Two weeks ago, in the wake of gaining new leaders in our country, I began a short series on leadership.
The first week we discussed what the Biblical response to leadership is – to submit and respect our leaders. Last week, we began to look at some characteristics of a good godly leader.
Today I want to dive deeper into what makes a leader. What should we expect of them and what should they expect of us?
First of all, I cannot stress enough that a leader is one who is LEADING. A good leader MUST be headed in a direction that is worthy to be FOLLOWED! Being in a position of power does NOT make you a leader.
It just means you have a title and have been given power. Being a leader is an earned position because people will only truly FOLLOW you and RESPECT you if you deserve it.
Let me further add that when you are a leader, a true leader – a person who knows where they are going and is seeking to make themselves and their world a better place – then people will follow and respect you EVEN IF YOU DO NOT HAVE A TITLE. A true leader does not have to command respect and follower-ship; his life naturally leads others to that response.
Let me bring it closer to home as I analyse leadership. My husband is a natural leader. He loves himself and he loves others. He is secure and humble.
He is a man of integrity who does what is right even when no one is watching.
He is a strong person who knows what he believes in and if given the opportunity, he can tell you about his foundations, but he is also okay to just live out his convictions without pushing those onto anyone.
We have lived in Botswana, America, and Canada and everywhere we live, regardless of whether he has a “title of power” or not – people seek him out for advice and trust his guidance if he counsels someone to go in the same direction he is headed.
Even last night, we went to an event and an older man we have never met approached us. He told us how Percy was his daughter’s head-boy in secondary school, at a school called Mater Spei.
He told of how years later the girl still talks about the impact Percy made on the school because he was so responsible, diligent and trustworthy as the school’s head-boy.
These are Christ like characteristics – to live a life which is praiseworthy and to leave a mark years later.
These are the types of characteristics I pray EVERY SINGLE day our national leaders would aspire to have. Lord, may they seek you FIRST. May they humble themselves BEFORE YOU.
May they trust YOU to lift them up! Instead of demanding respect, would they lead and make decisions in such a way people WANT to honour, respect, and follow them.
May they stand for SOMETHING so they don’t fall for everything! May they fear you so they know they will be judged for their actions and gain wisdom in the knowledge that they
May they understand that you see ALL THINGS and live in the LIGHT not in the dark.
May you expose that which they do in the dark so that you can humble them so that we have leaders who are not arrogant and corrupt, but leaders who are earnestly seeking to live upright lives – lives of Truth not lives of deception.
And Lord, may you help them to realise that as they choose to follow you and your principles, they will have lives that are exceedingly more abundant than they could think or imagine and WE, as a nation, who are subjected to live by the decisions they make will prosper as a nation!
That is what we should pray for and hope for in our leaders – but what about us, the “Followers”? I believe we need to live in the same way we expect them to lead.
It SICKENS me the way corruption flourishes in this country! The thing that frustrates me the most is that we hold our leaders to a different standard than ourselves.
We are so quick to talk about how corrupt so and so is, but then if given a chance we will quickly pay the bribe or look the other way when we know we should report wrong doing.
Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. Ephesians 5:15-17
Jesus says, “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.”
It is NOT right that we continue to judge others by a standard we are not willing to follow. My friends, please if we want our country to become a better place, we cannot put all of our hopes on the leaders for that change.
The change must start with US, each one of US living the way we expect our leaders to live! Every one of us make up our country and every one of our decisions and lifestyle choices will either make our nation a WORSE place or a BETTER place.
Whatever your position is in our nation – live in the light. Live a life worthy to be followed! Be a leader!
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org or Facebook page: Talking with the Thabas
Ashley Thaba is a popular motivational speaker and life coach. She is the author of the well-known books, Dive In and Conquering the Giants. She also facilitates corporate team building and wellness activities. You can view some of her work on her YouTube channel: Ashley Thaba