Nehemiah 2 – Leadership Takes Discernment (part 2)

Last week we started on Nehemiah 2, but I split it up to make it easier to read and apply.  This week I continue that with the remaining portion.  Last week’s post was called “Nehemiah 2- Leadership Takes Discernment (part1)”

Part 4- Discerning Where to Begin

1.  Nehemiah had a large task at hand and when he arrived and saw it he likely didn’t know where to begin.  So, he goes out on a mission to see first hand what the extent of the situation was.  He was simply on a mission to take in information and he did not share with anyone what he was doing yet.   This allows him to prioritize and plan the rebuilding project.

“The ability to juggle three or four high-priority projects successfully is a must for every leader.  A life in which anything goes will ultimately be a life in which nothing goes” – John Maxwell

Leadership Principle # 7 –  Leaders take time to plan before starting something.  This allows for a quality plan to be implemented and for people to truly understand what the steps are going to be to complete it.

2.  Nehemiah takes the time to inspect the wall.  Once he does, the officials hear what is on his heart.  This shows his leadership in determining what to begin with and with whom to share it with.

“Come, let us rebuild the wall of Jerusalem, and we will no longer be in disgrace.  I also told them about the gracious hand of my God upon me and what the king had said to me.  They replied, “Let us start rebuilding.”  So they began this good work.” (Nehemiah 2:17-18)

Leadership Principle # 8 –  Leaders observe all that is going on before starting.  This prevents overlooking important details and starting with people who will hinder the process.

Part 4- Discerning the Critic’s Motives

1. The criticism here was to be expected.  After all, it had been some time since the wall was destroyed.   Also the king had made it illegal for any rebuilding of this wall.  This is ironic since it is the same king that sent Nehemiah to rebuild the wall.  But, whatever the case, there was going to be critics.

Leadership Principle # 9 –  Leaders will be criticized for their plan.  This is especially true if it is something that goes against the status quo.

2.   Nehemiah’s approach is to address them with a reminder that this is God’s work.  He constantly keeps the mission in mind and he is not going to be intimated by people who don’t understand it.

“Leadership begins when a God-revealed mission captures a person”  – Gene Wilkes in the book “Jesus on Leadership”

“Simply put: Servant leadership is passionate service to the mission and to those who join the leader in that mission” – Wilkes

Leadership Principle # 10 –  Leaders know the mission God has called them to and are willing to do whatever it takes, even lose popularity, to get it done.  In this way, leaders are not afraid of change and giving all the credit to God.

So, how are you doing so far?  Are you one who has a God give mission?  Do you live the life of a servant leader?

We have many more chapters to go and much more ground to cover.  The question for today is:  “What would families look like today if leadership within them exercised discernment?”

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