Go Ye Therefore

Leadership Qualities: Discernment Part 1

Balaam Didn’t Get It-Numbers 22:21-35 (negative)

Balaam lacked both discernment and intuition about what was happening around him. Note the following observations about Balaam’s error:

  1. Balaam angered God because he disobeyed what he knew to be right.
  2. It took the Angel of the Lord standing in the way to stop Balaam.
  3. The seer could not discern the Angel’s blockade.
  4. Balaam’s own agenda so consumed him that he whipped his donkey for responding to the Angel.
  5. God enabled the donkey to speak when Balaam still didn’t perceive his danger.
  6. The donkey discerned more than Balaam and interpreted reality for him.
  7. It took a divine miracle for Balaam’s eyes to be opened.

No leader can long enjoy success without developing a healthy sense of discernment. Unfortunately, many leaders today suffer exactly this plight. Many factors conspire to keep us from discerning the needs of the moment. Consider some common factors:

  1. An unrelenting schedule leaves no room for listening.
  2. An important agenda fosters a stubborn heart rather than a sensitive one.
  3. A type-A temperament makes it difficult to slow down and discern.
  4. A strong task orientation leaves little time for people or spontaneity.
  5. We desire to solve spiritual and emotional problems with external answers.

Do you want to hone your leadership skills? Then make it a priority to pray for greater discernment. Listen for and interpret the root causes of the challenges you face. Consider your gut reaction to others, but also tap your mind. Discernment takes both godly intuition and intellect.

Join me next time for Leadership Qualities: Discernment Part 2