Bottom of the 9th - Loyalty
Loyalty - Block 4, John Wooden's Pyramid of Success
by Keith Wahl
The second of the "people blocks" serving as the foundation of the Pyramid of Success is Loyalty. In his book,
Born to Win
, Zig Ziglar says the following about Loyalty:
The final foundation stone is loyalty, and unfortunately it is in short supply these days. Loyalty is one of the characteristics of great leaders, and the reason we have a short supply of inspiring leaders is because we have a short supply of people who have learned to be loyal. People who are loyal are loyal to the commitments they make, and they keep their promises. They are loyal to the principles they embrace, and they are loyal to the people in their lives. A person who is loyal does not talk behind the backs of those he follows, and a loyal person sincerely wishes the best for others. In one sense, loyalty is an expression of love, because it requires some selflessness.
Few people have become great leaders without first learning how to be loyal. If a person holds a position of leadership and responsibility, his effectiveness will be directly related to how well he learned in his formative years to follow others and to be loyal to them. A person without loyalty will not follow others and is incapable of being an effective leader.
Both Wooden and Ziglar paint pictures of perfect loyalty. As a human being, I find this challenging, especially when considering the "rock" of the church, Peter.
In the Gospel according to Luke, chapter 22, Peter says the following in reference to Jesus:
"Woman, I do not know him." (verse 57)
"Man I am not (one of Christ's disciples)." (verse 58)
"Man, I do not know what you are talking about." (verse 60)
Loyalty isn't a perfectly paved path - it is a road littered with potholes set by the enemy, foliage blocking the way that must be pruned, and rivers of the living water of grace that must be poured out constantly. I guess I find myself to be more like Peter was towards Christ in the area of loyalty. It's a daily battle and it feels like I fail more often than I succeed.
If Christ still chose to build the church on this man who denied Him, I take great comfort in a Christian community that will offer grace to one another in the area of loyalty.
If you have denied a friend, a fellow leader, or someone you once respected, I encourage you to reconnect with that person. Relive the scene of Peter enthusiastically jumping into the sea when he saw his risen Savior. Rekindle the loyalty in your life today.
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