Increasing Leadership Authority through True Worship

rainbow throneTry to picture the Apostle John’s vision:

Twenty-four elders seated on thrones around the ONE throne.
THE ONE—a rainbow of splendor, flashes of lighting, bolts of thunder, loud voices adoring His beauty, seven lamps burning with the seven Spirits of God. Four terrible, vibrant creatures never resting, forever focusing their reverence on the One. This is the pattern of true worship from heaven.

The elders had crowns, not just for decoration. The crowns marked their authority within the boundaries of delegated responsibility. Scripture doesn’t tell us exactly what authority these elders will have, but one thing we know:
Every time they heard the four living creatures say, “Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty…,” the elders fell with their faces to the ground in awe of the One.

They cast their crowns before the thronelaid down their authority—with abandoned desire to revere the One. “You are worthy, O Lord, to receive glory, honor and power!”

That’s true worship: adoring Jesus by casting our authority at His feet.

We can sing and dance and praise and bow, but until we relinquish our authority to the ONE, we do not abide in true worship.

Submission to Christ also means a submissive attitude to one another in His body. We continue to walk in leadership responsibility with confidence, but also in an attitude that respects and honors others—not striving for our own opinion or will, but seeking the wisdom and direction of Jesus together with others who worship the Lord.

“…giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, submitting to one another in the fear of God.” Eph 5:20-21

It’s all about Christ, abiding in His love and truth, and not about us.

“The Father is seeking such to worship Him…” – John 4:23b

As we submit, our spiritual authority increases. What an honor to walk in the authority Christ gives when we surrender to Him. In His presence, we receive His wisdom and direction, and have full power to carry out our responsibility on earth.

True leadership comes out of true worship—casting our authority at Jesus’ feet.

REVELATION 4 & 5; Psalm 8:4; 27:4; John 4:23-24; Ephesians 5:18-21; II Timothy 2:12; Revelation 5:10; 20:6

Learn more about the authority in worship from Keith’s MP3: Crown, Harp and Bowl

Mastering PBLFind comprehensive understanding of how to develop spiritual authority in our leadership with Keith’s book, coming out in April, 2016:
Mastering the Art of Presence-Based Leadership


What Does “Coming as a Little Child” Look Like in Leadership?

dreamstime dad daughter_xs_36489737One evening I sat conversing with friends around the living room. I specifically noticed a young toddler’s interaction with his mother. He played by his mother’s feet, chewing on and strewing around several toys. Then he pulled himself up and ventured away. He went to other adults, made googly eyes, but always ran back to his mother. He took more ventures, each one longer and further, but alway glanced back to make eye contact with his mother, or ran back to her again for a smile and pat.

During one particularly far-away venture, the mother knelt on the floor to gather up the strewn toys. This time the toddler couldn’t see her from his angle. His face tensed and he fussed. Not missing a beat, Momma called his name. “Don’t worry. I’m right here.” He ran toward her voice for renewed sense of secure belonging.

I’ve heard others give similar renditions of this scenario to illustrate how humans develop healthy autonomy. We begin life attached to our mothers, not even realizing we’re a separate entity from her. She gives unconditional love that establishes trust, the secure sense that we “belong,” that we’re “valued” and won’t be forsaken. Then, as we grow, we venture out on our own, longer and further, but always coming back to Momma for renewed assurance of our value. Eventually we reach the point where her love has solidified a trust strong enough to let us stand secure in our separate identity.

Both Mom and Dad’s roles are vital throughout development, of course. While Mom’s role is more prominent during the infant/toddler stage, Dad’s role gains prominence during the teenage years. As we start making our own decisions, Dad gives us affection and affirmation that confirms our value and validates our purpose.

dreamstime_father sonxs_51666986Sadly, children who don’t have this grounding live with insecurity and seek validation elsewhere, usually the wrong places.

None of us had perfect parents; none of us were perfect parents. We’re all broken and live with broken people.

But our heavenly Father lacks nothing in security and validation. In the Trinity we find all we need from both motherly and fatherly perspectives—and far beyond—if we run to Him as “little children.”

Perhaps that’s why Jesus was so upset—[indignant, angry, very displeased, irate*]when His disciples tried to stop the children. “Let the little children come,” He scolded, “for of such is the kingdom of God.” After all, Jesus is One of the Trinity who designed our need for family to ground in us security and significance. He gives it perfectly.

“Whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will by no means enter it.”

No matter what authority level we carry in our leadership roles, to receive the kingdom of God—the security and validation to be all He created us to be—we must become as vulnerable toddlers, running to Father.

If we barge through life as self-made adults, we’ll behave as those who never received that deep sense of value from Father God—forever pushing our way to grasp for value and validation and defending ourselves in it.

Humility. That’s what it requires.

Humility realizes that in ourselves, we miss the mark. We find His kingdom one way, like that little toddler who kept seeking security and value from his mother. We run to our Father– in listening prayer, His Spirit-inspired word, growing Christ-like character in our relationships—our only source of eternal security, identity and purpose.

*Words used to describe Jesus’ emotion in Mark 10:14 from different translations
Mark 10:14-15; Romans 3:23; 8:12-17, 39; 14:17-18; 1 Corinthians 1:18-31; Galatians 4:5-7; Colossians 1:9-14

Mastering PBLComing in April!-
Mastering the Art of Presence-Based Leadership
How to make effective decisions by discerning the wisdom of Christ
… For the full story of how our Father desires to give value, affection, affirmation and validation to His leaders

Six Ways to Cultivate a Culture of Honor in Your Organization

dreamstime handshake_xs_31562176Take a moment to dream about a world where everyone honors everyone else–where we view others through God’s eyes, valuing others by treating them with dignity and respect

Hard to imagine on this side of heaven, but as leaders, we have a powerful opportunity to overcome habits of disrespect and cultivate honor in our own spheres of influence.

A culture of honor makes for an environment of integrity, speaking truth in love and effective collaboration. Genuine honor enables the joy and satisfaction that comes when people fulfill their purpose in Christ.

Jesus valued honor.

I honor My Father – John 8:49

If I honor Myself, My honor is nothing. It is My Father who honors Me ... – John 8:54

And as incomprehensible as it sounds, the Father extends this honor through Christ to us:

If anyone serves Me, him My Father will honor – John 12:26

And now we have the opportunity to extend the Father’s honor to others in our spheres of influence. We may honor others with genuine words or appropriate gifts, recognizing them for how they’ve given value to us and our organizations.

Practical ways scripture teaches us to cultivate a culture of honor:

  1. Be the example of respecting authority. Simply put, “whoever resists the authority…will bring judgment on themselves” (Romans 13:2). If it seems as if people dishonor your authority, consider, are there areas where you have shown dishonor to those in authority over you, even governmental authority you may not agree with? (Consider the ungodly governmental authority of Paul’s world when he wrote the above words.)
  2. Develop a lifestyle of honor toward others as an example in your organization.
    1. To parents, elders and widows (Ex 20:12, I Tim 5)
    2. Husbands to wives, and wives to husbands (I Pet 3:1-7)
    3. People to their leaders (Heb 13:17)
    4. Leaders to people who serve them (I Cor 16:15-18)
  3. Honor experts who have the skills necessary to help complete the work entrusted to you (I Thess 5:13).
  4. Honor those mature in the faith with the spiritual authority that comes from a seasoned relationship with God (I Thess 5:12-13; I Pet 5:5).
  5. Honor those who have earned your trust in relationship with you (Romans 12:10; Phil 2:1-4).
  6. Honor ALL people. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king. (1 Pet 2:17)

As ambassadors in Christ’s Kingdom, let’s extend His Kingdom of honor to others.

Mastering PBLComing in April!
Mastering the Art of Presence-Based Leadership
How to make effective decisions by discerning the wisdom of Christ
… For the full story of how a culture of honor naturally results from leading in and from the Presence of the Trinity

For deeper understanding of how to develop an environment of honor in your leadership and organization, get Keith’s audio: Cultivating a Culture of Honor 

Also see other posts:
How’s the Environment in Your Sphere of Influence?

The Four Roles of Authority: Rendering Honor, Parts 1-3

Patricia Tillman, Review of Keith’s audio: Cultivating a Culture of Honor