Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Are You Being Honest with YOURSELF?

A great post by Mac Lake - A must read!
Integrity is essential for leadership credibility.  And for many leaders the starting point of losing integrity is when they stop being honest with themselves.  
When you lead an organization, team or church all eyes are on you. The success and progress of your organization is strangely intertwined with your significance and self-esteem. This is what makes it difficult for us to be honest with ourselves. There are times when things are not going as well as we like. The organization is in decline, resources are drying up or people are jumping ship. And instead of looking at the cold hard facts we try to convince ourselves that everything is okay. We find excuses for why things are not going well and worse we even put a spin to make it look like these things are positive.

I was talking with the church planter one day who told me about all the people leaving his church. He put a positive slant on it by saying, “You know we are just blessed to be sending people out.” But from everything I could discern people were leaving because he was not a leader others wanted to follow. When a leader is not honest with himself he will continue down the road of mediocrity which ultimately leads to failure.

When we’re not honest with ourselves…
§ we fail to grow in essential areas that help us improve as leaders
§ we lose credibility and influence with our followers
§ we’re unable to move into a place of fruitfulness and fulfillment
§ we hinder the work God wants to do in our own development
Remember Paul’s words in Romans 12:3 “Don’t think you are better than you really are. Be honest in your evaluation of yourselves, measuring yourselves by the faith God has given us.”  Take some time and ask yourself a few questions:

§ How are things going, really?
§ Are there excuses I’ve been making for poor performance or unacceptable results?
§ Am I fruitful and fulfilled in what I am doing?  If no, then why not?
§ Am I using my God-given gifts?  What’s the evidence of that?
§ Am I excited about the future?  If no, why not?
§ Am I actively listening for the promptings of the Holy Spirit?
§ Do I feel challenged by the work that I do or have i grown stale?
The man who is honest with himself about himself will walk in humility and gain greater respect among men.

Wednesday, 6 March 2013

A Call to Love....and a call to die!

Francis Schaeffer says,  "To the effect that when Christians differ, there is a golden opportunity to show the world how we love each other. Differences are not the end of love, they are the occasion for love. Which means an occasion for death. One of the reasons it's so easy to walk away from a difference instead of working it out is that you don't have to die."

Before there will be revival, there will be a dying in each of us; and before we see a great resurgence of love we will have to die.

Here is an list from John Piper that challenges me to the core and I hope it does for you.

A Call to Love . . . and to Death 

  • Being long-suffering means dying to the desire for an untroubled life.
  • Having no jealousy means dying to the desire for unshared affection.
  • Not boasting means dying to the desire to call attention to our successes.
  • Not acting unbecomingly means dying to the desire to express our freedom offensively.
  • Not seeking our own way means dying to the dominance of our own preferences.
  • Not being easily provoked means dying to the need for no frustrations.
  • Not taking account of wrongs means dying to the desire for revenge.
  • Bearing all things and enduring all things means dying to the desire to run away from the pain of obedience.