Leadership is not always a fun road. Actually, often the journey is quite the opposite. We see all these videos on social media highlighting the joys of being a leader and the many people who follow them, but that can be very deceiving because what we don’t see is that most leaders are born out of hardship. You see, leadership training involves obstacles, mistreatment, and sometimes even the breaking of your heart. Leaders endure criticism, abuse (verbal, emotional), many backbites, and so much more.
The most crucial part of a leader is growing tough skin but maintaining a soft heart. If you have soft skin but a hard heart, God will give you more trials and tests to change your character. He will have to soften your heart (which can be painful), all the while toughening your skin.
God is more concerned with your character than your comfort.
There is a reason why the Word shows us the hardships of our favorite Biblical leaders. Because that is the true life of the road to leadership, James 1:2-3 states: So, yes, you will lose friends, but you’ll gain better ones. Yes, Leadership comes with seasons of loneliness, when God cleans house for the next set of guests; but each season will bring forth new guests that will stand by your side, and you will help one another take the next step. You will be criticized and hated for the smallest of reasons or without even knowing why.
Sometimes, you will have to get in the shower and cry out to God because leadership is an uncomfortable process, but learn to get it out and get up because this world needs you to.
It doesn’t always mean a promotion at work or a fancy new lanyard from your church serving team. Leadership is more than that, and not everyone who gets elevated is truly a leader. What man promotes, God will eventually demote to make way for His true leaders. Like the story of Saul and David.
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But here is what I can promise you, once you have gone through the training, once you have endured the fight and continued to grow in God. There will come a time when you will use discouragement for motivation when you feel love over pain, anger, or bitterness. You will have comfort and peace in times of high intense stress and circumstances. Achieving the true Biblical elevation of a leader is the most rewarding thing one can do in their life. You have proven to God that He has anointed one He can trust. Your journey and hardships will be what God uses to raise more leaders behind you. To encourage them to rise above everyone else. Because honestly, you cannot fight the good fight from the sidelines.
The best of soldiers have to deepest of wounds; you aren’t damaged goods, you are a warrior!
Leadership is a long road and doesn’t happen overnight. King David had 15 years after being anointed before he even entered into His Kingdom. Christ had a 30-year preparation for a 3-year ministry. But what I believe is that once you have reached that level of leadership, there is a whole new level of God’s promises and anointing over you, your ministry, and your life. That’s why Satan wants to knock you out in your valley seasons. He doesn’t want you to build the strength you get when you hike up the mountain in the dead of winter or the scorching heat of the summer. The more mountains you climb, the stronger you become, so strong that you can not only teach others how to do the same but carry them.
Everyone has a call of leadership in their life, but not everyone accepts that call, achieves it. Many get knocked out of the game because of small offenses or obstacles.