You can manage without leading but you can’t lead without managing. People are looking to you, so how will you choose to live your life? Will you try to manage and control things or will you lead by example and serve all those who are looking to follow you? How do you know what a good manager looks like? How do you pick your measuring stick? Is it something temporary like your current or last or what you feel was your best manager? Is it something that will last the test of time? Is it a hypothesis or is it a principle? Is it a test or is it solid? Do you take time to try it before you move onto the next one? Do you try it and make sure it actually works? Do you choose to act in a way that makes you and others better? Do you choose to act in a way that isn’t controlling or micromanaging? How do you define the difference between managing and leading? What do you do?
Leading vs. Managing:
Managers are responsible for the work getting done, while leaders are responsible for forging ahead and showing people how to get the work done. There is a need for both roles, but there can be tension and stress when managers and leaders do not agree—and employees often respond differently to different styles of management or leadership.— www.projectmanagement.com/articles/389767/Leading-vs–Managing
I choose to build my life on the rock that will last, the solid foundation of leadership that is Jesus.
Today’s reading from God’s Word which has stood the test of time gets us started at the end of 2 Kings 23:
‘Jehoiakim was twenty-five years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem eleven years. His mother was Zebidah, the daughter of Pedaiah from Rumah. He did what was evil in the Lord ’s sight, just as his ancestors had done.’— 2 Kings 23:36-37
Today’s reading then continues into 2 Kings 24:
‘During Jehoiakim’s reign, King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon invaded the land of Judah. Jehoiakim surrendered and paid him tribute for three years but then rebelled. Then the Lord sent bands of Babylonian, Aramean, Moabite, and Ammonite raiders against Judah to destroy it, just as the Lord had promised through his prophets. These disasters happened to Judah because of the Lord ’s command. He had decided to banish Judah from his presence because of the many sins of Manasseh, who had filled Jerusalem with innocent blood. The Lord would not forgive this. The rest of the events in Jehoiakim’s reign and all his deeds are recorded in The Book of the History of the Kings of Judah. When Jehoiakim died, his son Jehoiachin became the next king. The king of Egypt did not venture out of his country after that, for the king of Babylon captured the entire area formerly claimed by Egypt—from the Brook of Egypt to the Euphrates River. Jehoiachin was eighteen years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem three months. His mother was Nehushta, the daughter of Elnathan from Jerusalem. Jehoiachin did what was evil in the Lord ’s sight, just as his father had done. During Jehoiachin’s reign, the officers of King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon came up against Jerusalem and besieged it. Nebuchadnezzar himself arrived at the city during the siege. Then King Jehoiachin, along with the queen mother, his advisers, his commanders, and his officials, surrendered to the Babylonians. In the eighth year of Nebuchadnezzar’s reign, he took Jehoiachin prisoner. As the Lord had said beforehand, Nebuchadnezzar carried away all the treasures from the Lord ’s Temple and the royal palace. He stripped away all the gold objects that King Solomon of Israel had placed in the Temple. King Nebuchadnezzar took all of Jerusalem captive, including all the commanders and the best of the soldiers, craftsmen, and artisans—10,000 in all. Only the poorest people were left in the land. Nebuchadnezzar led King Jehoiachin away as a captive to Babylon, along with the queen mother, his wives and officials, and all Jerusalem’s elite. He also exiled 7,000 of the best troops and 1,000 craftsmen and artisans, all of whom were strong and fit for war. Then the king of Babylon installed Mattaniah, Jehoiachin’s uncle, as the next king, and he changed Mattaniah’s name to Zedekiah. Zedekiah was twenty-one years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem eleven years. His mother was Hamutal, the daughter of Jeremiah from Libnah. But Zedekiah did what was evil in the Lord ’s sight, just as Jehoiakim had done. These things happened because of the Lord ’s anger against the people of Jerusalem and Judah, until he finally banished them from his presence and sent them into exile. Zedekiah rebelled against the king of Babylon.’— 2 Kings 24:1-20
Today’s reading brings us over to Ezekiel 30:
‘This is another message that came to me from the Lord : “Son of man, prophesy and give this message from the Sovereign Lord : “Weep and wail for that day, for the terrible day is almost here— the day of the Lord ! It is a day of clouds and gloom, a day of despair for the nations. A sword will come against Egypt, and those who are slaughtered will cover the ground. Its wealth will be carried away and its foundations destroyed. The land of Ethiopia will be ravished. Ethiopia, Libya, Lydia, all Arabia, and all their other allies will be destroyed in that war. “For this is what the Lord says: All of Egypt’s allies will fall, and the pride of her power will end. From Migdol to Aswan they will be slaughtered by the sword, says the Sovereign Lord . Egypt will be desolate, surrounded by desolate nations, and its cities will be in ruins, surrounded by other ruined cities. And the people of Egypt will know that I am the Lord when I have set Egypt on fire and destroyed all their allies. At that time I will send swift messengers in ships to terrify the complacent Ethiopians. Great panic will come upon them on that day of Egypt’s certain destruction. Watch for it! It is sure to come! “For this is what the Sovereign Lord says: By the power of King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon, I will destroy the hordes of Egypt. He and his armies—the most ruthless of all— will be sent to demolish the land. They will make war against Egypt until slaughtered Egyptians cover the ground. I will dry up the Nile River and sell the land to wicked men. I will destroy the land of Egypt and everything in it by the hands of foreigners. I, the Lord , have spoken! “This is what the Sovereign Lord says: I will smash the idols of Egypt and the images at Memphis. There will be no rulers left in Egypt; terror will sweep the land. I will destroy southern Egypt, set fire to Zoan, and bring judgment against Thebes. I will pour out my fury on Pelusium, the strongest fortress of Egypt, and I will stamp out the hordes of Thebes. Yes, I will set fire to all Egypt! Pelusium will be racked with pain; Thebes will be torn apart; Memphis will live in constant terror. The young men of Heliopolis and Bubastis will die in battle, and the women will be taken away as slaves. When I come to break the proud strength of Egypt, it will be a dark day for Tahpanhes, too. A dark cloud will cover Tahpanhes, and its daughters will be led away as captives. And so I will greatly punish Egypt, and they will know that I am the Lord .” On April 29, during the eleventh year of King Jehoiachin’s captivity, this message came to me from the Lord : “Son of man, I have broken the arm of Pharaoh, the king of Egypt. His arm has not been put in a cast so that it may heal. Neither has it been bound up with a splint to make it strong enough to hold a sword. Therefore, this is what the Sovereign Lord says: I am the enemy of Pharaoh, the king of Egypt! I will break both of his arms—the good arm along with the broken one—and I will make his sword clatter to the ground. I will scatter the Egyptians to many lands throughout the world. I will strengthen the arms of Babylon’s king and put my sword in his hand. But I will break the arms of Pharaoh, king of Egypt, and he will lie there mortally wounded, groaning in pain. I will strengthen the arms of the king of Babylon, while the arms of Pharaoh fall useless to his sides. And when I put my sword in the hand of Babylon’s king and he brings it against the land of Egypt, Egypt will know that I am the Lord . I will scatter the Egyptians among the nations, dispersing them throughout the earth. Then they will know that I am the Lord .”’— Ezekiel 30:1-26
Today’s reading then brings us to the New Testament starting with Acts 19:
‘Afterward Paul felt compelled by the Spirit to go over to Macedonia and Achaia before going to Jerusalem. “And after that,” he said, “I must go on to Rome!” He sent his two assistants, Timothy and Erastus, ahead to Macedonia while he stayed awhile longer in the province of Asia. About that time, serious trouble developed in Ephesus concerning the Way. It began with Demetrius, a silversmith who had a large business manufacturing silver shrines of the Greek goddess Artemis. He kept many craftsmen busy. He called them together, along with others employed in similar trades, and addressed them as follows: “Gentlemen, you know that our wealth comes from this business. But as you have seen and heard, this man Paul has persuaded many people that handmade gods aren’t really gods at all. And he’s done this not only here in Ephesus but throughout the entire province! Of course, I’m not just talking about the loss of public respect for our business. I’m also concerned that the temple of the great goddess Artemis will lose its influence and that Artemis—this magnificent goddess worshiped throughout the province of Asia and all around the world—will be robbed of her great prestige!”’— Acts of the Apostles 19:21-27
Today’s reading then brings us to Revelation 11:
‘Then I was given a measuring stick, and I was told, “Go and measure the Temple of God and the altar, and count the number of worshipers. But do not measure the outer courtyard, for it has been turned over to the nations. They will trample the holy city for 42 months. And I will give power to my two witnesses, and they will be clothed in burlap and will prophesy during those 1,260 days.” These two prophets are the two olive trees and the two lampstands that stand before the Lord of all the earth. If anyone tries to harm them, fire flashes from their mouths and consumes their enemies. This is how anyone who tries to harm them must die. They have power to shut the sky so that no rain will fall for as long as they prophesy. And they have the power to turn the rivers and oceans into blood, and to strike the earth with every kind of plague as often as they wish. When they complete their testimony, the beast that comes up out of the bottomless pit will declare war against them, and he will conquer them and kill them. And their bodies will lie in the main street of Jerusalem, the city that is figuratively called “Sodom” and “Egypt,” the city where their Lord was crucified. And for three and a half days, all peoples, tribes, languages, and nations will stare at their bodies. No one will be allowed to bury them. All the people who belong to this world will gloat over them and give presents to each other to celebrate the death of the two prophets who had tormented them. But after three and a half days, God breathed life into them, and they stood up! Terror struck all who were staring at them. Then a loud voice from heaven called to the two prophets, “Come up here!” And they rose to heaven in a cloud as their enemies watched. At the same time there was a terrible earthquake that destroyed a tenth of the city. Seven thousand people died in that earthquake, and everyone else was terrified and gave glory to the God of heaven. The second terror is past, but look, the third terror is coming quickly.’— Revelation 11:1-14
Today’s reading comes to a close in Psalms 125:
‘Those who trust in the Lord are as secure as Mount Zion; they will not be defeated but will endure forever. Just as the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the Lord surrounds his people, both now and forever. The wicked will not rule the land of the godly, for then the godly might be tempted to do wrong. O Lord , do good to those who are good, whose hearts are in tune with you. But banish those who turn to crooked ways, O Lord . Take them away with those who do evil. May Israel have peace!’— Psalms 125:1-5
So where are you at today? Are you ready for forgiveness and peace? Are you ready for a hope and a future? Are you ready for a transformation where the old is gone and the new has come? Are you ready to being the journey of knowing right from wrong? Then let’s pray together to invite Jesus into your heart and your life so that His peace which surpasses all understanding can guide you and comfort you, protect your heart and mind in Christ Jesus. If this is the first time you have prayed to invite Jesus into your heart, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If this is a recommitment to Jesus, leave me a comment so that I can rejoice with the angels in Heaven. If you are still questioning or seeking, don’t go it alone, feel free to leave me a comment so we can discuss it.