Protect It

Protect It

“Whoever tends the fig tree shall eat its fruit. He who looks after his master shall be honored.” (Pro 27:18)

When we are given responsibility at work, we need to receive it with a sense of responsibility. If we treat it well, as if it were our own, it will bear fruit.

When we protect the areas, we are given with integrity and excellence, they will prosper. The byproduct of this is that we will actually be blessed by what we protect. He who guards the tree will eat of its fruit. Not only will that nourish and grow us it is accompanied with honour, but this also builds our reputation which in turn grows our capacity and opportunity.

We are called to be responsible regardless of the size of the task we are given. As we are faithful with the little, we are given more; it is a spiritual law with natural consequences.

Plus, as we operate in a spirit of protection, we will be given more responsibility because we will be deemed trustworthy by God and man.

Quick Prayer: Give me a spirit of preservation and protection. Amen.

Stay Sharp

Stay Sharp

“Iron sharpens iron; so, a man sharpens his friend’s countenance.” (Pro 27:17)

Who keeps you sharp? Who do you have in your life that you trust—whom you can “do life with”? We all need people who love God who can keep us sharp.

Leaders in particular can become very isolated and insular. We have to ensure we are actively looking at ways to address this deficit, in order to be at our best.

Often in our busy lives those relationships have drifted away or may not even exist. Ask God today to bring someone into your life or reacquaint yourself with a true friend. Why not schedule in some time to stay sharp with good company?

Be careful of a life with many acquaintances and no true friends. We all need some accountability. In order to gain true friendship, we need to be a true friend. As in any relationship, we will only get out what we put in. Investing in friendship is a sure way to surround yourself with great friends.

Quick Prayer: Lead me to people who I can trust, Lord. Amen.

Correction

Correction

“Whoever loves correction loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.” (Pro 12:11)

It is easy to forget that God is our Father, and like all good fathers, He will bring correction and discipline from time to time. This is often manifested in difficult circumstances or a word from someone else. How should we react to these events?

Getting before God to understand what adjustments He wants to make in us is a good start. We can be thankful that we have a loving Father who wants the best for us. Our position in receiving discipline and correction will determine our ultimate altitude in life and our walk with Him.

Let us not believe our own press and see our worldly leadership role as some sort of abdication of our responsibility to continue to grow and hear from God.

If you keep getting a “Why am I here again?” feeling, you may not have learned the lesson yet.

Quick Prayer: I need Your correction in my life, Lord. Help me to be aware. Amen.

Mocker

Mocker

“He who corrects a mocker invites insult. He who reproves a wicked man invites abuse. Don’t reprove a scoffer, lest he hate you. Reprove a wise man, and he will love you.” (Pro 9:7-8)

Leaders have an obligation to unlock and realise the potential of those under their authority. They do that through serving, guiding and encouraging, but also through challenging and stretching. Every so often we need to reprove, correct and bring discipline.

Sometimes as Christians we are reluctant to engage in this way. I think that is more as a result of an error in Christian culture rather than a true Biblical understanding. Being ‘nice’ is not Christian, if it is an abdication of our responsibility to confront, reprove and correct. Yes, it must be done with Godly wisdom, and in a spirit of reconciliation and service to the individual involved. But done it must be.

Notice the reaction here is not related to the rebuke, but to the character of the recipient. Obviously, that is assuming it is done in a wise and reasonable way, by someone fully aware of their own need for grace. The wise will respect and respond to the reproof, the mocker and scoffer will not. Sometimes discernment of character ahead of time will avoid unnecessary confrontation.

Quick Prayer: Help me to see who is wise and who is not and give me the courage to correct when led by you. Amen.

Rebuke

Rebuke

“Turn at my reproof. Behold, I will pour out my spirit on you. I will make known my words to you” (Pro 1:23)

Regardless of our position we are all responsible to someone. Even as a business owner you have the ultimate arbiter of your success, your customer.

I hate discipline. When God is working on something in my life, those adjustments are sometimes not easy. However, as we respond to those things, God begins to talk to us, reveal more of Himself, and make known more of His character and ways. Sometimes we miss out on His blessings because we resist His correction.

These corrections are always for a purpose. He will often highlight a behavior because it may well cause us to stumble down the track. He doesn’t do it for His entertainment but for our greater good.

His promise is to “pour out His thoughts.” Imagine that—thinking the thoughts of God.

Quick Prayer: Thank You that there is wisdom after a rebuke. Amen.

Be Gentle

Be Gentle

“A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” (Pro 15:1)

When we are in a position of authority in our company, there is a temptation to be harsh. We can easily display emotions that are not appropriate. This is especially true when we are faced with an angry person.

The wisdom of this Scripture is that an unexpectedly gentle response can disarm a potentially volatile situation. Often when we are challenged, we may assume a gentle answer is a sign of weakness and that authority demands a certain demeanor. This Scripture would indicate a better way.

Gentleness is not weakness, often it is an expression of an inner strength, a transformed heart, one full of the peace of God. Your gentle response is a witness.

Leadership does not demand that we act in a harsh or distant manner. Our example is Jesus. How did He act? Take a look in the gospels for an example of true leadership in action.

Quick Prayer: Help me to be gentle. Amen.

Lip Fruit

Lip Fruit

“A man shall be satisfied with good by the fruit of his mouth. The work of a man’s hands shall be rewarded to him.” (Pro 12:14)

Do you want to be filled with good things? Speak well and work hard. These two things go hand in hand. Individually they have an effect and together they produce good fruit. God says that as you operate in this way, you will be filled with good things and rewarded.

In business and our personal lives, we impact people. What we say has the power to build up or tear down. That influence on people often determines our success in all realms of life.

We can say good things and do, good things. Both are important and part of our witness at work. As leaders we set the tone and our teams are a reflection of us. How we treat others, what we say and how we say it, will be echoed across our organisations.

Quick Prayer: Thank You that You value good words and good work. Amen.

Tongue Holding

Tongue Holding

“One who despises his neighbor is void of wisdom, but a man of understanding holds his peace.” (Pro 11:12)

Sometimes the best thing you can say is nothing at all. Giving someone a piece of your mind may be a piece you can ill afford to lose.

There is grace in overlooking an offense, mercy in not taking retribution, and forgiveness in answering gently to a harsh critic. Grace, mercy, and forgiveness are all things that have been freely given to us.

Leaders sometimes seem to act with impunity and ‘cut loose’ on staff when things don’t go our way. There is no place for such behaviour in the workplace or in the Kingdom in any of its expression.

Let’s treat others as God has treated us. Thank goodness He does not give us what we deserve. Why not treat others as God treats us? Our businesses will be all the better for it.

Quick Prayer: Help me bite my tongue sometimes, please, Lord. Amen.