Trading Rights For Responsibilities

Listen to the podcast of this post by clicking on the player below, and you can also subscribe on AppleSpotify, or Audible. 

“When you become a leader, you lose the right to think about yourself.” —Gerald Brooks 

Sadly, I encounter far too many “leaders” (at least they are leaders in title only) who think being a leader means they have more rights. It might be the right to a better parking place, or to be first in line, or to ignore some of the rules that others have to follow. 

That certainly wasn’t the attitude of the apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 9, a chapter which the NIV gives the heading ‘Paul Gives Up His Rights’:

Since we have planted spiritual seed among you, aren’t we entitled to a harvest of physical food and drink? If you support others who preach to you, shouldn’t we have an even greater right to be supported? But we have never used this right. We would rather put up with anything than be an obstacle to the Good News about Christ. (1 Corinthians 9:11-12 NLT) 

Paul said the natural thing was for those in leadership to feel entitled to certain rights, but the spiritual thing is to turn those rights into responsibilities toward the people around us. 

Spiritual leadership is not about gaining more rights, it’s about fulfilling God-given responsibilities. In fact, the higher you progress in a leadership role, the fewer rights you have. Godly servant leaders gladly trade rights for responsibilities. 

A mark of a godly leader is one who has stopped demanding his “rights.”

To trade our rights for responsibilities is a sacrifice. But I don’t mean a sacrifice that comes with a “Woe is me!” feeling. God will only ask us to sacrifice what is holding us back. God wants to use His leaders to minister to His people. He will not give us a larger position if we are only going to use that for our own benefit.

Consider the rights Jesus had because He was fully God. Yet He made the ultimate rights-for-responsibilities sacrifice by going to the Cross in our place. “The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45). 

Leaders, I encourage you to ask the Holy Spirit to show you where you may be clinging to your rights, and how you can exchange those rights for responsibilities to the people God has placed under your care.

This is part 65 in my series on godly leadership. You can check out all of my posts in this series by clicking here. 

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Links & Quotes

Dan Reiland shares 7 practical questions for leaders to create their best strategy.

A powerful story of a life radically transformed. How Bruno Frigoli went from fascism to a relationship with Jesus Christ and became an Assemblies of God leader in Bolivia.

Scott Klusendorf wrote, “If Roe and Casey are struck, it will be a truly historical moment, and pro-lifers should indeed celebrate. Nine unelected judges on the Supreme Court will no longer have sole legal authority to determine abortion policy. Rather, the legislative and executive branches of the federal government, along with those in the individual states, will now decide how the practice is governed. Put simply, the American people—your friends, your classmates, your coworkers, and your family members—will now determine if unborn humans enjoy the same legal protections as you and I, or get relegated to the dumpster.” This is a fascinating article about how pro-life Christians should prepare for a post-Roe America.

Even the pro-abortion research firm The Guttmacher Institute reports “an estimated 100,000 children are killed after the first trimester of pregnancy each.” Let that sink in: 300 lives are snuffed out every day by burtual, inhumane abortion techniques!

Dr. Tim Clarey at the Institue for Creation Research explains how the dinosaurs in the Juassic Park series are “imaginary dinosaur science.” He then lays out the facts.

J. Warner Wallace is a cold-case detective. His investigation into the biblical claims of the death and resurrection of Jesus led him to become a Christian. In this video he explains his thought process as an atheist—

Podcast: Playtime Can Be A Leadership Tool

Listen to the audio-only version of this podcast by clicking on the player below, or scroll down to watch the video.

On this episode of “The Craig And Greg Show” we talk about: 

  • [0:30] Summertime is a good time to review our work vs. leisure balance
  • [1:21] I share how a leader can realize the organization needs some downtime
  • [2:51] Leaders need to recharge themselves
  • [4:13] Self-care is not selfish; self-care needs to be built into a leader’s schedule
  • [5:40] Greg reminds leaders that there isn’t an award for not taking a vacation
  • [6:46] Greg has seen the fallout from overly-tired leaders, and I share some ideas for leaders to help themselves and their teammates de-stress
  • [9:31] How do leaders build playtime into their regular work schedule?
  • [11:10] Share your ideas with us!
  • [11:34] Greg shared some playtime activities he used in his organizations
  • [12:27] Why do leaders think they have to be so serious?
  • [15:15] Some thoughts for leaders to help their teams
  • [16:51] Greg emphasizes again the importance of self-care and they guys talk about how we can help other leaders practice self-care
  • [19:03] Our coaching huddles can help you grow your leadership
  • [20:02] Is it possible to find work-life balance?

Check out this episode and subscribe on YouTube so you can watch all of the upcoming episodes. You can also listen to our podcast on Spotify and Apple.

Be The One

Listen to the podcast of this post by clicking on the player below, and you can also subscribe on AppleSpotify, or Audible. 

John Maxwell was right: “Everything rises and falls on leadership.” 

As the leader goes, so goes the family, the neighborhood, the business, the church, the country. Just as Israel’s leaders fell into sin and took the people down with them, so too the religious and political leaders in America are leading people to sin. 

God told Ezekiel, “See how each of the princes of Israel who are in you uses his power to shed blood” (Ezekiel 22:6). These ungodly leaders were described as:

  • disintegrating the family 
  • mistreating orphans and widows 
  • despising God’s holiness 
  • slandering the righteous 
  • promoting idolatry 
  • living lewdly
  • winking at sexual depravity 
  • being dishonest in their business dealings
  • defrauding their neighbors 
  • treating people like possessions 
  • pursuing immoral gain
  • whitewashing evil (vv. 6-12, 25-28)

The bottom line: God says, “You have forgotten Me” (v. 12). 

This kind of evil must be punished by an All-Righteous God. 

But God is still merciful. He is still looking for just one who will turn away from the sins of the culture and live righteously. He is looking “for someone among them who would build up the wall and stand before Me in the gap on behalf of the land so I would not have to destroy it” (v. 30). 

God is looking for just one leader who will seek God’s glory and not personal gain, who will stand for righteousness even if he has to stand alone. 

Will you be that one? 

I pray I may be that one! 

I pray for godly leaders to stand up! “Holy God, may we stand for You in this evil culture. May Your Holy Spirit strengthen us to stand unmoved against the onslaught of depravity. Strengthen us against the evil one and against evil people, knowing that greater are You in us than the evil that is in the world. May we be the ones that refuse to bend our knee to anyone or anything but You. In the powerful name of Jesus, I pray this. Amen!” 

►► Would you please prayerfully consider supporting this ministry? My Patreon supporters get behind-the-scenes access to exclusive materials. ◀︎◀︎

Links & Quotes

Ken Blanchard shared a blog post based on one of the chapters in his book Simple Truths Of Leadership (which I highly recommend to leaders!). He wrote, “When you catch yourself doing things right, everything in your life will improve—especially your relationships. Why? Because it’s fun to be around people who like themselves. After all, if you’re not your own best friend, who will be? And as my dad used to say, ‘If you don’t toot your own horn, others might use it as a spittoon!’”

For all Christians, but especially for those in leadership positions, Jon Bloom shares How to Watch for Wolves: Three Signs of False Teachers.

Fight The New Drug shares the research behind 15 Basic Facts About Human Sex Trafficking.

This is a great lesson from church history on the power of importunate prayer: The Hundred-Year Prayer Meeting.

Mary Slessor set a high bar for missionaries. John Stonestreet reminds us of this amazing woman.

Autobiography Of Calvin Coolidge (book review) 

Listen to the podcast of this post by clicking on the player below, and you can also subscribe on AppleSpotify, or Audible. 

Calvin Coolidge is the only US president to have been born on July 4, which I think is very fitting for him, since his political philosophy found its firm foundation in our nation’s remarkable founding. In a very modest fashion, President Coolidge relates his amazing career in his autobiography. 

I’m not sure how the title “Silent Cal” ever stuck to this president. Throughout his legal and political career, his speeches—almost all of which he wrote himself—are some of the most thoughtful and enduring speeches in our nation’s history. His voice seemed to resonate across the political aisle too, because at each subsequent election, Coolidge would be elected by larger margins than before, with more Democrats crossing over to vote for him each time. 

Coolidge stood strong during a potentially disastrous Boston police strike while he was governor of Massachusetts, and he transitioned our government’s activities and expenditures from the wartime outlay of Word War I back into the peacetime activities after the war. He never wavered from his adherence to the principles in our founding documents, remaining a strong proponent of states’ rights and a smaller federal budget. 

He was quite progressive, utilizing the new media of radio to get his thoughts out to as many people as possible while championing topics like women’s suffrage, lower taxes, and a stronger working class. 

And then at the height of his political career, he chose not to run for reelection to the presidency, walking away from an almost guaranteed victory to a second term. 

Calvin Coolidge was a fascinating leader, one which both those in and out of politics should strive to emulate. As a student of leadership myself, I highly recommend this book to both American history buffs and those desiring to increase their leadership acumen. 

►► Would you please prayerfully consider supporting this ministry? My Patreon supporters get behind-the-scenes access to exclusive materials. ◀︎◀︎

Visionary Leaders

I believe God gives a vision to His leaders.

God doesn’t give a vision to a leader so that a leader can have a better life, but so that the leader can help the people get to a better place. Vision is always through the leader to the people.  

Daniel exhibits this in his life.

This video is a short clip from a longer video that is exclusive content for my Patreon supporters. 

My Patreon supporters are helping me be able to continue to provide all of the free content on my blog and my YouTube channel. Will you please prayerfully consider supporting this ministry at just $5/month?

Podcast: Generous Leaders Unleash Potential

Listen to the audio-only version of this podcast by clicking on the player below, or scroll down to watch the video.

On this episode of “The Craig And Greg Show” we talk about: 

  • [0:15] I adapt a verse from the Bible to talk about generosity and Greg agrees with me. 
  • [1:00] Generosity is so much more than donating money.
  • [2:15] Generous leaders are proactive, and have appropriate boundaries.
  • [2:48] Leaders cannot fake generosity.
  • [3:42] Generosity isn’t in the big things, but the everyday things.
  • [4:25] Time, talent, treasure are all important components in generosity.
  • [6:00] Greg shares a telling statistic about how Americans give to charities.
  • [6:45] Greg says giving your network can be one of the most generous things a leader does. 
  • [7:37] Generosity requires an abundance mindset.
  • [8:52] What holds us back from being generous?
  • [10:00] Comparisons kill generosity.
  • [10:27] Being generous expands our influence, but stinginess strangles it.
  • [12:55] Our teammates are looking for places to be generous.
  • [13:53] Generosity opens doors for new opportunities.
  • [14:51] Greg shares an insightful quote from Anne Frank 
  • [15:17] I make a connection to the change in Ebenezer Scrooge’s life.
  • [16:11] How we define a generous leader.
  • [17:38] Our leadership challenge: how can you view generosity differently?

Check out this episode and subscribe on YouTube so you can watch all of the upcoming episodes. You can also listen to our podcast on Spotify and Apple.

Links & Quotes

Dan Reiland shares 5 reasons leaders stumble and fall.

Max Lucado addresses the sickening news of sexual abuse coverups in the church. He wrote, “[Jesus] defended the weak, stood up for the forgotten. The idea that His church would be unsafe for His sons and daughters disturbs Him deeply. And you can bet your Bible that He’ll turn a few tables. If history teaches us anything it is this: Jesus will not sit idle while His church drifts from His cause. ‘I will rescue My flock from their mouths,” He declared through a prophet. ‘It will no longer be food for them’ (Ezekiel 34:10). 

“Repentance is necessary; heartfelt, tear-stained, face-on-the floor repentance. By all of us in positions of leadership. Will we see it? I pray so. Regardless, I pray that you will pursue the difficult path of seeking Christ in spite of Christians who have let you down. His pastors have failed to pastor. But when they don’t, He still does. Let Him pastor you.”

Darren Carlson wrote, “Healthy pastors experience the fullness and complexity of their emotions, and then hold them up against the sinlessness of Christ. How might Jesus respond to the pain and loss and victory and neediness in front of me? We grow emotionally as leaders by studying the heart of Jesus as he walks among sinners and sufferers.” His post ‘Healthy Pastors Have Emotions: How to Test and Cultivate Your Feelings’ is an excellent read. I explore the emotional health of shepherd pastors in my book.

Nicky Cruz’s story is a fascinating one. His message for America today should be heeded!

My friend Greg Heeres and I had a helpful discussion about leaders and forgiveness on our Craig And Greg Show podcast. Here is a brief snippet:

How Godly Leaders Prosper

Listen to the podcast of this post by clicking on the player below, and you can also subscribe on AppleSpotify, or Audible. 

I’ve been presenting a series of exclusive leadership lessons to my Patreon supporters, but I wanted to make this particular lesson available to everyone because of its overlap with my book Shepherd Leadership: The Metrics That Really Matter.

I would be honored if you would support this ministry through your support on Patreon. Your gift of just $5/month helps me to keep providing all of the free content that’s on my blog and my YouTube channel. In addition to these leadership lessons from Daniel, you will also receive book quotes, Bible study tools, and a whole host of other helpful items. 

You can check out more information about my book Shepherd Leadership by clicking here. 

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