By Perry Noble
Leadership matters! It is listed in the Scripture as a spiritual gift (Romans 12:8), there are books in the Bible dedicated to what happens when God empowered leadership is embraced (Ezra, Nehemiah, Judges, Esther) and God has called you and raised you up for the purpose of making a difference.
You are going to have to make hard decisions…ones that will cause you to be unpopular and misunderstood. Remember, the Bible says that fear of man is a snare that leads to a place you do not desire to be (see Proverbs 29:25)…and also remember that if it is your goal to be popular, understood and loved by everyone then it is impossible to do so and be a fully devoted follower of Jesus (see Galatians 1:10). MANY people see the problems…very few people actually possess the courage to do something about it…and that is what God has called, equipped and empowered you to do what you do.
God has not called you to do this alone. One of the most amazing things about leadership is that the Lord WILL surround you with men and women to come along side to serve with you and help you do all that God has placed in your heart. LISTEN to other people (See Proverbs 15:22) and understand that being the leader DOES NOT mean that you are the smartest person in the room! (When you believe that…it’s over, the smart people will leave and eventually, over time, you will be the smartest person in the room in a room full of morons!) ASK FOR HELP OFTEN…it doesn’t mean you’re weak, it actually communicates to those you lead that you are strong!
You are going to get hurt…all great leaders do. People you thought loved and cared about you will turn on you, attack you and make false accusations against you. This will cause tremendous amounts of insecurity, pain and frustration; however, don’t allow one person who goes Judas on you cause you to believe that everyone you have around you will eventually betray you. I’ve seen so many leaders isolate themselves because of things like this happening and it just isn’t necessary. The only reason that you believe leadership is lonely is because you have most likely chosen to isolate yourself.
Your character can never be compromised–EVER!
Don’t feel the need to waste time responding to every critic. Life is too short and hell is too hot for you to come down off the wall and have a conversation with people who have a history of attacking others and who make ridiculous accusations against you but have never even taken the time to try to get to know you! (See Nehemiah 6:1-4.) AND…STOP obsessing over what “they” say about you…and my friend Craig Groeschel says, “Becoming obsessed with what people think about me is the quickest way to forget what God thinks about me.”
Pay the price to grow and develop as a leader (see Proverbs 4:7!) Don’t always expect everyone to hand you something for free. Conferences cost money! Books cost money! Quit complaining about the cost! Great leaders never whine!
And remember, He who has called you is with you…He will never leave you…He will finish what He began (Philippians 1:6)…you should NOT give up (Galatians 6:9)…and He has called you to fear no one or no thing but HIM (II Timothy 1:7!)