A Great Leader
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It is said that William Gladstone and Benjamin Disraeli were great leaders, but intense rivals. Gladstone was the leader of the Liberal Party and considered by many to personify the best qualities of Victorian England. He was a career public servant, a great orator, a master of finance and a staunch moral man. He was elected Prime Minister of Great Britain on four occasions, the only person in history to achieve that honour. Under his leadership, Great Britain established a national education system, instituted parliament reform and saw the vote finally to a great number of working class people.
Disraeli, who served twice as Prime Minister, came from a very different kind of background. He entered politics in his mid-thirties and built a reputation as a diplomat and social reformer. His greatest accomplishment was masterminding Britain's purchase of the Suez Canal, but what really separated these two great men was their different approach to people.
The difference between the two men can best be illustrated in a story told by a young woman who dined with each of the two rival statesmen on consecutive nights. When asked for her impressions of the two men she said, "When I left the dining table after sitting next to Mr Gladstone, I thought he was the cleverest man in England, but after sitting next to Mr Disraeli, I left feeling that I was the cleverest woman in England."
There's an important lesson here, in that good leaders win the confidence, trust and friendship of the people they lead. Christ was such a leader and his disciples were willing to suffer torture and death in following his example and teachings.
Christ said, "You are my friends if you do what I command you.
No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing."
Published Sat 26th Jan 2019 23:45:20
Last Modified on Sun 27th Jan 2019 00:07:35