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12.17.2018

"Spiritual Leadership", by J. Oswald Sanders (book review)


Are you wondering if you have what it takes to lead? Or are you wondering if you still have what it takes to lead? As J. Oswald Sanders makes clear throughout this book, there is a lot involved in leadership, but even more-so in spiritual leadership. He writes, “It is not a calling we choose to pursue, but is it calling we choose to answer.”

If any of these thoughts strike a chord with you, this book may well be a good resource to consider. In twenty-two chapters (206 pages), J. Oswald Sanders leads the reader through the highs and lows, ups and downs, joys and sorrows of what it means to be a spiritual leader.

Reading this book came at a particularly useful time for me, as I have recently embarked on answering the call to be the interim music director in our local congregation. In short order, many issues and small fires have already surfaced, and I have felt the burden of their increasing weight as these matters cannot continue to go ignored.  So, I was encouraged in reading this book that I am not alone in these struggles, but have a good company and knowing that I can get through them all with the right mindset…and I may even come out the other side as a better leader as a result.

Sanders reminds the reader that:
·         sometimes leadership calls us to cut to the heart and render judgment in difficult situations, while other times decisions require patience and grace;
·         that it is no virtue to be disliked as a leader, but it is also dangerous to pursue being popular;
·         that a true leader humbly serves others and sets them up for success, while poor leaders pridefully promote themselves and their own needs;
·         that good leadership comes at a cost in the form of fatigue, loneliness, criticism, and rejection.
·         that all difficulties provide opportunities to reveal who the true leaders are.

While there are a plethora of very good books pertaining to leadership, this is one of the better books I've read on leadership in the church – “Spiritual Leadership”.  I would highly suggest it to anyone who is considering answering the call to leadership, or to anyone currently in a leadership position who is struggling under its burdens.

No doubt about it, I give “Spiritual Leadership” 5 out of 5 stars!

Disclaimer: I received this book free of charge from Moody Publishers in exchange for my unbiased review of it. I was not required to provide a positive review. All opinions are mine.

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