Tue | Feb 20, 2018

Steve Lyston | Leadership not for the narrow-minded

Published:Monday | February 13, 2017 | 12:48 AM
Lyston questions why religious leaders were critical of Prime Minister Andrew Holness' long overdue visit to Israel.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

There needs to be strong leadership in every sector - locally and globally - now more than ever if there is to be any form of success.Every leader - whether church, military, public or private sector - will now be under the microscope in light of the paradigm shifting that is currently taking place. So, to be successful, a leader must be willing to go beyond normal and be willing to become a misfit. They cannot be like others. They cannot be double-minded, so if they are serving God, then they need to serve God, but if it is the devil then it is the devil. Leaders today won’t accomplish anything by leading with the same protocols and terminologies! 

If leaders try to please the people, they will fail.  However, if they please God, then God will please the people. While a leader will try to be a people-person, charismatic or politically correct, God wants us to be whom He has created us to be. We must be ourselves.

Every leader’s number one priority should be to equip and empower the people with knowledge; and challenge them to think beyond the box to solve problems. We have been surrounded, over time, by leaders who are narrow-minded and cannot see beyond themselves. Hence, many countries have been allowed to be in a state of stagnation. The very things that are given to us from time to time to propel us into greatness as a nation are the very things that are instead used against us and to our detriment. 

Every leader must aspire to please God. When you please God, you won’t be afraid to make difficult or unpopular decisions to advance a nation or organisation. Oftentimes decisions are made to please self-interests which lead to political suicide. If you look at the various leaders in various organisations, regardless of political affiliation/ideology, they all make the same mistakes. So how can we break out of that cycle if we continue to repeat the same actions?

...Breaking the back of the issues

In order to break the back of crime, corruption and have economic development while creating jobs, we have to be different. We have to surround ourselves with thinkers who are inspired by God - not religion/religiosity. For example, the prime minister of Jamaica took a trip to Israel seeking economic partners for the nation and a few ‘church people’ came out questioning why he went there, when he was long overdue for that visit! I am wondering on which planet and to whom are they listening.

This is why neither the Church leaders, nor any other leader for that matter can lead without the Holy Spirit. Leading without the Spirit of God is the biggest problem from which we are suffering globally, in our efforts to advance a nation and to govern effectively. So, if we are not being led by the Spirit of God, then by which other spirit are we being led? Surely not by the narrow-minded man.  Philosophy, Logic and Theology are not what will remove the Goliaths. Neither can we achieve prosperity without adhering to God’s Word.

God’s Word corrects, instructs, guides, teaches and leads in the right path, and it is never outdated in relation to the time and era regardless of how current; and in the same way that times and seasons will change, so will customs and human opinions.  (Psalms 119: 87 & 105)

Only through God’s help can a leader meet a target within a nation or accomplish what seems impossible, in light of all that is happening today locally and globally.  If God is not the one to bless or establish a person’s plans, then it will all come to naught. 

We have tried everything - men, women, academic qualifications and more, and when things are not improving, then we need introspection.  We therefore need to be servant leaders who understand the scope of our calling and the mission for which God has us there. We cannot be afraid to deal with social, ethical, moral or controversial issues - oppression of the poor, unjust trade, economic injustice, corruption. He deals with the root of problems.  He breaks the mold of tradition and protocol and He was not afraid to be unpopular. His main focus was to please above - because He understood that God above has the last say. 

We need leaders who can identify the true enemy within a nation and deal with them accordingly. There are nations that are seemingly making changes, but the nations are not making the changes that truly need to be made, so they are constantly in the cycle of failure - they are failing their people. Laws are being passed that are not even dealing with the real issues, and that must change.