“But he said to me, My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” -2 Corinthians 12:9
When I was in college, I read a book called the 48 Laws of Power. I chose this book to learn how to be a good leader and entrepreneur so I could be prepared to enter the workforce after graduation. However, it only took me a few chapters to realize how diametrically opposed this book was to living a Christian life.
For instance, here are a few quotes from the book:
- When asking for help, appeal to peoples self-interest, never their mercy or gratitude.
- Strike the Shepard and the sheep will scatter. Play dumb, lure people in with kindness and use it against them later.
This is not good advice. In fact, it’s terrible advice. This book is full of ways to manipulate and deceive people in order to gain more power and success. This type of “survival of the fittest strategy” is not meant for believers.
We are called to imitate our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, who is the Good Shepherd. The Lord Jesus did not use his kindness against anyone in order to gain power. On the contrary, Jesus sacrificed His own life for the sheep. His kindness is what led us all to repentance and faith. Without the love and grace of our Lord Jesus, we could not be restored and brought into union with God. He did not come to be served, but to serve others.
If we want to properly use “power” to influence others, it can’t be generated from within. Our carnal desires and evil inclinations will lead us to become self-righteous and conceited bosses. Instead, our goal should be to receive “power” from God almighty. For His power is made perfect in our weakness.
What exactly does that mean? When we humble ourselves and seek the wisdom and power of God, we will follow biblical principles that will serve our community well. For example, Jesus said the sum of the law can be fulfilled in this one statement: “Love God with all your heart, mind, soul, and strength and love your neighbor as yourself.”
As leaders, when we follow biblical principles and the power from God, we will treat others with dignity, respect, gratitude, and honor. These positive attributes will “stir” an ethos of positivity that will inevitably make you into a great leader. In other words, the more you let the Lord Jesus take control of your life, the better everyone around you will become.
When I worked at Chik-Fil-A, I had a boss who loved Jesus. His relationship with Jesus was the reason why he could lead and guide our restaurant business to success. For example, customer service is an integral part of generating income for the food industry.
People want to buy products at places where they are treated with respect and courtesy. Because our culture was full of grace and kindness, we were able to genuinely smile and serve our customers for the glory of God. You can’t fake kindness, and I believe this is one of the reasons why Chik-Fil-A is so successful.
Abraham Lincoln once said, “Nearly all men can stand adversity. But if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” This is so true. When a person is given more power, they either use it for good or for evil.
When you have a relationship with God, your temptation for selfish power is still there. God doesn’t automatically erase it. However, you are in a much better situation when you allow the Spirit of God within you to be tested by the power given.
This verse of the day also teaches us to boast in the Lord rather than in ourselves. God is the one who gives us gifts, whether that is teaching, leading, empowering, or speaking. He is ultimately the reason for our successes. Consequently, the Lord should receive all glory, honor, and praise for the accomplishments we receive in life.
In conclusion, I have observed that the world has a different methodology towards leadership than the Christian worldview. I believe Christian leadership is paramount during this age, where there is so much uncertainty and fear.
There needs to be leaders who have the wisdom of God, can withstand adversity, and serve local communities for the glory of Jesus. Are you willing to be that leader? I hope so. May God give you wisdom to do just that. Blessings!