Leadership Lessons From The Boys in The Boat

My book club just finished reading “The Boys in the Boat” about the BoysInBoatunlikely rowing team that won a gold medal in the 1936 Olympics.  As I prepared to lead the discussion, I came across this fantastic article that draws eight Christian leadership lessons from the book.  I highly recommend the article, even if you haven’t read the book!


Healthy Discipleship Requires Raising Up Disciplers

We need to raise up disciple-makers… This is not simply the task of your pastor… we are ALL called to be disciple-makers, because disciples of Jesus Christ cannot be mass produced. 

Programs do not make disciples, people make disciples.

Good blog post.


Let Go. Die Quickly.

I tuned in to an old play list while running yesterday and the song “Let Go” by Barlow Girl popped up.

“Yeah I trust in You, I remember times You led me, This time it’s bigger now, And I’m afraid You’ll let me down, But how can I be certain?  Will You prove Yourself again?

[Chorus:]  ‘Cause I’m about to let go
And live what I believe
I can’t do a thing now
But trust that You’ll catch me
When I let go, When I let go

What is this doubt in me , Convincing me to fear the unknown, When all along You’ve shown, Your plans are better than my own, And I know I won’t make it, If I do this all alone…”

Ladies, why is it so stinking hard for us to trust God?  Every time I am left to my own devices I make a big mess of things… my historical track record is not so awesome.  But all along God has shown that His plans are better than my own!  His track record is fantastic!

So I was thinking about you – my friends – and I wanted to encourage you to LET GO, to SURRENDER.  Stop hanging on and trying to exercise some imaginary control over everything… your kids, your husband, your health, your life…

And I was thinking about myself – as I am embarking on a new ministry.  I remember well sitting in a leadership workshop with Chris Adams (of Lifeway) and she made three BIG points:

(1) Seek God Early.  Early in the day.  Early in all your ministry plans.

(2) Die Quickly.  Let go of your own plans, goals, and control.  Surrender to God’s purpose and control in your ministry.  Christ calls us to die.  Keep on dying to yourself and your plans.  A mark of maturity is your peace and confidence in God’s control.

(3) Obey Continually.  Keep on doing it until you are given other instructions.  Do not grow weary of doing good.  You will reap a harvest if you obey and do not give up.

Let Go, ladies.  Let God.  Let’s work on dying quickly, so He doesn’t have to come and wrestle control from us… : )

Unintended Consequences

“And that day Doeg the Edomite killed eighty-five men who wore the linen ephod. He also put to the sword Nob, the town of the priests, with its men and women, children and infants, and its cattle, donkeys, and sheep.” 1 Samuel 22:18-19

Have you ever done something that had unintended consequences?  And maybe it wasn’t something you wanted to do, or had even planned to do, but when the time came it had to be done that way?  And then things went from bad to worse… And you felt responsible, even though it maybe wasn’t your fault at all?

Yea, it’s been that kind of week.

Do you know what happened in the town of Nob in 1 Samuel 21?  David (not yet king, but commander of a big chunk of Saul’s army) and his soldiers were running away from King Saul.  They barged into town, met the head priest, and talked him out of some consecrated bread and a sword.  The priest was terrified, but I don’t think he had much choice.  Then a spy in the town went a told King Saul, who was furious and ordered his men to wipe out all the priests and the town of Nob.  His soldiers refused to touch the men of God.  So the spy killed everyone with the king’s blessing.

When the news got back to David, he claimed responsibility for their deaths.  He didn’t make any excuses, or blame the spy who totally caused the whole drama, or even blame King Saul who was acting crazy.

Leadership is rather tiresome sometimes.

It can be a great challenge to separate out in your mind what needs to be done from the behavior of others and unintended consequences.  I remain in awe of David’s ability to seek God, hear Him clearly, and carry on with the weight of leadership and its responsibilities clearly on his shoulders.


What a Mentor Can Do For You

Do you have a woman who is committed to investing in you and your spiritual life?Mentoring

Are you the woman who is intentionally investing in the lives of others?

We as mentors and leaders are called to empower others with the power God has given us.

Leaders and mentors who are “other-focused” bring many different gifts to those they mentor or lead, including these:

  • Accountability – They help others keep their commitments to God.
  • Affirmation – They speak words of support and encouragement.
  • Assessment – They evaluate others’ progress, offering an objective perspective.
  • Advice – They offer words of wise counsel and direction.
  • Admonishment – They lend words of caution, rebuke, or correction.
  • Assets – They give tangible resources (time, money, effort, networks) to help their people reach their goals.
  • Acceptance – They provide unconditional love, regardless of the recipients’ identity.
  • Application – They help others find places to apply and practice what they learn (and their gifts).

Wouldn’t you love to have another woman do ALL THAT for you?!

Would you consider BEING that mentor or leader for others?

* Adapted from John Maxwell, A Leader’s Heart devotional, (9/5).