Posts Tagged ‘Strengthening the Soul of Your Leadership’

The Loneliness of Leadership

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Moses said to the Lord, “See, you have said to me, ‘Bring up this people’ but you have not let me know whom you will send with me…If your presence will not go, do not carry us up from here.” Exodus 33:12, 14 Any leader who cannot endure profound levels of loneliness will not last…

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Observing Lent: Seeing What We’re Missing

Lent-2017

Lectionary readings for Fourth Sunday of Lent Cycle A: 1 Samuel 16:1-13; Psalm 23; Ephesians 5:8-14; John 9:1-41 Guidance on using the lectionary. “Spiritual masters often refer to a kind of “dread,” the nagging sense that we have missed something important and have been somehow untrue—to ourselves, to others, to God. Lent is a good…

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Spiritual Direction with Pastoral and Corporate Leaders

“A spiritual director is one who helps another to recognize and to follow the inspirations of grace in his life, in order to arrive at the end to which God is leading him.” —Thomas Merton    It was almost twenty years ago now when, as a young leader, I crept into a spiritual director’s office…

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Practicing Lent: True Confessions

“The things we cannot accept in ourselves we project upon others. If I do not admit my shadow side, I will unconsciously find another who will carry my shadow for me. Once this projection is made, then I need not be upset with myself. My problems are now outside and I can fight them “out…

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Practicing Lent: Cleaning Our Messy House

“Create in me a clean heart, O God, and put a new and right spirit within me.” Psalm 51: 10 In her book Amazing Grace, Kathleen Norris tells the story of working as an artist-in- residence at a parochial school, teaching children how to write poetry using the psalms as a model. One little boy…

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Advent 2: Necessary Preparations

“The word of God came to John in the wilderness. He went into all the region around the Jordan, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. As it is written in the book of Isaiah, “Prepare the way of the Lord.” ~from Luke 3:1-6 Recently I started writing a new book which…

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Advent: The Courage to Wait

“God comes to us like the sun in the morning…when it is time. We must assume an attitude of waiting, accepting the fact that we are creatures and not the creator. We must do this because it is not our right to do anything else. The initiative is God’s, not ours. We are able to…

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Available to God on Behalf of Others

“On the day I called, you answered me, you increased my strength of soul.” Psalm 138:3 This week I went to a funeral with my daughter, Haley. It was the funeral for one of her friends who died in a complicated way from causes that were not entirely clear. An Eagle Scout, a disciplined athlete,…

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Holy Week: An Invitation to Walk with Christ

“Stay together, friends, don’t scatter and sleep. Our friendship is made of being awake.” Rumi In her book Cloister Walk, Kathleen Norris comments that in a monastery, Holy Week is “a total surrender to worship.” This surrender allows for a greater focus on the events leading up to and moving us through Resurrection Sunday—Jesus’ gathering…

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Lent: An Invitation to Return to God

“Yet even now, says the Lord, repent and return to me with all your heart.” Joel 2:13 Today is Ash Wednesday—the beginning of the Church’s observance of the Lenten season. It is a space in time in which we are called to stop whatever we are doing, no matter how important it might be, and…

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Make a Joyful Silence

“On the day I called, you answered me, you increased my strength of soul.” Psalm 138:3 Long ago, a wise spiritual director said to me, “Ruth, you are like a jar of river water all shaken up. What you need is to sit still long enough so that the sediment can settle and the water…

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Discernment: Finding God in All Things

“Discernment in its fullness takes a practiced heart, fine-tuned to hear the word of God and the single-mindedness to follow that word in love. It is truly a gift from God, but not one dropped from the skies fully formed. It is a gift cultivated by a prayerful life and the search for self-knowledge.” –Ernest…

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The Conundrum of Calling

“Calls are essentially questions. They aren’t questions you necessarily need to answer outright; they are questions to which you need to respond, expose yourself, and kneel before. You don’t want an answer you can put in a box and set on a shelf. You want a question that will become a chariot to carry you…

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When Leaders Lose Their Souls

“For what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul?” Matthew 16:26 (NLT) I want to talk to you about the soul—your soul, my soul, and the soul of our leadership. When I refer to the soul, I am not talking about…

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Epiphany: A Time for Seeking and Finding

“When the wise men saw that the star had stopped, they were overwhelmed with joy. On entering the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they knelt down and paid him homage.” –Matthew 2:10, 11 Today is the day when Christians celebrate Epiphany—the journey of the wise men to find the Christ…

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Advent: Training in Waiting

“Waiting is the hidden preparation through which God puts his ministers. We neglect it to our own peril.” –Richard Foster The seasons of the church year are meant to teach us something about the spiritual life that we need to learn. Beyond mere information about the spiritual life, they offer us the opportunity to “live…

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Spiritual Leadership And the Practice of Paying Attention

“Spiritual leadership springs forth in grace from our very desire for God’s presence. This does not take effort or striving.    It takes courage, a kind of showing up, attentiveness.” –Gerald May It was a very humbling moment in my life as a person in ministry. I was on staff in a church where, like most…

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A Leader’s Lifeline in the Crucible of Ministry

“I didn’t want to be the leader because the leader always gets voted off the island.” Gary Hogeboom Survivor Guatemala A couple of years ago, our family watched a season of the reality T.V. show Survivor because we were acquainted with one of the participants—former NFL quarterback, Gary Hogeboom. He emerged early on as a…

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