What is a quality that will truly make the difference in any marriage, family, nation, and church? I believe that the key quality can be summed up in the word-INITIATIVE. I’m thinking about initiative in this way–the catalyst that gets you to start and complete what you know God has called you to do.
In Scripture, we see examples of this great quality. David was bringing food to his brothers who were fighting in war and he heard Goliath taunting the people of God. He took the initiative to go defeat the giant and the spiritual and physical impact was felt by the entire nation. Paul was an initiator. He pressed and pressed under the leadership of the Holy Spirit to pioneer the gospel to new cities.
We can learn about certain qualities by studying the opposite character traits that we sometimes find in Scripture. North Central been engaged in a series of Bible studies on Sunday nights in the book of Proverbs. Last night we studied the Sluggard. By studying the lazy man (Sluggard) we learn the importance of initiative. Derek Kidner, in his commentary on Proverbs, gives us some good insights on the Sluggard.
Consider the following:
1. Sluggards will not begin things. Proverbs 6:9-10
2. Sluggards will not finish things. Proverbs 19:24
3. Sluggards will not face things. Proverbs 22:13
4. Sluggards are restless with desire. Proverbs 13:4
We must not allow ourselves to remain lazy. I heard the story years ago about Charles Schwab, the president of the Bethlehem Steel Company who was discouraged with the progress of his own life and business. He hired a consultant and offered to pay any price if the consultant could help him be more productive. The consultant said, “I’ll tell you what I think, you try my advice, and then you pay me what you think it’s worth.” His advice centered around a simple “To-Do List”. He said to Schwab, “Start by writing down several things that you need to get done. Number them by priority. Work on number one until it is complete and then go to number two. Continue in the same way until you have completed your list. If you come to the end of your day and the list is not complete, make the uncompleted items your first priority for the next day and add to them, working down your priority list.” Schwab tried it and was very pleased with the results. He paid his consultant $25,000.00.
I have found this method to help me get more done in my life. It helps me take the initiative to follow what I sense God calling me to do.
What about you? What is the dream that God has put in your heart for your family, your church, your business, and your ministry. Make sure that you ask the Lord for initiatve and then write it down and go to work!!