What's Your Character Like?
This is the question we maybe get asked as leaders more than any other question. And I don't disagree with asking it either. Your character is what keeps you where your talent may take you. So, you better be ready to answer it, honestly, and then be willing to put every effort into not only making it what it should be but then protecting it as well.
Leadership without good character is flawed.
How would others describe you?
Nobody wants to be known as someone with bad character, yet this is the state many of us find ourselves in, if only for the lack of a little focus and intentionality. Such a state brings calamity, demotion and in reality means people don't want to hang around us.
Good character is not our default position. Good character comes through purposeful design.
Think about it. We are inherently selfish. We give most of our attention to ourselves. We want to make sure we have what we want, not just what we need. We will bump people out of the way to make a way for ourselves. We expect as much as possible for as little as possible. We praise and curse with the same mouth. The list of our character flaws could be endless.
I have learned this lesson by getting it right and getting it wrong. Through awkward conversations and times of confrontation by people who care for me, I have discovered that to lead well in life is to be watchful and protective of the right kind of character. And such watchfulness takes concentration and effort.
Read Proverbs 6:12-19 and start by avoiding the list of those things which don't look good from Gods point of view...some are easier than others.
Quick to do wrong things.
False witness towards others.
Then remember how Jesus lifted the standard higher on many of these in His Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5, 6 & 7. Let's be honest, we all have our weaknesses, those unredeemed aspects of who we are which we can use too quickly to blame our words and actions on.
Instead, let's be a leader who is different.
A leader who lives right. On purpose. By design, not by default.
A leader who will lead well. One who is above reproach. Who lives a life worthy of the calling to which they are called.
A leader who honours God in all things.
A leader who is watchful. Be alert. Sin and temptation are always at the door.
A leader who stays focused on Jesus. Keep your eyes on Him. Don't allow yourself to drift. Hold fast your confession of faith. Do not be afraid. And when necessary, repent quickly.
Our character is the greatest test of our personal leadership. The challenge of leading ourselves well and living a life worthy of the calling to which we are called. To be a leader others would be happy to be led by, our character is everything. Let's start today at making it a better one.