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On Becoming A Servant Leader
Stats: 2,938 words / Reading Time: 14.69 mins

Published: Monday 13th January 2020

On Becoming A Servant Leader is read 432 times on CentreNDL.org 432

On Becoming A Servant Leader

Rediscover Your 3Ps

Today, we will be starting a new series, I believe that we were blessed looking at the Leadership Trip to Genesis. But in this series, our focus is On Becoming A Servant-Leader. The truth is there are many leaders across the world. What is missing or in short supply is the effectiveness of our leadership. There are leaders who are not really effective leading. So, while there are many leaders, there are very few leaders who serve the people, who serve the interest and purpose of God in their generation. From this moment, the will of God is that we become servant leaders. I believe at the end of the series, you would have gotten the consciousness of what God demands from as a leader who must serve.




We are looking at the book of Nehemiah and from there, we would be learning how we can become servant leaders from how he became a servant leader. By the way, Nehemiah was not originally a servant leader, he was a servant. But he became a leader who serves. So, we want to see how he migrated from being just a servant to leading servant. Our focus today in this series is: Rediscover your 3Ps. We want to see how you and I can rediscover our 3Ps towards becoming a servant leader. I hope you understand that. So, let us quickly go to the book of Nehemiah chapter 1, and I will read from verse 1 downward.


"The words of Nehemiah the son of Hachaliah. It came to pass in the month of Chislev, in the twentieth year, as I was in Shushan the citadel, 2 that Hanani one of my brethren came with men from Judah; and I asked them concerning the Jews who had escaped, who had survived the captivity, and concerning Jerusalem. 3 And they said to me, “The survivors who are left from the captivity in the province are there in great distress and reproach. The wall of Jerusalem is also broken down, and its gates are burned with fire.”4 So it was, when I heard these words, that I sat down and wept, and mourned for many days; I was fasting and praying before the God of heaven."


Now, let us jump to verse 11 so that we can see the character and the personality of whom who made that statement in verse 4 that he wept. Let us see who he was in verse 11.


"O Lord, I pray, please let Your ear be attentive to the prayer of Your servant, and to the prayer of Your servants who desire to fear Your name; and let Your servant prosper this day, I pray, and grant him mercy in the sight of this man.” For I was the king’s cupbearer."


Now, at this moment, Nehemiah was a the king's cupbearer. Each time the king wants to drink, Nehemiah is called to hold the cup and handover the drink to the king. So, it was all about serving the king, nothing more, nothing less. But at this moment, a group of people came who had visited the land of Judah, and they brought back some report to him. So, he was very inquisitive. He wanted to know the state of the people who were left behind in Judah and the state of the land of Judah in Jerusalem. And they told him, the people who were left behind were in great distress and in reproach. The place where they were, its walls had broken down. So, they could become easy prey to their enemies. They are not safe nor sure of their lives. This is the circumstance of the people.


Now, when Nehemiah heard these things, Bible says he said when I heard these words that I sat down and wept. The question then is: Was Nehemiah, you know the Bible says he was the King's cup bearer. A cupbearer so to say, must always be a cheerful person, and a person who is always with a cheerful countenance because the role he plays in the palace is the role of luxury, the role of comfort. So, hearing this news, even though he was a man who is associated with comfort, he became discomforted by the discomfort of the people of Israel who were in Judah and for the land of Judah.


You see, it does not really matter whether you are in comfort or discomfort right now, if you must become a leader that serve the people, there are three things, three Ps that you must rediscover. From our study, the first thing that we saw there is that you must rediscover YOUR PLIGHT or you must rediscover your pain. Prior to this moment, Nehemiah was in comfort. He was not in pain. He was excited and happy, he was having fun. But the moment they brought the news to him about the state of the people of his heritage and the place of his heritage, he took their discomfort upon himself. He took their pain upon himself.


It look like what the Bible says that Himself borne our infirmities, talking about Jesus, and in Philippians 2:5, the Bible says let this mind be in you that was also in Christ Jesus. Even though He was God, He decided to put on the form of man, and being found as a man, He became obedient unto death, even the death on the cross. So, you must see that dying was not natural to Jesus. But He had to die simply because He had taken on upon Himself the sins of the world. So, what Jesus took upon Himself, the sins of the world, that is what leaders take upon themselves, the pain of the people. The plight of the people becomes their plight. The things that gets the people agitated and unsettled becomes the things that makes them unsettled too, they begin to have a heart for the people. Their heart begin to pants after the things that the people pants after.


See what the man Nehemiah did, Bible says he mourned for many days and fasted, and he prayed to the God of heaven. Now, you must rediscover your plight. It is possible you may not have any plight right now, you may have no pain. But you must first rediscover your plight. And how can you rediscover your plight? It is by you rediscovering your past. So, the second 'P' that you must rediscover is to rediscover YOUR PAST. Another word you can use for that is to rediscover your paths. You see, in life, we are going through a journey. Everyone of us has a path that we are following. In fact, you began the journey when you were born into this world. And the place and the people of your birth, that is, the people that you were born with; or born around are the people that form your beginning.


So, on this path, they are there. If you must know where you are going and you must serve the purpose of God in your generation, then you must rediscover your plight and then you must rediscover your past. The pains of your people when you were young, which you have left behind, must be rediscover. There was a time nobody was sure of what to eat in the evening. Now you are sure of what to eat even next year. Now you must rediscover your past. You must know where you came from, you must remember the circumstance of your beginnings. Remember the days of your struggles, when you were really like the people. Now things have changed.


If you continue to celebrate your abundance and your increase, then there is a tendency for you to forget your past, and you will never want to serve the people. Why? You don't find anything connecting you with the people. Now let me read from verse 5 forward. It says:


"And I said: “I pray, Lord God of heaven, O great and awesome God, You who keep Your covenant and mercy with those who love You and observe Your commandments, 6 please let Your ear be attentive and Your eyes open, that You may hear the prayer of Your servant which I pray before You now, day and night, for the children of Israel Your servants, and confess the sins of the children of Israel which we have sinned against You. Both my father’s house and I have sinned."


He was in comfort, but he was able to, while rediscovering his past, to reconnect with the past. He was able to build a bridge of some sort between him and the people who were suffering. If he must bear their burden and feel what they feel, then he

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must know that their suffering is also a product of his own past decisions. If he had done something differently, the people wouldn't be in this current mess. So, he knew that his own effort or lack of effort was a factor in bringing the bondage on his people. So, he reconnected himself with his origin.


"We have acted very corruptly against You, and have not kept the commandments, the statutes, nor the ordinances which You commanded Your servant Moses. 8 Remember, I pray, the word that You commanded Your servant Moses, saying, ‘If you are unfaithful, I will scatter you among the nations;"


Now, you can read the entire chapter and verses for better understanding of the prayer of Nehemiah. Nehemiah reconnected himself back to his root, then he was able to understand his place in the present going forward. Now, you don't have any idea of what your people are going through now. That is why you still go around partying. You see, your people. not necessarily the people of your tribe, your people, those of your heritage; the people that God has created you for; the people that God has created you with; the people that God has created you to salvage from every corruption and calamity, they are in great distress and reproach.


And the reason why you are not aware of their reproach is because you have not reconnected back to your root. You have not. Even though they don't have food to eat, you don't know, and it does not really bother you. If you must become a leader that serve your generation, that serve the people, then it must be built on the foundation of your own rediscovery of your plight, and your past.


Another thing that I observed that Nehemiah rediscovered was HIS PURPOSE. He was able to rediscover his purpose and then he was able to see a place for himself simply because he was able to connect the dots between his past and his pain. He knew he was in the past, and know who he was when he was hearing the news. And then he was able to draw the line between he was and who he is now, a cupbearer, a man who has access to the king at Shushan. So, if you must have a place of relevance in your generation today, it must be rooted in your rediscovery of purpose, in you connecting the dots between your experiences in life and where you are now.


You see, nothing happens to you accidentally. You are not a product of accidental discharge, but a product of purpose, and purpose you must fulfill. Rediscovering that purpose will give you an idea of what you must do. You see, it is possible to look at the problems of the society and be overwhelmed. But there is a place that you fit in. If you reconnect with your past, and you are able to bring from your past the pains of your people to your present, and that become your pain, you will soon find a place for you in the grand plan of God for now. In the book of Acts of the apostles 13:36, the Bible says for David after he has served his own generation, note that word "his own", not my own generation, by the will of God, Bible says he fell asleep.


If you must become a leader that serves, then you must rediscover your past, you must rediscover your plight and you must rediscover your purpose. Bible says David served his own generation by the will of God, the purpose of God for his life. Your leadership is not in doubt. Your leadership is waiting for you. That is why the Bible says in Romans 14 that earnest expectation of creation waits eagerly for the manifestation of the sons of God. The sons of God must manifest and what are they waiting for? They are waiting for the rediscovery of their past, rediscovery of their plight, and the rediscovery of their purpose.


A man who is able to rediscover these 3Ps is a man who is ready to begin his journey towards servant leadership. Your generation wants you to lead them, but they are not looking for men and women who will go about commanding them, who will go about issuing directives, ordering them up and down. Your generation is looking for people who wants to serve them. So, your leadership is rooted in your service. If you read the book of Matthew 20, from verse 20 downwards. You will see the story of two brothers: John and James. Their mother brought them to Jesus and beseeched Him that James sits at His right hand and John occupies the other side. Let them just be there in your leadership.


And Jesus responded by saying, No! He asked their mother whether James and John are ready to partake of His cup that He was about to drink and be baptized with the baptism He was about to be baptized with. They responded that they were ready. Jesus said to them, verily they would be partaker of the baptism and drink of the same cup, but for what they have come for, sitting at his right and left, is for those that has been prepared by His Father. Bible says immediately, his other disciples were jealous. They were not comfortable. And so, Jesus called them together and had a leadership discussion with them. He said to them, you know that the rulers of the gentiles, they want to lord it over their people, they want to command their people.


But it shall not be so among you, for anyone who wants to be great among you, let him be your servant. Anyone who wants to be the greatest perhaps, let him be your slave. So, Jesus brought leadership to service. Until a man begins to serve his people, begins to serve his generation, he does not have any right or any chance of leading that same generation. So, are you available to serve or do you want to lord it over the people? Are you looking for an opportunity to just get there so that you can oppress the people. If your plan is to oppress the people, you will never get to that leadership.


Leadership is for men and women who must serve their generation. Whether you are a pastor, or an emerging pastor or a businessman, or you are a politician, whoever you are; the ideal leadership is service. And if you must serve the people, you must reconnect with your past and let the plight of the people become your plight. Rediscover your own plight. Rediscover your pain. Rediscover that thing that will hurt you, that thing that pains you. I am sure you know you can accept many things, but not one thing. What is that thing? Find out that thing, that is the genesis of your leadership emergence.


I believe you have been blessed by this word. The focus is that you become a servant leader but towards becoming a servant leader, you must rediscover your purpose, which is rooted in your pain and your pain is rooted in your past. Rediscover these 3Ps, and you will become a servant leader. I hope to connect with you again next week Wednesday bringing you another side on the series, another side to the story On Becoming a Servant Leader, I want you to stay leading. However, I want you to stay serving. 

Be blessed!

Thanks for the gift of your time, I am Gboyega Adedeji!

Feel free to share your thoughts or testimony with me in the comment box below. I promise to respond to them as soon as possible!

Word of Confession: (Optional)

Lord Jesus, I confess to you that I have sinned against the LORD God - in the rebellion of my heart, I have disappointed your expectations on my life. I have fallen from Your grace and followed wrong influences around me. Today, I retrace my steps back to you - and I ask that in your mercy you accept me as your son and give to me (again) the promise of the Father - the Holy Spirit. Lord Jesus, please, come and make my heart your home, and from there rule in the affairs of all men. In Jesus Name I have prayed.


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