1 Kings 3:9
“Give therefore thy servant an understanding heart to judge thy people, that I may discern between good and bad: for who is able to judge this thy so great a people?”
If every person mimicked Solomon’s heart when he was young, they would have no problem leading in whatever area they lead. The verse above is a conversation that Solomon had with God. God came to him in a dream and asked him what he wanted, and Solomon responded by requesting the qualities for spiritual leadership. When Solomon woke up, God confirmed this conversation by telling Solomon that He would bless him with riches and honor because of his desire to lead His people in the right direction.
Spiritual leadership should have the same desires that Solomon had when he was offered whatever he wanted by God. You will notice that Solomon’s response had nothing to do with power or recognition, but his response was all about making sure he led God’s people to do right. Three things were distinctly mentioned by God that He would give Solomon to help lead His people. These three qualities mentioned are needed by every person who is going to be a spiritual leader.
The first thing needed is wisdom. Wisdom is knowing the mind of God so you will know how to act and what to do in every situation. Solomon desired to do the right thing so much that he asked God for His wisdom. You will never become a spiritual leader without gaining God’s wisdom from His Word. I’m afraid that we get this thought that God is just going to give His wisdom out of nowhere when He gives us His wisdom in His Word. Don’t get me wrong; I believe God can give you His wisdom for every situation if you ask Him, but He has given you His Word to discover His wisdom. If you are going to be a spiritual leader, you are going to have to spend much time in God’s Word to glean the mind of God so you will know what He wants you to do in every situation.
The second thing needed is understanding. Understanding is seeing the whole picture as God sees it which allows you to help people better. Understanding is having the wherewithal to explain God’s mind to every person so they can see His mind clearly. Nobody knows how to get through the heart of a person better than God. If you are going to get God’s understanding of people, you are going to have to spend time with Him in prayer so He can give you the answers as to how to help people better. You will never have God’s understanding without spending time in prayer.
The third thing needed is discernment. Discernment is having the ability to see the direction as God sees it. Spiritual leadership will have the discernment of God to determine where a decision takes you in the future. Fleshly leadership makes decisions by how it affects the present; whereas, spiritual leadership makes decisions by where it takes the next generation. My friend, spiritual leadership will be more concerned with what the next generation does with our decisions more than they will by how it affects them in the present.
All of these qualities start with a humble heart that doesn’t think it knows everything. It starts with a heart that knows it needs God. If you come to God as a little child who doesn’t know everything like Solomon did, God will be happy to help you become the spiritual leader you need to be by giving you these three qualities to leader His people spiritually.