You’ve seen them. You’ve been them. You may be one now. Everyone of us has seen someone right out of college with all the energy, a fresh degree, and a head-full of untapped knowledge who is anxious to gain success as fast as he/she can.
We watch them pitch their ideas, confront the status quo, and question every philosophy. In doing so, they are looking to assert themselves and hopefully gain the influence of their peer’s and eventually become a successful leader.
In 1 Kings, we see the story of a young King, probably right out of King college, trying to make an impression in the business world of his day. And like all aspiring, young professionals, he wants to gain the respect of his peers and followers as fast as he can.
When approached by the people he was to lead, the request was made to lighten the work load of they carried. The young King Rehoboam calls in his father’s advisers, who helped successfully advise his dad during his reign. They give the young entrepreneur advice for the fast-track to success.
1 Kings 13
4 “Your father put a heavy yoke on us, but now lighten the harsh labor and the heavy yoke he put on us, and we will serve you.”
5 Rehoboam answered, “Go away for three days and then come back to me.” So the people went away.
6 Then King Rehoboam consulted the elders who had served his father Solomon during his lifetime. “How would you advise me to answer these people?” he asked.
7 They replied, “If today you will be a servant to these people and serve them and give them a favorable answer, they will always be your servants.”
8 But Rehoboam rejected the advice the elders gave him and consulted the young men who had grown up with him and were serving him.
Unfortunately, the young King, listened to his young, out-of-kingdom-college friends what they thought best and rejected the wise counsel of the aged advisers. This prideful move led to a rebellion against the kings house that lasted for a long time.
The wise old sages gave the young King the secret to get on the fast-track to success. It was to serve those he led.
When we serve those we want to lead by doing something that is not expected or deserved, we influence their life which builds our credibility and trust. When our credibility and trust are high with people, they will follow.
They will follow your crazy young ideas. They will buy into the vision that will cost them money and time. They will follow you into uncharted territory.
But you first must serve them.