In this episode:
What comes to mind when you hear the words “Servant Leadership and Legacy”?
In this episode Mike Kelly does a phenomenal job of unpacking scripture that paints a clear picture of what this should look like for Lions. The core of the message is this – “To Lead Means To Serve.”
Mike provides four areas to consider as you evaluate your own journey as a servant leader:
- Free others from confusion and doubt
- Free others of anxiety and tension
- Free others to grow and learn
- Free others from destructive relationships
To lead means to serve. A servant leader is someone in authority: a manager, a mentor-friend. They are a provider of expert care. They're an encourager. Click To TweetMike Kelly
Welcome to the lion within us, a podcast, serving Christian men who are hungry to be the leaders. They are predestined to be. I’m your host, Chris Grainger and let’s jump in now today, guys, we’re going to be talking about what is servant leavers. And legacy. So servant leadership and legacy. I talk about this a lot, even on my LinkedIn profile, the number one thing I have on there is servant leadership.
So I’m excited today. I have Mike Kelly, who is the founder and CEO of team own up. He’s going to be unpacking a lot of his thoughts and ideas around servant leadership and legacy with me. Very excited about that. Welcome Mike, how are you doing today, sir?
00:39 Mike Kelly
I’m doing great, Chris, thank
you for having me very excited, very excited to have you here.
And I know when we were talking to get started and preparing for this conversation, you know, we definitely, we went to scripture and we went, you went straight to Psalm 23, and I just want to read that real quick for our listeners out there. You know, I encourage you guys. This is a Psalm. You really need to get a study, get it in your heart.
Uh, I’ve done a lot of study. And even since Mike told me that we were gonna focus on this, I went and did some devotionals around Psalm 20. And there’s a lot to unpack here. So guys just, just let’s, let’s jump right into some scripture. The Lord is my shepherd. I shall not want, he makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside quiet waters. He restores my soul. He guides me in the paths of righteousness for his namesake. Even though I walked through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil for your, with me, your rod and your staff. And they. He prepared a table before me in the presence of my enemies.
You have a known in my head with oil, my cup overflows, surely goodness and love. Kindness will follow me all of the days of my life. And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. So, you know, just get a list of reading of the word. So, you know, I like jump in here. What are you thinking? I love
01:50 Mike Kelly
this scripture in, I M.
It resonates with may one because it’s true. Right. God’s truth always does that. And, um, I just think it’s a great pattern for us to follow in terms of how we think about being in this world. And, you know, I think, uh, for good or bad, Chris we’ve turned a lot of Christianity into a self-help book a little bit.
Right. And in that, you know, we’re all trying to do our best at work. We call it. And so of course we are helped by reading the Bible, but there’s a bigger, broader story here. And to me, Psalm 23, so much of that, right. You can hang out on one, one line all day, but when you, when you pray and click back out to the big picture, Of the Bible, the full sweep of the Bible is the story of God’s rescue mission for his chosen people.
And when you try to unite the books, instead of trying to take them in these little vignettes, because everyone’s so busy and I get it, you know, and I suffer from this as well. But when you read Psalm 23 and try to correctly link it to the broader story, it turns into so much more than self-help, but it is a.
Uh, way that we can be leaders just in a way that we are led. Right. And so, uh, you know, I just have been inspired by it. I work with my mentor on servant leadership all the time. I screw it up constantly just because, you know, our, our role model is the perfect servant leader and we are imperfect. And so I just, there’s so much here.
I give a talk on this servant leadership and it’s modeled after Psalm 23. So I think there’s a ton in here that’s just really exciting and useful and
true. It definitely is in some of the studies hours doing Mike, just preparing it, taught it, broke this dissolve down in three areas, provide protect and.
Promises. And I just really looked at that and I started thinking about servant leadership. And I even, I got a little card here, Mike, you may find this humorous. So I went to a training a couple of years ago for a company and they had a guy come in and he was talking about servant leadership and he passed out these cards and he was, he had a nice presentation.
It was all off. And I started looking at it and basically he outlined the, uh, the fruit of the spirit. And all of a sudden, I kind of during a break, I called him out. I was like, Hey, bud. Um, you read your Bible and he just selected me and grant. I said, yeah, I bet you do Spears when he was teaching for servant leadership, but nobody else in the room.
Well, maybe a few people caught on to it, but it was very clear to me. So just, I just thought that was, I wanted to bring that up to you. I thought she might get a chuckle.
04:42 Mike Kelly
I do get a chocolate and the talk I give is to many, many companies leaders and, uh, I do a similar thing. So my talk on. You know, when I talk to men like you, I’m talking about shepherd leadership in the world, I’m talking about servant leadership.
So you can open some of these doors and plant some seeds without making people run from the Hills to the hill. And the funny thing is I gave this talk to a group of executives here in my hometown, just a couple of months ago, two day strategic planning session, halfway through I’m the, I’m a guide for it, right?
So I’m there to ask the good questions and help them uncover the things that are not talking about. And, um, this is just a, it’s a software company, great little company, but not a religious organization by any means. Right. And so I give them this talk on servant leadership and I break it down and I, and we could go through this if you’re, why, what does it mean to be a servant leader?
And so it’s really clear. It’s not a feeling. There’s a clear path here. And the punchline to me, Chris is it’s about love and love is more than a. It’s an act and an attitude you can do in someone else’s best interest done in such a way that they would understand it as they’re up at work. They’re like, wait a minute.
What are we talking about? Love why? So I give this talk and I say that to this group and the whole room just explodes and great conversation. And the women in the room say, finally, we’re talking about something interesting. Right, right, right. Right. And then some of the, uh, some of the guys who were, you know, EVP types, right.
So direct reports of the CEO started to kind of say, all right, maybe I’ll get into this. And the CEO salad, his arms folded back, Greg, you know, and he had his arms folded back. He thought we can’t be talking about love. This is insane. And so we spent an hour and a half challenging the thought of. And then they try to change the word love.
Why don’t we just call it leadership? And I’m like, eh, it’s not dangerous enough, isn’t it. You’re not really pouring into someone. You’re not really caring for them. You’re not really making sure your team is free of fear and doubt and confusion. Right? The pests and the flop. You’re not worrying daily, making sure your team is free of fear and anxiety and tension.
Right? So when you go through the stanzas of Psalm 23, The, and the being in the valley of shadow of death at work, we might think, oh, I’m, I’m about ready to get fired here. And so how does the shepherd, how does the servant lead in that time? And, you know, in life we’ve been in that valley many, many times, and we’re not left there to call an Uber right here.
Like, Hey, get yourself out. Now he texts us through the valley and in the same way, because we’ve been given his holy spirit. We can lead in that same way if we’re obedient, you know? Yeah,
absolutely. Absolutely. And Mike’s, I’m very interested, as you mentioned, unpacking your definition of servant leadership because you know where the line within us, we’re serving those Christian men.
Some of them are not quite as far along in their walk and that’s, that’s what we’re here for. We’re here to help. When they hear servant that just that word servant may turn them off initially. Right. I, I don’t want to be a servant. Uh, so how would, how do you make that definition to someone and really start connecting the dots?
08:06 Mike Kelly
I think this is it, Chris and I wanted to unpack this well, what are we talking about? You know, what’s our operating definition, this, you know, we don’t need God’s wisdom to understand. We need to be talking about the same thing. And so at work, just get clear on your shared definition of success, the language you use, your vocabulary, because we all have different learning styles and gifts.
And you know, you, you, as a leader have to be clear and unambiguous on what success looks like. And so this servant leadership one is fun to me. I was just writing about this this morning. You’re right. It is the word servant. If you. Took the two standalone. And you said, I only want to be a servant. It’s right.
What you said? And we’re like, ah,
08:52 Mike Kelly
their reality is that servants can’t fire anybody. And yet a boss at times has to fire people. And so to me, um, pulling them apart. And considering them. Okay. What do we really mean by servant? And then can I actually do what this thing proposes? I think that’s a really interesting dynamic in terms of, well, surgeons get fire servants, don’t fire.
Right. So let’s just get real practical. And so how do you think about that? Is it even possible? And so to me, servant leadership. Is, uh, this idea that, you know, we have to come back to the role of a leader and it’s to turn company vision into reality, it’s to create a new reality that leaders must lead.
And then what does it mean to lead? Well, to me, to lead means to serve. And your servant leader is an authority. It’s a manager, it’s a mentor friend, right? A lot of people would say, Chris, especially earlier in your journey, you’re like, Hey, listen, don’t get it twisted. We’re not friends. Right. Um, I’m going to tell you what to do, right?
That comes from us, that deep level of insecurity. And instead you’re taking away some of your most powerful, powerful tools. That’s certainly not how Jesus thinks about us. Thank God. And so, you know, when you get deeper on that, you’re a, provisioner, you’re a provider of expert care. You’re an encourager.
It’s exhausting, really. I mean, it is exhausting, like careful what you ask for, don’t say it because it is a steep. And so to me, those words start to frame out what this thing actually looks like. And it doesn’t mean that you, you have to, you know, we all have chores, but I think there’s four requirements of servant leaders to make their followers successful.
Even that word follower. I think when you say it. In the context of your team, the weight of that, right? Chris is like these just start my Facebook followers, right? Ranking people, the ghosts that I don’t even know. Right. These are the people whose have been given and I’m the steward of their care, um, to care for this group in a way that I may or may not be prepared for.
Right. I didn’t get any training here. Companies have abandoned training. And so there’s four requirements kind. I break them down for. Ah, here’s requirement one. So you have to make your team free of fear, confusion, and doubt. So to me, the word make is what comes through in Psalm 23. You know, the, the Lord’s yeses and nos are unambiguous.
I’m not sure. Uh, maybe these are biblical, right? So if you’ve got one foot on the boat and one foot on the dock in corporate America, you’re gonna fall on the wall. You have got to at a certain point, be decisive and the Lord tells us, okay, wait on me. You know, don’t rush. It’s my timing. Not yours. But I can’t find, I brought a lot of it.
I can’t find where it says these are. Okay. And so you have to make your team figure out how are you talking about all these human beings? How am I supposed to make? And so to me, that first requirement, I like to say a lot that goals, mash roles, no matter what your role in the world, you have goals, assignment.
And part of your role as a leader is to serve your team. And so the goal of that is to make your team free of fear, confusion, and doubt. Second one, make your team free of anxiety and tension. And I think this one is one of there’s gossip on it. What if there’s a lack of real conversation, you know, so a tip maybe for your listeners is whenever I go into a room and more and more, we’re coming back to the normal state of actually being together.
Right? If the room is not have a level of noise before the meeting starts, they’re really low trust team. And I get it, everybody’s on their phone and doing this and that, all the dehumanizing things we do now, but. If there’s no noise. And this team that I gave this talk to was a silent group of people when I first, oh my God.
And so there’s no trust here. I don’t trust. So, so another thing to define here, and by the way, you know, these are my beliefs and my study is in my experience, but I love the discussion of did we get this right? Trust is created by two components, character and competence. I don’t think team’s not going to trust you if first they don’t believe in your character and people only believe your behaviors.
Right. You all only believe what you actually do. That’s right, right. And so the belief system, you are communicating everything you do communicates as a leader. Where are you parked? How you dress, how prepared you are for a meeting. Do you show up on time? Do you ask good questions? Do you care for people?
Whenever it comes out of your mouth is only ever interesting. People are believing what you say and what you don’t say. So if they don’t trust your character and Chris, I like to say in the worst scenario, and let’s just suppose that’s when you’re getting ready to fire me. So I work for you. You’re getting ready to fire me.
Something’s gone wrong. And I’m getting rid of my last day. I need to know you’re going to treat me like him. Right. Cause my family’s here. People who love me are here. Even if I’m single, there are consequences to this and crucial here. People in corporate America say crazy things like this. Tell me if you ever heard them.
So it’s that meeting. You’re getting ready to fire me. And you might say something like Mike, let’s take all the emotion out of this scenario, situation. That was, you heard that a million times and you think, why are we doing that? I have been given a motion. By God. And they are my bed, the best tools I have in my kid.
And so I might suggest we need our emotions more than ever as leaders. And I think back to that server leaders, it’s fun to talk about certain leadership when it’s going great. Don’t get that scrap is our leader. Our numbers are working in, and my team’s great. And, but in the crucible moments, when we’re in the valley, there’s your character.
Show up and you, and I know these are issues of our hearts and because we are born again, believers by grace, through faith, I’m saved, I’m love on a new creation. My heart is good because Jesus made itself, right? Because when it’s left of my own design, I was a filthy mess. You know what I mean? And so trust character and competence, and that competence is I’ve got to know that, you know what you’re doing.
I want to know that we’re generally going ahead in the right direction. And I would have a level of confidence that these are good ideas and that you’re going to invite me into a conversation so I can make sure that we’re all heading the same direction. Right. So I think we skipped by, we don’t define any of these things.
And then we don’t put the weight of these things. And I think this connects to our legacy conversation a little bit later. And proper. So that can slow us down as leaders and men, sometimes we’re like, let’s just get this over.
You know what I mean? That’s right. That’s right. I think you’re all over it. I mean, th th the character and the competence, if you do not exhibit those and that’s, and that’s the daily walk, you know, people are watching your money moves everyday.
How you behave their fruit, you know, do you have good fruit? Do you have bad fruit? So if you want that trust to character and competence is. Fundamental, you know, I love how you say, you know, goals, master roles for the first, for the first bullet point as well, too. So I’m excited to see you are getting ready to go here.
Let’s take a quick break and then we’ll jump into three and four.
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Our guys, we’re back with Mike here. Now. He’s going through the requirements for servant leadership and for the first one, make sure your team first is free. Confusion and doubt. And that second one, make sure that the free from anxiety intention. So, and Mike, you unpacked a lot there. So guys go back rewind.
If you need to, I’m anxious to hear where we’re going with three and four.
18:39 Mike Kelly
Yeah. So the third one is make your team free to grow and learn. And Chris, I think we screw this one all the time up at work, so free to grow on learn. So this to me is when we think about transforming town, when we think about becoming leaders, we want to do all this new stuff.
And to me, this is a restoration project. If we could realize, man, God has given us incredible gifts. And each one of us by design is made in the image and likeness of God, but best the creator and the best designer ever. Can’t we just recognize, man. What’s great about you. How about I just sit in the pocket with you and ask you and consider and see you for who you are and at work right now, all we see and I, and I’m talking about HR training.
I’m talking about how we put projects together, our technical skills. Those are job descriptions. You don’t resumes ever is the word. Right there. It’s just not there. And yet there is why are we following people? Those are the things of the heart God’s wisdom is in our heart. This is where our deepest thinking is done.
And so if we make our team free to grow and learn, I’m just trying to restore you to the original position was growth and understanding. And here the Lord is my shepherd. We’re talking about young king David here as well. Right. And so David has this incredible cryptic career trajectory. Doesn’t it? And he’s doing so many different things, but he’s hanging out in the fields with the flock of sheep.
Are you putting in I’m king, David? I wonder if he did any work on his game. And he worked on his skills and his quiet time and he considered and he thought, and he practiced, right. Those great stories of him, you know, tackling the bear and tackling the line and to get them away from the flock. And so there’s a couple of patterns there.
We could follow. But the restoration project is allow your team to be free, to grow and learn. So we like to say that’s a silence. Yeah. I remember your side hustle. Yeah, but also we’re going to crush what we’re doing here. You’re not. And if I can get you grooved where I can pour anyone really hit the buttons of what makes you, you all, my job is so much easier.
Right. You know, I, I think a lot of this is self-interested in terms, do I want to beat my head against a wall or do I want to go against the original engagement model, which is humans are built to grow. And learn and develop. And we just seek that out of one another. We need a metaphorical, hopefully by the time we get into corporate America.
No, it doesn’t. I mean, I think if you think it through right now, career paths that I’ve been on it and people that I work with, one thing I’ve tried to be very cognizant and aware of and intentional about with them is understanding where they’re at and what their desires are, where are they trying to grow to your point?
You know? Cause it’s, it’s the worst thing you can have is a, is an employee or, or a person that you are. And they had that feeling that they’re stuck and they not going anywhere because we are here. We’re, we’re, we’re, we’re wondering if we made and we’re not wonderfully made to do the same thing day in, day out.
We need to be doing moving towards something. So I think being intentional about that is very important
22:06 Mike Kelly
and realizing, and this is one, two being, understanding that a lot of people are panicked that they don’t know. A lot of these, the answers to a lot of these questions, they don’t know what motivates them.
They don’t know. What’s great about that. So one thing that for your audience to consider is if you, if you’re sitting here listening right now, I don’t know. What’s great about cool. I struggled with that too. Here’s one thing to consider. What is the most frequent compliment you get? So just whatever comes top to mind.
That usually signals how the world is seeing you. Right? Cause we just have too much data. And often Chris, the compliment you most frequently receive is the compliment that you quickly dismiss because it’s like breeding to you’re like, oh, facts. I think for you, this is your second hand nature, but there’s something really interesting underneath that to get at.
Where is your gift set? And the compliment that the world sees you in your wife, your spouse, you know, your, your mom, your friends, your coworkers, whatever the FIM is there, try to pull on that thread and really consider, huh? I guess that’s how people see me. And sometimes we don’t like it because I really want you to say that I’m really book-smart, but the world sees my energy.
Yeah. I understand what it is and then how you can most put it to use, because then we’ve, we’ve, we’ve created. Uh, true force. And now we’ve got you in your lane. Now, your energy’s there and it’s not just strengths, right? I think we’ve screwed this up too. I feel strong here. Right? What core would that might not extrapolate to good career?
Rough. I’m glad you feel strong, but you’re already scales them. Do scales scares. You feel. Yeah. You know, I, I don’t know what I’m doing. Good. Now we got you where I watch it. You know? So this growth and learning, I think is, uh, we could do a whole podcast just on that. I believe
you for sure. And one, one word that I use a lot with my guys is what’s your superpower.
You know, you guys got a superpower, you really getting to your point, what are you really good at? The compliments, your conflict you’re always getting. So I just relate it to a superpower. I’m like, okay, you’re a great communicator. Lean into that. Why are you sending book long emails when you light up a room when you’re in it, you know, get them on the phone, talk to them, use your superpower and lean into that.
So I love it, man. So we’re where are we going? Next?
24:33 Mike Kelly
Number four is make your team free of destructive relationships. And again, so there’s links to the earlier one of anxiety and tension anxiety is I’m afraid my needs. Aren’t going to get. Right. Anxiety, unchecked leads to depression and you know, all this other crazy stuff, but make your team for your restructure relationships.
And to me, when you have toxic, first of all, we use the toxic word way too much at work. Not everything sucks. You just don’t like my opinion on some of this stuff, you know? Uh, but this destructive relationships, that’s your job as a leader. And to me, that’s when we have Unbound, servant and leader to really study, do I want to serve and part of this cause servants.
Literally, it’s not that you don’t want to it’s that servants can’t fire anybody by definition, you can’t fire anybody. Right. Which is a makes you wonder, oh, is servant leadership even possible, but there’s destructive relationships. If you are servant leader, you are also, and firstly serving the mission.
So you have to be able to get on your snapshot and then into your big picture. And as a servant leader, you’re serving your mission first. We have to move the ball forward because by the way, at work, it’s got to work. We need results. It has to allow us to continue on second. You’re serving your team. So mission team, then teammates.
Then, then, then you know, the individuals then self. And so to me, the certain leader, if we want to do this, and this is such a steep curve, and I cannot admit to you that I have not screw this up a million times. You can’t fire somebody because you have to care for them to such a degree that when you realize, oh boy, this person hasn’t got back yet, they’re not going to stay with us on this team.
You have got to care. And this is where we need our character and God given emotions to really see them and say, with a clear on ambiguous heart and mind, okay, this is going to be the end of this chapter for you, but I want more than anything. To help you open up a new chapter. And if you’ve done that right, all over the balance of your relationship, and we have a bank account of trust and in that, hopefully we’re running a high balance, right?
You’ve made deposits and character and trust over time. You’ll take withdrawals just cause we’re goofy humans, but that bank account of trust would allow you to say, you know what I believe? Yeah. I believe it. Cause I don’t want to be here either, because if you’ve done that right, the person is going to obviously know.
This isn’t working out. We’re going to have looked at our data. What’s our data. Tell us, here is this, this data, these numbers are just not going the right way. Now, if you do that in the firing meeting, you’re on the problem. You’re data, bad manager event leader. But if you’ve cultivated that and curated this and catered for your team in this overboard fashion to do what we just said, these four things is exhausting.
You have to go overboard by the way, you have to do your day job as well. This is work of people. And right now at so many companies we’ve combined well, all of a sudden you’re a technical expert we hired before, you know, be the overspray that we probably value you Morin. But if you want to do this, that’s the move that has been done for me.
Uh, and I have tried to do that for others. And I’ll tell you that those relationships stand the test of time across company boundaries. And then you’ll see it on those hard moments. I had a guy call me two months ago that I worked for, uh, worked with six years ago and he said, man, I’m in transition. Can you help me?
And I said, you bet my brother, he didn’t pay me. We’re we’re friends, we’re teammates and always will be. And so that’s really that, that to me is the payoff of all of this is that concrete trust we have with one of the.
That’s where it’s all at all comes back to trust. You know, so Mike, this has been four great points here on servant leadership, you know, just to recap for our listeners, make sure you guys, you go to show notes as this all be there.
You know, making sure your team is free of fear, confusion, and doubt, free of anxiety. And. Free to grow and learn and free of destructive relationships. And Mike, I think you did a wonderful job, so I’m excited now, as we start, maybe we can transition to, let’s talk about legacy because that’s not something we talk about a lot.
So let’s take a quick break and then we’ll jump back in and we’ll jump into that topic.
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our guys, we’re back here with Mike. We’re talking about servant leadership and legacy. So we’re getting into the legacy part is conversation. And when I think about that, Just legacy in general. It seems really far out. Like I, it’s hard to wrap your mind around like my, my legacy. You may be right around here and you’re in your twenties and you’re like, man, I don’t want to talk about my legacy.
I’m just trying to figure it out. I’m doing this weekend. So make the connection for the guys out there. And when you, when you hear the word legacy, what does it mean? And what should it mean?
30:40 Mike Kelly
Yeah, it’s a great question. I’m mean, I’ve been thinking about this, praying about this and working on this for a number of months now.
And to me, legacy, I run a software company. Uh, I’ve been in FinTech most of my career. And so every time I hear legacy, I think legacy software, legacy is a bad word. And, uh, but as leaders, what I hear now, so many leaders we’re talking about culture, but have a strong culture is my culture bad is my culture is employee engagement, right?
Employee engagement as a signal of culture, culture to me feels very now. Feels very odd. The moment, really hard to quantify. And there’s a bunch of protocol lectures on this cultural issue that would say, I thought hard to quantify. You know, it, it doesn’t even exist as a fun question, but culture is of the world.
It’s now it’s temporary. And to me when you extend out. And so, uh, my wife and I have three kids and it is unbelievably the gift of a lifetime. There are 12, 10 and eight boy, girl. And I think about legacy and all these different roles we have. And my goals in those roles as a husband, a father, a leader, a friend, right?
We’ve got a million roles and a million goals that pile up on top of those. I have been beautifully slowed down by this idea of legacy because culture is now legacy. Is that right? Legacy is when I’m not here. What will exist five years from now, 10 years from now, my legacy will be what, and I think this can apply at work because you’re leaving behind something.
Right. And if you’re not intentional about it, and considering that how your impact will be felt, whether they assign your name to it or not. You’re missing an opportunity to be a stronger leader. You’re missing the reality because this is happening, whether you like it or not, you’re leaving a legacy. And so if you’re that leader, who’s all about you and transactional and getting yours.
Okay, cool. You’re leaving that legacy. And I have, I haven’t been transactional in my early career like that, so I’m not judging. I have made these mistakes. And yet, if you are relationship driven and in your role, Chris first, I’m a child of the most high guy, right? I’m a mighty man of God, nothing by what I did.
And so that’s my first role and they infuse all the other roles. And so legacy, you know, I’ve been thinking about this a lot and I went to one of my mentors. I thought, boy, I really been thinking about this legacy and it keeps coming up in my prayer time. Like, what am I doing about this? And so he’s was listening to me and why I like about it is it slows you down a little bit culture now legacy is you’re like, Hmm, am I, am I ready for this?
You know, do I, do I have what it takes here? And so legacy he’s talking to me and he said, you know, well, that’s a great question. He’s a believer as well, great guy. And he said, do you know that Jesus left us his lice? And I kind of was like, You know, in, uh, yeah, I’m sure he did, but I didn’t have anything in mind.
And I said, no, it’s in the gospel of John chapters, uh, 13 to 17. Really, if you read 12 to 18, you kind of get the, it’s a bigger story, but it’s, uh, those chapters are referred to as Jesus’s farewell discourse. And so, you know, we did, we got together as a group of guys and we read, uh, 13 to 17 and darn it. If it’s not in there.
Jesus lays out his legacy as a leader. And so what he wants for us and by design has given us, and it’s unbelievable. And again, a pattern we can go to to say, well, there’s our best sort of leader ever. And I’ll only out of it would be a dusty image of him, but gosh, because I’m powered by his holy spirit and in this world for his purposes.
Right then what will it mean? And can we learn from that? So that’s what I’m excited about and that’s what I’ve been talking a lot about lately. And so that to me is legacy. Let’s go to the original employee handbook and see what it says.
Yes, absolutely. I love it because I mean, I think too many times guys, including me sometimes when I start thinking about legacy, I really associated with monitoring.
You know, what, what am I leaving behind, you know, from assets and, and bank accounts and retirements and maybe insurance policies, but it’s not that at all, because that that’d be gone in a, in a, in a flash, you know, you’re, you’re talking much deeper here, the impact on others, how you are, will be remembered, you know, will you be making an impact on two to three generations from you right now?
You know, that, that.
35:46 Mike Kelly
Right. And you’re not praying for so many people. Have I prayed yet for my grandchildren? Well, not now I have, but I wasn’t. I mean, my grandma came here from Ireland and she was born in 1901 or two. She came here in 19, 19 to be a maid and on park avenue in New York city. So I’m, you know, my mom and dad grew up in Bronx, New York city, and now I’m here with my family in Tennessee and the generational.
Uh, leaps we’ve been able to make my mom grew up in a tenement, you know, in New York city, which is another name for a rough place with drug addicts and all kinds of crazy people running up and down the stairs. That was not that long ago. And yet, so as we think about leaders and legacy, I just love this idea of what does it mean?
And it brings a weight to it that I think is correct. This is a big. And you get to ask and answer the question. Do I have what it takes and on your own? No, you do not absolutely do that. Right. But with God, You know,
you do, you do. And guys, you know, you may be thinking right now. Well, that’s something I can work on when I get to closer to retirement or that’s what I need to start worrying about.
You know, maybe there’s, um, I’m envisioning this 20 year old and the gym right now. Listen to the line with Dennis and he’s working out he’s he’s totally rolling his eyes, bro. I’m speaking to you. This, it can happen right now. Your legacy starts right now. You you’re a building it, your actions, how you treat others.
All what Mike was talking about from a servant standpoint earlier from a certain leadership, that’s all building upon your legacy. I think about the Bible. So many of the great characters of the Bible, how much did they achieve early on in life? And we’re still talking about their legacy now.
37:32 Mike Kelly
And, you know, the, and by the way, we’re talking to our man in the gym, you have more reps in here. You always do this to me the other day, Chris, when we say, when we use the term characters, I hope you don’t mind, but these are people. These are, these are real in the Bible. And you know, the first time I read through, I was like, man, these people are broke, broke.
People are in St. David, a man after God’s own heart cheated on his wife, murdered a guy, Mullins was murdered. Her guy ran all the profits and they all have problems. Daniel might be the only one besides Jesus where I’m like, I don’t know. I feel like they ended up got it. Right. And he’s good.
Well, I think that, that helps me though. Cause it’s, it shows the human, you know, I mean,
38:22 Mike Kelly
And that’s how Don goes to work in our brokenness and this links to servant leadership and your legacy. Now I’m able to understand, I didn’t have it all sorted out, and that has been my journey. And now, uh, the impact and the way of my skills and dreams and ambitions and leadership.
And then my. Uh, ability to be a good student to all of that is in God’s design. And it’s part of my gift set. And along with that comes some of my mess. And, but I’ll have to be burdened down by that because of what Jesus
did, you know, that’s right. You know, and if you’re listening to, you know, hopefully you have Jesus in your heart and if you do, you have the holy spirit, then you have.
And he puts it very clear. You know, we’re a call. We are predestined for greatness, go to Romans, check it out. It’s there guys, there’s your homework. But it is our responsibility day in and day out to step up to be the man that we need to be, to lead our families, to lead our careers, or just to be wherever, you know, serve others at all times.
And through that, that legacy is building, Hey
39:33 Mike Kelly
man, can we, can we get real practical here because I’m excited about it. Uh, it’s God’s rescue mission for his chosen people. He comes down here and gets us, right? So that’s, that’s the story of Jesus’s story of God coming to earth fully man, fully God. And, uh, has this shocking moment that, you know, it was in a public career for three years, dies on the cross to save our sins.
And three days later comes out of the grave and he’s like, Hey boys, you got any fish? Right. He shows up again. And you know, a little bit later, uh, sends it to have an incense, his always spirit, which I always call the holy spirit, our executive coach. Do you have an executive coach right in your heart?
Right? Lean on him. The spirit of the son of God. Right? So you are commanded, you are call, he looked at you in the eyes of your heart before you were born and was like, no. And that’s what he says in these chapters. Go read these chapters. You’ve got, so let’s set the setting here and then let’s do you mind dipping into a little scripture?
Okay. So John 12 to 18, 13 to, uh, 13 to 17. So Jesus goes it’s right before the festival of Passover. So this is the big seven year Jubilee party that Jewish people have. Like, this is the part of your part. This is super bowl Sunday. And so he know this is his moment. This is the crucible moment. I’m going to do this at the exact pivotal right time.
And so it says before the Passover, Jesus knew that it was his time had come the time for him to leave the world and go to his father. He had always loved his own people in the world, and now he loved them right through to the end. It doesn’t say all people, it says his own people. We are all home. And so it was supper time.
He’s the bread of life. Now, Judas is at this table. Judas the betrayer. Yep. And this is by design. He had to betray Jesus. So the, so the gospel message, the promise could be fulfilled, but the devil had already put in the heart that he was going to betray his son. Jesus knows that. So that passed on your team that you’re sitting across from the Lord.
I want this, this person is going to fire genes is he knew that the father had given everything into his hands and have come. Uh, from God was going to God. And so here it is this servant leadership what’s he do. He gets up. So Juan he’s feeding them a meal. And then right after that, he gets up techs, office, uh, you know, outer clothes and washes his disciples feed.
Chris, what could there be more disgusting to do than to wash another man? So just put the picture of my feet or a crime scene. Could you imagine sermon leader? Okay. Freedom you’ll even that my wife leaves the scene. I might be eating peanut butter and jellies out of here. And so Jesus doesn’t say, okay, boys, here’s a set of ideas.
It doesn’t say that he feeds him, sits with them, talks to them, ends up praying for them, which I’d love to hit before we say goodbye and then washes their feet. What are you kidding me? But for me, there’s all this in corporate America mindset stuff. I’m like, I do feel like we screwed this up too. Yeah.
Mindset is parts at first heartset parts to get that thing, right. Ask God for his wisdom. And then what comes out of your heart feed? Your mom? We’ve been given the mind of Christ. You have a helmet of salvation. Laura, keeping me focused on the things about making great today. Let’s go, right. Let’s go. Why are you going to put me in here for a reason?
This is your fault. Make me go and Ben skillset. Right. Then I have my sword. Then I have technical abilities. Then I can call. In corporate America, we try to go skillset a little bit of mindset, but fake, you know what I believe, mindset more. If somebody would admit that they were fixed mindset, then I might believe somebody, right?
Zero people you have ever talked to have admitted to having a fixed mindset, true or false. That’s
43:38 Mike Kelly
true. That guy in the gym right now, I was thinking I’m a growth mindset. He might be fixed mindset, right? I’m not going to get out. So to me, that part says, God and Jesus. Breaks it out here in a big, big way, right.
To be on that.
Absolutely. It’s it’s it’s right in God’s word.
43:59 Mike Kelly
And so, uh, he says down in 13, you know what I’ve done to you? He asked you, call me teacher, you call me master and you’re right. That’s what I am. So here, we’re back to serve him. Well then if I, as your master and teacher washed your feet, just now you should wash each other’s feet.
Woo. I’ve given you a pattern so that you can do things in the same way that I did to you. Right? So here, we’re talking about Lord’s prayer. We’re talking about Psalm 23, which, which is an echo, is an old Testament. Echo of Jesus come. He is our best shepherd, right? So it’s just, he knows the ones I’ve committed.
If it’s, I’m so excited and you’re like, this is a man, this is a man’s man. The man’s man right here. Getting down to it because he knows what’s coming right. You with me on there. Absolutely. Um, here, here’s the other thing that I, that I think is super fun. So talking about the mail, what a servant leader does, he feeds his team, right?
He’s the bread of life, but we also have to resource our team for success. So at work, you only have four things to invest in your strategy, time, talent tools, treasure. So your strategy is how you want to spend time and money. Uh, you are planning to make those investments and then your ability to execute those, make them come to life.
In other words is how you prove you weren’t lying. And you know, so those, that’s what he’s doing here. And, you know, when we, we look to this, these crucial moments, so, so Judas, when he goes out, Jesus has just given him a piece of bread. So we’ve known since betray. It gives them the bread and then he begins to speak.
So it’s summertime night has fallen back so evil. I said, yeah, right. Uh, gives you the sobriety’s was, Hey, look what you’re about to do, do it quickly. And then he goes to speak. So in other words, as a leader, I don’t really need to be standing up in front of the company, blabbing necessarily everything to everyone.
It’s not, it’s not the movie. It’s I have discretion. I have judgment. I’ve been given wisdom if I just slow down and ask God for it. And so here, this pattern I think is so exciting. So the only really thing I wanted to point out here is kind of the context of what was going on and these crucible moments.
And then he says here, and we talked about this. He said, I’m giving you a new commandment and it’s this love one another, just as I have loved you. So you must love one another. This is how everybody will know that you are my disciples. If you have love for one another. So even in corporate America, not everybody’s a believer and not everybody will know just like that.
Gentleman who gave you that talk on Psalm 23 and you were like, what is this based on the Bible? And he was like, Hey, it is you don’t, you know, if you have to use words. Okay do it, but you can share the gospel just by letting God love you. Right. I feel like our number one, my mentor tells me this all the time.
Our number one job each day is to let God love us completely. We get to have a personal, intimate and involved relationship with him in every aspect of our life, so that we can be his message. And this is his master. This is Jack Jesus, his legacy for us, his actions, which we can believe in his character and competence.
Because he has got to come down here and he’s given us a pattern to follow, which if we follow it on our own strength, we fall into a hot mess, which
you and I both know. Right? Absolutely. Am I talking crazy here? No, you’re all over it. This has been beautiful, beautiful scripture. I love how you brought the scriptures of John into this.
This really helped us here.
47:44 Mike Kelly
Um, one more thing. I know we’re gonna run out of time here, but one more thing. Uh, I just thought was so exciting here. And so as 14 ads, he’s talking to his boys and he’s really happy to, if you don’t read in one, go 12 to 18, just get the full sweep of it. It was taken out, you know, so you can understand the pattern and the holy spirit ask him to point out what’s important to you, but at the end of 14, he’s given this great prayer and he’s talking about, I’m going to give you peace and, um, you know, on and off.
And this is where it says, I’m the true vine. So he says, right before that, he says, get up, let’s be gone to his boys. Now, Judas is out there, but they don’t actually go anywhere. They don’t, they’re not, they’re not going anywhere for three more chapters, they don’t leave. And so here he starts talking about the garden and all the plans he have for us and not until he starts talking about the spirit of the world and asking you will receive.
So anyway, then in 17, He says he starts to pray. They still haven’t gone anywhere yet. He still starts to pray. And 17, he prays for himself and he prays to his father and he says, God, you have glorified baby. So I could glorify you. You have given me these people. I just wanted to read you one to two. You mind if I read you two things?
Absolutely. So in 17 nine, he says, I’m praying for that. He’s talking about his disciples. I’m praying for that. I’m not praying for world, but for the people you have given me. They belong to you all. Mine are yours. All yours are mine, and I’m glorified in that. Come on, baby. I mean, you got inmates and me and God, like this is God became king on earth and we are kingdom men.
You know, you were called, you were commanded to your place in line. You need to spring into the armor off and sprint to the battle lines. That’s right. Because you know, Jesus lays it out here. And so I just. There’s crumbles me like a rainbow mass. Does you ever either wrote a mass and locate? Oh my gosh.
So, uh, he could read that beautiful prayer. And at the end, after he’s prayed for himself and his boys, he prays for us. You mind if I read that? Yes, sir. It says I’m not praying simply for them. His disciples. I’m praying too, for the people who will come to believe in me because of their, or. I’m praying that they all may be one just as you father on me and I in you, that they too may be in us so that the world may be believed that you sent me.
I have given them the glory, which you have given to me so that they may be won just as we are one I in them and you and me. Yes, they must be completely. So that the world may know that you sent me and that you love them just as you love me, Chris. That’s what you’re doing. You are uniting. Uh, God’s chosen people in your podcast here.
We must be completely one unity.
And then that’s the prayer. That is the prayer every line within us. That’s why I said we’re a group of Christian men that are, that are predestined for greatness and weak, but we got to do it together. We have to come together. We have to fight Mike. This has been phenomenal, absolutely phenomenal conversation.
Thank you for all the wisdom that you provide a year.
51:18 Mike Kelly
You are welcome. And, uh, just one final. This has been great fun. At the end of that, he finally gets up and you know where he’s going, he’s going into a garden. So he’s finally says his boys, all right, let’s go over here. And they’re heading over to the seminary, which is just a couple hundred yards down the road and in the garden, we’re back in the garden where it all started creation, new creation, Exodus, new Exodus.
And that’s where we see Judas again and all these bad guys and Jesus steps up. So, so this is my final call to action for the men listening to this podcast. That in this crucible moment, and we’re all asking ourselves, do I have what it takes? Can I be a servant leader? Can I lead legacy in this way? As a two way?
Do I have what it takes? So Jesus knew everything that was going to happen to him. He went out to meet them. He went to meet the bad guys. The guys were going to murderer. Who are you looking for? He steps up as hard as moment. Who are you looking for? Yeah. Jesus of Nazareth. They answered. And he says, I’m the one.
I says, I’m the one he didn’t say that’s me. He said, I’m the one, the one true guy Judas has for sure. Standing them. So they said any apps have again, I’m the one. And they went back a few paces and they fell on the ground and he asks again, who are you looking for? Jesus Mathers. I told you I’m the one. And they fall down to the ground again.
And. They know, I know. Right? And that when you’re struggling and you feel overwhelmed and you’re suffering from imposter syndrome, what are these two crazy guys talking about here on this podcast, go into your room, shut the door, and speak to your father in private, where he knows what you do in secret.
Right? You have been given the holy spirit. He is your executive coach or number one job each day and let God love you completely. So you can be as messaged. So that’s my hope and prayer. Or you Chris for me, and for all your friends listening online, uh, it’s love to talk to you today, my man or not.
Absolutely. This has been so much impactful here, Mike. So for the guys out there, listening, check the show notes, Mike, if, if they want to connect with you, see what you’re doing, where’s the best place for them to go.
53:28 Mike Kelly
Uh, I’m really active on LinkedIn. Mike Kelly. There are 2 million Mike Kelly’s. I run a company called team on up, so just search Mike Kelly team on up.
We have a software, um, for CEOs to automate alignment, uh, at work. So this is what I do every day. I try to get leaders and teams positioned for success at work. And we have a software tool that helps people do that, but it’s all this that really is the glue that holds the whole thing together. So I hope I hope to make more connections here out of this.
for sure. And check the show notes out guys. Go there. We’ll make sure you get the right Mick Kelly on LinkedIn. That that’ll be in the show notes there. Forest forest as well. So the con the question I want to leave you guys with, you know, how are you building a legacy through servant servant-leader.
You know, think about that. You know, how are you doing it each day in and day out? And I think Mike gave us some great tips and guys, you know what the line within us, if you’re enjoying it, you got to share it. It’s texted to somebody sending it to a brother. Maybe there’s a brother out there right now who needs to hear about leadership and legacy.
And he think this could bless them. Send that text message, go over to the line within.us, check us out right there, where all our resources, all our coaching information, all the blogs, all the wonderful conversations we’re having just like here with. And I guess if you like it, give a five star rating, write a review, that stuff really does make, make a impact.
It helps get the show after to more and more people. So guys, I hope you enjoyed it. Go out there and unleash the lion within.
As you build servant leadership in your life it will be critical to focus on building trust with those around you. Through this Mike beautifully describes trust as the intersection of Character and Competence. Let those words sink in as that is the type of wisdom we all need to grow in our walks.
The concept of legacy was covered and while that seems to be a far off idea it is one that we all impact every day. How do we impact it you ask? By the actions we take and the fruit we bear. Legacy is not money and assets – it is the impact you leave on others and how you daily walk with Christ will be remembered.
Whether you are leading large groups of people at work or overseeing your family every Lion has a chance to make an impact on their legacy through servant leadership.
Remember the question of the week – How are you building a legacy through servant leadership? As you consider your answer grab a notepad and refer back to the scriptures that Mike referred to. You can do this and we pray this message encourages and inspires you to start being the leader you are predestined to be. Now go out and Unleash the Lion Within!
Guest: Mike Kelly CEO at TeamOnUp
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