Leadership is vitally important. Our culture is designed in such a way that it takes a team to get just about anything accomplished. Great leaders provide the right combination of vision, guidance, intellect, and hard work to move teams and organizations from where they are to where they need to be and even into their destiny. This is why I say that leadership is vitally important. Successes and failures often hinge on the caliber of leadership in operation.
Because of the vitality and necessity of leadership, organizations have leadership positions in place, that are built into the structure and culture of the organization. Subsequently, many of the people who hold these positions, try to lead from them. In other words, “I am the manager, so I will lead,” or “I am the CEO, so you will follow me.” This type of attitude does a grand disservice to you and your organization, so my advice is to never lead from your position.
As a pastor, preacher, teacher, you should know that I have to give you Bible to make my point. Israel was a theocracy, a government led by God. As needed, God would raise up a judge to lead His people for a particular season. God had given His law, and engrained it in the people’s hearts. But the nation wanted to be like everyone else, so they pleaded for a king to rule over them. So God gave them Saul. The rulership of Saul is full of illustrations of bad leadership, but from his example we find five reasons why leaders should not lead from their position:
- Without his position, Saul was insecure. From the moment we meet him in 1 Samuel 9, Saul is indecisive and weak in his spirit. The only thing he had going for himself was his stature, but even that was superficial. However, once he becomes king, his entire persona changes. People who need position to lead are usually insecure and weak. Great leaders don’t wait to occupy the seat to lead, because they will lead and maximize their influence where ever they are.
- Saul was more concerned about image than integrity. More than once Saul did what looked good, instead of what was best for the nation. Great leaders will do the right thing even when it costs, because doing the wrong thing for the sake of image will always catch up with you.
- Saul allowed the people to determine his direction. Saul had this tendency of doing whatever the people said he should do. Once, even God gave the king a direct order, in which he turned and did what the people said. Great leaders understand the limit of organizational input, and at the end of the day, he or she is responsible for his or her decisions.
- Saul lacked accountability. While Saul WAS the king, he was still accountable to God, by way of Samuel. He got to a place where he viewed himself above the law of God and the consequences thereof. Great leaders understand that they are not the “end all” of their organization; therefore not only do great leaders welcome accountability, they pursue it.
- Saul did whatever he had to do in order to keep his position. God ultimately rejects Saul and anoints David to be king, but Saul wasn’t about to give up his throne. He tries to have David assassinated, and even goes as far as conjuring up demonic spirits in order to protect his position. Great leaders know when their time is up and will not try to hold on to their positions for the sake of vanity. Not only does that hurt the organization, it ultimately kills the leader.
God knew what would happen once the nation decided to just fill a position, and all the while there was a truly great leader, ruling in obscurity. God saw David in the back nine of his father’s property, ruling with clarity and humility. In the case of Saul, God made him king so he would rule; but David was ruling, so God made him king. hopefully, in your own life, you can see the difference.
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