April has been full of beautiful learning curves. They have been rapid, but they’ve been beautiful, and at one point it felt like a learning curve a week! This was the month the Lord took to begin teaching me the arts of leadership and surrender. I pray what I’ve learnt will bless you…
About two weeks ago, I found myself working 11-hour days on an internship at an Investment Bank in the City. Now anyone that knows me well knows that I’m a morning person, but waking up at 6am in the HOLIDAYS?! LOL! It was a struggle! (Can’t believe I used to do that every day for school!) I loved the internship—it was an excellent opportunity. But somewhere during the week, I got overwhelmed. Because I was working such long hours, my time for everything else was squeezed. It got to the point where I couldn’t give as much attention to the people around me, to whom I usually give 100%— all 5,000 subscribers, everyone on Snapchat, everyone on Whatsapp, everyone on Messenger, friends and family. It was a struggle. In that season I realised that for as long as there’s only one of me, and my platforms are growing, I cannot give everyone the full-on love that they have come to know me for. I’m the same sized pie, but my audiences are growing (which I am ever grateful for! Praise God!) and so more people want a piece.
God taught me in that week that sometimes in order to serve people, you’ve got to separate yourself from them. That means becoming less available and accessible when necessary. At the end of the day, I learnt I cannot pour out from an empty cup, I’ve got to keep myself full and refreshed in order to serve others, and as things grow it is going to become increasingly necessary to be selective and discerning in who I interact with and how I interact with them. I love easily, so it’s a process, but I am learning.
If that’s you too right now, know that you’re not on this journey alone. He is an expert at teaching leadership; He is, after all, the best leader, and the best teacher.
It’s not easy. Lol! Sometimes it feels as though it goes against our human nature, intelligence, ingenuity, creativity. We like to be in control of things, to solve problems. I think that as a creative, when I see obstacles my immediate response is to use my ingenuity and creativity to come up with a way of getting around them. This is good in some scenarios, and my creativity is something God placed in me, but I’ve learnt that in those seasons where He is looking to bless us as His children through inheritance (rather than the blessing being anything we could creatively find a way to get our hands on in our own strength) it doesn’t work. Some things—often those most important and desirable to us—simply will not be given to us until we have surrendered our desire for them back to the One above them all. Another thing—it is a dangerous thing when you feel entitled to a blessing (symptom: anger/frustration toward God because He hasn’t given it yet but you think it should be yours). A dream, vision, or prophecy which is not surrendered to God is an idol; conversely, when we surrender our desires to God, often we find He blesses us tenfold later on down the line.
My encouragement to you is this: that thing you’re seeking so earnestly and with all your heart; that thing you so desire; that dream and vision you’re so passionately pursuing? Invite God into the journey towards it, and surrender it to Him. Remember that He so desires to bless you as His cherished baby girl or boy. Know that when you come to His throne, you have His full attention. Know that He is not a God who wishes to do well but is impotent and unable; He is a God who both desires to bless you and is omnipotent—nothing is impossible for the Lord (Luke 1:37)! Know that your life is connected to the supply line of Heaven. Know that, while you’re waiting for that thing, He’s working—and remember that He fulfils all of your needs (Psalm 23:1).
Focus in the meantime on serving Him in your current season; reach a place where you are so focused on your Kingdom Assignments (sometimes called Purpose Projects—the things He’s given you to do now, in this season, for His glory) that you desire nothing but to serve Him. Align your heart with His. Then He’ll give you the desires of your heart (Psalm 37:4). Seek Him first, and watch your godly desires fall into place around you.
In the Bible, during the month of April, I’ve read from Numbers through to 1 Samuel and a recurring theme has been the importance of obedience. I’m learning that surrender to His Will and His voice out of love for Him is the very foundation of obedience.
I pray these encouragements and lessons bless you. One of the most precious privileges of being a Christian is the opportunity to simultaneously lead and be led—to learn the arts of authority and surrender—which at first glance seem to contradict each other—all at once.