What makes a good leader these days? Does he or she have to be bold, strong, popular, good looking, hard worker?
Jesus, the Life leader to us all (Matthew 23:10 MSG) illustrated good leadership as good servanthood.
‘If you want to be the first he said, you are not a good fit for leadership’ ( see Mark 9:35).
The traits of a good leader according to Jesus are of a different order than ours. For Him, humility, integrity, compassion, generosity, understanding and constant dependence on God are at the top of his requarment. He is the perfect example. Jesus Christ left behind heaven to come as a lowly babe and bleed for us. He shares his tears when we are griefing, he rejoices in our joys, he sympathises and empathises with us. He guides us through difficulties and never gives-up on us.
What kind of leader are you? Does servanthood takes any part in your leadership?
Being brought up in a dictatorship and raised under a corrupt and harsh governmental style, I appreciate the privileges of a godly government. There are no pure governments, but there have been through history some good ones. I believe that when those who are in the government pray for the people, and the people pray for them who govern, amazing things can be achieved. Governing is always a prayer partnership between people and God.
If we want to see wise, just, people who bring prosperity to all, good defender of the poor, honourable, meek, kind and strong people who govern, we must pray to God who has and gives all those attributes to his people to help us with our leaders.
If we want to see the poor, the destitute, the weak rescued and helped we need to participate with our God, politicians and each other to see that happen.
It’s about prayer, and not complaining, is about longing for the real King who cares and loves the world to accomplish His will on earth.
It’s common to doubt God when life is turned upside down. Doubt we have, but doubt should have us not. When life throws us in a pit, there, is the best place to remember God and what he says. Let us never say that God has forsaken or forgotten us. He promises to never do so. Never think that He is uncaring. He will quicken to our aide.
His love is tender and his mercy is vast, his truth is freeing and his grace is sufficient. GOD likes to fill our lives with surprises. He is unpredictable and risky. He does not like us to figure him out. He wants us to seek Him. Seek Him in the valley, seek Him in the top of the mountain, seek Him in the desert and seek Him in the river current.
Our mission is that as we seek we keep our expectations focused on Him.
His tender love will restore our lives over and over and over again.
We will get old. Just because the usage of botox and surgery can eliminate some of our wrinkles, the body continuously gravitates to its destination.
When we are young we need God, when we are old we need him more.
You see, oftentimes the strength of our arms and the sharpness of our minds can ‘replace’ God in our youth, but not so when we are old.
We don’t retire from God. Retirement is something that our bodies might need, but in the kingdom, our spirits are getting renewed every day. But, just because our bodies are limiting us, God is limitless.
With every ‘age ‘ we ask God for help that we will continue to do the work of the gospel even in our old age. Not perhaps in the same condition than when our bodies were strong, but with the same fire and commitment. The new generation is always in need to hear the wonderful miracles of the Lord. ( See Proverb 16:31, Isaiah 46:4, Titus 2:2-4)
My husband and I had a conversation lately with someone that has gone through torment and pain for most of his childhood. Rejection from parents, abuse from people who were supposed to protect him and abandonment its what paints the majority of the years of his growing up.
Rightly, he was asking us why those heartbreaking things happen to him. We did not have an answer, none really knows the hard whys in our lives, but we said what we have seen in our lives that: God always puts people in our path to show us his grace and his love even in the middle of pain.
Even when we don’t know him, he knows us.
If we look back, yes, even in those most difficult times of our lives there will be glimpses of his kindness and love on the way. The writer of Psalm 71 is on the run and danger for his life, at those very moments he remembers the faithfulness of God since he was in the womb. Can you recognize God and detect his love in the most difficult times you have faced?
Because Jesus became the door, we always have an open door to the Father. The cross attained the ‘all access’ for us to the presence of the Father through the Holy Spirit.
Whence before we were separated with God, now we have an eternal relationship with Him. We were in enmity with God, now we belong to his family. We have the freedom to approach God, to live in His grace, to enjoy His mercy and presence and to dwell on His truth. You might be experiencing a lot of close doors at the present, know this:
Jesus is the door. The door to salvation and life, the door to safety and health. We will always find that door open and inside a room to breathe and rest Do you know the door? Are you trying to run to the Father God by other doors? Jesus is the only one to authorize your entry. Run to him.
God wants us to pray before we do anything at all, God wants us to praise in the middle of all also. We tend to either leave prayer as the last resort and complain in the middle of the process.
Prayer is not something we do as believers, it is what we are.
This psalm starts with an urgent prayer, David wants God to be quick in answering and coming. Still in the middle of his plea for help praise lifts off from his mouth. We don’t know if he got his prayer answered and when, but we learn that prayer is necessary and that praise is vital.
Dear Lord, help us to pray without ceasing and praise you continually. We are poor and needy O Lord, we can’t do either with full heart, no pray or praise.
Troubles are proven to almost always make us look to God, but His blessings tend to distract our attention elsewhere.
It’s not that God does not use blessings to keep our eyes fixed on him, it’s just that we are easily distracted creatures.
The suffering, heartbreak, temptation, setbacks, illness, broken relationships all them, although hard going, it’s often the only way that God can get us alone with him.
It’s the only time that he can teach and reveal himself to us.
So, take heart, my dear friend, if you are going through any of these things. Jesus cannot instruct us anything until we quiet all our intellectual concerns and fearful hearts and get alone with Him.
When he gets alone with us we will have his eyes and heart to see ourselves and others and his strength to deal with all.
Take heart, all you God-seekers.
It’s mind-baffling to many of us when we hear or realise that: God will wound us to transform us.
We accept for example, that for a surgeon to get cancer out the body he needs first to cut the way in. When we go to a doctor with an abscess the cut is vital for the pus to drain and heal.
We read in the Bible that when Jacob and God were wrestling together ( Genesis 32:22-32) Jacob was left with a limp. A person that has truly met with God is always marked. His walk in life and his posture are altered.
People may question his ways, we may reject his method, but like a loving father, he loves us and he transforms us, and that often means through pain. The Bible and the history of humanity tell us that: suffering handled with God is one of the greatest instruments that bring us to the understanding of our dependence on God and his love for us.
I am not saying here that suffering is to be enjoyed or make us unsympathetic to one another, all I am saying is that we worship a suffering saviour, suffering is part of our lives. With him pain will always have a purpose.
When I went to school shaming was an everyday practice. Shame and fear, this dynamic duo was used by teachers and pupils alike. Although I did not get to experience much shaming as I was a good student, I experienced a few which left their scar deeply.
The first one was when I was about 7 years old and I was made to stand for one hour on one foot without rest facing the class. The second one was when I was 16 years old and the boys in the table behind had stuck chewing gum to my trousers (bottom) which I carried as a big stamp while writing on the black table.
In both occasions, there was giggling and finger-pointing and mocking that still screech to my ears. What makes it even more painful is that these came from all, yes, even those who were my best friends.
What I love about our God is that through Jesus, he has removed our shame. ( Isaiah 61:7) People can point fingers or ridicule us, and especially about our faith, but God admires and approves of us. No more ‘shame on you’ in the kingdom, but only -shame off you.