The Leadership Walk: Week One, Day One (W1D1) - Humility

"I hope in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you soon, that I also may be cheered when I receive news about you. I have no one else like him, who will show genuine concern for your welfare. For everyone looks out for their own interests, not those of Jesus Christ. But you know that Timothy has proved himself, because as a son with his father he has served with me in the work of the gospel. I hope, therefore, to send him as soon as I see how things go with me" (Philippians 2:19-23).

Paul had many men who were part of his team, but only one like Timothy. That means that great leaders are rare. Look at the things that set Timothy apart, things that made him a good follower and leader in Paul’s eyes. He had learned to humble himself and put others’ interests ahead of his own. What’s more, his concern for others was genuine - it was not fake or self-serving but was expressed solely for the good of others. Are you willing to be the one good leader that others encounter in their life journey?

LEADERSHIP STEP: Take 10 minutes to reflect on this passage. What leadership traits from Timothy's life do you see mentioned in this passage? How do you see humility working in Timothy’s life? What part of this description do you want to make part of your own leadership style?


A New Devotional for 2014

Thank you for joining with me once again this year on what is now my fifth consecutive year of producing and sending a daily devotional. Below this post will find the entries for my 2014 daily effort. For at least five years, I have wanted to write something about leadership. The idea came when I first started my church position at ACAC in January, 2009. That summer, I began to hold what we call Ministry Team meetings once a week and focused on passages that spoke to pastoral leaders. What I noticed again is that while some of the material was specifically for church workers, many other passages applied to leaders in general - attitudes, behaviors and best practices. I actually carried the notes from those sessions in my briefcase for the last five years, without knowing how to publish or what to do with them. Now I know.

As I was seeking the Lord for a new daily devotional, the thought came to me to incorporate my notes into this year’s presentation. I agonized a bit over the title - should it be Leadership Talk, Your Leadership Walk, Leadership Wisdom - but finally decided on The Leadership Walk. I think this title represents what I want to convey - every leader has a unique walk, but there are many principles and lessons that are the same for all leaders. What’s more, leaders are always learning and growing, so the walk never ends. And the work can be demanding, so there must be rest along the way.

This year I will write six days of devotionals that conclude with a Leadership Step - some practical step based on the devotional thoughts I wrote. Then on the seventh day, I will post a Rest Stop, some thought or concept to consider on Sunday, the first day of the week. Since I write on one day and they are sent to you the next, you may find this a little out of sync if you read my devotionals live instead of waiting to receive them via email. In other words, the Rest Stop will be written and posted on Saturday, but won't arrive to you via Feedblitz until Sunday. I hope you find a reading rhythm that is meaningful and works for you. I will number each entry with something that looks like this - W2D3, which stands for week two, day three. As the year goes on and another way to post these emerges, I will change.

You may want to enroll someone you know who is a leader or an aspiring leader who would benefit from these devotionals. You can subscribe them through my blog site, but please tell them to look for a confirmation link from Feedblitz after you do. Then I invite you to join me on The Leadership Walk as together we learn from the Lord and one another what it means to take daily steps that constitute The Leadership Walk.


Pearl 357: Spending Time

TOPIC: Time and Values

"You yourselves know that these hands of mine
have supplied my own needs and the needs of
my companions" - Acts 20:34.

Paul had a life value not to be a financial burden on his converts so that the gospel would not be criticized or connected to traveling teachers common in his day. He did not just talk about that value, or think about that value. That value impacted his time and determined how he was going to spend the hours in his day. So Paul did not work first and foremost to make money; he worked to express his values and to support and further his apostolic mission. How are you spending your time? Is your time management values-driven, or do you sell yourself to the loudest, most urgent bidder? Why do you work and do what you do? Is it simply to make money? If so, then money is your highest value! Is that how you want it to be?

Lord, I often say 'it's not about the money,' but then proceed to invest my precious time like it's all about the money. I know I need money, but I need purpose more and therefore I must learn to spend my time to support my purpose, not my eating habits. I need to change my thinking where my time is concerned. Help!


Q6: Unbelief

What would Jesus ask you today?

"Do you believe I am able to do this?" - Matthew 9:28.

You may know that God has the power to do something for someone, but do you believe He will do "it" for you, whatever the "it" represents? Jesus posed this question to two blind men who asked to be healed and they answered an emphatic, "Yes!" Jesus went on to heal them. Ask yourself this question about some need or goal you have, and don't be afraid to face your unbelief. Just don't be content to stay there. Read what the father said to Jesus when asked if he had faith in Mark 9:23-25 and then be honest with the Lord.


Proverbs 4:3-4

Your daily dose of Proverbs:

“When I was a boy in my father’s house, still tender,
and an only child of my mother, he taught me” - 4:3-4.

It is never too early to teach a child about the Lord and His ways. What are you doing to prepare the next generation to serve the Lord? What about your own children, nieces and nephews? What more can you do to instruct them or the children in your church? Read what Jesus said about little children in Matthew 19:14.

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PLEASE NOTE:  In case you missed the announcement, I am discontinuing this daily devotional in favor of another one entitled, "What Would Jesus Ask?"  I will post the daily Proverbs for three more days, after which you can download the month-by-month Daily Dose on my website or from my blog.  You will find instructions for how to do that and an overview of the new devotional here.  If you have subscribed to a Daily Dose, you will automatically continue to receive What Would Jesus Ask, unless you unsubscribe. Thank you and I hope you enjoy the new devotional.


Proverbs 2:6

Your daily dose of Proverbs:

“For the Lord gives wisdom,
and from his mouth come knowledge and understanding” - 2:6.

Wisdom is a gift from God. You cannot earn it but you can position yourself to receive it. What's more, God is always communicating.  Are you listening for Him?  Do you expect answers to your problems and questions?  Solomon asked for wisdom in 1 Kings 3:5-15 and God gave it to him.  Why don't you ask, too?


Proverbs 1:3

Your daily dose of Proverbs:

“For acquiring a disciplined and prudent life,
doing what is right and just and fair” - 1:3.

A good and productive life doesn't just happen, it takes planning, hard work and God’s grace. What are you goals this year to improve your quality of life and to be more disciplined?  Set goals in as many areas as possible - financial, health, spiritual, personal development and family. Read Joshua 24:13-14 and make it your theme this year as you take steps to grow and be more faithful. 


Proverbs 31:3

Your daily dose of Proverbs:

“Do not spend your strength on women,
your vigor on those who ruin kings” - 31:3.

Your relationships should be godly and life-giving.  Are there any people in your life who are hindering your ability to go forward and be the person God wants you to be? Perhaps the coming year is when you make some adjustments so you can give your energy and attention to your purpose and goals and not to so many dysfunctional people.  See what Jesus had to say about your relationships in Matthew 10:34-39 and then make any changes based on what He said.

NOTE: Tomorrow I will start a new devotional format, along with instructions on how to access the daily Proverbs online any day you want it!  Happy New Year!

 


Proverbs 30:4

Your daily dose of Proverbs:

"What is his name, and the name of his son? 
Tell me if you know!” - 30:4.

If you were given a quiz on your faith and the Bible, how well would you do?  What goals can you set in the coming year that will enable you to grow in the knowledge of your faith, the Bible and the Lord Himself? Your goals should not only be to increase learning, but to apply that learning to godly living.  It is the longest psalm, but perhaps you can end the year by reading Psalm 119 and note the connection between the Word and holiness.  If you would rather listen to that psalm, you can do that here.

SPECIAL NOTE:  Be watching for a new devotional on January 1 as I phase out Proverbs (it will be online to access any time you wish) and introduce the new devotional entitled, "What Would Jesus Ask?"


Proverbs 29:3

Your daily dose of Proverbs:

“A man who loves wisdom brings joy to his father” - 29:3. 

What you do impacts others closest to you, for good or not. Your love for wisdom and your desire to apply it will be a blessing to your family, whether natural or church. How can you express your love for wisdom in the coming year in a way that will bring others help and joy?  Read James 3:17-18 to better understand wisdom and its traits and then set a course to obtain practical wisdom that will be a blessing to others.

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1 WEMA Kids GroupLAST CHANCE FOR MATCHING GRANT! This week I received a $750 matching grant toward The Big Blessing for Kenya to help feed children like those pictured here. The grant offer expires, however, on December 31 and I have received $100. The grant means for every dollar you give by December 31, you are actually giving two dollars. Don't miss this chance to be a blessing and to double your gift.  You can give through my website or by sending a check to PurposeQuest, PO Box 8882, Pittsburgh, PA 15221-0882.  Remember to mark your contribution "Matching Grant" and I will take care of the rest. Thank you and Happy New Year!