Pastor Greg continues his series on Servant Leadership this week. This week’s message focuses on three more leadership principles: Leaders Aren’t Afraid To Act, Leaders Act Like Then Is Now, and Leaders Put The Best Person For The Job On The Job. Greg looks at the example of Joseph and Pharaoh avoiding the disaster of an upcoming famine in Egypt and shows us lessons on servant leadership we can apply in our modern world as well.
LEADERSHIP PRINCIPLES (So Far)
1) All LEADERSHIP Is STEWARDSHIP
2) All LEADERSHIP is TEMPORARY
3) All LEADERSHIP Is ACCOUNTABLE To God
4) The SPEED of the LEADER Is The SPEED Of The PACK
THREE MORE LEADERSHIP PRINCIPLES TODAY
5) LEADERS Aren’t Afraid To ACT
6) LEADERS Act Like THEN Is NOW
7) LEADERS Put The BEST Person FOR the Job ON The Job
(About 1900 B.C. the Pharaoh of Egypt has two nightmares in one night. In the first dream, seven fat, sleek, beautiful, healthy cows are swallowed up by seven thin, sickly, ugly cows. In the second dream, seven fat and healthy heads of grain are swallowed up by seven withered and scorched heads of grain. None of his advisors can interpret the dream so eventually Joseph is called upon. He interprets the dreams as one in the same. Seven years of incredible prosperity are coming, followed by seven years of incredible famine. Unless they prepare properly during the seven years of prosperity the seven years of famine will destroy the empire of Egypt. Joseph also lays out a plan for success. Enact a 20% tax on everything produced in the first seven years of abundance so a great storehouse will be available during the famine. Appoint a wise man to administrate the plan.)
78% of National Football League players are either bankrupt
or are under severe financial stress within two years of retirement.
60% of National Basketball Association players go bankrupt within five years after leaving
their sport despite many of them having made millions and millions of dollars during their careers.
Now Joseph was thirty years old when he stood before Pharaoh, king of Egypt. And Joseph
went out from the presence of Pharaoh and went through all the land of Egypt. ~ Genesis 41:46
During the seven years of plenty the land brought forth abundantly. So he gathered all the food of these
seven years which occurred in the land of Egypt and placed the food in the cities; he placed in every city the food
from its own surrounding fields. Thus Joseph stored up grain in great abundance like the sand of the sea, until he stopped measuring it, for it was beyond measure. ~ Genesis 41:47-49
When the seven years of plenty which had been in the land of Egypt came to an end, and the seven years of famine began to come, just as Joseph had said, then there was famine in all the lands, but in all the land of Egypt there was bread. So when all the land of Egypt was famished, the people cried out to Pharaoh for bread; and Pharaoh said to all the Egyptians, “Go to Joseph; whatever he says to you, you shall do.” When the famine was spread over all the face of the earth, then Joseph opened all the storehouses, and sold to the Egyptians; and the famine was severe in the land of Egypt. The people of all the earth came to Egypt to buy grain from Joseph, because the famine was severe in all the earth. ~ Genesis 41:53-57
SOME ADVICE TO ALL LEADERS EVERYWHERE
1) Don’t try to PLEASE us. LEAD us.
2) Lead this generation with the NEXT generation in mind.
3) Remember, FAIRNESS for the sake of FAIRNESS often leads to CONFUSION.
4) Put the NEEDS of the MANY ahead of the WANTS of a FEW or the INDIVIDUAL.
5) Don’t automatically, always bail people out without any effort on their part.
What is REWARDED is usually REPEATED.
6) Surround yourself with an INNER CIRCLE of wise and trusted leaders.
7) Stay open to the wise voices of OUTSIDERS as well, and not just your own INNER CIRCLE.
ALOHA GROUP DISCUSSION QUESTIONS
1) In his sermon this week, Pastor Greg talked about how some people fear change or at least fear losing control or influence or power when change occurs. How do you feel about change? Does is scare you or bother you in any way? If so, why? If not, why not?
2) Pastor Greg mentioned “Self-centeredness is always an obstacle to change.” Do you agree or disagree?
3) Pastor Greg said, “People often tend to only focus on the negative repercussions of change and they ignore all the positive aspects that change can bring. “ What is your reaction to that statement?
4) Pastor Greg also said, “The reality is: If you get on board with change early on, you can have an impact in the direction it travels. You can steer change to a degree. But, if you try to fight it, you will just get run over by it. Change will always win out in the end.” Do you agree or disagree? Why?
READ: Isaiah 43:18-19 and Psalm 96:1-2
1) Pastor Greg mentioned that one time of change God brings about quite often is called “renewal.” What does God’s “renewal” mean to you and how do you see it working in these two Scripture passages?
2) Can you think of some specific examples from your life where you have experienced a God-driven change of renewal? How did you feel when the change was occurring? Did it result in a lack of your control over a situation or an organization?
3) Did you find comfort in remembering that God is always in control even when many things in our life are in a constant state of change?
READ: Daniel 2:31-36
1) Here is another example of God communicating a very important message through a cryptic dream. This seems to happen fairly often in the Old Testament. Why do you think God often chose to communicate this way instead of a more clear and obvious message?
2) Do you think God still communicates in this way today? Why or why not? If you had a cryptic dream like this that you thought was from God, where would you turn for help with the interpretation?
READ: Acts 5:27-39
1) Have you ever found yourself in the position of Peter and the others; where a person of authority commanded you to do something or to stop doing something that you knew in your heart was not what God was calling you to do? How did you react?
2) Peter and the others were shaking up the status quo of those who had been in power for many years. It is no wonder their efforts were being opposed. What were some of the consequences Peter and the others would face if they did not agree to stop making this changes to the current system of Judaism? Did they let the fear of those consequences stop them? Why or why not?
3) What ultimately happened to Peter and the others when they repeatedly refused to stop bringing about the change God had called them to bring? Do you think they ever regretted it and wished they could have gone back and backed down to those in power over them? Why or why not?
4) What can we learn from their example when we face opposition from people who try to stop us from enacting the changes of renewal that God has called us to bring about?
5) What do you think about the points Gamaliel made to the council? Do you think he was right? Why or why not?
READ: Mark 2:21-22
1) What is the main point Jesus is making with these two analogies? Are they two different ways of making the same point or are they making two different points?
2) Why do you think Jesus chose these particular object lessons of cloth and wine skin to make his point?
3) What are some examples of old wine skins and old shrunken cloth in our world? How about in our church world?
4) What are some examples of new unshrunk cloth or new wine in our world that can rip or burst the old established systems? How about in our church world?
5) You have probably heard the term “sacred cows” before. Do you think a sacred cow and an old wine skin are the same thing? Why or why not?
6) If a non-Christian friend read this passage and said, “I don’t get it. What does he mean?” How would you explain it to them in your own words?
7) What would putting new wine in new wine skins in our world look like? How about in our church world, what would it look like?