I am currently spending my personal devotional time in the Old Testament book of Nehemiah. Nehemiah stepped into a leadership role during a time of turmoil and transition for God’s called people of Israel and became a picture of God-centered leadership. As a result, many leaders have looked to Nehemiah’s example in order to learn lessons they can apply in their contexts.
That’s why I’m reading Nehemiah’s story again.
My congregation is currently going through a time of leadership transition. One of our most respected and most cherished spiritual shepherds is retiring from the office of Elder due to a loss of hearing that is keeping him from contributing the way he would like. Also, our long-serving Administrative Minister is retiring after a successful run. So, over the next few months, we will be transitioning in a new minister and some new elders.
While none of this is bad – in fact, it’s quite normal – any type of transition in an organization requires good leadership that can navigate the choppy waters of transition smoothly and successfully. But I don’t want to simply be a good leader during this season in Alameda’s life; I want to be a godly leader. Thus, my time with Nehemiah.
Here are my observations from Nehemiah 1…
- A godly leader cares deeply for God’s people and purposes.
- A godly leader intentionally seeks God’s help first.
- A godly leader prays.
- A godly leader views prayer as an act of humility, confession, and remembrance.
- A godly leader sees prayer as an indispensable ingredient to success.
- A godly leader defines success as the expansion of God’s Kingdom (i.e., the reign of God’s values, influence, and will).
- A godly leader prays bold prayers and relies on God’s blessing.
- A godly leader seeks God’s glory above his or her own.
- A godly leader serves God as King, even if he or she is the servant of an earthly king.
Want to be a godly leader?
Me, too. This list from Nehemiah provides a good starting point for us.
In my next two posts, I will share 5 elements of a godly leader’s prayer (Friday) and my own “Nehemiah Prayer” for Alameda (Monday). I hope you’ll check back on those days.
Thanks for reading.