Everyone depends on a leader for answers. “Where do we go next?” “What’s our goal?” “Should we move ahead or wait?” It’s the leader who must make these decisions, sometimes choosing between the greater of two goods—the lesser of two evils.
Where does the leader go for help?
Effective leaders have learned this secret: They are not alone. When forced to make tough choices, they seek the counsel of One greater than themselves. They seek God’s guidance.
Pray for Perspective. Competence, skill and intelligence are all important attributes of leadership, but there is one greater: faith. Truly great leaders believe in Someone greater than themselves, and they express that belief in regular times of reflection and devotion. By spending time alone with God, leaders gain perspective. They are reminded of what really matters—and what doesn’t.
Pray for Wisdom. Solomon, the wisest man in the Bible, was offered an incredible opportunity. God told Solomon he could ask for anything and receive it. Solomon asked for wisdom. As a result, he became the greatest king in the history of his nation. Great leaders pray not merely for specific needs: things such as better staff, more funding or greater resources. They pray for something more fundamental, the wisdom to make proper choices. They pray that God will make them people of insight, discernment and integrity.
Pray for Guidance. Even the most competent leaders ask for advice. Great leaders take their questions to God, asking for insight. They consult the Master Planner before announcing a new policy or strategy. They seek God’s direction for specific decisions and for major goals.
Pray for Strength. When it comes to facing adversity, there are two types of leaders: those who go it alone and those who succeed. For great leaders, prayer is not a way out; it is a way through. The strength that is derived from communication with God sustains them through times of adversity. Prayer is a vital part of their spiritual support system.
Abraham Lincoln said, “I have been driven many times to my knees by the overwhelming conviction that I had nowhere else to go. My own wisdom, and that of all about me seemed insufficient for the day.” What was true for Lincoln must be true for all of us.
Remember you are not alone. Make use of the most powerful weapon in the leader’s arsenal: prayer.