I spent Friday, May 10th at the Chick-fil-A Leadercast® event, a one day leader development conference held in Atlanta and broadcast via satellite to about 750 sites. The theme of the event was “Simply Lead”. Like others in attendance, I was there to grow through learning from others. The speaker list was varied in background and experience, including Andy Stanley, David Allen, Henry Cloud, John Maxwell, Sanya Richards-Ross, Mike Krzyzewski, Condeleeza Rice, Jack Welch and Rorke Denver. As you might expect, the presentations and content was as varied as the speakers.
My favorite speaker was Andy Stanley, who shared three questions that a leader and those he is leading must know the answers to. 1. What are we doing? 2. Why are we doing it? 3. Where do I fit in? The point of knowing the answer to the three questions is to provide clarity for everyone involved. One of the best pieces of practical advice from Andy is for each person in an organization to have a one sentence job description. Not easily done, but very helpful for everyone and a good way to provide clarity for the “Where do I fit in?” question.
There were a few things from the other speakers that were helpful, but where do I get knowledge and wisdom every day, not just at a one day event? Where can I turn when I need knowledge and wisdom to help me through a decision I have to make, a challenge I have to face? Fortunately, we have a great source readily available to us, at least in the English language. God gave us His Words in the form of the Bible, which is filled with wisdom, not just for leaders, but for everyone. If you are a leader, then you need to be reading the Bible daily as a source of wisdom and knowledge so you can be a better leader.
There is wisdom throughout every book of the Bible, mainly via the stories of the experiences and results of wise and poor decisions. This method of sharing knowledge and wisdom isn’t any different than the techniques used during the Leadercast® event by the speakers. Don’t you think you can learn something from Abraham, Joseph, Moses, Joshua, David, Solomon, John, Peter and Paul, men who made great and sometimes horrible decisions?
Of course God gave us a book dedicated to the purpose of sharing knowledge and wisdom, Proverbs. Here is the purpose of Proverbs directly from the opening seven verses: “These are the proverbs of Solomon, David’s son, king of Israel. Their purpose is to teach people wisdom and discipline, to help them understand the insights of the wise. Their purpose is to teach people to live disciplined and successful lives, to help them do what is right, just, and fair. These proverbs will give insight to the simple, knowledge and discernment to the young. Let the wise listen to these proverbs and become even wiser. Let those with understanding receive guidance by exploring the meaning in these proverbs and parables, the words of the wise and their riddles. Fear of the Lord is the foundation of true knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline”.
If someone wrote a leadership book that offered those promises and delivered them, it would be a best seller. Guess what, the Bible does offer those promises and delivers them and it is a best seller. Even better it is available in many different formats and in many different versions (at least in English). Thanks to Lifechurch.tv the Bible is available electronically for many different devices through YouVersion.com and it’s free.
I have many verses highlighted talking about wisdom, knowledge, instruction. Here are a few, without reference, so you can demonstrate some leadership and search them out on your own:
My child, listen to me and do as I say, and you will have a long, good life. I will teach you wisdom’s ways and lead you in straight paths. When you walk, you won’t be held back; when you run, you won’t stumble. Take hold of my instructions; don’t let them go. Guard them, for they are the key to life.
For the Lord grants wisdom! From his mouth come knowledge and understanding. He grants a treasure of common sense to the honest. He is a shield to those who walk with integrity.
Those who love your instructions have great peace and do not stumble.
Get the wisdom that can literally be in the palm of your hands and enjoy its benefits!