Then I told them of the hand of my God which was upon me; as also the king’s words that he had spoken unto me. And they said, let us rise up and build. So they strengthened their hands for this good work. (Nehemiah 5:18 KJV)
If you want to know what true leadership is all about, then one of the books you should read is the book of Nehemiah. It also shows us how the presence of an individual can have an impact on a nation. Nehemiah used his office to bring back the Jews to order, stability, and proper focus on God.
How did he achieve God’s assignment for him as a leader?
Nehemiah was the king’s cupbearer and anyone who gives service to the king must always wear a cheerful countenance because it was forbidden to be sad in the king’s presence during those ancient times. The idea was that the king was such a wonderful person that merely being in his presence was supposed to make you forget all your problems. So Nehemiah’s sad countenance could be interpreted as an insult to the king.
Nehemiah knew the consequences of displaying a sad countenance in the presence of the king, hence his prayer of mercy to God as he appeared before the king.
You know how we usually answer ‘I’m fine’ or ‘nothing’s wrong’ when someone asks what’s wrong or why sad? For Nehemiah, he knew giving such a reply was simply being dishonest and he was never going to play that card. So he gave a wise and honest answer to the king when asked the reason for his sad countenance.
(Although there are reasons people choose not to tell another why they are sad, troubled, or depressed).
The king did not only grant leave to Nehemiah for the rebuilding of Jerusalem, but he was so favoured that all the necessary assistance needed for the work was granted him because God’s hand was upon him.
The people of Jerusalem had lost hope in the rebuilding of their walls. It was a problem they never saw to be fixed, so they lived with it. But Nehemiah changed their unbelieving mindset because he was a favoured man by God. His words of encouragement and the favour shown to him by the king through God strengthened the hearts of his brethren.
Nehemiah’s attachment to the King of kings (Yahweh) paved the way for him and brought light to the people of Jerusalem.
Being a leader who would impact the people under your care requires a sincere relationship with God and with the people, relentless prayer, big vision, burden-bearing, positivity, firm action (when needed), understanding, a listening ear, wisdom, boldness, well-of-knowledge, courage, and humility.
As Christians, if we must brighten our little or big corners and have a great impact on lives, we must work on our relationship with God and the people given to us by God. These people in our corners can be our spouses, children, parents, siblings, fellow servants in God’s vineyard, friends, colleagues, etc.
Most times in life, to achieve a huge task/assignment, you will need men to assist or partner with you in any way possible.
For Nehemiah to accomplish the building of the wall, he needed his brethren (the people of Jerusalem) to partner with him to rebuild their wall.
You can be the kind of leader who can change the mindset of others, fix a problem, and refocus others on God.
Impactful leadership is achievable when God is fully involved.