Brave Christian Leadership is a Heart Condition
And the officers shall speak further to the people, and say, ‘Is there any man who is fearful and fainthearted? Let him go back to his house, lest he make the heart of his fellows melt like his own. (Deuteronomy 201:8 , ESV)
How selective should you as a Christian leader be in the associations that you keep? Well, according to the Bible we should be very discriminating when choosing company. Why? Because godly Christian leadership is not immune to external influences. Proverbs like “bad company corrupts good character” or “the rotten apple spoils the barrel” summarise the human experience and confirm the truth that none of us are immune to the influences of those we give access to our lives and to whose lives we may have access to.
In Deuteronomy 20:8 it is written, Is any man afraid or fainthearted? Let him go home so that his brothers will not become disheartened too. In the military morale is vital. A small army with high morale can defeat a much larger army. How is this possible? One factor is heart size.
I am more afraid of one hundred sheep led by a lion than one hundred lions led by a sheep. Attributed to Charles Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord (1754 – 1838)
Courage is a choice. So is cowardice.
Twelve spies explored and experienced the promised land. Ten chose to believe what they saw and felt instead of remembering what they heard from God. Their report had a devastating effect upon the morale of the people: “Then all the congregation lifted up their voices and cried, and the people wept that night.” Fortunately, Joshua and Caleb believed what God had promised. Same scenario elicits polar responses: “Impossible!” cries the one. “Possible!” cries the other. It boils down to choice.
It is nearly impossible to win a battle alongside someone whose mind is fixated on defeat; or does not believe victory is possible. Such individuals were given the opportunity to excuse themselves from the fight. Their absence made the army stronger. Fear is contagious, debilitating and paralysing.
Christian leadership implies courageous leadership .
What is true of physical warfare is true of spiritual warfare as well. Faintheartedness will inject negativism, inspire unbelief, impair vision and instill disobedience. Leadership and courage go together. (1 Chronicles 28:20; Joshua 1:6-9; Deuteronomy 31:23; Deuteronomy 31:6-7; Joshua 10:25)
Today, choose courage infused by faith. Think, possible instead of impossible. You have more reason to succeed than to fail (Psalm 18:29; Psalm 118: 6). But what if you don’t feel courageous?
Courage is equally contagious that is why we have the english word, encourage (early 15c., from Old French encoragier “make strong, hearten,” from en- “make, put in” + corage “courage, heart, innermost feelings“.–http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=encourage).
Surround yourself, associate yourself with those exhibiting believing courage; with those who strengthen you inside. This requires that you be discerning, selective and aware. Remember, we are all different.
Better yet. Be and encourager. Better to be a heart motivator than a heart melter. Jesus, explaining the Scriptures, had the hearts of his hearers burning (Luke 24:32). There we have an antidote to a melted or cold heart- set it ablaze with the Word!
We all at times feel discouraged and perhaps fearful. What strategies do you employ to get into a state of courageousness?