Problems and Challenges as Refining Tools.
Joseph, a youngster who God chose to be a leader. At age 13, he was young and naive believing that all brethren are truly brethren who will have his interest at heart.
He never envisaged that he would be envied, hated and even wished evil just because he had a dream that he didn’t fabricate by himself. He wasn’t aware of the part of the scriptures that says-“the heart of a man is desperately wicked”.
As a result of his naivety and his ignorance about how wicked the heart of a man is, he told his brethren about his dazzling dreams and it earned him a well-orchestrated sale into the land of Egypt.
That was how his challenges began.
His journey into slavery began in Potiphar’s house where the favour of God was upon him. However, right there, he was persecuted for his morally upright depositions by his master’s wife, and this landed him in prison.
These were the ”Ps” in Joseph’s life, that acted as refining tools to his ultimate success.
It began with the Pit, to Potiphar’s house, and then into the Prison. He spent 17 years in the refining oven before he came out tough, trained, refined and better placed to lead the most powerful country on the planet at that time.
Nelson Mandela’s Refining Process
Nelson Mandela was born in 1918 in Umtata, South Africa in what is now Eastern Cape Province.
He was a South African activist, winner of the 1993 Nobel Peace Prize, and the first black president of South Africa (1994-1999). Mandela attended the University Of Fort Hare in Alice where he became involved in the political struggle against the racial discrimination practised in South Africa.
He was expelled in 1940 for participating in a student demonstration.
By the late 1950s, Mandela with Oliver Tambo and others, moved the (African National Congress) ANC in a more militant direction against the increasingly discriminatory policies of the government. He was charged with treason in 1956 because of the ANC’s increased activity, particularly in the Defiance Campaign, but he was acquitted after a five-year trial.
Mandela helped to establish the ANC’s military wing in December 1961. He was named it’s commander-in-chief and went to Algeria for military training. Back in South Africa, he was arrested in August 1962 and sentenced to five years in prison for incitement and for leaving the country illegally
However, while Mandela was in prison, ANC colleagues who had been operating in hiding were arrested at Rivonia, outside of Johannesburg. Mandela was put on trial with them for sabotage, treason, and violent conspiracy. He was found guilty and sentenced to life imprisonment in June 1964. For the next 18 years, he was imprisoned and held under harsh conditions with other political prisoners. Despite the maximum security of the Robben Island prison, Mandela and other leaders were able to keep in contact with the anti-apartheid movement covertly.
The Refining Results
Mandela eventually became the President of South Africa after all his trials and travails. These trials and travails refined him and made him better placed to hold the highest office with an exceptional performance during his tenure.
Dear friends, problems and challenges are inevitable, in fact, they are wired to be part of life. God has made these challenges refining tools to bring out the best in us. Most great leaders went through the bitter experience in life that made them exceptional in there field. Challenges in life refined and taught them deep lessons that made them who they were.
Have you noticed why some leaders fail gallantly? They fail because they were not rocked and pillowed in hardships and tough times-thus making them unfit to hold positions of relevance.
Dear reader, do well to embrace whichever pain or challenges that come your way, on your path to greatness. Learn lessons from these challenges or problems, adopt the lessons, utilize the lessons, and make it a truly refining process to achieving that greatness you so desire!