For Godly wisdom be given each manager and employee. Also special super-natural insight into the tasks at hand and knowledge of your work.
2. For cooperation between departments, shifts, and employees. A team motivation that seeks the welfare of the whole, not just the individual.
3. For an eliminating of negative attitudes that tend to poison the work environment.
4. For a protecting of your work from mistakes, unforseen errors, and most of all chargebacks! Also clarity of mind, strength of purpose and a determination to do things well.
5. For profitable operations in each department. An excellency of operations and workflows.
6. For ability to face the challenges and struggles that confront you each day with a firm knowledge and confidence that “He who is with-in you is greater than he who is in the world.” (1John 4:4)
7. For your customers and vendors that God’s grace and mercy would go before you to smooth over difficulties and prevent the sabotage of your working relationships.
8. For your marketplace that it would continue to grow and expand. For your marketshare to continue to grow and expand as well.
9. For your company owners and officers that they would “trust in the Lord with all their hearts, not leaning only on their own understanding.” (Proverbs 3:5) And for special provision and protection for them personally and professionally.
These not only are good prayers to help establish God’s economy in your workplace, they also contain wonderful business management principles as well. Begin today incorporating these Godly truths into your daily routine. Remember, your break-through is only a prayer away.
Tom Schulte is Executive Director of Linked 2 Leadership
He provides leadership training fit for the Blackberry-Attention-Span
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