March 8, 2022
Failure to ask is often TIMIDITY wrapped in the guise of COURTESY.
You know that thing that tells you to wait a little longer on others to go first, that wants to wait a little longer to respond, that doesn’t want to be a bother?
Leaders intentionally ignore that impulse most of the time.
““Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.” (Matthew 7:7–8, NLT)
When Jesus said, “Ask”, He wasn’t limiting this to prayer. Because the only thing that wins for a leader is to move the team forward, they ignore impulses that would slow down progress.
If you’re going to be an effective leader, get used to asking for things that others wouldn’t have the courage to ask for.
Here are three places you should be asking for things:
1. ASK God for Wisdom, Direction, Open Doors, and Success.
God has declared that He is not reluctant to give such things (see James 1:5), and we are hamstringing ourselves if we don’t ask Him for what He has already offered us.
“You don’t have what you want because you don’t ask God for it.” (James 4:2, NLT)
In the words of F.B. Meyer, “The greatest tragedy of life is not unanswered prayer, but unoffered prayer.”
God is never reluctant to give guidance provided that intimacy with Him remains the most important thing we’re seeking.
2. ASK others for Favors, for Time and for Opportunities.
Indirectness shuts down all kinds of kingdom solutions from ever happening (not to mention what it can cost us relationally).
Leaders know that while it is the Lord who raises up one and brings another down (see Psalms 75:7), He often uses PEOPLE to open doors of opportunity, connection, and advantage for us.
Elisha didn’t ONLY ask God for things, he asked other people for things with unflinching persistence. Most notably, when he asked Elijah for a double portion of his spirit, he was asking big and asked a lot (DOUBLE what Elijah himself had walked in).
- Ask for the highest possible talent to join your team. They might say YES.
- Ask for a favor from someone you know is busy if you know their input would make a world of difference.
3. ASK your team for Information, Excellence, and Feedback.
Under-challenging the people on your team is NOT a compliment to them. A vote of no-confidence that they’re capable of anything beyond mediocre is hardly flattering.
- ASK for better information from your team (you’ll make better decisions).
- ASK for more excellence, more character, more courage, more fortitude.
- ASK a poor performer to step off the team if they’re not willing to bring their A-game.
- ASK for feedback because wise leaders know that there are things about their work that they cannot see (but the people around them can).
God hasn’t given you a spirit of timidity (see 2 Timothy 1:7).
So just ask.
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