"Now King Solomon gave to the queen of Sheba all she desired, whatever she asked, much more than she had brought to the king. So she turned and went to her own country, she and her servants."---2 Chronicles 9:11-13(NKJV)
This one is a bit...odd (LOL). Maybe because Rosh Hashanah is upon us and I'm gearing up for a new year (9/28 sunset thru 9/29 sunset), yet as I was doing some other biblical research, the lead Scripture caught my eye: that even on a platonic level, when two members of royalty met, there was an exchange. Queen Sheba did not come empty handed and left with far more than she gave. And, if you read the story in its entirety, it wasn't just material things that she took back with her. She received a great dose of King Solomon's *wisdom* too.
SHE GREATLY BENEFITED FROM THE TIME SHE SPENT WITH HIM. *EVEN PLATONICALLY*.
Indeed. Being that a wife is to bring favor to her husband (Proverbs 18:22), being that the Word, which is Adonai (John 1:1), tells us that we are of a royal priesthood (I Peter 2:9), and being that King Solomon himself was inspired (2 Timothy 3:16-17) to pen that, "An excellent wife is the crown of her husband..." (Proverbs 12:4), why would it not be *completely rational* to believe that the Lord is using this as a time to have us in *queen class* as well as a covenant minister-in-training lessons?
And one thing that a queen is, in her own Adonai-led way, is...a leader.
Of course, all of us lead in different ways. That doesn't mean that everyone is to be a CEO of a corporation. And in a marital relationship, a (spiritual) queen *supports* the leadership role of a (spiritual) king. Yet, no matter where you are in your individual (Psalm 33:15) life journey, what being a "queen leader" *does mean* is that, in the spirit realm, a woman understands that as a daughter of the King of kings and Lord of lords, she understands the Word when it says that "and those who are with Him are called, chosen, and faithful.” (Revelation 17:14-NKJV) Called. Chosen. Faithful. To fulfill their purpose (Psalm 20:4).
She's knows that she is to be about QUEEN BUSINESS.
You know, a trigger word for me in this season is "honor". When you are honorable, you are honest, fair and you operate with integrity. I am in a completely focused mindset of giving and expecting that in my relationships, both personal and professional; of truly learning the *power of honor*. And as I thought more and more about the exchange between King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba, things started clicking. She didn't make it a point to just go see some...dude. She was about royal business.
It's funny. I was having a conversation with an older, married spiritual sistah of mine earlier today and I said, "I'm not about running into him. He needs to be running towards me." We were discussing something of a personal nature, but I'm sure you get the gist. A queen puts herself in a position where men don't just *happen upon her*. No, a *divine appointment* has to be made. Everything is done *on purpose* and *with purpose*. After all, we are made in the image of the Most High, to reflect his likeness (Genesis 1:26-28) and you can best believe that everything he does is *on purpose* and *with purpose*. Every. Single. Thing.
Every. Single. Time.
[Disclaimer: even and in some ways, especially, when the Woman was brought to Adam (Genesis 2:22), it was still by divine appointment. My running statement is not about being hunted down as prey by some man. My running statement is that "he" should be having a *purpose* for interacting with me. Or he's just not to be so much of a priority. Feel me? Cool. Moving forward...]
If this sends a spark somewhere within you, there are two books that I recommend. One is "The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership" by John C. Maxwell (and let me tell it, these are great marriage principles to apply as well). The 21 Laws are as follows:
1) The Law of the Lid: Leadership Ability Determines a Personal Level of Effectiveness
2) The Law of Influence: The True Measure of Leadership Is Influence---Nothing More, Nothing Less
3) The Law of Process: Leadership Develops Daily, Not in a Day
4) The Law of Navigation: Anyone Can Steer a Ship, but It Takes a Leader to Chart the Course
5) The Law of Addition: Leaders Add Value by Serving Others
6) The Law of Solid Ground: Trust Is the Foundation of Leadership
7) The Law of Respect: People Naturally Follow Leaders Stronger Than Themselves
8) The Law of Intuition: Leaders Evaluate Everything with a Leadership Bias
9) The Law of Magnetism: Who You Are Is Who You Attract
10) The Law of Connection: Leaders Touch a Heart Before They Ask for a Hand
11) The Law of the Inner Circle: A Leader's Potential Is Determined by Those Closest to Him
12) The Law of Empowerment: Only Secure Leaders Give Power to Others
13) The Law of the Picture: People Do What They See
14) The Law of Buy-In: People Buy Into the Leader; Then the Vision
15) The Law of Victory: Leaders Find a Way for the Team to Win
16) The Law of the Big MO: Momentum Is a Leader's Best Friend
17) The Law of Priorities: Leaders Understand That Activity Is Not Necessarily Accomplishment
18) The Law of Sacrifice: Leaders Must Give Up to Go Up
19) The Law of Timing: When to Lead Is As Important As What to Do and Where to Go
20) The Law of Explosive Growth: To Add Grow, Lead Followers---to Multiply, Lead Leaders
21) The Law of Legacy: A Leader's Lasting Value Is Measured By Succession
The other? "Choosing ME Before WE: Every Woman's Guide to Life and Love" by Christine Arylo. Now, this isn't a (eh hem) Lifeway book, but there are some real gems within it. Take this, for instance:
"My messed-up motivations drove me into an engagement that never should have happened. I was like a racehorse, focused on one goal---winning the race. The race and my goal were clear: to be married and beat all of my friends to the altar. After all, they had been dating for way less time, and, in my mind, their relationships were clearly flawed! Admitting defeat was not an option. Not getting married was an inconceivable option.
So I did what any obsessed, focused woman would do: I pushed my fiance' to propose. I dictated the day, the ring, even the store from which the ring had to be purchased. And on Christmas morning, he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. I accepted, even though I knew I was settling for less than I wanted. That fateful morning, I made a deal to sacrifice part of my soul for a diamond and the hope of what 'could' be. Six months later, the marriage and life I had dreamed of ended before it started.
The lesson I learned the hard way was; When we settle, we don't choose ME; we choose LACK. We let our fears and the shoulds drive us to bad choices."---pg.116-117
And how does this book tie in with the queen message? Well...yes, while one definition of "queen" is "a female sovereign or monarch" and another is "the wife or consort of a king", check out this one: "a woman, or something personified as a woman, that is foremost or preeminent in any respect". Now, I'm sure you get it! Yeah. Choosing ME before WE, when it means choosing ME before LACK is...a royal way of living! Especially since the Word tells us that love, even self love is patient (I Corinthians 13:4) and when patience has its *perfect work*, we end up *lacking nothing* (James 1:4).
Aight queens! I'm off to a class of my own.
Here's to a wonderful week and for those who do observe the Jewish (rather than the pagan-LOL) New Year: MAY IT BE YOUR MOST SPIRITUAL SOVEREIGN ONE YET!