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A Loyal Leader

Friday, April 15, 2011

by Dr. Paul Chappell

"And Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, the son of a valiant man, of Kabzeel, who had done many acts, he slew two lionlike men of Moab: he went down also and slew a lion in the midst of a pit in time of snow: And he slew an Egyptian, a goodly man: and the Egyptian had a spear in his hand; but he went down to him with a staff, and plucked the spear out of the Egyptian's hand, and slew him with his own spear. These things did Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and had the name among three mighty men. He was more honourable than the thirty, but he attained not to the first three. And David set him over his guard."

2 Samuel 23:20-23

Don't allow your position to impede your productivity.

Bernard Montgomery was a British army officer who was wounded badly in World War I. While many of his comrades gave in to such injuries becoming permanently crippled or even dying, Montgomery fought off his injuries, intent on returning to the battlefield. His return wouldn't come about until World War 2, but during the second world war he was appointed commander of the 8th Army. This unit was instrumental in the taking of the Battle of El Alamein, a major turning point in the Allied's Western Desert Campaign. Because of his work in the Western Desert, he was given a role of leadership in planning the British Forces during the D-Day invasion. After the war, Lord Montgomery was appointed Commander-in-Chief of the British Forces occupied in Germany.

Montgomery's leadership throughout his lifetime included thousands of soldiers. Once asked how he was able to successfully lead so many men, Montgomery noted the following seven characteristics needed for a leader in time of war:

He should be able to sit back and avoid getting immersed in detail.
He must not be petty.
He must not be pompous.
He must be a good picker of men.
He should trust those under him, and let them get on with their job without interference.
He must have the power of clear decision.
He should inspire confidence.

As David comes to the end of his life, he makes note of several men who aided him throughout his life. One such man was Benaiah, as seen in today's verses. Benaiah was a courageous leader who led others into battle yet was able to submit to a higher authority (David). He didn't allow his position to impede his productivity.

Benaiah was not worried about his position in David's band of men, but was only concerned with serving his God and his king. He was a man who was his own leader and led many men into battle, yet cared not for personal praise.

Ronald Reagan once said, "There is no limit to what you can accomplish if you don't care who gets the credit." While others such as Absalom desired a place of prominence in David's kingdom, Benaiah only wished to faithfully serve David.

How much could be accomplished in churches across the world if Christians were less concerned about recognition and more concerned about service? Your sacrifice won't always earn the praise of others, yet you can be sure that God sees your service and notices each time you choose His work over your own will.

Don't fall into the devil's trap of seeking prominence. Who cares who gets the glory as long as God's will is done? Choose faithful obscurity over pompous recognition today, and allow God to bless you in His timing.

To learn more about the ministries of Lancaster Baptist Church and Pastor Chappell, please visit lancasterbaptist.org, paulchappell.com, or follow him on twitter.

Daily Bible Reading
1 Samuel 27-29 | Luke 13:1-22