Archive | June 2014

Leadership Requirements: A Lesson from Joshua

 

 Certain requirements are a necessity for anyone who wants to lead people successfully, and some of these can be found in the charge given to Joshua by God as he assumes the responsibility of leading the people of Israel into the land of Canaan after the death of Moses. While Moses led Israel out of Egypt, he wasn’t able to lead them into the land of Canaan; Joshua was given this responsibility and a charge to go with it.

The Bible records that God said to Joshua; “only be strong and very courageous that you may observe to do according to all the law which Moses my servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may prosper wherever you go. This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth but you shall meditate in it day and night that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous and then you will have good success.”

The first requirement is strength; a leader must be strong especially mentally. The word strong means able to withstand force or pressure. A leader must be strong to lead because he is out in front and usually the target of opposition. He must be able to withstand whatever opposition may arise in the journey towards the fulfilment of the vision. If he is unable to withstand opposition and caves in under pressure, so will his followers.

The second requirement is courage; a leader must also be courageous. The word courageous means to be brave and undeterred by danger or pain. Interestingly, God did not just ask Joshua to be courageous, He asked him to be very courageous; without courage it is easy to quit when the battles of life get tough and a man or woman leading people cannot afford to quit, he must keep going despite the fierceness of the opposition. It takes courage to achieve this.

The third requirement is be a great follower; Joshua was asked to follow the instructions of Moses and not turn away from it. Every leader who will be great must be a great follower; Joshua was a great follower of Moses, he hearkened to the voice of Moses even after Moses died and so naturally the entire camp of the children of Israel hearkened to him.

The fourth requirement is speak from the book of the law. A law is simply a set of rules that guides a people and I have heard it said that where there is no law there is no sin, but also where there is no law anything goes and disorderliness will prevail. When the children of Israel left Egypt and journeyed towards Canaan, to ensure orderliness, God gave them a set of rules or the law also known as the Ten Commandments. When Joshua took over, God charged him saying the book of the law must not depart from his mouth, in other words he was to speak in line with the book of the law which was the constitution of the children of Israel. A leader must be careful what he says and ensure it is always in line with the constitution that guides the people he leads.

The fifth requirement is meditate on the law; no leader can speak the law he does not meditate on. To meditate simply means to think deeply about a thing. When a leader meditates on the law it fills his heart and two things happen; one, out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks and so when he opens his mouth the law flows out. Two, because it has filled his heart it shapes his values and ultimately his priorities and this is reflected in his ability to take right actions that benefit the people.

The sixth requirement is observe to do the law; a leader must without fail do as the law dictates for he is not above the law. A leader who does not do the law will give birth to followers who do not do the law because monkey see monkey do; followers do not do as their leaders say they do as their leaders do. Therefore, in an organisation or nation where the leader is corrupt the people will become corrupt because the people become like the leader. As such, a leader who wants to raise followers who are law abiding must first ensure that he is law abiding; it is not enough for him to teach the people the law he must do the law.

When a leader meets all of these requirements listed above then his success as a leader is guaranteed. If a leader is not successful, I daresay one or more of these requirements are missing.

Eturuvie Erebor

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It Is Not Too Late To Achieve Your Dreams

Many times, because of the challenges of life, we are unable to achieve our dreams at the time we desire to do so and as the years go by it becomes easy to dismiss them and conclude that they can never become a reality because we think we are now too old to achieve them. However, we must remember that we have only one life to live; there will be no second life to achieve the dreams not achieved in this lifetime, therefore, no matter what your age currently is go ahead and take steps to achieve your dreams. Perhaps circumstances made it impossible for you to go to school at the time you desired to go to school, it is not late; you can still go to school.
About two years ago I heard the story of an amazing woman, Nola Ochs, who went back to school and graduated at the age of 95 years (I don’t know what your age is but if she accomplished her dream of going to school at that age, then there is hope for you). This woman desired to go to school but circumstances did not make it happen at the time. However, she did not give up; she returned to school to achieve her dreams at an age when many of her mates would have decided it was too late for them to achieve their dreams. Nola graduated at the age of 95 and she didn’t stop there, she went further and achieved a master’s degree in May 2010, at the age of 98. Nola is quoted to have said, “I don’t dwell on my age. It might limit what I can do. As long as I have my mind and health, age is just a number.”
An uncle of mine once relayed his conversation with a friend who desired to be a lawyer but thought he could no longer achieve that dream. My uncle said to him, “you can still go back to school and study law” to which the man exclaimed, “but it will take five years to get a law degree by which time I will be X years old!” (I don’t remember what the age was) and my uncle said to him, “whether you go to study law or not, in five years’ time you will be X years old. Is it not better to arrive at X years old with a law degree than to arrive at X years old without a law degree?”
Abraham did not have a dream or vision for his life until he was 75 years but as he began to take steps to achieve his dream, not minding his age, he soon became rich in cattle, in silver and in gold. The man who lived in his father’s house at 75 years became so wealthy that he had a private army with which he fought four kings.
Moses lived in his father-in-law’s house for forty years and had no idea what to do with his life (other than care for his father-in-law’s sheep). Then suddenly he realised that he could still achieve his dream of delivering his people from bondage; so at 80 years, he returned to Egypt to fulfil his dream.
It is not too late for you to achieve your dreams; if it wasn’t late for Nola Ochs, Abraham, Moses and many others; it certainly is not late for you. Forget your age and take the first step towards the accomplishment of your dreams.
Eturuvie Erebor