Go Ye Therefore


The Law of Navigation Part 3

Solomon Commits to Excellence-2 Chronicles 2:1-6:42

Solomon saw to it that excellence controlled both the design and construction of the temple. He committed himself to excellence every step of the way, including hidden areas. If you were to ask him, “Why bother with the details of an area that no one would ever see? Who would know whether it was done right or not?” he would respond, “I would know and God would know.”

Leaders who model a commitment to excellence reap great rewards, and their people tend to emulate that same concern. Look at how Solomon’s commitment to excellence shows up:

Chapter Subject Commitment to Excellence


Preparation of temple He offers sacrifices daily consecrating the work.


Design and dimensions He specifies exact sizes and decorations in rooms.


Furnishings He furnishes it with extravagant accessories.


The ark He takes great care transporting the ark.


The dedication He models godly motives for building a temple.

Nehemiah: Leader Charts Course-Nehemiah 1:1-3:32

Leaders who navigate do even more than control the direction in which they and their people travel. They see the whole trip in their minds before they leave the dock. They have a vision for their destination, they understand what it will take to get there, they know who they’ll need on the team to be successful, and they recognize the obstacles long before they appear on the horizon.

Sometimes it’s difficult balancing optimism and realism, intuition and planning, faith and fact. But that’s what it takes to be effective as a navigating leader.

Above everything else, the secret to the Law of Navigation is preparation. When you prepare well, you convey confidence and trust to the people. It’s not the size of the project that determines its acceptance, support, and success. It’s the size of the leader. Leaders who are good navigators are capable of taking their people just about anywhere.

It seems remarkable, but Nehemiah could see both the problem and the solution even though he had never visited Jerusalem. That’s an incredible characteristic of all great leaders:  They have uncommon vision. And that’s why they can navigate groups of people.

A leader sees . . .

  • Farther than others see. Nehemiah was able to see the problem even though he lived hundreds of miles away from Jerusalem. And he could picture the solution in his head.
  • More than others see. Nehemiah knew that the wall could and should be rebuilt, and he knew what it would take to do it. Before he left Shushan, he asked the king to provide him with letters allowing him to gather materials and granting him safe passage to Judah.
  • Before others see. None of Jerusalem’s neighbors wanted to see the Jews rebuild their wall, and several enemy leaders conspired against Nehemiah and the people. But Nehemiah saw the danger and planned accordingly; he refused to give in to enemy plots. And when the people sensed danger, he formulated strategies to defend the city and keep the people working at the same time.

The Jews needed only 52 days to rebuild a city wall that had lain in ruins for more than 120 years. And they were able to do it because they had a great leader to navigate for them.

Nehemiah knew his purpose, made his plans, and led the people through the process. His is truly one of the most remarkable stories of leadership ever recorded.

Join me next time for The Law of Navigation Part 4.