Living Leadership

If I desire to lead others, I must start by leading myself. I heard this at an Away Day at work. It’s been on my heart the whole weekend. There are many things I wish I could change – issues around me, other people’s perception and attitudes, the whole world… The list goes on. However, the more you have tried to change others, the more I realise what an impossible task it is. This only leads to frustration. Sometimes, I even see me becoming the things I so badly wish were different. We can’t change the world, we can change ourselves. I think the more I change to be ‘an amazing world’ the better things will be. The phrase ‘be the change’ is ever making more sense to me. Like MJ said “if you want to make the world a better place, take a look at yourself and make the change”. I’m going to be the blueprint – in my home, at work, church and wherever else life finds me!

The first place to start in leadership is within. Lead yourself, be the change!

Arielle x


10 Beats His Heart Skip

Dancer Leaping On Beach

I came across this line in the bible a few days ago: These six things the Lord hates, yes, seven are an abomination to Him Proverbs 6:16. I read the six things mentioned and I asked myself what does He love?  In most relationships, as much as we seek not to displease the other party, I think we try harder to do the things they love because it puts a smile on their faces. So I thought to note down a few things that I feel the Lord loves. There are many however, here are 10 things I believe make His heart skip a beat or two:

1. The Sea of Forgetfulness

If only I remember always not just that I am forgiven but also that He’s forgotten… Many times, when we remember our past, we walk around like God has something against us. Sometimes, we  observe and regard ourselves through the eyes of our past – who we used to be, what we used to do. Then we relate with Him  as though He has not let go completely. He is pleased when I remember that my past is His-story and I do not walk around in guilt or condemnation. After-all what He promised to do is to throw it  all in the sea of forgetfulness. It makes sense to leave it there where it belongs. And if by any chance I am reminded of these past stories and events, its becomes an opportunity to thank Him for His forgiveness and what He has made out of my mistakes. He prefers me to remember that there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Romans 8:1, and also whom the Son sets free is free indeed John 8:36.

2. Early Will I seek You

I ask myself sometimes, does it matter if I do not spend time with Him till late morning or afternoon or maybe just last thing before I retire to bed? Then I realise that God takes my relationship with Him very serious. The one you love, you want to spend as much time as possible with. You would normally look for time to opportunities to be with them. For you its more than spending time but spending good quality time. Often times, these quality times occur when you are alone with this person. One thing my little mind still finds difficult to wrap its thoughts around is that He wants me more, deeper and stronger than I want Him Romans 8:38-39. The reason for seeking Him early is not necessarily about the time of the day but rather the quality of the time spent. In the early hours of the morning, when most of the world is still asleep in my mind and heart, its all about Him. There are no distractions, no work to rush to, no children to attend to, no spouse to please, no phone calls to return, no blackberry IMs to respond to :-). Its just the two of us and I am not too tired or occupied to pay Him good attention. This makes Him happy. Time spent with Him is not limited to mornings only. He wants to share our days with us. When I let Him in throughout the day, He smiles.

3. Bless Those Who Curse You

Hmmm…this is probably one of the most difficult things I have and still find sometimes to do. Its easier to be angry and ask for a pay back when someone hurts me. I am not speaking merely of before others but even in my private thoughts, and desires. When I pray regarding those that have hurt or offended me, what do I say? “Father, show them that I am Your child and they have  touched Your anointed, and let them know that they stepped on Your toes in doing so!” or “Forgive them, for they know not what they do.” If only I realise at these times that the one the Lord rises up against has no one to defend them! When I bless those that curse me, I am like Him, for He causes rain – His mercy, compassion, long-suffering, and love to fall on the evil and the good…hmmm.

4. Lean Not On Your Own Understanding

…simply because I am oh so limited in knowledge, wisdom and understanding, He loves it when I do not try to do things on my own. I do not see beyond my nose so He is pleased when I trust more in Him than in myself…when I reason as He would. The common phrase: “What Would Jesus Do?” comes to play here and the simple answer is “Whatever His Father would do.” So Daddy loves it when I walk like my Champion, think like my Champion, and talk like my Champion. He is my Hero and Champion so I lean on His thoughts, His judgement and directions. What He says, that’s what I hold on to. When I turn to and rely on His word and not myself, He leaps :-).

5. Prayers and Supplication For All Men

He smiles when I plead with Him about someone else’s difficulties, challenges or heart desires. He is pleased when I am unselfish and my prayer times are not filled with I-requests….I-want, I-need, I-would-like, I-look-forward-to…the list goes on. Frequently including He-wants, She-needs, They-would-like, We-look-forward-to makes His heart skip a beat or two.

6. Give Thanks In All Things

Giving thanks when things are going my way, giving thanks when things are not going my way, giving thanks when I am happy, giving thanks when I am not. I have come to realise that when I look closer at any situation, whether good or not so good, there is something to thank Him for. Why give thanks? Simply because when things are going well, He is God and He is good, and when things are not going well, He is still God and still good. Plus He works all things out for our good. Honestly, He is not the bad guy ;-).

girlsholding hands7. Seventy Time Seven

So one day, Peter asked Jesus this question: “how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Up to Seven times?” And Jesus responded “until seventy times seven.” According to my understanding: as often as they offend, I forgive. Forgiveness is a beautiful thing. It keeps me clutter-free. It also serves as a reminder that as often as I offend Him, He forgives me so I ought to extend this same dealing to another. He is happy when His children get along and maintain good relations with one another. He is happy when me and my siblings are one. He is happy when I live at peace with others and keep no records of their wrong doings. Yes, He is happy.

8. Ask…That Your Joy May Be Full

My joy means a lot to Him. Afterall, Jesus came that I may have life more abundantly (John 10:10). I am not saying I will never have seasons of heart ache, sorrow or sadness, but that He is delighted to put a smile on my face. We are not to lose our joy even in difficult and challenging situations. So when I ask, He acts. He is pleased when I ask His help. After-all, what sort of king does not seek the welfare of his people. If the kings of this earth strive for his people how much more the King of kings from whom all learn. If I ask, I receive, then my joy will be full. When I ask,  I give Him the opportunity to work on my behalf. He wants to give, but I need to ask. When I ask, He is glad because I give Him the opportunity to bless me and make me a blessing.

9. Lend to the poor

So now, I am blessed and a blessing but I step outside and I see my neighbour in need and  I say with a righteous smile “God bless you” or “it is well” then I walk on by…hmmm. I must have forgotten that He gives me an abundance so I can disperse abroad, I am a channel of His blessings. How pleased He  is when I seek someone else to bless after I have received from Him. He rejoices when I lend a helping hand to another. When the plight of those in distress moves not just my lips but also my heart, hands and feet. I feel the joy in His heart when others people find joy just because I cared enough to do something about their need.

10. Abba, Father!

Now I do not think there are any other words that cause His heart to jump higher than these “Abba! Father!” When He hears the voice of His children call Him “Daddy”. Ah! Pure bliss and joy. For the joy of hearing those words from me, and you, He said He  was pleased many years ago to bruise His only begotten Son (Isaiah53:10). I have become the apple of His eyes, I am His delight. It is nice and pleasing when we call Him King, Judge, helper, Fortress, Healer, Friend, Faithful One, etc but I believe Daddy loves it most when we call Him “Father”.

Arielle xx