Most of us grew up in systems that called us out to be responsible. As young people, we were responsible for putting toys away, taking out the garbage, mowing the lawn, getting our homework done, putting gas in the car. We’ve been given responsibility at an early age but somewhere along the way…our need or want of responsibility changes into a need or want of title.
That’s why I’m intrigued with David. David was called and set apart in his teenage years to become King. After this powerful revelation of David’s title, what was David’s next step? David walked out the door and headed back to the fields to continue herding sheep. Imagine being told by the House and Senate one minute, “You are slotted to be the next president” and then the next, to find yourselfheading back to class, your cubicle or your coffee shop to finish your shift.
David’s first leadership assignment was self-appointed to go after Goliath, because his people didn’t know what to do or how to move forward. Leaders lead because there is a conviction to act. There is a cause worth fighting for. And when no one else is taking leadership, they are willing to risk their personal comfort and reputation to see it through to completion. David did that because he saw the opportunity and felt the burden to act. Real leaders don’t need to have a position to make a difference but a precept. And that precept is responsibility.
I love the story in 1 Samuel 23:1-5.
23 When David was told, “Look, the Philistines are fighting against Keilah and are looting the threshing floors,” 2 he inquired of the Lord, saying, “Shall I go and attack these Philistines?” The Lord answered him, “Go, attack the Philistines and save Keilah.” 3 But David’s men said to him, “Here in Judah we are afraid. How much more, then, if we go to Keilah against the Philistine forces!” 4 Once again David inquired of the Lord, and the Lord answered him, “Go down to Keilah, for I am going to give the Philistines into your hand.” 5 So David and his men went to Keilah, fought the Philistines and carried off their livestock. He inflicted heavy losses on the Philistines and saved the people of Keilah.
David saved a city, without any assigned position of leadership. Sure, he had been anointed to be king, but he wasn’t yet “sworn in” to office. He was a king in waiting. Sometimes the only way to demonstrate the authenticity of your title is to face the opportunities God gives you, that are right in front of you and to take the responsibility to act.
So you're in a position and you don't have a title. That doesn't mean your void of responsibility. Use your gifts and talents and wisdom to make a difference. Not only do you better the organization but you better yourself. If you were truly meant to be the leader in the place got his position you, then you should feel compelled to make a difference, align yourself with the cause or feel the conviction to make the right decision. Don't make a call to action dependent on what it says in your business card. Be moved by the conviction direction and vision of the organization of where God has called you to serve.
So don’t wait for the title to hand you the responsibilities but let your responsibilities earn you the title!