Note: The following is an excerpt from the book Lead and Succeed by Sara. J. Moulton Reger
Business leaders can never go wrong by building their foundation on godly principles. The fundamentals in this chapter are the underpinnings of our thinking, so they precede effective decisions, actions, and habits. Just as it is a good idea to check the foundation of your home periodically to ensure it is sound, you may want to return to this chapter periodically to review these important Bible fundamentals for business leadership.
Acknowledge That Leaders are Chosen by God
The apostle Paul wrote the following passage at a time when Rome ruled the world. One of Rome’s emperors would eventually order Paul’s death.
“Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God.” (Romans 13:1)
Perhaps the most important leadership fundamental is understanding that God establishes leadership and authority. Notice that Paul tells Christians to respect the civil authority not because it is good or right, but because all authority is derived from God. This is true even when it casts itself in opposition to Him, as the Roman government did.
If we understand this first and foremost, it is easier to keep our leadership positions and the associated authority in proper perspective. Also, we are less likely to see leadership as a privilege or as something we deserve due to our own effort and results.
Leadership is a significant responsibility—one established by God. This important truth needs to guide us in both our positions as leaders and in the many areas where we are followers of other leaders in our lives.
• Remember that leadership is a responsibility established by God.
• Recognize you have a specific God-given purpose in your leadership position—one you need to continually seek and strive to better understand and fulfill.
• Seek to readily recognize the leadership positions others hold and your relationship and responsibility to those leaders.
• Ensure you are also a good follower and model respect for authority.
Since 1988, my work has required extensive travel. On one flight, after reading my pocket Bible during most of the flight, I unbuckled my seat belt while we were taxiing into the gate area. The nearby flight attendant asked me to rebuckle it.
I must admit, sheepishly, I failed to do it. Afterward I felt the conviction of the Holy Spirit. Shortly before this flight, I had read the book Spiritual Authority by Watchman Nee. I knew in this circumstance the flight attendant was the authority. I needed to repent, and I did. Although many years have passed since this situation, it still reminds me of the importance of identifying and acknowledging authority in all situations.