The Midwest is known for its flat lands with hardly any trees in sight. So when I moved to the South I was in awe of how many trees lined the landscapes. You could not turn from one side to the other without seeing trees!
When a tree has a strong root system, the deep roots provide nourishment and allow it to survive heat, wind, and storms. It will even stay green, exhibiting life and vitality because of the strong root system that provides the moisture and nutrients it needs from deep within the ground. In contrast, the trees that grow in clusters often have their roots close to the surface; their trunks are thin as they compete for vital nutrients. They are often the first to fall in a storm.
Intentional leaders will never know their strength as a leader until they have weathered the storms. They will never know what they are made of and how far their roots go down until adversity strikes and they are put through the test. How are you when the unexpected happens? When someone attacks your character? When you have lost what is most important to you? How do you respond? How we react is based on how strong our foundation is. How we respond reflects the very character of who we are.
Character comes in being rooted firmly in who you are and knowing what you can and cannot do. If it is your integrity that has been attacked, are you quick to set the record straight or can you rest, knowing that truth is all that matters? If the unexpected happens, do you accept it with grace, knowing that God is in control or do you fall apart?
Maybe you haven’t thought about the foundation of your life, because you have never had to. Living as an intentional leader means living everyday using all that has been given to us to the fullest. It means thinking ahead. It means being ready for the storms. It means being strong. It means knowing who you are. It is living everyday a life of intention, a life that makes a difference.
Build a strong foundation and withstand the storms of life.