If you want to understand unexpected leadership, look into the face of Irena Sendlerowa. It is what you don’t see that is significant: steely resolve, hardened determination, and an intimidating presence. Irena was an unassuming Polish social worker that helped rescue Jewish children from the German-controlled Warsaw Ghetto during World War II. She helped smuggle children out in ambulances and through sewer pipes. She hid children under stretchers, in sacks, trunks, and suitcases. Dangerous? Absolutely! But certain death was the future for those who remained. Irena and her network rescued 2500 Jewish children. She wrote their names on tiny slips of paper which she hid in jars. Then she buried the jars in hopes of reuniting those children with their parents after the war. Life In A Jar is the story of her heroism. Irena’s actions call to mind God’s word in Proverbs:
If you faint in the day of adversity, your strength is small. Rescue those who are being taken away to death; hold back those who are stumbling to the slaughter. If you say, "Behold, we did not know this," does not he who weighs the heart perceive it? Does not he who keeps watch over your soul know it, and will he not repay man according to his work? (Proverbs 24:10-12 ESV)
Unexpected leadership comes at a cost. Irena was captured, tortured, and sentenced to death. She was saved from a firing squad after her underground group, Zegota, bribed her executioner. Your call to unexpected leadership may not require that kind of sacrifice, but it will be costly in terms of time, effort, heartache, and inconvenience. Life in a jar makes it all worthwhile! Stand strong and lead.
MY PRAYER: Lord, give me eyes to see those who are being “led away.” Help me to respond to your call of unexpected leadership.
Copyright © 2010 Tommy Kiedis