If I seek to be a Spirit-led leader, I must expect to hear the Holy Spirit say "no."
"They went throughout the region of Phrygia and Galatia and were forbidden by the Holy Spirit to speak the word in Asia. When they came near Mysia, they tried to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit did not allow them" (Acts 16:6-7).
Imagine the work of Paul and his missionary team in preparation to enter into Phrygia. Surely they had a strategy. The region was not unknown to them and the culture was probably one they understood well. The region seemed like a perfect opportunity for a church plant. We read later in Acts 19:10 that the region was indeed a fertile ground for ministry.
"All who lived in Asia heard the word of the Lord Jesus."
It's not always easy to understand a "no." But we do have insight into the direction of the Holy Spirit in this case. Perhaps the Holy Spirit knew the time was critical for Paul to meet Dr. Luke. Perhaps the ministry in Macedonia was more important in a timing sense.
I wonder how many ministers and leaders miss a "no" from the Holy Spirit. World history would have been impacted had Paul not been obedient in this one seemingly simple decision to "obey" a "no." Many leaders are challenged when they hear the word "no." Some see "no" as an invitation to press on and find a way. For some, "no" is simply a suggestion.
The difference is that Paul heard a spiritual "no." We don't know how Paul heard from God, we only know that he did. We also know Paul moved with instant obedience to the Holy Spirit.
As we lead our organizations, we must develop confidence in our knowledge that we hear God. We must stay open and willing to hear the word "no."
We must sharpen our eyes and ears and soften our hearts to become willing to hear that our big idea isn't of the Lord. He protects us from ourselves. If we truly expect to receive the favor of God, we must be ready to hear Him say, "No, my son. Not at this time. Check back with me in another season."
Help us, Lord, to receive the favor of a "no."
Platform Tip No. 79
It's always the words.
Copy writing builds every platform. Whether written or spoken, words should be crafted for meaning. We aren't writing literature. We are communicating.
Write words that connect your audience's felt need to your message.
Write to needs every day.
Do you want to learn more about developing your personal platform?
Send for my free series of lessons titled, "The Fundamentals of Creating, Curating and Developing Content for Multiple Platforms." Send your request to: email@example.com.
This is an exclusive offer to Ministry Today and "Greenelines" readers.
We will not share your email address with anyone.
Dr. Steve Greene is the publisher and executive vice president of the media group at Charisma Media and executive producer of the Charisma Podcast Network. His book, Love Leads: The Spiritual Connection Between Your Relationships and Productivity, is now available.
Leaders, Dr. Greene wants to help you understand the spiritual connection between relationships and productivity. Read his new blog, Love Leads.
Get Spirit-filled content delivered right to your inbox! Click here to subscribe to our newsletter.
Dr. Steve Greene is now sharing stories, teachings, and conversations with guests who lead with love on Love Leads, a new podcast. Listen now.
Help Charisma stay strong for years to come as we report on life in the Spirit. Become an integral part of Charisma’s work by joining Charisma Media Partners. Click here to keep us strong!
Dr. Mark Rutland's
National Institute of Christian Leadership (NICL)
The NICL is one of the top leadership training programs in the U.S. Enroll in the FREE Mini-Course to experience Dr. Rutland's training for yourself and then enroll for the full training that will change your life and ministry.
FREE NICL MINI-COURSE - Enroll for 3-hours of training from Dr. Rutland's full leadership course. Experience the NICL and decide if this training is right for you and your team.
NICL Training offered in FL, TX and GA - Learn everything you wish someone had taught you about business and ministry before you finished seminary. Gain the knowledge that will help propel your life and ministry to the next level as you implement practical lessons from Dr. Rutland's training. Training Dates and Details.
The NICL Online is a brand new option for those church and ministry leaders who cannot attend the in-person training. Now, you can receive all 60-hours of Dr. Rutland's training from the comfort of your home or ministry for a full year. Learn more about NICL Online.