Inspiration: How Humility Lifts Those Around Us, Part 3 (Strategic Christian Leadership #78)

I am Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society International, and this is the “Strategic Christian Leadership” Podcast, Episode 78. The simple purpose of this podcast is to help Christian leaders understand how planning and strategizing is important to carrying out the Great Commission.

Our Bible verse for this episode is Luke 22:24-27 which says, “And there was also a strife among them, which of them should be accounted the greatest. And he said unto them, The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and they that exercise authority upon them are called benefactors. But ye shall not be so: but he that is greatest among you, let him be as the younger; and he that is chief, as he that doth serve. For whether is greater, he that sitteth at meat, or he that serveth? is not he that sitteth at meat? but I am among you as he that serveth.”

Our quote for this episode is from Mother Teresa, who said, “Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies.”

In this podcast, we are going through the fine books: “Advanced Strategic Planning: A New Model for Church and Ministry Leaders” by Aubrey Malphurs, “Deliberate Simplicity: How the Church Does More by Doing Less” by Dave Browning, and “Humilitas: A Lost Key to Life, Love, and Leadership” by John Dickson.

Our topic today is part 3 of “Inspiration: How Humility Lifts Those Around Us” from “Humilitas: A Lost Key to Life, Love, and Leadership” by John Dickson. He continues as follows:

What I Learnt from U2

Let me close this chapter with another personal example of humility’s effect on me. When I was starting out in my first band at age sixteen, my musical heroes were the band U2. Ever since their 1982 album October, these four Irishmen represented all that I wanted to do (next to playing striker for Manchester United): create music, tour the world and move people through passionate live performances. When they came to Sydney in 1984, I had to meet them. The problem was, no fans were allowed inside their trendy, inner city hotel. A friend had an idea: let’s dress up in suits, borrow briefcases and catch a taxi to the hotel. Perhaps security will think we’re staying there.

It must have looked ridiculous—a gang of five or six teenagers thoroughly overdressed arriving in convoy at one of Sydney’s stylish establishments. It worked a treat, though. The doorman peered through the taxi window, opened the door and escorted us straight past the two hundred suspicious onlooking fans right into the hotel lobby. Without a clear plan we quickly made our way to the restaurant on the lower level and ordered the cheapest thing on the menu (coffee and raisin toast, I seem to recall). We waited. Surely the guys from U2 would have to eat breakfast sometime! We were right, but not before the hotel manager spotted us and made his approach. “Lads,” he said as we looked up like rabbits caught in the spotlight, “I’ve been watching you all morning. I know what you’re up to. But I like your initiative. Stay as long as you like!”

We couldn’t believe our ears—and ordered another round of coffee and raisin toast.

Eventually, the band came down one by one. Bono, the lead singer, took a table just metres from ours. My mates voted that I should go over and ask him to join us for a few minutes. That’s exactly what I did, and it’s exactly what he did. For what seemed like an hour but was probably no more than five minutes, he signed everything we put in front of him, posed for photos and answered questions—questions about songs, the band, their well-publicized faith, the music industry and so on. The Edge (guitarist) and Larry Mullen Jr (drummer) were just as generous when we pounced on them. Looking back it must have been an annoying interruption for one of the world’s most sought-after bands. They would have been well within their rights to fob us off. But they didn’t. They were patient, courteous and surprisingly mild-mannered (especially Larry, who blushed when we fronted up to him).

I would have loved U2’s music either way. But I doubt they would have had quite the impact on me without this experience. The way they let me and my mates in, gave us time and treated us like equals instead of fawning fans was hugely inspiring. For a moment we imagined that we too could “go professional”, touring and recording full time. Sure enough, within a few years that’s exactly what we were doing. We never had more than minor musical success, but I can’t help feeling that part of the reason we punched above our weight for a decade was a brief moment of humility from our musical heroes. That day helped us to believe that a music career was not just for supermen inhabiting unapproachable glory; it was for people just like us. The inspirational (and aspirational) effect of humility is real.


If you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior, here’s how.

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now this is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9-13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

God bless.

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