As Valentine's Day is getting close, I want to switch my focus from servant leadership to romance. As I'm sure any faithful reader knows, I love romance. I like to watch the "girly" love movies like The Notebook, and I enjoy listening to love songs. I find love stories to be captivating and thrilling, and I love to hear married couples' share their love stories. I think romance is wonderful and I can't wait until I'm in a relationship of my own.
Several months ago, I wrote a post called Matching Wisdom With Romance. In that post, I talked about how impatient I was to get married. I really wanted to fall in love, to give my heart away, to revel in the beauty of romance. But I wasn't ready for it. I knew I wasn't ready and so I began to ask God how to get ready. And believe it or not, God began to show me some areas I needed to work on. God showed me that I was still a pretty cocky, selfish young man, and that if I ever wanted His blessing and guidance in romance, I needed to change. I needed to become wiser, smarter, and more humble.
The first thing I did was to commit to read a chapter of Proverbs a day. I've done that since October and God has really opened my eyes to the world of wisdom. I have learned a lot just by reading Proverbs. Through Proverbs, God began to teach me and show me what a man of wisdom looks like. He began to teach me that a man of wisdom will control his emotions and reactions. He will control his tongue, to the best of his ability. He will choose his friends wisely. He will oversee his fiances well. He will avoid sexual immorality. He will accept and welcome advice. He will be generous. He will be humble. And He will have integrity.
I want to become wise. I want to be like the man I just described. And that's why I've been pursuing wisdom. In the beginning of November, I approached the operator of my Chick-fil-A and told him I was interested in becoming a Team Leader. A Team Leader is the right-hand man of the managers. The Team Leaders assist and oversee the Team Members in their duties, and aid the managers in any way possible. They are in positions of leadership and represent the operator and Chick-fil-A while on and off the clock. I believed that becoming a Team Leader was the next step for me. So my operator started me on the process to see if he thought I would make a good leader. I should note that he wasn't guaranteeing me the position; as I said, he put me on a process to see if I would make a good leader. One of the things he did was to give me several of his favorite books on leadership, the very same books I have mentioned repeatedly in my blog posts, such as The Secret and The Servant.
Of all the books, The Servant by James Hunter impacted me the most. I really can't even begin to talk about how much Hunter's take on servant leadership has changed how I look at leadership. It was from his book that I've based my recent series on agape love and the qualities of a servant leader. The Servant changed my life and how I looked at leadership.
In my pursuit of becoming a Team Leader, I think I found the wisdom I was looking for. I found something that changed my life. It changed how I wanted to lead and how I wanted to treat people. It's changed how I look at my relationships with family and friends. It's affected my life on so many levels. And that's why I've been passing it on to you. If it has changed my life, it can change yours. And I hope it has been.
Like I mentioned, this all started when I began to pursue wisdom so that I could match wisdom with romance. And now that I feel like I'm getting a good grasp on this wisdom, I can't help but wonder if maybe romance isn't far away. I'm really excited about what God's done in my heart and at my job, and I'm a different person than I was four months ago. I'm really excited about my future. And I'm also excited and anticipating romance. I'm such a hopeless romantic and get goosebumps just thinking about my future wife. But I don't want to idolize romance or depend on it. I'm content with being single. I don't know that I could be content with being single for my whole life, but for now, I am. I want to be in love with a young woman, but even more, I want to stay in love with God. I don't want romance until I've assured myself that it won't be a distraction from God.
As we look at romance from a Godly perspective in the next few weeks, I want to keep using the "love is a verb" definition. Even in romance, true love is the same as agape love. You aren't really in love if you don't unconditionally love the other person. If you really want to be in love, if you really want to love and be loved, then you need to be patient, kind, humble, respectful, selfless, honest, forgiving, and committed. You need to be a servant leader in your romantic relationship. Otherwise, you're just a selfish lover.
Join with me in the next few weeks as we look at romance from a Godly perspective!