There are so many leadership lessons in the Bible. In Chapter 13 of II Kings, at the end of Prophet Elisha’s life, King Joash came to him fearing for his country and his army because of their enemy Syria. Let’s pick up at verse 14 through verse 19.
“When Elisha was in his last illness, King Joash visited him and wept over him. ‘My father! My Friend! You are the strength of Israel.’
“Elisha told him, ‘Get a bow and some arrows.’ And he did. ‘Open that Eastern window,’ he instructed. Then he told the king to put his hand upon the bow, and Elisha laid his own hands upon the king’s hands.
“’Shoot’ Elisha commanded, and he did.
“Then Elisha Proclaimed, ‘This is the Lord’s arrow, full of victory over Syria: for you will completely conquer the Syrians Aphek. Now pick up the other arrows and strike them against the floors.’
“So the king picked them up and struck the floor three times. But the prophet was angry with him.
‘You should have struck the floor five or six times.’ He exclaimed, ‘For then you would have beaten Syria until they were entirely destroyed. Now you will be victorious only three times.’”
What is the lesson here? What has this got to do with your leadership skills? Let’s examine this scenario. Why did Elisha ask the King to strike the arrows on the floor? Why did Elisha become angry with King Joash when he struck the floor only three times?
When King Joash beat the arrow only three times, Elisha was discerning enough to know that Joash was lacking in the passion he needed to be an effective King and leader. Joash acted more in fear of his problem rather than in the faith for his mission (career) in life. He was King physically but had not developed the passion inwardly to overcome the daily challenges that were required of him as King and leader. His lack of passion marred his vision for Israel. His lack of passion hampered his ability to make decisions. That’s why he came to Elisha for advice. His lack of passion was an obstacle in the way to victory. Passion produces victory.
Joash had not developed passion for the kingship duties. He became complacent and passive. Therefore the blessing of victory that God had promised could only be manifested in direct proportion to the passion he exerted in his leadership. Elisha was able to prophesy the future of Israel by measuring the amount of passion of its leader, because Elisha knew passion produces results. The amount of passion (enthusiasm, zeal, fervor, excitement) you have developed is directly related to the degree of your success.
If Elisha were to measure your passion, could you predict your future success?