It seems a little dramatic but there are times when God blesses a leader to bless an entire nation. Read 2 Chronicles 9:1-23.
John Maxwell discusses the extended blessing of an individual to a nation in his leadership notes in The Maxwell Leadership Bible.
Before he careened off course in his later years, Solomon began to fulfill God’s dream of blessing the nations through the nation of Israel. When leaders from the surrounding countries heard of his great wisdom, they hopped aboard their camels and made the long trek to Jerusalem to see whether the reports could be trusted. The Queen of Sheba spoke for these wide-eyed visitors when she said, “Blessed be the Lord your God, who delighted in you, setting you on His throne to be king for the Lord your God!”
God has entrusted to leaders the dignity and responsibility of being stewards of the resources and creatures of this planet. When a leader shapes, refines or creatively utilizes the minerals, plants and animals that God has placed at their disposal, they are accountable for the results. Read 1 Chronicles 29:10-16.
Near the end of his reign as king of Israel, David was stockpiling materials for construction of the temple to house the Ark of the Covenant of God. He has described his task in 29:1b saying, “The task is great, because this palatial structure is not for man but for the Lord God.” Wow! Talk about a vision statement! David personally had given willingly and sacrificially of his resources for this project and at his request so had the leaders of families, the officers of the tribes, the commanders of his army and the government officials.
A leader must learn how to relate with their team both as a group and one-on-one. The stronger the leader’s relationship, their connection with the individuals, the more likely there is loyalty, unity, and good work relationships of the team to the leader and to each other. If a leader determines it is the team’s responsibility to work to develop these relationships, it will fail. Effective leaders take the responsibility to take the first steps to connect with their team. Read 1 Kings 12:1-24.
Solomon died and his son Rehoboam was put on the throne. Solomon had been a great king but in his later years had shifted from serving the Lord and fairly treating the people to more self-centered leadership. Solomon had taken the throne from his father David with the nation’s momentum moving in a positive direction; Rehoboam was taking the throne with the nation’s momentum moving in a negative direction. Some enemies Solomon made in his later years were attacking from outside Israel’s borders. Jeroboam, a one time insider on Solomon’s team that Solomon had physically driven from the country, was poised to attack the new king’s authority from within. It was critical for Rehoboam to develop solid connections and good relationships with key members of his team and to make his first few decisions benefit this fledgling coalition and the nation as a whole.
A leader’s self-promotion may “work” in the short term, but over the long haul it almost always fails. Read Judges 9:1-57.
At first glance, Abimelech seems like a candidate for leadership. He is a gifted communicator and skilled tactician; he set his heart on becoming ruler of his people and he had a passion to lead. But leadership “qualities” alone doesn’t mean a potential leader will be a fit leader.
In a number of instances Moses’ actions showed he was a humble man and a servant leader. Think for a moment about his father-in-law’s advice to put structure and organization to the process of settling the people’s differences. Moses could have decided that he was God’s chosen leader, he was the leader of 3 million, he was the one God used to part the sea, God spoke directly to him and he did not need advice. He could have rationalized that the people and his core team would think him weak if he took advice. He could have, if he was ruled by arrogance and pride, but a leader ruled by humility can learn from the team around him. He not only took Jethro’s advice but he demonstrated a real change in his leadership utilizing the advice several times during the 40 wilderness years. The greatest validation of Moses’ humility came directly from God. Read Numbers 12:1-8.
The quality of humility flows out of a proper assessment of ourselves before God. Moses was a powerful leader, but he was also a humble leader because he saw himself in the light of God and sought God’s honor and reputation, not his own. When leaders come to grips with their desperate need for the grace and mercy of God, they develop a teachable spirit, they seek wise counsel and they are willing to be under authority.