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Leadership Self-Sacrifice in Balance

Leadership Self-Sacrifice in Balance

Do you love to invest yourself, your time and your gifts into others? Do you love giving, but hate it when the result is exhaustion, little or no appreciation, and confusion as to your true motives?

Adopt these healthy personal policies to help you make the tough choices, and deal with the tough.

1. If God grants you the grace to give something away (your time, whatever), do it!

  • Give as unto God and not man (knowing full well He'll reward you now, later or both). 
  • Attempt to give as freely as it's been gifted to me. 
  • Expect nothing in return from the recipient (but love it if it comes). 
  • Do not keep accounts. (ie - do not require a thank you or payback, etc.)

2. If you have nothing to give, or no grace to give what you have, ask God for whatever is needed. Pray, "God, I have no ___________ (whatever is needed or whatever I am being asked for right now), but You have plenty of ____________. Please flow some of Your ___________ through me right now. Thank You."

  • If God answers with the ___________, then freely give it as in #1.
  • If God does not answer with ______________, then apologize that you will not be able to help in that way today.
  • Refuse to burn bridges. Just because God did not gift you the ability or resources today does not mean He won't tomorrow.

3. If during the above process, at any point, you feel pressured to give by another person, check your spirit.

  • If you have what they need, why would you say "no"? Note: There might be hundreds of God-honoring reasons to say "no." Just be sure yours is God-honoring.
  • If you've asked God to supply and He has not, then be OK saying "no." If this is where you're getting messed up, humbly admit that you need personal healing when it comes to saying "yes" to God when He requires you to say "no" to this particular person OR to anyone who asks me about this particular service. In this case, recognize that you are the broken one, not the person asking this of you. Usually just realizing this can help you say "yes" to God.
  • There are some people to whom it is very, very difficult to say "no." Join God: He says "no" to them all the time! In fact, sometimes it is your "yes" that messes up His "no."

God is not obligated to jump through every hoop we hold up and you are not obligated to jump through every hoop help up by others for you.

If God has chosen to bless you with the ability to serve others in a particular way, then serve you should. But if He has chosen to withhold that ability (for a moment, an hour, a day, a lifetime), accept His decision and apologize for any inconvenience it inflicts on others.

*Why apologize? 

Well, at least for me, I actually do wish I could say "yes" to everything - both because it is more fun and also because I truly care about the tangible needs of the people in my sphere of influence. But, if God says "no," my answer must be, "Yes, Lord. I, too, will say no!"

It's tough. The only way to stay in balance with God's provision is to stay in touch with His Spirit. I love Ephesians 5:18. "Do not be drunk with wine but be filled with the Spirit."

When a person is drunk, they are no longer in control of themselves. They do things they'd never do if they were in full control.

It's the same with a Christian who is Spirit filled. We do things we would never do if we were fully in control.

The difference is that the drunkard's focus is on pleasing self while the person full of God's Spirit is focused on pleasing God. You truly can never out-give God if your sacrifices are for Him, through Him, in Him and to Him.

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