What shapes your character? (102-4)
Those closest to a leader have great influence as a leader’s character develops. Read 1 Kings 21:25-26.
Ahab’s marriage to Jezebel, the princess of Tyre, didn’t help his character. She zealously promoted the worship of Baal and imported an army of pagan priests in defiance of Yahweh, the God of Israel. Ahab complied with his wife’s demands and came to hate the prophets of Yahweh. Thus, “There was never a man like Ahab, who sold himself to do evil in the eyes of the Lord, urged on by Jezebel his wife.”
Second Peter 1:3-9 says it all:
His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these He has given us His very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.
For this very reason, make every effort to add to faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But if anyone does not have them, he is nearsighted and blind and has forgotten that he has been cleansed from his past sins.
Peter tells us that building character is the process by which a leader participates in the divine nature and escapes corruption that keeps us from being ineffective and unproductive.
Character isn’t shaped by intellectual comprehension of truth. It’s forged by Biblical truth that penetrates the depth of the human heart. That only occurs when a leader grapples with God’s Word and contemplates its meaning and application. Ultimately, the goal of such diligent study of God’s revelation is the “fear of the Lord” (Proverbs 2:5). A wise leader has an awe of God, holding Him in high regard. And that high view of God shapes character, which in turn controls our thoughts and actions.
Character is so important in a leader that if someone on your team has impressive skills but defective character, you should not promote that individual or allow others to be put in a position of having to follow them as a leader.
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