Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Leaders Have True Character

(This post is a continuation of the previous one from yesterday regarding leadership. I have taken excerpts from some printed notes I have in my file system, but unfortunately, I do not know who the author of the material is or remember exactly where I found this study.)

"Good character is the best tombstone. Those who loved you and were helped by you will remember you when the forget-me-nots placed on your grave are withered and dead. Carve your name on the hearts of others, and not on marble." - Charles Spurgeon

Examples of men with character from God's Word;
  1. Uriah the Hittite - 2 Sam. 11:9-11 But Uriah slept at the door of the king's house with all the servants of his lord, and went not down to his house. And when they had told David, saying, Uriah went not down unto his house, David said unto Uriah, Camest thou not from thy journey? why then didst thou not go down unto thine house? And Uriah said unto David, The ark, and Israel, and Judah, abide in tents; and my lord Joab, and the servants of my lord, are encamped in the open fields; shall I then go into mine house, to eat and to drink, and to lie with my wife? as thou livest, and as thy soul liveth, I will not do this thing.
  2. Daniel - Dan. 1:8 But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king's meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself.
  3. The three Hebrew children - Dan. 3:16-18 Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer thee in this matter. If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.

What is true character???

  1. True character is lasting. Leaders will always face the spotlight of criticism, therefore, without true character, the leader will not last long at his post.
  2. True character is transparent. Character is one of those intangible qualities found in a man that tells us who he really is. Credentials tells us what a man has done but character tells us what a man is made up of.
  3. True character will beget character in others. True leadership will beget leadership. True leadership will inspire others to want to follow.
  4. True character says with confidence, "Follow me!" It sets one apart from the crowd and attracts others to follow along with the crowd after you.
  5. True character is a conscience choice of one's will and the fruit of their personal relationship with God. Character seeks principle over personal gain. It places people over possessions and pleasure. It is guided by convictions rather than convenience. It is motivated by truth and not by hearsay or fears.
  6. True character causes others to want to be like them. Respect and reputation are dependent on the foundation of character.
  7. True character is based on going the extra mile rather than just far enough. Character will cling to the highest of values, morals, and principles.
  8. True character will not contradict itself. A man of character will live the same testimony no matter what day of the week it is or whatever crowd is gathered around him.

Tests of True Character in a Leader

  1. How do they act when no one is looking?
  2. What do they do when no one is looking?
  3. How do they treat people of little importance when important people are around?
  4. Are they approachable?
  5. Do they look into the eyes of those sharing problems or concerns with them?
  6. Do they allow themselves to be accountable?
  7. Does their presence inspire you to do good or bad?
  8. Does their presence inspire you to criticize or praise?
  9. Are they willing without complaint to put the needs of others before their own?
  10. Do they think of consequences to others before making decisions?
  11. Are they willing to admit failure or fault?
  12. How do they respond to criticism?
  13. Do they have the respect of those closest to them (for instance, their family)?
  14. What is their attitude at the first sign of crisis?



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