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Loving Leadership (5 of 5)

Mike Connell

There's a difference between letting your wife run something, as part of a delegated flow, recognising a gift and deploying it; it's another thing to cop out all together. Do you understand that? When the man cops out, she feels the weight. When he takes responsibility, and they make joint decisions, then it works out just great. Does that make sense? [Yeah.] So it's very, very simple, so you work it out. So everyone's got to work it out differently; and so you know, maybe the men have just got to run around, and if you don't like the home being untidy, well go round and tidy it up, simple as that. If you feel strongly about it, you do it, or get one of the kids to work with you in doing it. It's no big deal, no big deal. It's no big deal if you do anything in the home, just do it, if it needs to be done. I found, after we had two children, that we had to have major changes in the home. Actually I'll correct that - major changes in me. [Laughter] I had to change, and so I used to think: well work's work, and the home's the home. Joy's got the home, and I've got the work - then we had two children, then it all changed, and I had to really get my act together, and wake up and start to get involved. Then I realised that between five and seven, if the man wasn't around when you've got a young family, this is very baaaad! [Laughter] Oh it's a bad time. You can be away any time you like, but not between five and seven when there's meals and there's a baby, and there's baths and there's getting this one ready, that one ready and the phone's going, all that kind of stuff. That's just the time - how many men know what I'm saying now? Yeah, that's right. You be there then - two hours then, will couch you for the whole day just about. But if you're not there, you can't make up with it with a whole day! [Laughter] So you've just got to work a partnership thing in this area, and figure out who's got the strengths. So women have strengths to bring into the relationship, that need to be accepted, celebrated and listened to.

Now that's the third part of being a partner, you need to listen, and don't react when your wife shares her cares. I want you to look with me in 1 Kings, Chapter 12. I'll say it again: listen, and don't react, to her concerns and cares; honey, I'm just concerned a little bit about this. [mutter mutter ] don't worry about that... Don't be like that, it won't work. If this is going to work, you've got to realise your wife will have the heart of the home. She will sense what's going on. She will feel things you don't feel. Men see the big picture down the line, but they often miss what's under their nose; but the wife knows exactly what's under your nose, and she will tell you. So you need to listen to her cares and concerns. That's how you work as a partnership. If you're going to lead, you've got to listen. Here it is in 1 Kings, Chapter 12:7, and this is a time when King Rehoboam is about to take over the nation of Israel. He's about ready to take over. His dad's died, and he's going to be the new king, and it's a huge nation, a wealthy nation, a prosperous nation, and he's about to take over; so he asks for some advice from the old men. This is the advice the old men give him, because he's a young buck, who's just become king. He's really wanting to make a mark.

So this is what they say: If you will be a servant today - now he didn't want to hear that - if you will be a servant. But I'm the king! King! King of the castle! They said: if you will be a servant, and will serve them. Now he says: and answer them, and speak good words them, they will be your servants forever. He said: if you want these people to follow you, you've got to have a servant heart, and a servant attitude, and a servant spirit, and give consideration to their needs. That words 'answer them', means literally to eye them, or to look, so that you become aware of what their needs are, and then speak kindly and encouragingly to them. So he says: if you will be a servant, minister and meet their needs that they have, be sensitive and aware with what they're going through and facing, and speak encouragement to them, do you know what'll happen? They'll just love to run after you and follow you. Now men, wouldn't that be a great verse to put into practice? If you just started to do those things - but you think: well - it's not me! Well that's what the young man said, he said: that's not me!