The art of looking at the world through a lens of leadership is one that I have been developing myself in for a few years. I attended a post-secondary bible school with a very strong emphasis on leadership. The normal world around suddenly became alive as I noticed conversations, promotions, events and church services in a new light.
Suddenly seeing a “good mom” wasn’t just a heart warming thing, it made me switch to my leadership lenses and examine why she is a good mom. What does she do differently? What characteristics does she possess that are different?
Walking into a church, feeling welcomed and appreciated was no longer a thing to be taken for granted. I visitws Lakewood church in Dallas, Texas (home of Joel & Victoria Osteen) and qA completely overwhelmed by the number of clapping, dancing greeters. I was instantly filled with joy.
When you look through a telescope you see details very closely. This can either reveal unseen beauty or magnified mistakes. It is up to the viewer to decide what they will focus on. As you look through the telescope of leadership it is easy to become jaded and judgemental. It is important to look at the positives and negatives in balance. Ask yourself a couple of questions.
1. What can I learn from what they are doing well?
2. What can I learn from things I see need improving?
If you find the bible boring, put on your leadership glasses before reading. I had continuous revelation the other morning as I was reading in Nehemiah, chapter 6.
Nehemiah had his heart completely broken for the task for rebuilding the wall that guarded Jerusalem after it had been destroyed by their enemies. This was a great task. If you are not familiar with the whole story, start reading it here.
Soon into the reconstruction of the wall, Nehemiah came against some heavy opposition. I love how Nehemiah pulled together his leadership strength, motivated his people, and kept going. Let’s read Nehemiah 6:6-7, where a servant is bringing Nehemiah a message from the people trying to stop him.
“There is a rumor among the surrounding nations, and Geshem tells me it is true, that you and the Jews are planning to rebel and that is why you are building the wall. According to his reports, you plan to be their king. He also reports that you have appointed prophets in Jerusalem to proclaim about you, ‘Look! There is a king in Judah!’
First note these words: there is a rumour.
There was no truth to this necessarily, it was simply a rumour. How often do we as parents, family members, pastors, managers or other types of leaders run around putting out little fires that detain us from doing what is important? Have you noticed that just when God is really starting to move, or you are really beginning to accomplish something the enemy starts to stir up drama? Drama sucks the life out of us, and absolutely pulls us away from what is important.
But here is Nehemiah’s brilliant reply.
I replied, “There is no truth in any part of your story. You are making up the whole thing.” They were just trying to intimidate us, imagining that they could discourage us and stop the work. So I continued the work with even greater determination.
I love it! I laughed out when I read it the first time. Way to go Nehemiah! He just simply discredits it, tells them they are making it all up and sends the guy on his way.
- He is not motivated by fear.
- He does not stop to go make sure that everyone clearly understands this is simply a rumour.
- He refuses to let them steal time and energy from him.
- He tells his people what their enemies are trying to do to them.
- He models hard work and determination to see their vision of a rebuilt wall come to pass.
If you keep reading you will later find out that as they just focused on their work, the Lord was their defender and in time everyone saw that it was HIS hand at work, and their enemies were afraid.
So what can I learn from Nehemiah’s great leadership? Well in my everyday life I am going to be more on guard for the enemy stirring up drama. When drama starts to arise, or accusations, or rumours, I won’t give them my energy. I will remember wise Nehemiah and discredit statements, but work with greater determination at what God has called me to do.
May you see something new through your leadership lenses today!