The Leadership Void.
“When there is moral rot within a nation, its government topples easily. But wise and knowledgeable leaders bring stability.” – Proverbs 28:2 NLT
Don’t get me wrong. We have no shortage of leaders in this country. It’s just that we don’t have very many godly leaders. There are plenty of ambitious, intelligent, capable and sometimes even moral men and women who hold positions of leadership in our nation, but most of them lack the wisdom that only God can provide. The verse above paints a pretty bleak picture for a nation that finds itself with a moral and spiritual leadership void. The Message paraphrases verse two this way: “When the country is in chaos, everybody has a plan to fix it – But it takes a leader of real understanding to straighten things out.” What an apt description of our own country at this stage of the game. We are in chaos, and everybody has a plan to fix it. We have an abundance of “princes” as the NIV describes them. These so-called leaders and political pundits all offer up solutions to our nation’s myriad problems, but none of them really have a clue what to do about the economy, terrorism, or any other issue facing us. They fail to realize that the root of all our problems is a spiritual one. Our economy is a symptom of a much more serious issue. Neither raising or lowering taxes is going to fix what needs to be fixed. A larger or smaller government will neither one prove to be a panacea for our problems.
In the very next chapter Solomon gives us the real solution. He says, “When the godly are in authority, the people rejoice” (Proverbs 29:2 NLT). In other words, when godly men and women lead our nation according to godly principles and guide us with wisdom and insight directly from God Himself, the people find themselves living in peace and moral prosperity. Godly leaders make godly decisions. They are not selfish and self-centered. They are not greedy and out to benefit only themselves. They are not motivated by pride or consumed with the need for recognition. They view any power they have as given to them from God, to whom they must report and by whom they will be held accountable. What we pass off as leadership today is a far cry from what God intends. All you have to do is look at the leadership style of Jesus and you see a marked difference. Jesus came to serve, not be served. He came to give His life away for the sake of others. He was concerned with and consumed by the will of His Father. He was obedient to God to the point of laying down His life. He knew that the world’s problems were spiritual in nature and the solution would have to be a spiritual one. Toppling the Roman government was not going to bring peace to the Jews. Only a Savior could save them from what ailed them. They needed deliverance from sin, not relief from high taxes. They needed dependence on God, not independence from Rome. The same thing is true for us today. We are looking to a government or political leader to bring us relief and restoration. We are wanting a flawed, failed system to deliver us, when God has already provided a deliverer – His very own Son. Godly leaders point a nation back to God. They don’t try to act as a substitute for Him. We find ourselves in trouble as a nation, not because of a bad economy or the presence of terrorism, but because we have appointed leaders who have no respect for God. Without Him, they are helpless and hopeless to lead us because they lack the wisdom required for the job. We need to pray that God will raise up men and women who know Him, love Him and are willing to live for Him. But we also need to pray for a spiritual reawakening among the people of God who have become complacent and sometimes even contributors to the moral chaos facing our nation. We lack godly leaders because we have become a godless nation.
Father, we desperately need Your help. Only You can solve the problems we face as a country. Our issues are so much deeper than the economy or global terrorism. Our problem is a moral one. Re-energize Your Church, that we might become the salt and light You have called us to be. May out of our midst come godly leaders who will step into the chaos and provide godly direction and wise leadership – pointing us back to You. Amen.
Grow Pastor & Minister to Men