Everything rises and falls on leadership

166683-John-C-Maxwell-Quote-Everything-rises-and-falls-on-leadershipIn one of John C. Maxwell’s books, he  mentions that ” everything rises and falls on leadership”. The first time I read this quote I did not quite agree, I thought that surely people have a role and they cannot be left off the hook and we give the full responsibility to the leader. John C. Maxwell further says ” Leadership is influence”, this is when it suck in and I agreed with him that indeed leaders have the influence and authority to determine the direction of their people and subsequently their communities.

For the past months, I was spending time in 1st and 2nd Kings in the old testament for my morning devotions. I like to keep inter changing the testaments so that when a the book in the old testament the next should be from the new testament book and back so that I keep in perspective of the message of the gospel. However when I finished 1st Kings, I realized that 2nd Kings was in a way connected to 1st Kings so I needed to start on it so as not to lose the flow.

For the first time I learned that the Kingdom was divided into Israel and Judah. I imagined how years later these two would be enemies forgetting that they are brothers. I think this is how the world behaves when we focus on our differences and highlight them instead of celebrating life with one another because we are all human beings. We forget and start thinking one tribe is better than the other, and therefore choose to relate and favor one against the other, the same for race or gender  forgetting that essentially we are all; Spirit, Soul and body.

Two insights that I gleaned from these two books;

  1. Everything rises and falls on leadership. The Kings had influence on the people and could determine which direction the community took. The bible kept mentioning how some Kings did everything evil in Gods eyes and led people to worship at the high places whereas other times a King would do right in the eyes of God, destroy the high places and lead people to worship God. If a King was hard working with wisdom, he created wealth for the Kingdom only for the next King to squander it. One King would choose ‘his wars’ carefully using wisdom to create alliances and listening from God through the prophets whereas another would not. Whatever the decision of a King, it affected the people directly. Your leader matters because they make ‘life and death’ decisions on your behalf.


  1. God is committed to His people and it is never His wish that any should perish. We see this in 2 Pet 3:9 “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance” NKJV. This truth keeps coming out as he pleads with Israel to leave the high places and stop worshiping gods that are nonexistent and causing pain to them, practicing rituals like passing their children through the fire. Why would a god who loves you ask you to burn your children? In all this God keeps hope alive and keeps inviting them to himself through the prophets to choose life. He still does this today, inviting us to choose life, because what the world offers is fleeting and leads to destruction.  He invites us today in John 10:10 “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill and to destroy. I have come that they many have life, and that they may have it more abundantly”.  NKJV

Have you read 1st and 2nd Kings before? What insights jumped off the pages for you? Please share in the commend box.


Day 18 of 25 Days Exploring the Pearl of Africa – Uganda

This was one of the best days on our birding trip because we were birding the beautiful Royal mile in Budongo forest which has a part inside Murchison falls national park called Kaniyo Pabidi and the part outside which we were visiting known as Royal mile. There is also a section known as Busingiro sector but we did not visit this section on this trip.

We spent the night in Masindi town which is over an hour away from the Royal mile section of Budongo forest. It is some drive on a dirt road but very active for birders. We must have spent about 2 hours on a stretch that should take about 40 minutes because of the various bird species we found on the way. We arrived at the gate of the royal mile about 8.30 am and prepared to start birding immediately. We were mainly birding along the ‘road’ and rarely on the footpaths off the road.

The royal mile in Budongo forest is one of the best places to bird in the forest in Uganda. There is generally good light which allows you to easily view the birds and photograph them. The birds are also generally on the ground or in the lower branches of the trees and not the high up canopies (some are but not too many) like while birding in many forest destinations. The bird species that were the highlight for the day were; Chocolate backed Kingfisher and African Dwarf Kingfisher, Nahan’s Francolin, Narina Trogon, Yellow billed barbet, African Moustached Warbler, Yellow-throated Greenbul, Yellow-mantled Widow bird, and Purple Starling.

We had a picnic lunch in the beautiful forest and soon started to bird. No sooner had we started to bird than it started raining, even though this is something to expect when in a tropical forest in Uganda, we were a bit frustrated because we had geared up for a full day birding. We returned to the lodge in preparation for the day tomorrow to Murchison falls national park through the Rift valley escarpment with views of Lake Albert. We climaxed the day with local food at Kolping Masindi which was an experience.

Growing from ‘last minute’ actions



I am an adrenaline junkie and this partly contributes to why I do things last minute when the deadline is knocking. I have talked myself out of this habit but I am yet to succeed. I know it contributes negatively to my output sometimes but somehow I find myself back at it whenever I have a task. Some days I have felt so helpless and almost resigned to my fate but  I know that growth requires me to keep on and not give up concerning an area I am convinced I need to improve. I must say that going forward I will pick up again and work towards planning and accomplishing tasks without waiting for the deadline.

Take for example assignments, I can have them for as long as a month but I will still keep pushing them aside until it’s the last day. One given Friday, the electricity was off for most of the day and night ( who makes these decisions at UMEME) and I needed to finish reading a book and a write a report on my reading before midnight. You should have seen me reading the book using the torch from my phone. This lasted up to about 11pm and later start the process of writing the report . Thankful that the computer had enough battery which allowed me work. Once the writing was complete and ready, the internet connections was playing hind and seek with me. It was difficult to attach the documents to the email. Thankfully eventually they attached and I was able to send a few minutes after midnight. The voice inside me (God) inquired why I do not consider doing all this much earlier to avoid the hassle.

And yet it is not only in tasks at work or school but even concerning travel. I usually know weeks prior to my travels and I wait until the night or morning before the trip to do the packing. This is disorganizing because I tend to forget some items which I need on these travels. It’s in times like these that I remember the advice from my dad while growing up. He suggested to me to consider packing my luggage at least one week before the travel ( this was especially in relations to school) because that way when I forget an item I am able to include it before the travel date. He even suggested that I consider making a list of the items I must pack.

Today while thinking about this I almost quickly acknowledged my weakness and accepted it as me but then I remembered that if this is not helping me be effective then I need to drop it and find ways  of growing. In life if we hope to grow, we cannot allow certain areas of our being to go unchallenged but rather engage with them and come up with plans to improve them. I look forward to operate from the ‘not urgent but important’ quadrant as opposed to the ‘urgent and important’ quadrant which is draining. Which areas in your life which areas do you recognize need growth? What are you doing about it? Or are you justifying their existence instead of improving them?

‘My take home’ from Proverbs 18


1A man who isolates himself seeks his own desire;
He rages against all wise judgment.

A fool has no delight in understanding,
But in expressing his own heart.

When the wicked comes, contempt comes also;
And with dishonor comes reproach.

The words of a man’s mouth are deep waters;
The wellspring of wisdom is a flowing brook.

It is not good to show partiality to the wicked,
Or to overthrow the righteous in judgment.

A fool’s lips enter into contention,
And his mouth calls for blows.
A fool’s mouth is his destruction,
And his lips are the snare of his soul.
The words of a talebearer are like tasty trifles,[a]
And they go down into the inmost body.

He who is slothful in his work
Is a brother to him who is a great destroyer.

10 The name of the Lord is a strong tower;
The righteous run to it and are safe.
11 The rich man’s wealth is his strong city,
And like a high wall in his own esteem.

12 Before destruction the heart of a man is haughty,
And before honor is humility.

13 He who answers a matter before he hears it,
It is folly and shame to him.

14 The spirit of a man will sustain him in sickness,
But who can bear a broken spirit?

15 The heart of the prudent acquires knowledge,
And the ear of the wise seeks knowledge.

16 A man’s gift makes room for him,
And brings him before great men.

17 The first one to plead his cause seems right,
Until his neighbor comes and examines him.

18 Casting lots causes contentions to cease,
And keeps the mighty apart.

19 A brother offended is harder to win than a strong city,
And contentions are like the bars of a castle.

20 A man’s stomach shall be satisfied from the fruit of his mouth;
From the produce of his lips he shall be filled.

21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue,
And those who love it will eat its fruit.

22 He who finds a wife finds a good thing,
And obtains favor from the Lord.

23 The poor man uses entreaties,
But the rich answers roughly.

24 A man who has friends must himself be friendly,[b]
But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.

‘My take home’ from Proverbs 18 

Seek knowledge. I should keep learning and never feel that I have arrived because as long as I live there is something I can learn. Growth is a deliberate choice on my side, I have to spend my resources and read books, listen to great teachers, attend conferences etc. but whatever I do I have to keep on the journey of learning.

A combination of hard work and gifting. I have to work hard knowing that this is God’s way of blessing me. I should remember that work is not a curse as some view it, because God asked Adam to work the garden way before the curse. In addition to hard work is utilizing my gifts or talents because with no hard work the gift’s effect diminishes (think of it as practicing for the athlete or musician). God’s promise is that my gift will open doors for me. I have seen glimpse of this in my already.

I need to continuously find ways of keeping my spirit alive. I have been in a place where my spirit has been broken and it is not a good place. I felt stuck and was vulnerable to all the lies the enemy threw my way. So for me this is very crucial – I have to continuously ‘protect’ my spirit and keep it alive because it’s what keeps me alive. I know it is a catch 22 but well I must figure it out. The most consistent way to keep it alive is to keep in the truth of who I am and whose I am.

The tongue is life and death. Woooohhh, I think this is deeper than we can ever comprehend. This also contributes to a man’s spirit being alive or dead. I will keep proclaiming life in whatever situation I am in. It is difficult because it goes against the status quo but this here is about life and death, maybe if I view as ‘life and death’ I will be more deliberate in what I speak in/to my life and that of others.

And that folks were my highlights from my reading today. What are your highlights from Proverbs 18? Share and we learn together.