Do you understand how to keep your core values and still be a situational leader? (183-4)
God’s leadership can be like a judge or a father depending upon the situation. Read Nahum 1:2-13.
Nahum had the task of prophesying against the most powerful people in the known world. God asked him to help the people living in Nineveh, the capitol city of the Assyrian Empire, to realize the cruelty they had inflicted on other nations, including Israel, was bringing judgment on them; their nation would be destroyed and the people either killed or taken into captivity. Nahum uses the picture of a father and that of a judge to help them understand the serious nature of God’s judgment in this situation.
John Maxwell, in his notes in The Maxwell Leadership Bible compares these elements of judge and father in God’s nature:
- Although their ancestors had repented, the generation to which Nahum spoke failed miserably. The Ninevites that Jonah confronted returned to God, while those Nahum confronted never did. Yet in both cases, God led appropriately.
- God modeled situational leadership for leaders everywhere, showing when to act as judge and when to act as a Father. These two images demonstrate a wonderful balance every leader must strike. Examine what God did in each situation:
|The Leader as a Judge||
The Leader as a Father
|God is Jealous (v. 2)||God is slow to anger (v. 3)|
|God is an avenger (v. 2)||God is good (v. 7)|
|God is furious (v. 2)||God is a stronghold (v. 7)|
|God is great in power (v. 3)||God is a refuge (v. 7)|
|God punishes the guilty (v. 3)||God is a liberator (v. 13)|
Even though God gave Nahum words that seemed almost contradictory, His message was unwaveringly consistent. God acted like a father and had been merciful to the Ninevites and spared the city just a century ago but now was bringing judgment. Situational leadership requires a leader to observe, listen, assess the circumstances and do what the situation demands. Situational consistency does not mean a leader handles the situation the same way every time but that the leader is consistent to the established core values and, using those values, takes the appropriate action for the situation.
2 Timothy 4:5 “But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry.”
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