Posts Tagged ‘Assertive’

Genesis 24 – RESUME OF A SERVANT LEADER – Part 7

Servant Leadership

He is not mentioned by name in this story but he makes a name for himself in the pages of history. If you are looking for an example of SERVANT LEADERSHIP, you will find it here in Abraham’s servant. Imagine if he asked for a reference to add to his resume.

As I speak about the leadership characteristics of this man, I wonder would the reference Abraham writes about him be the same kind of reference he would write for me? What does it look like to be a servant leader?

His reference would probably read something like this…

TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN,

I have known Eliezer for many years. He has served my family over all those years. In fact he has been a most trusted manager and a true servant leader.

I regard Eliezer as a gift from God. He has administrated the affairs of my considerable estate with efficiency and my business has prospered considerably (Genesis 24:1-2. Of course it was God who had blessed Abraham and Eliezer was there to administer the business and household. Many commentaries say that this servant had to be Eliezer but he is not actually mentioned by name.)

With his extensive experience (which is another way of saying that he is old) I believe he has, through his involvement in a variety of business and personal experiences, much to offer. He has learned valuable lessons and together we have charted new territory (Genesis 24:2).

You will find that Eliezer is NOT AFRAID TO ASK QUESTIONS and he ANTICIPATES DIFFICULTIES when given a task, not because he is being negative but in order to achieve his task more effectively and understand more accurately what is being asked of him (Genesis 24:5. When Abraham asks Eliezer to find a wife for Isaac back in Mesopotamia, Eliezer sees a problem and says, “If this girl won’t agree to come with me. Should I take your son with me?” He presents a problem but suggests a solution. Abraham rejects the solution but it shows that Eliezer is proactive).

Eliezer has a great reputation for finding the right people for our family business. Recently I entrusted Eliezer with an impossible mission which involved travelling to another country and “headhunting” a suitable girl to live and work back in Canaan with my son. He has a particular passion for EXECUTIVE MATCHMAKING, and found someone who was more than suitable. Isaac loved her so much, he married her. (Genesis 24:3-4. Eliezer found the right person for Isaac to marry.)

Always PREPARING WELL, Eliezer has been entrusted with full access to my finances and he budgets well. As you know I have a sizeable fortune. Eliezer can be TRUSTED with money (Genesis 24:10,22,53 When he set off to find Rebekah, he took a fortune with him by way of gifts in silver, gold and garments as well). He is RESPONSIBLE. When transacting business for my family recently in the East, I put at his disposal some of my trained soldiers.(Genesis 24:32. Abraham had his own private army which he had previously used when his nephew Lot was captured by king Chedorlaomer. The story is found in Genesis 14:14-16. I would presume that he would send some of these men with Eliezer for protection purposes). Eliezer also travelled with a valuable cargo into dangerous territory and I am sure an angel was going before him because he was able to accomplish his mission with efficiency. (Genesis 24:7. Abraham said that an angel would go before him to find a wife for Isaac. I presume this would be an angel like Gabriel, who would protect the promises and purposes of God concerning these ancestors of Jesus).

Eliezer takes RESPONSIBILITY after thinking through things well. He’s not afraid of finding success for others. He’s NOT OUT TO SERVE HIS OWN INTERESTS. Once given the mission, he GETS ON WITH THE JOB assigned to him. He is POSITIVE and LOOKS FOR SOLUTIONS and has honoured me. (Genesis 24:12-14. Eliezer prays “O Lord, the God of my master Abraham, please grant me success today, and show lovingkindness to my master Abraham.” He is always serving the interests of God and his master).

What I particularly appreciate about Eliezer is that he allows God to guide him. You will not find anyone as COMMITTED to serving the Lord and his employer as Eliezer. He has a RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD and WORSHIPS EASILY and God guides him.  (Genesis 24:12,21,26,42,48,52. At each step Eliezer is careful to ask God for success and to praise God for the answers he receives. Psalms 37:23 (NLT) says “The Lord directs the steps of the godly. He delights in every detail of their lives”).

He’s a DETAILS PERSON, but somehow manages to be PRECISE AND TO THE POINT with his presentations. (Genesis 24:33-49. Eliezer explains the reason he is there, how God has prospered Abraham to the point where is is now a rich man. He speaks about the miracle of Isaac’s birth and how he is the sole heir to Abraham. He explains that he took an oath to find a wife for Isaac among Abraham’s relatives, and how he had asked for a sign so that God would lead him to the right girl. The Lord led him to Rebekah. Without being pushy he seeks to have them make a decision). You will find Eliezer not to be intrusive but he is ASSERTIVE and firm when closing a deal. (Genesis 24:49) Very DECISIVE, and COMMITTED to accomplishing the purpose of the tasks I have assigned him, he does not waste time. He is never keen about delaying things (Genesis 24:55-56. Once Eliezer has found Rebekah, he is keen to go the very next day). Although he is PERSISTENT, he is careful not to force his way into a situation. He completes what he sets out to do.

If his experience and gifts in excellent service and trusted leadership, along with his loyalty seems to match up with any opportunities you may have, then you must know that although I commend him to you and that he would be an asset to you, YOU CAN’T HAVE HIM. He is permanently indentured to me. Abraham. 

God bless you as you seek to learn and apply these principles of servant leadership from this amazing man of God.

Pastor Ross

Genesis 24 – THE PERFECT WIFE OR A DOMESTICATED DOORMAT? – Part 6

Perfect Wife or Doormat?

The Formula in the 50′s FOR THE PERFECT WIFE get your work done, have dinner ready for your husband, look good for him, minimize any noise before he arrives at the door after work, be happy to see him, don’t greet him with problems and complaints, don’t complain if he is late for dinner, make him comfortable, listen to him and make the evening his (Was this designed by the PERFECT WIFE OR A DOMESTICATED DOORMAT?)

Now picture this scene found in Genesis 24. Abraham sends his servant with 10 camels and a sizable fortune in gifts to find THE PERFECT WIFE for Isaac. He asks God for a SIGN so he’ll recognise who is the right girl. The sign? The girl who not only gives him water to drink from her jug but also offers to water his 10 camels will be the one. Rebekah makes such an offer. This is like having someone offer to fill up 10 EMPTY TRUCKS with petrol. It’s going to take a long time. But so far so good. She seems like the perfect wife for Isaac (not to mention that it will save him watering the camels).

He discovers a number of things about Rebekah at the well that day. She is BEAUTIFUL, SINGLE. She is CONFIDENT, WARM AND FRIENDLY despite the fact that he is a stranger. She calls him “lord” which was a way of showing RESPECT. She has a SERVANT HEART. She’s THOUGHTFUL, CARING, CONSIDERATE, SELFLESS, willing to go the EXTRA MILE to help out. She puts the needs of others before her own. She’s a FITNESS FANATIC (Carting all that water would keep anyone fit). She’s STRONG AND HEALTHY. She is definitely NOT AFRAID OF HARD WORK. She’s FLEXIBLE with her time. She is there to get water for her family but she goes out of her way to help someone else first.

Apart from this she has FAITH IN GOD and she is HOSPITABLE. She invites him to stay with her family

Genesis 24:26-28 (NLT) says that the servant “…bowed low and worshiped the Lord.” As far as he is concerned, God has answered his prayer. He gives her some EXPENSIVE JEWELLERY including a nose ring and Rebekah runs home “… to tell her family everything that had happened.”

What would you do if your DAUGHTER COMES HOME LATE, wearing expensive jewelry and raving on about a man she has just met that evening? I’d be a little suspicious if it was my daughter and I’d want to get rid of the man. Not Rebekah’s brother Laban. He’s the head of the family but he is also a business man so when he SEES THE JEWELLERY that Rebekah is wearing all of a sudden this servant becomes HIS BEST FRIEND. In Genesis 24:31 he says “Come in, blessed of the Lord! Why do you stand outside since I have prepared the house, and a place for the camels?”

Just before the evening meal the Servant explains how he asked God for a sign and that he thinks that Rebekah is God’s choice for Isaac. He lays it on the line “Please tell me yes or no, and then I’ll know what to do next.” (I knew a girl once who said she knew that it was God’s will that she marry a friend of mine. Strangely, God didn’t tell him too and he ended up marrying another girl). Is this man being EMOTIONALLY MANIPULATIVE or has he really heard from God?

Laban and his father Bethuel believe in God and when they hear of how the servant received a sign from God, they say, “The Lord has obviously brought you here, so there is nothing we can say. Here is Rebekah; take her and go. Yes, let her be the wife of your master’s son, as the Lord has directed.”

The servant lavishes the family with a FORTUNE IN GIFTS. What is this? Human trafficking, SELLING YOUR DAUGHTER? Rebekah hasn’t had a say in any of this yet! What is she? Some KIND OF DOORMAT OR OBJECT OF EXCHANGE?

By early the next morning, it looks like the deal has changed however. Laban has been talking to Rebekah’s mother and they say “We want Rebekah to stay with us at LEAST TEN DAYS, then she can go.” Abraham’s servant is straight with them. He says “Don’t mess me around. This is God’s will and we’ve made a deal.” Actually he says “Don’t delay me. The Lord has made my mission successful.”

“Well,” they say “we’ll call Rebekah and ASK HER what she thinks.” IT’S ABOUT TIME that Rebekah actually gets to say something about their plans for her life! Ever felt like God loves you and EVERYONE ELSE has a wonderful plan for your life? So they call Rebekah. Oh, by the way Rebekah, “Are you willing to go with this man?” they ask her.

Rebekah is no doormat. She’s INTELLIGENT enough to make up her OWN MIND. She’s heard everything the servant said and she is ASSERTIVE AND DECISIVE. She makes a decision immediately based on what she has heard. What would you have said? She replies, “Yes, I will go.” She is quick to recognise that God is in this and that this is her opportunity to fulfill her GOD GIVEN DESTINY. She doesn’t insist on staying an extra 10 days like her family requests. Just as well! Major spanner in the works if she had said “NO. I’M NOT GOING ANYWHERE AND I’M NOT MARRYING ANYONE!”

Sometimes people say that CHRISTIANS ARE JUST PASSIVE DOORMATS who follow GOD’S RULES AND REGULATIONS MINDLESSLY. I don’t follow Christ because I HAVE TO. I follow Him because I WANT TO. He has won me over with who He is and what He has done for me on the Cross. There’s a difference between CO-OPERATING WITH GOD and being a DOORMAT. I have a CHOICE.

Rebekah is a RISK TAKER. Faith is always a risk. GIVING YOUR LIFE TO CHRIST is always a risk. Some people say “FAITH IS BLIND because it involves taking a risk. FAITH MAY BE BLIND BUT IT ISN’T DEAF! Faith comes when we HEAR what God has to say for our lives and then we CHOOSE, by an act of our own FREEWILL, after receiving His revelation of Truth, to step out and act upon it without knowing what the future holds. Rebekah courageously takes a step of faith by her willingness to give up her life with her family and go with this man to a land she has never seen, to marry a man she has never met. I like this woman of faith. It is no wonder that Isaac falls in love with her.

Although everyone else seemed to have a plan for her life, Rebekah listens and responds to what God is saying to her and makes a decision that changes the world. She doesn’t know it but this decision will impact the future as God fulfils His promises. One day Jesus will come from the line of Isaac.

Rebekah encourages me NOT TO BE A DOORMAT to my circumstances or to other people. God bless you as you COOPERATE WITH GOD’S PLAN for your life today and in doing so LIVE LIFE TO THE FULL and make a difference in the world.

Pastor Ross