Daily D – 1 Kings 12:7
1 Kings 12:7 The older counselors replied, “If you are willing to be a servant to these people today and give them a favorable answer, they will always be your loyal subjects.” (NLT)
1 Kings 12:12-14 Three days later Jeroboam and all the people returned to hear Rehoboam’s decision, just as the king had ordered. But Rehoboam spoke harshly to the people, for he rejected the advice of the older counselors and followed the counsel of his younger advisers. He told the people, “My father laid heavy burdens on you, but I’m going to make them even heavier! My father beat you with whips, but I will beat you with scorpions!” (NLT)
1 Kings 12:26-28 Jeroboam thought to himself, “Unless I am careful, the kingdom will return to the dynasty of David. When these people go to Jerusalem to offer sacrifices at the Temple of the Lord, they will again give their allegiance to King Rehoboam of Judah. They will kill me and make him their king instead.” So on the advice of his counselors, the king made two gold calves. He said to the people, “It is too much trouble for you to worship in Jerusalem. Look, Israel, these are the gods who brought you out of Egypt!” (NLT)
Great leaders serve. Great leaders serve their people. Poor leaders serve themselves at the expense of their people.
Mark Miller (markmillerleadership.com) wrote a book entitled, Great Leaders Serve. He outlined the core teachings of the book around these five strategic practices:
Great leaders SERVE when they…
- See the Future
- Engage and Develop Others
- Reinvent Continuously
- Values Results and Relationships
- Embody the Values
Rehoboam and Jeroboam each made the same mistake. They came to be served rather than to serve. Each of them turned out to be major losers. It doesn’t take much Bible real estate to tell their sad tales. Their stories are contained in three chapters (1 Kings 12-14). David and Solomon’s stories demanded much more space.
David was a shepherd. He understood servant leadership. The only time you drive sheep is when they are going to slaughter. Shepherds lead at the pace of their sheep. They provide what they need to succeed. They protect them, defend them, and provide clear direction. (See Psalm 23.)
Jesus, the greatest leader of all time, had this to say about leadership to a dozen dudes who each thought they were the greatest:
But Jesus called them together and said,
“You know that the rulers in this world Lord it over their people, and officials flaunt their authority over those under them.
But among you it will be different.
Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you must become your slave.
For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
Matthew 20:25-28 NLT
Today, tomorrow, the next day, and the rest of the week, and for as long as you live, is a good time to practice servant leadership. You and I will never lead like Jesus until we master ourselves and serve those in our care.
On this first workday of this new week, lead like Jesus. Rehoboam and Jeroboam blew it. Jesus still leads the way. Lead like Jesus.
I will learn the rhythms and routines of servant leadership.
Our Father, leadership is a trust, a stewardship given by you to us with a focus on serving those you entrust to us. Empower us to serve with wisdom and grace, character and compassion. Empower us to lead like Jesus. Amen.
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Romans 2:4 Don’t you see how wonderfully kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Does this mean nothing to you? Can’t you see that his kindness is intended to turn you from your sin?
Acts 18:24-26 Meanwhile, a Jew named Apollos, an eloquent speaker who knew the Scriptures well, had arrived in Ephesus from Alexandria in Egypt. He had been taught the way of the Lord, and he taught others about Jesus with an enthusiastic spirit and with accuracy. However, he knew only about John’s baptism. When Priscilla and Aquila heard him preaching boldly in the synagogue, they took him aside and explained the way of God even more accurately.