Is it possible to lead when you are not the top dog?

David-and-Goliath-paintingThe answer is a resounding yes.

The story of David and Goliath in 1 Samuel chapter 17 is a great example of leadership. David was just a teenager and he managed to have influence over the king and change the direction of a nation.

Here are ten leadership principals that we can learn from David.

1. Seek to understand then be understood.
David understood Saul’s problem. Understanding means that you feel the same emotions that your leader feels. Many people that serve in youth and or children’s ministry do not feel that their pastor understands them. The key to influencing some one that out ranks you is for you to allow yourself to be influenced by them. 1 Sam 17:24 -27

2. You Will Get Shot At.
As soon as David started to lead his older brother took a shot at him. If you are getting shot at it just means that you are leading. Don’t take it personal. You need to develop thick skin and a soft heart. It’s rare that the person shooting at you is the enemy. 1 Samuel 17:28

3. Keep Your Motives Pure.
Who is this uncircumcised philistine that he should defy the armies of the living God?” If there is any hint of self-promotion you lose all credibility.

4. Lead by Asking Questions.
Don’t act like a know it all. Learn from what David did. He was asking questions that he already knew the answer to. 1 Samuel 17:30

5. Know when the door is Open.
Pastors are busy people. Don’t try to force your idea. You know that the door is open when your leader is asking questions. 1Samuel 17:31

6. Don’t try to “lead up” unless you are willing to fight the giant.
It’s easy to identify problems. It’s another thing to do the work it takes to solve them.

7. Be Confident.
Don’t talk about things you know nothing about. Lead from a position of strength. David used his slingshot because it gave him confidence.

8. Do it Afraid.
There is going to be an element of fear when you “lead up”. The more scared we are of a work or a calling the surer we can be that we have to do it.

9. Think positive thoughts and say positive words.
1 Samuel 17:45-47

10. Get Results.
This story would not be here if David had lost the battle. You will make mistakes and even fail sometimes but you just have to keep fighting till you win.

What are some lessons you have learned when leading from the middle of then pack?

2 thoughts on “Is it possible to lead when you are not the top dog?

  1. Kymburly Odell says:

    Two words keep me grounded and come to mind yet again when you ask “What have I learned?”…Be Uncomplicated!

  2. Karen Hosier says:

    What have I learned?
    Proverbs 22:4 “By humility and fear of the Lord are riches and honor and life”

    Staying humble, teachable and looking to the Lord for affirmation as opposed to men.

    Thank you for the insightful and relevant message (as usual).

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