WHAT IS GOD SEEKING FROM A LEADER
The integrity of the righteous guides them, but the hypocrisy of the treacherous destroys them.( Prov.11:3)
THE SUPREME QUALITY OF A LEADER IS UNQUESTIONABLE INTEGRITY AND HONESTY WHICH IS GROSSLY COMPROMISED TODAY.
The Greek philosopher Socrates said: ”The key to greatness is to be in reality of who we appear to be.” A man of your word. What you say is what you are. What he is driving home here is that don’t be a cheat! Saying one thing with your lips and pretending to be something you are not. And don’t ever think you are smart by doing that!
We got to have a transparent life for people to trust us and follow after us. God will never compromise in this area no matter who you are and what your excuses may be.
In other words our words and our deeds should match what we are projecting to the world. What we are claiming to be to the world.
But sadly people are not what they say they are today, especially among Christian leaders unfortunately.
What is the definition of integrity in God’s terms?
It is soundness of moral character, honesty, incorruptibility.
You know what? Some people try to develop character (1) on human values and principles. (2) Some people try to develop character on good behaviour. (3) Some people try to build their character on human philosophy.
At the end of the day when everything has been said and done, the testing and the trials, the storms and the floods will beat against your house. Only then, the foundation on which you have build your character will prove whether you could withstand the pressures of time. And the Bible gives a dramatic anology in:
New International Version (NIV)
The Wise and Foolish Builders
24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. 26 But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. 27 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”
It says in another translation: Great was the fall of it! It fell with a mighty crash.” You know what? You and I need to be aware of the seasons we are living in today. Can I say something to you? You better watch out! “Not all people who sound religious are really godly people.” They are just a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.
Today the reason why the world is in such a mess is because of a lack of integrity and character in leaders. The intellectual world tries to be cleverer than God. They have rejected God as their very foundation. Instead they use their own intellectual philosophy to build their principles and values to run nations.
Without integrity you will be heading nowhere. Without it you will not be able to influence anybody! Without it you will become unpopular! Without it nobody will submit to you or respect you. You will only end up in quarrels and strife in church.
INTEGRITY IS A SOLID REPUTATION NOT AN IMAGE
Image is what people think we are. Integrity is what we really are. Unfortunately in today’s world people are concerned about building their own self-image. We call such people image-builders. Sadly many use the pulpit to do so.
However, a solid reputation in Christ is a character which is measured in a man as to what you would do even when you are not being policed , even when nobody is watching.
FOOLISH LEADER: “I DON’T CARE WHAT PEOPLE THINK OF ME!”
The worst place to think you can get away with deceiving the people is the church. You can escape trying to fool people in the corporate sector because people in the secular world will often compromise by measuring you on human standards. But the Church’s expectancy of you will always be beyond the human standards. It is based on God’s word.
Some leaders are very mistaken; they think I don’t care what people think of me. I can get away with it. This is absolute rubbish. This is the major reason why many ministries and leaders have been defeated today. When you have such flaws in you, the enemy will be waiting to destroy you. Many unfortunately have fallen into the trap of the enemy because of clever thinking mind of their own.
Matt. 16:6 “Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the Sadducees”
A little leaven leaventh much. The Pharisees and the Sadducees were a set of people who had a strong religious spirit. An arrogant spirit of an outward appearance and self-righteousness but inwardly they were crooks and thieves. Obviously they did not have the born-again spirit of God in them but they carried a strong leaven that was very contagious. Leaders need to be aware of this spirit that can subtly creep into you if you are not careful.
GOD’S WORD DON’T NEED INNOVATION
MATTHEW 24:35 – “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.”
Have you ever realized that everything created by man need to change and innovate from time to time in order to suit civilization’s demand? That’s because man is an imperfect being. Therefore whatever man creates today becomes outdated tomorrow; out of fashion over time.
But you know what is happening today in ministry and churches? People are changing the word of God to suit their own convenience and circumstances. Can I say something to you this morning?
God’s word need no change!!!! For ever and ever it will last, forever and ever it will not change! Forever and ever it will be a living word! Forever and ever it will be relevant in season and out of season from generation to generation.
ISAIAH 40:8 — “The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever.”
A GOOD CHRISTIAN LEADER WHO HAS HIGH INTEGRITY WILL HAVE HIGH INFLUENTIAL VALUE.
In other words the word that you say with your mouth will influence other people around you. Listen to me! You carry a spiritual power that is so contagious that it will impact, empower, and transform others around you.
WHAT DO PEOPLE EXPECT FROM YOU?
You can say a hundred things with your lips but if your life shows a different message, people will not believe you. Because your reality defeats your message! That’s a fact, you can’t run away from. What people want to see is Christ operating through your life as one of the leaders of His church.
We should always focus on Jesus every time we attempt to do something which is against the standard of God. Ask ourselves “WILL JESUS DO IT, IF HE IS IN YOUR SITUATION?”
That’s the standard of measurement that you should follow.
Integrity is a result of self-discipline. A decision to be honest in all situations irrespective of your circumstances.
EFFECTIVE LEADERSHIP IS NOT BASED ON HOW CLEVER I AM, INTEGRITY IS BASED ON HOW HONEST AND CONSISTENT I AM TO BE CHRISTLIKE!
INTEGRITY IS LIKE A GLUE THAT HOLDS OUR LIFE TOGETHER. YOU TAKE AWAY INTEGRITY THERE IS NOTHING LEFT IN YOUR LIFE.
We need men and women of integrity no matter what. The standard and conduct that God has set for His children to follow is not an outward standard but an inward standard. God is concerned about our inward standard! God’s standard of righteousness has never changed. He is holy and nothing flawed with sin can stand before Him.
This is the standard that governs our attitude and thoughts. Jesus said in Matt 5:20 your standard and conduct must (exceed) higher than the standards of the Pharisees and Scribes. You see the standards of these people were only outward in nature. They were only cosmetic in their righteousness. They were arrogant.
True character of God is an inward change! Our life should be a living epistle. There is an old American cliche which goes like this: “Your talk is cheap but your life speaks volumes”. Do you have a testimony in your life? Your testimony is so powerful that you don’t have to impress people with all your talk.
Integrity is not something that happens just because you become a Christian. It’s something we develop by crucifying our flesh which results in yielding ourselves to Christ progressively. It is a product of a divine spirit that is at work in our heart.
This is what you mean when you say “I am a BORN-AGAIN CHRISTIAN”
Note: Rev Dr Jai Kumar is an ordained & licensed minister of Covenant Ministries International N.J. USA. He is a mission minded pastor who carries an apostolic anointing who preaches and teaches an uncompromising gospel with boldness. A member of ECCM (Malaysia) Spiritual Adviser & overseer to various ministries and churches. An itinerant speaker. He is also the author of a book entitled, ‘God’s Time Clock.’ Currently he worships at C3 Subang.
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Rev Dr Jai Kumar