I blogged yesterday on how authoritarian leadership is actually a form of oppression.
How do you know if you are an authoritarian leader?
Aside from understanding basic leadership (see, for example, The Top Ten Mistakes Leaders Make — especially the first chapter, which is on authoritarian leadership), here’s one test:
Can you tolerate open inquiry? Do you let people ask questions? And do you let them do this not just one-on-one, but in public and in front of the whole staff?
Are you able to defend your views? Do you simply tell people what to do and expect them to do it because you said, or do you seek to show why it is a good idea?
Good leaders love open inquiry and can make a case for their views and the direction they are taking things.
This is probably one reason why, in the church, all elders — not just the main preaching pastor — must be “able to teach” (1 Timothy 3:2). Without the ability to teach and show why you believe something and are doing something, there is little recourse other than to the unbiblical practice of domineering over those in your charge (1 Peter 5:3).
Excellent. Here they are:
- If you don’t want this job, I’ll find someone who does
- I don’t pay you to think
- I won’t have you on Facebook while you’re on the clock
- I’ll take it under advisement
- Who gave you permission to do that?
- Drop everything and do this now!
- Don’t bring me problems, bring me solutions
- Sounds like a personal problem to me
- I have some feedback for you…and everyone else here feels the same way
- In these times, you’re lucky to have a job at all
Here’s one of the best parts, in response to number 3 (“I won’t have you on Facebook while you’re on the clock”):
Decent managers have figured out that there is no clock, not for white-collar knowledge workers, anyway. Knowledge workers live, sleep, and eat their jobs. Their e-mail inboxes fill up just as fast after 5:00 p.m. as they do before. Their work is never done, and it’s never going to be done. That’s O.K. Employees get together in the office during the daytime hours to do a lot of the work together, and then they go home and try to live their lives in the small spaces of time remaining. If they need a mental break during the day, they can go on PeopleofWalmart.com or Failblog.org without fear of managerial reprisal. We are not robots. We need to stop and shake off the corporate cobwebs every now and then. If a person is sitting in the corner staring up at the ceiling, you could be watching him daydream—or watching him come up with your next million-dollar product idea. (Or doing both things at once.)
Leviticus 19:13 is interesting: “You shall not oppress your neighbor or rob him.”
What does this have to do with leadership?
It’s simple. Command and control leadership is an oppressive way to lead. Authoritarian leadership is a form of oppression. And this verse says “you shall not oppress your neighbor.” While the implications of this verse go far beyond leadership, they do pertain to leadership. If you lead in a way that oppresses your people, you are not leading in accord with this verse.
Am I being too extreme to call authoritarian leadership a form of oppression?
Obviously some forms of oppression are worse than others. I’m not classifying authoritarian leadership with slavery or other such things, which are clearly far more severe.
But as Christians we are to reject all forms of oppression. And authoritarian leadership is a subtle form of oppression because it does not seek the good of those being led. It views the leader as the one knowing all the answers, and the followers as existing to primarily carry out the will and desires of the leader. Instead of seeing his people as having initiative and ability to unleash, he sees them simply as tools. That is a failure to build people and serve them and, yes, it is a form of oppression.
I am not saying that clear, decisive leadership is a form of oppression. I’m not even saying that it is wrong for a leader to get in the details on things and seek to uphold high standards in how things are done.
Rather, we are primarily getting at a heart issue here. Is your aim in leading to serve and build others up in the accomplishment of the mission? Or do you see others merely as a tool to accomplish your aims?
There’s a big difference. That difference plays itself out in varying leadership styles, but at root and most important is your motive. Why are you even leading at all?
From Alex and Brett Harris’ Do Hard Things, quoting the daily periodical Bits & Pieces:
Complacency is a blight that saps energy, dulls attitudes, and causes a drain on the brain. The first symptom is satisfaction with things as they are. The second is rejection of things as they might be: “Good enough” becomes today’s watchword and tomorrow’s standard.
Complacency makes people fear the unknown, mistrust the untried, and abhor the new. Like water, complacent people follow the easiest course — downhill. They draw false strength from looking back.
You’ll notice something interesting: Everything about complacency is the opposite of leadership.
Leadership inspires energy; complacency saps it.
Leadership enlivens attitudes; complacency dulls them.
Leadership energizes you to think hard; complacency is a brain drain.
Leadership is not satisfied with the problems and wrongs of the current situation; complacency says “OK.”
Leadership rallies people to a better future; complacency says “things can’t change; let’s stay here.”
Leadership challenges you with high expectations; complacency is content with “good enough.”
Leadership provides clarity and hope; complacency fears the unknown.
Leadership takes risks and is willing even to make excellent mistakes; complacency fears the untried and is not only unwilling to risk, but scoffs at it.
Leadership motivates people to endure challenges and difficulty to get to where they are going; complacency refuses to challenge the status quo or do hard things.
Leadership is energized by looking to the future; complacency seeks to take a nap in the present, even when it is full of need and opportunity.
But, like leadership, complacency is diligent. It is diligent in its commitment to prevent change and do nothing. At the heart of complacency is a militant commitment to mediocrity that scoffs at the notion that things can be better. And that is the worst thing of all.
Have you ever noticed that the story of Mary and Martha (Luke 10:38-42) comes right after the parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37)?
There is a purpose in that — the authors of the gospels arranged their material very carefully, with thought and intention.
The connection between the two is not hard to see. The story of Mary and Martha is intended, in part, to correct a possible misunderstanding of the parable of the Good Samaritan.
The parable of the Good Samaritan tells us how we are to be as Christians — we are to show mercy to others whenever the opportunity is before us, and indeed we are to seek out opportunities to do good and serve. We are to “go and do likewise” (Luke 10:37), just as the Samaritan did. This is what it means to “love your neighbor as yourself” (v. 27).
But we could mis-apply that by allowing true service to transform into mere busyness. This is what we see with Mary and Martha. Mary “sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to his teaching” (v. 39). Martha, on the other hand, “was distracted with much serving” (v. 40). When Martha asked Jesus to rebuke Mary and help her serve, Jesus said “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her” (vv. 41-42).
The lesson: Do indeed be radical in doing good, just like the Good Samaritan (v. 37). But don’t take this to mean that you should be scrambling around frantically, over-committing yourself and becoming over busy. We ought to sacrifice and endure hardship. But don’t let your service to others distract you from the ultimate reason for your service, which is Jesus himself.
Serve, but don’t be frantic. Sacrifice and go out of your way, but don’t neglect devoted time to worship and prayer and reading the Bible. The point of seeing these things together here in Luke 10 is that there is enough time for both. Don’t let your service turn into frenetic anxiety.
And here’s one other thought: We also see here that God values — indeed, requires — both action and thought. Radical action for good is illustrated in the Good Samaritan. And deep consideration of the teaching of Jesus is modeled in the story of Mary and Martha. Don’t play doing and thinking off against one another. Do both. There is time for both and, ironically, each serves the other.
A great summary of some of the best new features coming to iOS 5.
God’s purpose is to be known: “That your way may be known on earth” (v. 2)
God’s purpose is to be praised: “Let the peoples praise you” (v. 3).
God’s purpose is to be enjoyed: “Let the nations be glad and sing for joy” (v. 4).
God’s purpose is to be feared and reverenced: “Let all the peoples of the earth fear him” (v. 7).
“And God’s purpose is not to be known and praised and enjoyed by any little clique, but by all nations.”
“What does he man to be known for? What does he mean to be praised for? What is it about him that he intends to be enjoyed? And what is is about him that makes us tremble?”
There are 4 of them:
1. He aims to be known as the one and only true and living God. He is not the God of any other religion. I gather this from the fact that an inspired Israelite is praying that his God be praised by the Gentile nations who have other gods. “Let the peoples praise you, O God” (v. 3). Here’s what Isaiah 45:5-6 says: “I am the Lord, and there is no other. Besides me there is no God. …There is none besides me. I am the Lord, there is no other.” God did not say “May all the nations become sincere worshipers of their god.” The whole Israelite religion is the opposite of that.
“Let’s be super clear about this, because we are in a world super charged with Islam. It doesn’t help the cause of truth to say we worship the same God as Muslims do. I am putting the emphasis on the word worship. We do not worship the same God that Muslims do. Muslims do not believe in Jesus dying, giving his life as a ransom for sinners, who raise from the dead and claims worship as the divine Son of God. They don’t affirm any of those things, which for us are the center and essence of our faith. And Jesus has something to say about people of whatever religion who don’t believe those things about him: ‘You know neither me nor my Father. If you knew me, you would know my Father’ (John 8). John 5:23: ‘Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father.” If you don’t worship Jesus, you do not worship God. Liberals who don’t believe Jesus rose, they don’t know God. No one who denies the Son has the Father. And everyone who truly worships the Father also worships Jesus: “Whoever has heard and learned from the Father comes to me’ (John 6). Neither Muslims or anyone else in any religion — including Baptists or any denomination in Christianity — knows God if they do not trust in Jesus.”
2. He wants to be known and praised and enjoyed and feared because he is a God of justice. Verse 4: “Let the nations be glad and sing for joy, for you judge the peoples with equity.” When the judgment comes, God will not be partial. No bribes will be considered, no sophisticated plea bargaining, all will proceed along the lines of perfect, divine righteousness. Everyone stands on equal footing. There will be one standard for everyone: perfection. Therefore, the universal failure to love God with all our heart and all our soul and all our mind means the only salvation is the death of Jesus in our place. The perfections of Jesus and the punishments of Jesus are the only remedy for the entire world.
3. God aims to be known and praised and enjoyed and feared for his sovereign power. Verse 4: “Let the nations be glad and sing for joy, for you judge the peoples with equity, and guide the nations upon earth.” Many nations boast of their independence, but God made all nations and determined their boundaries and periods of time (Acts 17) and “he removes kings and sets up kings” (Daniel 2:21) and “he does according to his will in the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of men” (Daniel 4:35). God means to make himself known as sovereign over the existence and rise and fall of nations. He sets the destiny, not any president.
And part of this destiny is that they will hear the gospel.
4. God aims to be known as a gracious God. Verse 1: “May God be gracious to us and bless us and make his face to shine upon us, that your way may be known on earth, your saving power among all nations.”
Piper’s quick summary of God’s path, through Abraham and Israel, to save all the nations:
God chose Abraham and said “I will bless you to be a blessing, and through you all the nations of the earth shall be blessed” (Genesis 12, 15). Psalm 67 is a realization and praying into reality of that promise ahead of time. “May God be gracious to us and bless us…that your way may be known on earth, your saving power among all nations.”
God fulfills this through Christ, who is the seed of Abraham. All who belong to Christ — whether Jew or Gentile — become the seed of Abraham and are heirs according to promise.
Galatians 3:13: “Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us so that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles” — that is, the nations. “Know then it is those who are of faith are the sons of Abraham.” “If you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring — heirs according to the promise.”
“God’s plan to save the world is that he created it, it fell, and on his way to redeem the nations he chose a nation, Israel. You might say: ‘That’s strange. He focused on one nation for 2,000 years’. It is strange. That’s why Romans 11 is in the Bible. Romans 11 is all about why God took this strange, circuitous route to the nations through focusing first on Israel primarily for 2,000 years.”
Piper is starting his message now, “Let the Peoples Praise You, O God Let All the Peoples Praise You!” He is preaching from Psalm 67 and Genesis 12.
“Let’s apply these truths to the unreached.” “There are 6,000 plus people groups with little or no access to the gospel. Over 2.5 billion people. Why must we give our lives, losing them if necessary, to spreading this gospel? Why must we go to them with urgency?” 3 reasons:
1. The knowledge of God in nature is sufficient to condemn, but not to save. All people see the glory of God in nature, and reject it (Romans 1). It is only through the gospel that God cuts through this and brings salvation (Romans 1:16; 10). Will God condemn someone for not believing in a Jesus they never heard of? No. “But the problem is there are no innocent people in Africa — or anywhere — waiting to hear the gospel. There are only guilty people. The innocent person does not exist. That’s why we need the gospel.”
2. “We must go to them because the gospel is powerful enough to save them forever. Because the gospel is truly good news for every people group on the planet, and it works.” “You can go to the hardest, most difficult people group to reach, and you can have confidence that that people group will be represented around the throne of God. This gospel is powerful enough to save. There is not a people group on the planet that God cannot save. And people who believe that cannot stay in their seats and do nothing.”
3. “The glory of God is good enough to satisfy them forever.”
A summary of Platt on God’s remedy for our sin:
How can a holy God look at a guilty sinner and say: “Innocent”? We rightly expect God to justify the innocent and condemn the guilty. And none are innocent. So how can God call the guilty innocent?
Jesus’ death is the payment for sin. All the suffering of Jesus is for our sin. Isaiah shows that Jesus stood in the place of sinners, in our place, to bear the penalty for sin: Isaiah 52:13 – 53: 12.
Is it true that “God hates the sin but loves the sinner”? In one sense, certainly. God loves sinners. But when we see God’s holy wrath against sin, we need to understand that it’s not as though sin is something outside us. Sin is at the core of who we really are. So when Jesus went to the cross, he wasn’t just enduring the penalty of sin as though it is something outside us. He was doing this in our place — taking the full wrath of God due to us as sinners.
Here’s the deal: We are sinners. All of us by nature went our own way. God has both wrath and love towards sinners. How can God’s judgment and love toward sinners be reconciled? That’s the cross. God takes away all of the judgment due us. The beauty of the gospel is that God takes away all our sins and does not count any of them against us.
“Think of it: Of the God of the universe looking at us and saying ‘I have no record of anything going wrong in your life.’ Because God cancelled the debt at the cross. In fact, because of Christ’s righteous obedience, he looks at us and says ‘I only have a record of you doing right.’”
“Everything in all of creation responds to God, until you get to man and we have the audacity to look him in the face and say ‘no.’ From this sin, we see lostness all over this book (Isaiah). What does it mean to be lost? It means to be cut off from God. To live alienated from God. Separated from Christ (Eph 2:12). Romans 5:18: one trespass led to condemnation for everyone. In our sinfulness we are cut off from God, we are enemies of God. We are slaves to sin, John 8:34. Jesus said ‘truly truly I say to you: everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin.’ 2 Timothy 2:26 says we are captured in the snare of the evil one, having been captured by him to do his will. We are children of wrath, Eph 2:3, and darkened in our understanding. And this affects every facet of our being. And this is the natural state of all of us. Romans 3: ‘there is none who seeks God, not even one. There are none who understand.’”
A side note: I know this is not Platt’s purpose, but it is really remarkable how well he knows the Scripture. He is quoting dozens of Scriptures from memory. This is a good model for all of us.
Platt is really driving home the lostness of the human condition. A reflection: I’m reading through Jeremiah right now, and over and over you see Jeremiah denouncing the sins of Israel. And what stands out is: this is the state of all of us, by nature apart from God. Jeremiah isn’t just denouncing the sin of “those people over there.” The point of the book is that we are all fallen, every one of us, and our only hope is to look to God in Christ for mercy. That is, we cannot come to God on the basis of our good works. Apart from him, we don’t have any. The way to a relationship with God is to acknowledge our sin to him and trust in Christ for mercy, not in anything we do, have done, or can do.
Piper introduced David Platt with two things he loves about him most: his love for the Scriptures and passion for God’s glory among the nations.
Platt remarked how the passages he planned on speaking on are the same ones Louie Giglio went to last night — so maybe the Lord wants us to go deep into these passages.
Reading from Isaiah 6 now.
“There is no one like our God. It is folly to compare anything to our God. All of the earth is a continual explosion of the glory of God. ‘He brings the stars out one by one and calls them each one by one.’ And he is sovereign over all nations. Go to Isaiah 46. This is part of the purpose of Isaiah — to show the sovereignty and supremacy of God over the nations.”
This is a key point he is making: God’s sovereignty over nature is meant to buttress our confidence that God is sovereign over human history as well. We shouldn’t think “God is sovereign over rocks and trees and stars, but human history is out of his control.” He is sovereign over human history just as much as he is sovereign over the course of the stars and workings of nature.
Louie Giglio brought in some amazing illustrations from astronomy to illustrate the supremacy of God.
Apparently, the electromagnetic radiation that quasars emit translates into sound. “Stars don’t just shine; they also sing.”
So he put some quasars up on the screen and then the sound their signals reduce to. Then he did this for some whales, mashed it all together, and laid over Chris Tomlin’s “How Great is Our God.” And it all fit. It was pretty cool.
It seemed so hard to explain that I captured the video on my iPhone. Here’s the video:
And here was his point:
“The point is simply this. God is a God who doesn’t need anything. He has a band, he has a universe, that is singing to him. Every bird’s wing that flaps through the sky, every ocean wave that crashes on the shore, every snowflake that falls imperceptibly to you and me, or when a baby cries or a human being laughs, it is all God’s creation praising him, and he is big and powerful and amazing and expansive in every way, and he is the one asking the question: ‘Whom shall I send? He doesn’t need us, but he invites us to be a part of what he is doing.’”
There is a ripple effect of the gospel that is undeniable. It doesn’t lead us to just contemplate what happened to us, but proclaim what Christ has done.
God is bigger than we think he is. I don’t know how big you think he is, but he’s still bigger than that.
God is not just a global God, he is a galactic God. And he is even bigger than that. I love the quote “the universe is one of God’s thoughts.”
Isaiah 6 has been in my heart over the last few weeks, and this is an incredible passage. Isaiah saw a God who is “high and lifted up”–not low and bowed down.
Worship is happening with or without you. Worship happens wherever God is present, and Isaiah saw this. The vision of God was so great it wrecked him. He didn’t need anyone to tell him what kind of trouble our sinful condition puts us in. And God restored him, and Isaiah heard “whom shall we send?”
You cannot be near the cross and not hear that. Because the world is messed up, and God cares.
Talking about the Sombrero Galaxy now, 34 or so million light years away. “Most of you didn’t even know about it. And so you are saying ‘then what’s it doing there/’ It’s there for God, not first you.”
Astronomers are perplexed: why is the universe so big? And they are saying “There’s got to be more people in this place. It’s way too big if it’s just for you and me.” I agree — if the universe was created just for humanity, it’s oversized. But if they knew the universe’s primary function was not to house humanity but to magnify the creator, they would know it’s just about the right size.”
“This world is messed up to an amazing magnitude. But in the midst of this there is a God, who is great beyond our wildest imagination.
“And he has linked arms with us and given us marching orders if you will, and we are not at our leisure tonight. We are here under the mandate of hte grace of God, which found us, restored us, redeemed us, breathed life back into our dormant lungs, and brought us back from the grave for one purpose:
“That we would become an amplifier for the beauty of Jesus among all the peoples on the planet.”
Since I’m here anyway, I think I’ll live blog the DG conference.
It’s on missions, and the theme is Finish the Mission.
Louie Giglio is up now.
Doing the right thing when it costs something is the essence of true heroism. It is also the mark of a great leader.
From J. Oswald Sanders’ Spiritual Leadership: Principles of Excellence for Every Believer. I can’t get it to work as a table, as it is in the book, but you should be able to see the comparisons well enough:
Makes own decisions
Seeks personal reward
Confident in God
Knows men and knows God
Seeks God’s will
Humble [and ambitious for God's aims]
Follows God’s example
Delights in obedience to God
Loves God and others
Depends on God
Sometimes people say to me, “leadership is not a biblical category. The right terms are shepherding or stewardship or discipleship.”
Shepherding, stewardship, and discipleship are indeed critical things. And the absolute last thing I would want to say to pastors is “you aren’t shepherds, you’re leaders.” That would be horrible. Shepherding is a massive, valid, critical, and biblical category, and I think it communicates more about the nature of the pastoral role than simply the term “leader” does.
However, leadership is a biblical category. Pastoring (shepherding) is a type of leadership. And there are other types of leadership in the church and in all sectors of society everywhere that we are unable to properly describe and understand if we abandon the term “leadership.” Leadership is a good and right and proper category for these things.
In other words, if we abandon the category of “leadership,” we abandon an essential and necessary grid for understanding the task of (dare I say it) leading people. That’s what school superintendents, project managers, small group leaders, managers, CEOs, directors, vice presidents, marketing managers, executive pastors, senior pastors, and on and on, are doing.
Saying “that’s not leadership, that’s stewardship” doesn’t help a ton — stewarding what? Neither does saying “this is discipleship.” In the church and among Christians, that’s a helpful category. But is the marketing manager at Target discipling his or her employees? Maybe there is an element of that, even in the general arena of work. But if so, it’s discipleship in the context of leading a department, or carrying out whatever your role is.
We might be tempted to say that leadership is the right category for the task of leading outside the church, but it’s not a biblical category for inside the church.
But this would ignore the fact that the Bible actually speaks of leadership, and uses that term to describe the task of leading and shepherding inside the church as well. For example:
Luke 22:26: “Let the greatest among you become as the youngest, and the leader as one who serves.
Hebrews 13:7, 17: “Remember your leaders, those who spoke to you the word of God. Consider the outcome of their way of life, and imitate their faith. . . . Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls.”
Acts 5:31: “God exalted him at his right hand, as leader and savior.”
One interesting thing to note, and this is one reason this matters so much: In Luke 20:26, Jesus is drawing a contrast with how the Gentiles led, and how he wants the church led. The Gentiles lorded it over people and saw exercising authority and controlling people (for the leader’s benefit!) the main thing in leadership. Jesus said: “Not so. That’s a wrong view of leadership. It will not be that way among you.”
Here’s the point: If we remove leadership as a category of thought, we are unable to make these sorts of contrasts and comparisons. If what a person in the general society is doing can be called “leadership,” but what we are doing in the church can’t be, we lose the ability to learn from comparisons and contrasts. Jesus couldn’t have made the point he did here.
And, it is to be noted, Jesus’ point was not “you aren’t leaders.” His point was: “Lead in this way, not that that way. You will lead for the benefit of those you serve, not your own benefit. You will not focus on controlling people and exercising authority, but building them up for their good.” That’s true leadership.
The problem is not the concept of “leadership.” It’s that there are lots of wrong ideas about leadership out there. The problem is not leadership, but bad leadership.
We don’t need to be afraid of the term leadership — it is a biblical category. Let’s not eat the confusing fruit of overspiritualization that seeks to eliminate real, biblical, helpful categories in favor of more spiritual-sounding, but often ambiguous, ways of speaking.
All seen in the parable of the Good Samaritan:
Here’s the interesting thing: When we think of showing mercy and serving others, we don’t often think of advocacy. But it is often a critical, and simple, form of mercy. Just advocating for the person — taking up their cause, defending them, supporting them, advocating for them.
(Note: Advocacy is different than encouragement. Encouragement is something you do to the person — building them up and strengthening them with your words. Advocacy is something you do for them in relation to others. When the real need is advocacy, encouragement alone can come across as hollow. On the other hand, real and sincere advocacy is a very encouraging thing.)
My guest post at the Willow Creek Association leadership blog. Here’s the start:
When most of us think of good works, we tend to think of things like giving money to those in need, encouraging a friend who is discouraged, or going on a short-term mission trip.
All of those things are critical and important, and definitely are good works.
However, it’s easy to think that these types of things are the only things that God considers good works. That good works are something relatively rare and infrequent. If you go on a mission trip, you are engaging in good works. But when you go to your job each day you are doing … what, exactly?
A great post by John Piper. He gives quick thoughts on 9 areas:
- Corporate shaping
One additional word on skill: If you show love by being the first to order the pizza, or drive the van, or do whatever to serve people, but aren’t good at what you do, everything will fall flat. You have to be good at what you do. Good intentions are not enough.
And this usually means, in part, reading about your industry and about the best practices (and unconventional practices!) for your role and about management and about leadership and other such things.
Which likely means reading secular resources as well as Christian. You won’t learn what it means to be a great manager, for example, simply by reading Christian books on management (unfortunately!). Same with leadership. Marketing. And so forth.
And this is acceptable and good. As John Wesley said, “To imagine none can teach you but those who are themselves saved from sin, is a very great and dangerous mistake. Give not place to it for a moment.”
Likewise, the book of Acts points out that Moses (Moses!) was “instructed in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, and he was mighty in his words and deeds” (Acts 7:22). And we could go on and talk about Daniel (Daniel 1:4, 17), Paul, Luke, Joseph, the book of Proverbs (most scholars recognize that many of the Proverbs were adapted from the wisdom literature of other civilizations), Jonathan Edwards, and on and on.
The point is: If we want to glorify God in our workplaces, we need to learn from the best thinkers in our fields, whether they are Christians or not. And, this creates a better testimony to the gospel.
Don’t be the guy who volunteers first to go get the pizza, but that everyone groans about because he thinks that’s a substitute for being an expert in his role.
Marcus Buckingham’s new book, StandOut: The Groundbreaking New Strengths Assessment from the Leader of the Strengths Revolution, is now available. I’m very much looking forward to reading it, and the new strengths assessment that has been released along with it sounds very helpful.
Michael Hyatt has an excellent review. Here’s an excerpt:
As usual, Marcus does a great job striking the balance between theory and practice. He gives you just enough of the theory to understand the statistical validity of the testing instrument. Yet he does this without making your eyes glaze over. He also does a fabulous job of providing lots of real-world illustrations and personal anecdotes.
If you enjoy self-assessments, want to further exploit your strengths, and make your greatest contribution, this book is for you. If you lead a team, it would be well-worth the investment to read the book, take the test, and then discuss the results as a group. It will provide you with insights into how you can better tap the strengths of your team and recruit roles that aren’t currently represented.
And here’s a video of Buckingham talking about the book:
Registration is open for Redeemer’s new faith and work conference, The Gospel & Culture. The conference will be November 4-5.
Here’s the gist:
The Gospel & Culture Conference represents the culmination of more than eight years of the Center for Faith & Work’s ministry targeted at equipping, connecting, and mobilizing Christians to engage the world from a gospel-centered foundation.
Drawing on the experiences of one another as well as more than 10 speakers representing various sectors, conference participants will gain:
- Sharpened discernment of God’s work in the world.
- Renewed understanding of the importance of community in cultural engagement.
- Heightened awareness of the power of the Holy Spirit in changing motivations of the heart.
- Excitement for our daily work as it contributes to building for the great City that is to come.
And here’s the agenda:
The Conference opens Friday evening, November 4th, with participants engaging the culture of NYC through “Glimpses,” events happening throughout the city which point toward evidence of God’s glory and His sovereignty over all things.
On Saturday, November 5th, all attendees convene at St. Bart’s for a full day of interacting with practitioners from across various sectors who will showcase their work in ways that highlight God’s work in the world.
Speakers include Tim Keller, Richard Mouw, and many others.