Posted 6/19/13 at 4:17 PM | Eddie Williams
The Bible has a lot to offer us in regards to leadership. Old book or not, the Bible has much to say about leaders and leading people on a mission towards a vision. Even though the Bible is the authoritative, inerrant word of God, it can also be very simple and practical for our everyday lives. The book of Nehemiah in particular is very helpful in practical ways for leadership.
Here are three big lessons God teaches us through the man Nehemiah and his experiences.
1. Have a deep burden for your calling
Nehemiah was deeply burdened for Jerusalem. He knew his city had been destroyed, but once he heard a few more details of the destruction, he sat down and mourned over it (Neh. 1:4). He also fasted and prayed to God over what he had heard and what he should do about it (Neh. 1:5). After that, he asks God to forgive Israel for its sins and to restore the city.
Are we passionate for our mission? Are we passionate for our goals? In order to see God’s calling through to the end, we must long for our calling to be fulfilled. So many of us are lukewarm followers of Christ’s call. Our deepest desires are to follow God, but sometimes our heart just isn’t in it. We must keep our motivations ignited so that we may glorify God and finish our calling. FULL POST
Posted 6/18/13 at 8:24 PM | Eddie Williams |
I cannot tell you how many times that, in the midst of struggle, i have been tempted to quit moving forward with something I knew God wanted for me. The temptation to quit is great. Quitting is so easy. Instead of dealing with disgruntled people or problems, one can simply walk away and live differently from that point forward.
But is that what God wants for us? Does he want us to quit when things get tough? Does he want us to walk away from his mission, leaving him to change his plans? More importantly, does God even want us to be care free, and live problem-free lives? I’d have to say the answer is no.
God knows that following him would be tough. He knows that fighting the good fight is hard. That is why we must push forward with our calling. it is supposed to be difficult FULL POST
Posted 6/18/13 at 1:28 PM | Eddie Williams |
Kanye West calls himself a god in his new song, “I am a God”, on his album “Yeezus”. In case you aren’t as sharp as Kanye, Yeezus is a play on words combining his name and Jesus’ name. On the album Kanye lifts himself up as a god saying that if Jesus is the most high then, he is the “close high”. The album released today which causes me to wonder a few things about music’s recent commandeering of religious imagery. Is God angry with the bastardizing of His name and all of the imagery that comes with it, or is all of this, like many believe, all harmless word play by clever artists just trying to make a buck?
First and foremost, This hijacking of God’s name is not new. Rapper Jay-z has been going by the name Hova for years. Hova is a play on words with one of God’s names, Jehovah and the name Jay-Z (Jay-hova). Many rappers have long seen themselves as Gods among men. Rapper Meek Mill released a hit song entitled, “Amen”. In the song the rapper says “Amen” because of all of the beautiful women he has slept with. Another rapper, Pusha T, released a song proclaiming that he believes there is a god above him, but that he is just the god of everything else. Many rappers parade around with incredible amounts of Jewelry on, rapping about sex, money, drugs and murder, but around their neck is the symbol of a cross or a picture of Jesus face. Look no further than Rick Ross’ album ironically titled, “God forgives, I don’t”. FULL POST
Posted 6/10/13 at 12:10 PM | Eddie Williams |
I am frequently asked what would happen if a NFL player comes out as homosexual. Many people around the sports world are wondering the answer to this question, mainly because the NFL is a hyper-masculine, manly culture. The general consensus views the league as the final frontier for homosexuality, and many players have agreed that locker rooms are simply too hard-nosed to allow for a gay athlete.
As we have seen, the baskteball locker room has by some accounts been effected homosexuality, with Jason Collins and now, Britney Griner. However, at the college level, homosexuality is not that new. Basketball at the collegiate level has long been changed by gay athletes. Homosexuality is laid deep into the culture of women's college basketball. At my college, nearly half of our basketball team were practicing homosexuals, and i know of many other colleges that are the same. But the football locker room seems, at least on the surface, different that the rest. It is a smash mouth, hardcore sport that includes violent, bone rattling hits. FULL POST
Posted 6/10/13 at 11:07 AM | Eddie Williams
Leading people is not so cut and dry. Many step up to the challenge of leadership, only to back out after testing the waters. The myth is that if you get the title of leader and are put in a leadership role, you will simply lead people and everyone will like you for it. Unfortunately, the body count is high when it comes to failed leaders. Nevertheless, we need leaders now more than ever; to lead our homes, businesses, ministries and our country. Reggie McNeal, in his book Present Future, notes that “leadership is in high demand, but short supply”. Not that we have a short supply of people who want to be leaders, but we have a short supply of people who actually can lead effectively.
In fact, we have quite a surplus of those who want to be leaders. But can they actually lead, or will they simply add to the body count of burned out, non-influential and angry failed leaders? Here are a few types of people who just can’t get leading figured out:
1. The Entitled one
This is the person who feels that they deserve to be in leadership for whatever reason. Maybe they had worked in a ministry or business before and feel they have a lot of experience. Perhaps they have a current role that they are unhappy with, so they complain and undermine until they are offered a higher position. Unfortunately, no one respects them as a leader. No one has seen them lead anyone effectively. Their current team underneath them is fractured or unhealthy due to their leadership, yet they want to move up in the ranks without any leverage or cause. Often times they will use their life experience as leverage, forgetting that experience does not equal maturity. This person forgets that leadership is about influence and not about position or title. The current leadership over this person should discuss humility with this person, seek that they repent of their pride, and teach them how to effectively influence as a real leader. FULL POST
Posted 5/31/13 at 10:57 AM | Eddie Williams
Recently I had the chance speak on big pressing issues in our culture today, namely Homosexuality and the Jason Collins Situation. After the story of Jason unfolded, Mad dog radio's Dino Costa called me up and asked to come on the show after I voiced my thoughts via social media.
I was a bit skeptical to go on at first, only because i wasn't sure if I would get hammered and labeled a bigot like I did on social media. Ultimately I decided to go on the show because it was a great opportunity for some of the 23 million subscribers to hear about Jesus.
My hope was not to change the minds of the whole culture about any one issue, but instead, my hope is that God softened at least one heart that was listening and made it ripe for His Gospel. Enjoy the interview, and please let me know what you think.
Eddie Williams(Twitter: @realewilliams) is a Christian, a husband and a father, and public speaker, he also leads a ministry as a pastor, called REACH, a young adults ministry at his home church. The 5 year NFL veteran (Cleveland Browns, Seattle, Seahawks) speaks weekly at the ministry and has spoken across the U.S. at high schools, colleges, conferences and ministries about a vairety of topics, including leadership, health and faith. Eddie has been a part of numerous programs for youth, including NFL Play60. He has also given back to the community at organizations like the Cleveland Foodbank, Feed My Starving Children and Veterans hospitals.He has also been featured on SiriusXM radio and ESPN Outside the Lines. For more on Eddie, visit: Eddiejwilliams.me
Posted 5/29/13 at 10:08 AM | Eddie Williams |
“Who is the next Billy Graham?”
Isn’t that a question we have all heard at one point or another?
Where is the guy that will rise from the ranks to shoulder an entire era of Christianity? We have been waiting a few decades and so far, we haven’t seen anyone like him. Where is the charismatic, dynamic leader who can set the country ablaze and help usher evangelicalism back to forefront of the United States?
The reason we haven’t seen the next Graham isn’t that there aren’t any worthy candidates. There are many brilliant men who have shown the charisma, personality and evangelistic gifting capable of leading a resurgence (although we can agree Billy Graham was unusually gifted and anointed). Rather, a major reason we have not seen a revival is that the team or tribe of “Evangelicalism” has become far too divided to support one leader to lead us all.
We see this everywhere, from Christian media and conferences, to our local church. We as evangelicals are dividing like mitosis, creating separate teams that are quickly becoming oppositional towards one another. The interesting part is that these teams are dividing for issues that are really secondary, contested issues in scripture, like method of church service, type of worship, method of baptism and women pastors. The Bible isn’t explicit in it’s instruction of any of these secondary issues, yet we have divided with animosity over them. Now, we have always had denominations of Christianity that have done church the way they see it in scripture. But, never before have our denominations and networks become this separated in nature. FULL POST
Posted 5/21/13 at 11:44 AM | Eddie Williams |
We’ve all seen the recent developments in our day that just don’t align with the way things used to be. The statistics used to be that more than half of our country consisted of followers of Christ. There used to be a time when we could freely speak about prayer, Jesus or sin without much criticism or debate. Before, in the 70’s, 80’s and even 90’s, the Christian seemed to be the majority. Mega Churches, national days of prayer and para-church organizations led the way, but now we have seen a radical shift in that culture. The United States lived up to the moniker of the “Last Christian nation” back then, but as we can see, we are seeing a great shift into something increasingly more un Christian.
STATE OF THE CULTURE AND IT’S RAPID SHIFT
In this century, church is dying. Less people are going to church now than ever before. More importantly, less people understand and agree with the foundations of scripture and who Jesus is. Young people especially have completely abandoned traditional biblical principles in favor of the new ‘tolerance culture’. This new culture is a pluralistic, therapeutic one that says everything, no matter what, is tolerated and accepted by all, with one exception, Christianity. John Dickerson writes in his book The Great Evangelical recession, that culture is shifting faster than it ever has. If we look back to the 70’s or 80’s or even early 2000’s we will see the most rapid cultural shift our nation has ever seen. In the last 15-20 years, culture has shifted more than it had in the previous 100 years. FULL POST
Posted 5/14/13 at 11:30 AM | Eddie Williams |
“Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.
-Matthew 7:13-14 (ESV)
As a Christian, one could get very discouraged in light of all of the recent social issues that have hit the news wire. Abortion is the normative as it ever has been, divorce is seemingly at an all time high and things like pride, slander and sexual sin are absolutely rampant. What's worse is not the fact that these acts are happening, but it is the wide spread tolerance and acceptance of these issues. Abortion's approval rating is near 50% in the US, divorce has just surpassed the 50% mark itself and adultery and homosexuality is widely become normative; if you want proof, turn on the television. You can see the overwhelming support from 'people of faith' for sexual perversion, and the media blackout given to the Gosnell abortion doctor trial. What has happened to the planet one might ask? I find reason to be encouraged even in dark times like these: FULL POST
Posted 5/7/13 at 12:09 PM | Eddie Williams |
As the news broke about Jason Collins this past week and his recent decision to come out of the closet as homosexual, I sat and watched the news. Nearly every media outlet covered it, from ABC, to HLN, to ESPN. His unveiling of his homosexuality did not surprise me. I always believed sports would be one of the last places to become openly homosexual; I believe we are at that point in society now. As I continued to watch television I began to see the overwhelming support for Jason from the media and from public figures on social media. That too did not surprise me.
What did surprise me was the support for Jason’s homosexuality from self-proclaimed followers of Jesus.
The acceptance of every lifestyle has become normative in our society. I hear it said all the time, “whatever is good for you is good for you, and what is good for me is good for me.” There is this pithy pluralistic tolerance in our day that seeks to accept anything and everything no matter ones faith or belief. FULL POST