ASSERTIVNESS: I remember, back in 1960, I was employed as a “testing engineer,” for a local testing laboratory. It wasn’t much of a job, didn’t pay much; but one whereby I learned a lot of “good lessons,” which were very necessary as I began to embark on my career. I don’t remember how I got the job, but I remember getting “laid-off.” It was a polite word for being “fired.” The second of about six times that I’ve been fired.
Actually, the owner did me a great favor when he FIRED me. Resulting that episode, I took a position as a “construction clerk,” for a West Virginia company who, literally, were building their own processing plant. They had their own engineers, designers, surveyors, craftsmen, and….construction clerk….That would be me. It was there that I began to “learn my trade,” as an accountant. Thanks be to God.
Ten years later, at age 31, I was a Corporate Controller of a major Distributing Company. It was because of my ASSERTIVENESS, that I got that job….and “each and every job” since. Each time I approached a new opportunity; I went in very strong-willed. A lack of confidence has never been a deterrent for me. These attributes, along a good dose of determination and forthrightness have always been in my bag of tools, as I approached each endeavor.
These forms of ASSERTIVENESS, I know, appear that I am a bit pushy and commanding; and I admit to all of that. It has paid off well for me over the years in pursuing my career. All of these, collectively, are important attributes as we, as believers, pursue the most important career move available to man-kind….The Lord God, Jesus Christ. 2 Corinthians 3:12 –Therefore having such a hope, we use great boldness in our speech.
Many of us are uncomfortable asserting ourselves, and some of us are not comfortable doing so under any scenario. Possibly, we are shy or feel awkward with people, and fear we’ll fail in our attempt to be outspoken and fear being embarrassed. Learning how to confront and manage our fears is a important step forward in becoming more assertive. We need to strive, too, for greater optimism about our possibilities for success.
Assertiveness is not incompatible with Paul’s instruction to speak the truth in love to each other as Ephesians 4:15 tells us. There, he clearly admonishes Christians to be assertive, at least within certain boundaries. And, Paul declares in – 1 Corinthians 9:10 – “Though I am free and belong to no man, I make myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible.”
The greatest show of ASSERTIVNESS in the Bible is found in Genesis 18:27-29 – Then Abraham spoke up again: “Now that I have been so bold as to speak to the Lord, though I am nothing but dust and ashes, what if the number of the righteous is five less than fifty? Will you destroy the whole city for lack of five people?” “If I find forty-five there,” he said, “I will not destroy it.” Once again he spoke to him, “What if only forty are found there?” He said, “For the sake of forty, I will not do it.”
Basically, Abraham BOLDLY goes on to ask the Lord to spare Sodom and Gomorrah, even if there were only 5 righteous people residing within the cities. Maybe we all could be more like Abraham. …Blessings…1/16/15