Dr. Jack L. Arnold
I. Character: “As water reflects a face, so a man’s heart reflects the man” (Prov. 27:19).
A. Character is the sum total of the features and traits that make up the nature and personality of a person. It is who and what we are in essence.
B. People do not choose IQ or talent (those are God-given), but we do choose character. Each time we choose either good or evil we are building character.
C. Adversity causes one to choose one of two paths—character or compromise. Every time a person chooses character, he becomes stronger, even if that choice brings negative circumstances. Crises may not make character, but it does reveal it.
D. One can never separate his actions from his character. In fact, action is the real indicator of character.
E. Followers do not trust leaders whose characters are flawed. This is especially true of leaders in Christian ministry.
F. Those who achieve success but have weak characters move into arrogance, loneliness, adventure seeking and adultery.
G. Positive character faces flaws, apologizes when wrong and accepts responsibility and the consequences for actions.
H. If you want to change the world, start by changing yourself. Then go out and change the world.
I. Ethics change as cultures change. But this should not be true for the Christian leader since Christians build their lives on the moral law of God which never changes.
1. “Never for the sake of peace and quiet deny your own experience and convictions” (Dag Hammarskjold)
2. “Admire and emulate ethical behavior wherever you find it. Apply rigid standards of morality to your lives; and, if periodically you fail—as you surely will—adjust your lives, not the standards” (Ted Koppel).
3. “There’s no great fun, satisfaction or joy derived from doing something that’s easy. Failure is never fatal, but failure to change might be. Your strength as an individual depends upon, and will be in direct proportion to how you react to both praise and criticism. If you become too concerned about either, the effect on you is certain to be adverse” (John Wooden).
K. TEST: Can people trust what you say? Is your word or handshake your bond? When you say you will do something, do you do it? Do you break promises? Do you do right, even when you know no one is watching?
II. Charisma: “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves” (Phil. 2:3).
A. Charisma is the ability to make people feel good about themselves rather than feeling good about you. It is the ability to draw people to you. People respond to a spirit of approval rather than criticism.
B. Charismatic people enjoy life—they are celebrators not complainers. They are passionate about life.
C. They see the good in every situation or person. They expect the best of people. They encourage others and help them reach their potential. They give people hope. They share themselves, their experiences and even their failures. They think about others before themselves. They don’t care who gets the credit.
D. They build up rather than tear down others.
E. Some things that keep followers from following leaders are:
1. Pride—leaders think themselves better than others.
2. Insecurity—the leader is uncomfortable with himself.
3. Moodiness—people do not know what to expect so they stop expecting anything.
4. Perfectionism—leaders set expectations for followers to high.
5. Cynicism—followers sense a negative attitude in the leader (gloom and doom, throw cold water on every idea, etc.).
1. “When you set yourself on fire, people come to see you burn” (John Wesley).
G. TEST: Do people like to be around you? Do you negate everybody’s ideas but your own? Do you tend to build up others to make them look good or tear down others to make you look good?
III. Commitment: “Jesus replied, ‘No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the Kingdom of God” (Luke 9:62).
B. Commitment shows people you have convictions. They believe because you believe in what you are doing. People buy into the leader before they buy into his vision.
C. Commitment is what separates doers from dreamers and the good from the great.
D. Commitment gives new power—no matter what comes: sickness, poverty, crisis. A committed leader never turns his eye from the goal.
E. Commitment is action and not talk. It is “walking the talk” and not “talking the walk.” Words are easy to say but commitment is hard to live.
F. In crisis, many times only comitment to the cause will carry one through.
G. Following through on commitments is the key to leadership—you can be trusted.
H. Commitment knows what is worth dying for; therefore, there must be priorities.
I. Commitment is ultimately to God. He sees and fairly evaluates all of our actions and motives, and brings into play one’s accountability to God.
J. Commitment is always towards a goal.
1. There are people who have no goals and do not commit.
2. There are people who do not know if they can reach their goals so they are afraid to commit.
3. There are people who start towards a goal and quit when the going gets tough.
4. There are people who set goals, commit to them and pay the price to reach them.
1. “A leader will never take a person any further in his spiritual life then he himself has come” (Jack Arnold)
2. “Make sure the thing you’re living for is worth dying for” (Charles Mayes)
L. TEST: Do you have goals and priorities for those goals? Do you know what you would die for in your life? Do you tend to give up when the going gets tough? Do you keep your commitments to others or do you find excuses for your actions?
IV. Communication: “Speaking the truth in love” (Eph. 4:15)
A. To communicate is to impart knowledge or information. A leader must be able to share knowledge and ideas to transmit a sense of urgency and enthusiasm. Leaders inspire, motivate, guide, direct and listen.
B. People will not follow a leader if they do not know what he wants or where he is coming from.
C. Communication is not just what you say but how you say it. You must be clear in communication—short sentences, direct speech, no meandering, no ambiguity, etc. Use the KISS principle—Keep It Simple Stupid!
D. Credibility precedes great communication—“Believe what you say; live what you say.” One should say what he means and mean what he says.
E. Every time you speak to people give them something to feel, something to remember and something to do.
1. “Educators take something simple and make it complicated. Communicators take something complicated and make it simple” (John Maxwell).
2. “Half the world’s problems are due to sin. The other half is due to communication” (Jack Arnold).
3. “If you want me to speak an hour, it will take me a minute to prepare. If you want me to speak a minute, it will take me an hour to prepare” (Abraham Lincoln).
4. “People believe in great communicators because great communicators believe in people” (John Maxwell).
G. TEST: Do you speak clearly and directly with short sentences and understandable vocabulary? Are you excited about and do you believe what you are saying? Can a child grasp the essence of what you are saying?
V. Competence: “Whatever you do, do it for the glory of God” (1 Cor. 10:31).
A. Competence is to have suitable skills, knowledge and experience to accomplish some task. We choose to be competent.
B. Competent people ask why which drives them to continue learning, growing and improving. The person who knows how will always have a job but the person who knows why will always be the boss.
C. A competent person comes to work everyday and follows through on all decisions. They do more than what is expected of them—good enough is never good enough.
D. Competent leaders inspire others to competence.
E. Competent leaders learn to deal with chaos—stuff happens, things don’t go as planned, there is lack of order. They work through chaos. We don’t live in a perfect world; it is a fallen world. We live with Murphy’s law: “If anything can go wrong, it will go wrong.”
1. “Chaos is the law of nature. Order is the dream of man” (Wallace Stegner).
2. “We are only as good as our private standards” (unknown).
G. TEST: Do you have a commitment to continue to learn, grow and improve? Do you follow through on decisions? Do you panic at crises and chaos or do you work to change it, bringing it somewhat under your control? Do people want to emulate your competence?
A. Courage is the state of mind that enables one to face difficulty, danger, pain, etc., with firmness and without fear.
B. Courage in reality is not the absence of fear. It is doing what you are afraid to do. It is letting go of the comfortable and pushing ahead into the unknown. Fear limits a leader because human nature clings to safety and comfort zones.
C. Courage for a leader involves making quick decisions on adequate but not complete information.
D. Courage involves taking risks. Those who don’t have the courage to take risks and those who do, experience fear about life. Risk always involves the possibility of losing and failure. Better to have tried and failed than not to have tried at all.
E. Courage is a dedication to possibilities and potential and they are seen as greater than our desire to please self.
F. Courage is contagious and it is one of the great motivations for followers.
G. Courage often brings positive results. What we feared was not as big a barrier as we thought it would be. Ninety percent of our fears never come true (Phil. 4:6-7).
H. TEST: Do you have fears that freeze your ability to make decisions? Are you willing to push out of your comfort zones to reach your potential? Do you look your fears straight in the eye and force yourself to do things you are afraid to do?
A. Discernment is to perceive by the sight or some other sense or by the intellect.
B. Discernment is finding the root of the matter, relying on rational thought and intuition. Never ignore a “gut feeling” but don’t believe it is enough.
C. It is impossible to gather all the information about any situation. But we can gather enough information to get the big picture and then logic and intuition (Spirit impressions) should be used to get a solution.
D. Intuition is based on experience, maturity, gut feelings and Holy Spirit leading—it is subjective experience and must be balanced with faith. Intuition used well will increase with use.
E. Leaders who lack discernment are rarely in the right place at the right time.
F. Leaders have to value non-traditional thinking, embrace change and live with ambiguity and uncertainty.
G. When a leader’s intuition is wrong, he must never be too proud to say, “I was wrong. I misjudged the situation.”
1. “Smart leaders believe only half of what they hear. Discerning leaders know which half to believe” (John Maxwell).
I. TEST: Do you gather as many facts as possible before using your intuition to make a decision? Do you honestly try to get to the root of the problem? Do you listen to Holy Spirit promptings and impressions? How easily can you admit that you are wrong?
A. To focus is to concentrate one’s thoughts.
B. For one to focus, he must know his priorities and concentrate on them, distinguishing between the majors and the minors, putting emphasis upon the majors. Divided focus always works against you.
C. Focus on strengths and not your weaknesses. Pour time, energy and resources into your strengths. Spend a lesser percentage of your time on weaknesses and then delegate what you do not do well. Put people around you who complement your weaknesses.
1. “If you chase two rabbits, one will escape” (unknown).
2. “What people way what people do, and what they say they do are entirely different things” (Margaret Meade).
3. “Never let what you can’t do stop you from doing what you can do” (John Wooden).
E. TEST: What are your strengths and weaknesses and how much time, energy and resources do you spend on each? Do you have a priority list, and a few priorities that you will not give up? What are these priorities?
IX. Generosity: “What do you have that you did not receive” (1 Cor. 4:7).
A. Generosity is bountiful and unselfish giving of one’s self and possessions.
B. Generosity comes from the heart and permeates every aspect of a leader’s life, time, money, talents and possessions. The essence of life is giving to others.
C. Generous people are satisfied with what they have. If you are not generous with a little, then you will not be generous with a lot.
D. Generosity always puts others first. Leaders do not just gather things for themselves but to give to others.
E. Never let possessions obsess you. God who gave them to you can just as easily take them away. A person cannot lead if enslaved with the demon of greed.
F. Put your money to work for something that will outlive you. Make investments that will produce spiritual dividends.
G. Find someone to mentor (as you grow older) and pour your life into that other person.
1. “You candle loses nothing when it lights another” (Unknown)
2. “Giving is the highest level of living” (John Maxwell).
I. TEST: Is giving of self and possessions hard for you? Are you satisfied where God has you or do you want more? Do you think carefully where you put your monies so that it will bear the most fruit?
V. Initiative: “He is a double-minded man, unstable in all he does” (James 1:8).
A. Initiative is an act leading to action.
B. Leaders do not wait for others to motivate them. Leaders push themselves and others beyond their comfort zones.
C. When leaders make up their minds to do something they do it. One cannot be effective and indecisive.
D. Leaders initiate connections with their followers and are ready to act.
E. Initiators take more risks and may make mistakes. When they fail, they get up and keep moving forward. They put themselves on the line for what they believe.
F. Initiators do not let failure incapacitate them although it will bother them emotionally. All people hate failure and rejection.
G. Initiators do not endlessly analyze things but act on fact and instinct.
H. Initiators “make it happen” not just “let it happen.”
1. “Of all things a leader should fear, complacency should head the list” (John Maxwell).
2. “A right decision made too late is a bad decision” (Unknown).
J. TEST: Do you want to let things happen or do you make things happen? Are you willing to risk and fail? If you fail, do you get up and move forward, learning from your mistakes? Are you a self-starter or do you have to be told to initiate?
XI. Listening: “Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry” (James 1:19).
A. An overwhelming majority of communication problems come from poor listening skills. Sixty percent of all personal problems are the result of faulty communications.
B. Listening helps us to connect with people and to learn. Most of what we learn is from books and from listening to others. Most people are satisfied that you heard their problem whether their request is granted or not.
C. People who are quick to give their own ideas never hear the thoughts, concerns and screams of others.
D. Listeners not only observe words but feelings, meanings and undercurrents. They observe body language, tonal reflections, facial expressions, etc. Listeners read between the lines.
E. What a person says and what a person means are often two separate things. What a person says and what I heard him say are often two separate things. Listeners say, “Is this what I heard you say?” (and then repeat back what was said.) “Have I left any gaps in your thinking?”
1. “Wisdom is the reward you get for a lifetime of listening when you would have preferred to talk” (Doug Larson).
G. TEST: Do you genuinely care what people are thinking? Would you rather talk than listen? Do you believe everything a person tells you?
XII. Passion: “For to me to live is Christ” (Phil. 1:21).
A. Passion is a powerful and compelling emotion about something or someone.
B. One’s desire determines one’s destiny. A leader loves what he does and does it better than anyone else. If a leader does not have the passion to lead, he cannot lead.
C. The stronger one’s desire (fire) the greater the potential. If one desires something hard enough (good or bad) he will find the will power to do it. Passion vanquishes impossibilities.
D. Many successful people have not done well in college. Seventy-five percent of all US presidents were in the bottom half of their class. Fifty percent of all millionaires never finished college. We can test IQ but we cannot test motivation. Those with high IQ’s often do not achieve to their potential because they lack passion. Many with average IQ’s often succeed beyond all expectations because they have passion.
E. Passion is often mistaken for conceit or pushiness or a “know-it-all” attitude. Passion must never be squelched but must sometimes be reined in. You can never lead followers if they do not see you are passionate about what you are doing.
1. “To add growth, lead followers. To multiply, lead leaders” (unknown).
2. “Passion leads more followers than personality” (unknown).
3. The greatest tragedy in life is that most people spend their entire lives preparing to live” (Paul Tournier).
4. “Motivation is the stuff that permeates your entire being when you have a clear, vivid picture in your mind of what you want to do, who you want to be and an intense, burning, all-consuming desire in your heart to fight for it.” (Bill Eskridge).
G. TEST: What is your passion in life? Do others see passion in you? When was the last time you gave yourself a motivation check? What “turns you on?” Find your passion and do it and you will most likely succeed in it.
XIII. Positive Attitude: “Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable . . . think about such things” (Phil. 4:8).
A. Leaders are to have a positive outlook of life. They are optimists and try to see some good in everything.
B. Negative thinking comes naturally and is always self-centered. Because attitude is a choice, anyone can learn to be a positive thinker.
C. Followers are attracted to positive people and turned off by negative people.
D. The more negative one is the longer it takes to turn oneself around.
E. The thing which separates great people from average people is mental attitude. If the mind is positive, unbelievable possibilities are open to us.
F. The two greatest things we can leave our children as a heritage is Christ and a positive, upbeat, attractive attitude about life, which is nothing less than the life of faith.
1. “Genius is 99% perspiration and 1% inspiration” (Thomas Edison).
2. “A winner’s edge is not in aptitude but in attitude” (Unknown).
3. “The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude to me is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than success, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company, church or home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice everyday regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change the past . . . we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is to play on the one string we have and that is our attitude” (Charles Swindoll).
XIV. Problem Solving: “If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask of God, who gives generously to all without finding fault” (James 1:5).
A. Problems are inevitable because:
1. We live in a fallen world.
2. The world is growing more complex and diverse.
3. People are sinful with whom we interact.
4. It is impossible to control all circumstances.
B. There are three ways people deal with problems:
1. They refuse to accept them (bitterness).
2. They accept them and put up with them (frustration).
3. They accept them and try to make things better (resolution).
C. Leaders anticipate problems. They rise to the occasion and challenge. They solve problems by creativity and tenacity.
D. Leaders face up to the reality of the situation. There is instantaneous acceptance of total reality.
E. Leaders get the big picture. They do not give into their emotions or get bogged down in the minute details.
F. Problem solvers never try to solve all the problems at once. They break down the problem and solve one part at a time.
G. Problem solvers make major decisions when they are experiencing a positive up swing in their leadership, not during dark times.
H. Each time you solve a problem, you get a little better at the process. If you never try and fail and try again, you will never get good at solving problems.
I. If you are not a good problem solver, surround yourself with people who are.
J. The formula for problem solving is:
1. Time—spend time to discover the real issue.
2. Exposure—find out what others have done.
3. Assistance—have a team study all angles.
4. Creativity—brainstorm multiple solutions.
5. Hit it—implement the best solution
1. “You can’t let your problems be a problem” (Unknown)
2. “The measure of success is not whether you heave a tough problem to deal with but whether it is the same problem you had last year” (John Foster Dulles)
3. “A leader cannot have his head in the sand and navigate through troubled waters” (Unknown)
XV. Relationships: “Be kind to one another” (Eph. 4:32); “Love one another” (John 13:34).
A. Relationships ultimately are all that matter in life—Christ, spouse, father, mother, siblings, children, relatives, friends, etc. People want to go along with people they get along with.
B. A person can have good people skills and not be a good leader. Yet he cannot be a good leader without people skills. He must understand people and how they think. People will not follow a leader unless they love him.
C. Treat people as persons not things, individuals with different needs. Leadership methods should be adapted to the group you are trying to reach.
D. Focus on what you can put into people rather than what you can get out of them.
E. Do not wait until you feel like helping people before you act. Act your way into feeling or you may never act.
F. Repair hurting relationships whenever possible.
G. Ways to endure people to you:
1. Make them feel special, so sincerely compliment them whenever possible.
2. Give them a better tomorrow so show them hope.
3. Give them direction, so navigate for them.
4. Realize they are basically selfish so speak to their needs first.
5. Understand they get low emotionally, so encourage them.
6. Realize they desire success, so help them win.
1. “The most important single ingredient in the formula of success is knowing how to get along with people” (Theodore Roosevelt).
2. “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care” (John Maxwell).
3. “In life all that matters is relationships—everything else is just stuff” (unknown).
4. “When we think of relationships, it is easy to automatically think of connecting with another human being in some way. One of the reasons we are ineffective in developing meaningful rapport with others is because we don’t have a healthy relationship with ourselves. The response to our internal turmoil causes us to either shut others out or we inappropriately look at others to frame our identity. So how do we have meaningful relationships? It is in a personal relationship with the Being who holds the universe together where one derives perspective, purpose and power” (Mark Arnold).
I. TEST: Do you have meaningful relationships? With whom and how many? Are you open to new relationships which may make you vulnerable to hurt and pain?
XVI. Responsibility: “I have fought the good fight. I have finished the race; I have kept the faith” (2 Tim. 4:7).
A. Responsibility is to be answerable or accountable for something within one’s control, power or management.
B. Responsible people are willing to do whatever it takes to complete the task or project.
C. Responsible people follow through and finish.
D. The one quality that all successful people have is the ability to take on responsibility.
E. A leader does not focus on his rights but his responsibilities. They never embrace a victim mentality. They recognize that who and where they are remains their responsibility—not that of their parents, their spouses, their children, their government, their bosses or their co-workers.
F. Leaders get the opportunity to lead when they prove they are responsible. Responsibility is earned and then given. More responsibility is not given until the present project given is done well.
1. “A leader can give up anything but final responsibility” (John Maxwell).
2. “No one can do the minimum in responsibility and reach his maximum potential” (Unknown).
3. “The buck stops here!” (Ronald Reagan)
H. TEST: When things go wrong, do you blame others? Do you take final responsibility for all your actions, accepting the consequences? Do you expect people to reward you when you do a mediocre job?
XVII. Security: “Rejoice with those who rejoice” (Rom. 12:15).
A. To be secure is to be firmly established and immune to threats and dangers.
B. Insecure leaders see every disagreement as disloyalty because they take it as a personal threat to their person or position. Insecure people are on a constant quest for validation, acknowledgment and love. They are takers and not givers.
C. A leadership position merely amplifies personal flaws in the leader.
D. An insecure leader cannot celebrate the victories of others. He might even prevent them from realizing any victories. He also may take credit for something done by some one else.
E. An insecure leader hoards power. The better his team the more insecure he feels and the harder he will work to prevent recognition for success. When followers are not recognized, they eventually become discouraged and stop performing at their potential.
F. Only secure leaders give power to others and delight in working themselves out of a job. A secure leader gets real joy when he sees his team succeed.
G. People without personal security cannot make others feel secure (feel good about themselves).
1. “No man will make a great leader who wants to do it all himself or get credit for doing it” (Andrew Carnegie).
2. “Anytime one’s success surpasses his personal security, the result is self-destruction” (Unknown)
I. TEST: Do you encourage others to succeed and praise them when they do? Do you consider constructive criticism from a team member a threat to you? Do you give away power even to the point of working yourself out of a job?
XVIII. Self-discipline: “But the fruit of the spirit is . . . self-control” (Gal. 5:23).
A. Discipline is training oneself so as to bring mind, body and emotions under control.
B. Self-discipline is not a one-time event but a lifestyle. Anyone can be self-disciplined—it is a choice.
C. Self-discipline pays the price instead of doing what is convenient. Anyone who does what he must only when he is in the mood or when it is convenient isn’t going to be successful.
D. A leader must eliminate any tendency to make excuses. Self-discipline allows one to accept all responsibility as a leader.
E. If you have a burning desire to manage others, manage yourself first. Do that well and you will be ready to stop managing and start leading. People do not want to be managed; they want to be led.
1. “The first and best victory is to conquer self” (Plato).
2. “Almost all of our faults are more pardonable than the methods we think up to hide them” (Francois LaRochefoucauld).
3. “Triumph is half try and half umph!” (unknown).
G. TEST: Will you discipline your mind and body and emotions so you can achieve a given end? Do you make excuses for your lack of self-discipline? Do you regularly choose that which is convenient over that which is right and demanding?
XIX. Servanthood: “So the last will be first and the first last” (Matt. 20:16).
A. Servanthood is not about education, position or skill but about attitude—submission and humility.
B. True leaders are motivated by loving concern rather than a desire for personal glory. Servants put others ahead of their agenda or personal desires. They respect other’s desires as important. The best way to get ahead is to put others first.
C. Someone who thinks he is too important to serve is one who is basically insecure. Secure people gladly take the last place.
D. Servants serve, never expecting anything in return. If one serve to only please men, he will be frustrated. We work for the promise of God and not the praise of man. God’s praise will come at the Judgment Seat.
E. People ordinarily do not expect leaders to serve, but when they do serve, even it if is just a small act, it seems to be significant, showing some humility.
F. Servants are motivated by love, not by manipulation or self-promotion.
G. How to get people to enjoy being with you:
1. Greet people with a smile, looking them in the eyes and giving them a firm handshake.
2. Learn their name and use it in the conversation.
3. Ask about husband or wife, children, job, family, etc.
4. Ask where they were born, hobbies, schooling, etc.
5. Ask key questions about needs, wants and desires of the person.
1. “You have to love people more than your position” (John Maxwell).
2. “Never require anything of anyone that you yourself are not willing to do” (unknown).
3. “I don’t’ know what your destiny will be, but one thing I know: the ones among you who will be really happy are those who have sought and found how to serve” (Albert Schweitzer).
I. TEST: Do you tell others about yourself before you find out their desires, needs and wants? Do you think people should follow you just because you hold a high position or office? Do you complain and grumble when you have to do menial tasks? Are you willing to take the last seat or no seat if it will somehow further the Kingdom of God?
XX. Teachability: “Pride only breeds quarrels, but wisdom is found in those who take advice” (Prov. 13:10).
A. Leaders are constantly learning and applying new truth. A person is never too old to grow, learn and perfect skills.
B. Leaders face the subtle danger of contentment and satisfaction with the status quo. Once a level of expertise has been reached, they stop improving themselves—earning a degree, reading a desired position, receiving a particular reward, achieving a financial goal, arriving at retirement age.
C. It is one thing to get to the top, it is quite another thing to stay there. Leaders must keep developing intellectually and emotionally.
D. Teachable people admit they don’t know everything. They also know if they keep risking by growing, they are going to make mistakes—they may change their opinions and convictions.
E. One cannot be prideful and teachable at the same time.
1. “Value your listening time at roughly ten times your talking time” (Gerald McGinnis).
2. “It is what you learn after you think you know it all that counts” (John Wooden).
3. “The greatest mistake one can make in life is to be continually fearing you will make one” (Elbert Hubbard).
4. “For everything you gain you lose something” (Emerson).
5. “He who makes no mistakes, makes no progress” (Theodore Roosevelt)
6. “If you make a mistake under my leadership, shame on you. If you make the same mistake twice, shame on me” (Unknown).
G. TEST: Are you content with a mediocre and stagnant life? Are you set in your ways? Are you willing to try new things? Will you make yourself vulnerable to change? Can you apologize for mistakes? Are you on the defensive because others know more than you? Are you willing to stretch your personality?
XXI. Vision: “Where there is no vision, the people perish” (Prov. 29:18 KJV)
A. A visionary sees possibilities, potential and problems and they are will to go with the flow. Visionaries want to change the world.
B. You can’t beg, borrow or buy vision—it comes from within. Yet vision does not happen in a vacuum; there is the leader’s past experience, his gut level assessments and the people placed around him.
C. To be a visionary one must listen to:
1. The inner voice (what turns one on, what stirs the heart).
2. The unhappy voice (notices what does not work, discontent with the status quo)
3. The successful voice (he finds a great team to put around him).
D. Vision attracts, challenges and unites people. It also rallies finances and other resources. The greater the vision, the more winners it has the potential to attract. The more challenging the vision the harder the team fights to achieve.
E. If you lack vision, out yourself under a visionary for awhile before you strike out on your own.
1. “The future belongs to those who see possibilities before they become obvious” (John Scully).
2. “Show me a leader without vision and I’ll show you someone who isn’t going anywhere. At best, he is traveling in circles” (Unknown).
3. “The men who build the future are those who know that greater things are yet to come, and that they themselves will help bring them about. Their minds are illuminated by the blazing sun of hope. They never stop to doubt. They haven’t time” (Melvin Evans).
G. TEST: Do you see beyond your present situation and believe that what you are doing is affecting the world? Are you convinced that you are a person of destiny to lead God’s people with a Christ-centered motivational vision? Do you believe your actions can change the world?
XXII. Integrity: “The man of integrity walks securely” (Prov. 10:9)
A. A person of integrity is one of sound moral character.
B. Integrity involves being ethical as well as being moral. Leaders need to avoid any appearance of evil (1 Thess. 5:21-22). Some behaviors are unethical because they often lead to harmful or sinful outcomes—receiving gifts, sharing confidences, etc.
C. People of integrity keep commitments regardless of the cost—incorruptible, honest, truthful, dependable. He accepts responsibility for his own failures.
D. Leaders of integrity inspire trust, loyalty, sacrifice and without it people will not follow.
E. Accountability to a small group of confidants or to one trusted friend is the best way to safeguard our integrity against poor judgment, unconscious motivations and self-deception.
F. He who walks with people of integrity will be a man of integrity (Prov. 4:5, 7; 16:16; 13:20). Who we spend time with defines our character (1 Cor. 15:33).
G. Men of integrity make the hard decisions and persevere in that stand for right. They do not compromise truth for comfort.
1. “Here I stand. I can do no other. God help me. Amen” (Martin Luther).
I. TEST: Are you more concerned about doing right than your own reputation? Does truth take precedence over friends? Do you have people of integrity to monitor your accountability?
XXIII. Spirituality: “Brothers, choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom” (Acts 6:3).
A. Leaders are men and women filled with the Holy Spirit (Eph. 5:18), yielded to the Spirit (Gal. 5:16) and not grieving the Spirit (Eph. 4:30). All one’s education, natural talents and spiritual gifts not used in the power of the Holy Spirit will be nothing but leadership in the flesh.
B. Leaders are growing in maturity and holiness of life (Eph. 4:13-15; Rom. 12:1-2).
C. Leaders are people of faith, basing their lives on the Bible, trusting God in their daily circumstances and living openly without hypocrisy (Acts 6:5; Rom. 4:20; 2 Cor. 5:7; 1 Tim. 3:9).
D. Leaders are people of prayer. They must set the example in this area. Prayer requires discipline and the only way to learn to pray is to pray (Phil. 4:6-7; 1 Thess. 5:19). Prayer moves God to bring about His own sovereign plan. God is the cause that determines the end. Man’s prayer is the means that brings God’s plan into action and into our personal experience.
E. Leaders are people of the Book. The Bible is to be used for all of life (1 Tim. 3:16) and is to be diligently studied (2 Tim. 2:15) and rigorously applied (James 1:22).
1. “Prayer moves God to bring about His own sovereign plan” (Jack Arnold).
2. “All vital praying makes a drain on a man’s vitality. True intercession is a sacrifice, a bleeding sacrifice” (J. H. Jowett).