Love Fiercely

YOU HAVE TO GIVE UP – TO GO UP

Have you ever heard that saying? John Maxwell made it famous, by teaching leaders about personal, & professional success – He called it, The Law Of Sacrifice. I think that we all have things that we need to give up. You may not know what that is for you right now – but do not be surprised when you encounter a moment or a season where one of two things happen: 

1. Personally, choose to give something up in order to move forward or to grow. 

2. The choice to give something up is made for you – & you only get to choose how you respond. 

 

It can be VERY difficult to come to terms with letting someone or something go. Growth & moving forward, while it may sound appealing is NEVER easy! It usually comes with what feels like rejection, failure, defeat, loss, regret, & even denial. But just because you are letting go of one thing – does not mean that you are empty-handed. 

 

NEVER CONFUSE A SINGLE DEFEAT WITH A FINAL DEFEAT. 

F. Scott Fitzgerald

 

Think of the image of an open hand. Now think of a closed one… 

It is ACTUALLY IMPOSSIBLE to take hold of something new, while you are holding onto the old.  It can be a trying process to understand that it is in the letting go, that you are able to take hold of the new. But there is no other way.

YOU MUST GIVE UP TO GO UP!

Everything worthwhile is uphill, meaning that it is going to take some effort & determination to get where you want to be, as well as become who you want to become. I’ve been saying this for a while now, but the more I think about it, the more I know it’s true. Whether you’re talking about personal growth, personal health, business or another aspect of life, nothing of value is easy. The precious things in life require something in exchange.

He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.

Jim Elliott

It is not hard to understand that great things come with sacrifice. But often, we do not think of that sacrifice as giving up something we love or like –  in order to gain something GREAT! We tend to think that we would be willing to sacrifice – if needed, but I personally tend to imagine that sacrifice being something easy for me to give up… because I think that the purpose behind the sacrifice will mean more than what I am giving up. I don’t know if this is a common thought process, but WHY DO I EVEN THINK THAT?!? Why would we think that sacrifice could ever be easy!?! Anytime I have had to make a sacrifice – the meaning behind the sacrifice NEVER made me feel good about what I was GIVING UP.

 

The thing I am striving to learn at the moment is not simply making hard decisions — But learning to make the hard decisions when they need to be made.

Every person who has achieved any success in life has made sacrifices to do so. Effective leaders sacrifice much that is good in order to dedicate themselves to what is best.

 

  • Success in leadership requires change, constant improvement, & sacrifice.
  • The higher you go – the more it’s going to cost you. & it doesn’t matter what kind of leader you are – you will have to sacrifice.
  • You will have to give up to go up!

 

In the Bible, we can learn from leaders that had to make sacrifices to be all that God had created them to be. 

 

THE GREATER THE CALL – THE GREATER THE SACRIFICE.

Here are a few examples of biblical leaders who gave up – to go up:

 

1) Gave up everything comfortable – for the unknown.

Noah chose to trust God’s plan, he ended up sacrificing his reputation to build an ark (a huge boat). People in his time had never experienced a flood of any kind, but because he was led by God to do this, he chose to submit to it – those around him even questioned his mental health. He gave up anything he was previously doing, any dreams, goals, plans, or personal calling & chose to follow Gods plan – over what seemed rational.  Because of his choice to give up his way, his plans, or what seemed to make sense for Gods plan, his family was saved & Noah not only became closer with God in the process – but God used Noah’s family to flood & repopulate the earth from his family line.

 

2) Gave up his freedom, family, comfort & his place as the favorite child – for what seemed very dark. 

The life of Joseph is very interesting when you think of all the stages of development & internal training that he endured. Most leaders naturally believe that God wants to use you in great ways, but what if the way God wants to train you & develop you through hard times? God will use all the people you experience & every circumstance, whether these seem good or bad – to help develop you into the person God created you to be.  Because of all the things he went through, slavery, rejection, imprisonment, wrongful accusations, & all the sacrifices, Joseph was able to discover that God was not only with him in every season & trial, but he also was able to learn that in all things God has a plan. Through it all, God trained Joseph to be a great leader & he eventually became the second-in-command over all of Egypt.

 

3) Gave up his life to accomplish a plan – that would kill Him.

Jesus was born & raised in a low income & seemingly normal home. Besides the fact that his mom was pregnant outside of marriage, & his step-father was a man who would be considered a blue-collar worker. They were a family, who from afar did not seem that different from other Jewish families around them. However there was a big difference, inside of there family structure, they were raising & housing the son of God. Jesus had a choice in all that He did, He was not bound to the plan of God. Much like us, we have a choice in what we do every day. From the time Jesus was little, He was focused on Gods plan, & while you would think that Jesus would be anxious to tell the world about who God is… Jesus was more concerned about becoming who God had created Him to be. He was not famous or highly paid, Jesus did not eventually get a huge backing of people behind Him. After 29 years of preparation, trials, & who knows how many lessons – in His 30th year, Jesus was finally released to do ministry on a large scale. Looking back, we only know about 12 people who wanted to live for God in the same way He did… well 11. & in the end, Jesus decided to lay down His life & be tortured, so that we could experience not only eternal life – but an eternal connection with God. It was not a convenient journey or life… & yet all we hear about is how much we are loved & chosen because of his choice to give up – we all get to go up!

 

The point is that great leadership comes at a great price.  

 

Jentzen Franklin posted a quote – as I was writing this, that encouraged me through what I have faced in life, but it also challenged me to push forward into what God has ahead of me…

 

THE GREATER THE BATTLE – THE GREATER THE VICTORY.

How did they do it? Is an easy question to think of when you see someone who is greatly successful. But rarely do we think to ask, WHAT PRICE DID THEY PAY TO GET THERE? On the outside, we see the fruit of the price that was paid & we want that success… but the question I want to ask you is – ARE YOU WILLING TO PAY THE SAME PRICE TO GET THERE? 

 

GREATNESS DOESN’T JUST HAPPEN, GREATNESS IS CULTIVATED THROUGH SACRIFICE!

THE LAW OF SACRIFICE.

 

We all have different reasons why we choose to lead people. Some do it out of necessity. Others to make money. & those who are like me, do it to make a difference & have a desire to help people. Sacrifice is always necessary to do something great… below are 4 things that are necessities if you want to be a great leader.

 

 

If you want to be a great leader – you must be willing to make great sacrifices.

 


 

1. Sacrifice is necessary to have success.

Any great success you or anyone you know will have has come through great sacrifice. I have met people who wish they had more, but are not open to making the sacrifices necessary to do so… For example, you cannot have a successful online business if you aren’t willing to build a website, connect to people on social media, build your network, or stay up to date with the latest technology. Sometimes the sacrifices we need to make look more like being willing to grow ourself, & not being satisfied or stuck in where we are comfortable.

Success is not something that comes easy, that’s why more people aren’t successful… Most people would tell you that they want to be a success, but they are not willing to do what it takes to make success happen. Leadership is not easy because you have to learn to lead yourself before you can lead anyone else… & I don’t know about you – but leading myself is VERY DIFFICULT. But if you cannot lead yourself, you will never be able to lead anyone else… I think that a great way to begin this process is by not letting what you have been through define you or dictate how you operate in life. Hard times either make you stronger or they will break you… I love the quote that says,

Adversity makes weak men break, & strong men break records.

 

2. Leaders must be willing to give up more than others

Leaders must often give up things that seem like they have rights to. & I am finding out more & more, that to be a successful leader – you must not only put others ahead of yourself but also give up more than those around you! This is NEVER easy, but it is a fact that leaders will always give up more than the people they lead.

It seems unfair, that those who lead must give up more than those around them. But if you think about it, what could others follow if you are doing the same things & living the same ways as those who follow you? Sometimes we see things the wrong way… we think we are being held back by an obstacle when it is the fact that we are not focused on the right things! Giving up the RIGHT things at the RIGHT time & being aware enough to act on it – that is what makes you a leader. 

We are kept from our goals not by obstacles, but by a clear path to a lesser goal.

Robert Brault 

 

3. Giving up is a continual process.

John Maxwell takes the Law of Sacrifice even further when he states that ‘If leaders have to give up to go up, then they have to give up, even more, to stay up’. There is always a cost involved in moving forward. The day you stop being willing to pay the price is the day when you stop being able to see the results you want!

We have to be willing as a leader to continually give up the lesser for the greater goal. It is easy to do it once or twice but to continually choose to give up, takes an understanding that growth & being great will cost you greatly.  It is very easy to see things that come up in our daily life & focus on those things as the most important… whether it is an issue or a situation that demands our attention. As a leader – you have to know what is worth you giving up your time, money, & effort. While it is important to give up – to go up, it is just as important to sacrifice for what matters – not for what just seems urgent. 

 

Most of us spend too much time on what is urgent instead of what is important.

Stephen Covey

 

 

4. The greater opportunity – the greater the sacrifice

People say, “new levels – new devils.” In your life, you have probably noticed that the greater the opportunity, the higher level of expectation. Also, there is usually a greater demand on you as a leader that others around you. You will have to give more, be more & do more than other people because YOU ARE THE LEADER! When you get to a new level & have more opportunity, it will not come without new & greater challenges.

We all would say we want to be great or do great things, & yet it is not often that we understand that it will come at a great cost. When But it is also very important, as a leader, that you stop trying to be perfect.  Perfection is not realistic. & even when you try to do all the right things… you will face failure at times. 

 

THE GREATEST GLORY IN LIVING LIES NOT IN NEVER FALLING, BUT IN RISING EVERY TIME THAT WE FALL.

Ralph Waldo Emerson 

 

When you read a post like this it can seem very instructional… you can even think about all the things you have done or are currently doing wrong. But my motivation in writing this was an encouragement to you & even myself! I have failed so many times in these areas mentioned in this blog… I have many areas I want to be better in & grow in as a leader. Let me remind you today, as I also remind myself, just because you encounter failure as a leader – it does not mean that you cannot be a great leader! We all have failures in life, it is inevitable for you to feel like your failure is final at times… but it is not! You only fail if you do not get back up & keep pushing forward! 

Hopefully, you can see this post as a reminder that you are not alone & that we are all on a growth journey as leaders. You will have to pay a great price to be great & do great things – & it is worth it to keep pushing & continue to grow. YOU GOT THIS!! GOD IS ON YOUR SIDE! 🙂 

 

KEEP GOING & YOU WILL WIN EVERY TIME. MANY TIMES WINNING LOOKS LIKE NEVER GIVING UP!

 

2 4