Finding Grace in the Face of Dementia by John Dunlop MD, Free for CAPC Members
Dunlop’s book tackles a subject that few of us would care to read about in a way that encourages, informs, and relieves fear.
Leadership is scary. As a manager of a Christian nonprofit organization, I’m responsible for other people’s work, well-being, and commitment. A decision I make or a word I say can have a long-lasting effect on someone’s life—and I might not even realize it at the time.
Leadership Mosaic will remind you to evaluate your heart, your motives, and your relationship with God as it pertains to a role of responsibility.Who am I to have such a responsibility? I’m just a regular Joe—or a regular Jolene, if you will. But I’m put in this place of power, and I do believe God’s got my back if I follow His directions.
In Leadership Mosaic, Daniel Montgomery discusses the need for leaders to follow God’s example. He describes leadership as not just an embodiment of one attitude or perspective, but a collection of God-given traits.
When we’re lost, we look for leaders. After all, they seem to know where they’re going. The trouble is that as you look at other leaders, they all seem to be going in different directions.
As the founder and lead pastor of Sojourn Community Church and founder of Sojourn Network, Montgomery comments that leaders are often tempted toward either reckless confidence or lack of confidence.
I get that. As a leader, you can become so sure of yourself that you see anyone who has a differing opinion as wrong or even disrespectful. On the other hand, you can become so scared of the power you have to influence and affect others that you do nothing and let others make decisions for you. In the latter position, you gradually lose your authority as the people you are supposed to be leading, consciously or not, dictate the terms of the relationship.
Oddly enough, I’ve experienced both, and it is only humility found through trusting God that has guided me back to a place of genuine, Christ-emulating leadership.
Montgomery uses the gospel to provide five reliable principles of leadership. He highlights the importance of conviction, creativity, courage, collaboration, and contemplation.
Using life examples and stories, Montgomery weaves a narrative that defines what a leader under the church should look like in a world that’s full of data where information is available at the tap of a keyboard.
We don’t need more information. We need to practice what we preach. God is inviting you out of the library where you have control over simple solutions. He wants you to come outside into the complexity and reality of his world and his Word.
Leadership Mosaic is best approached by leaders who acknowledge their strengths and their weaknesses. Due to our personalities and experiences, we each uniquely exhibit Montgomery’s five principles. Personally, I am more creative than courageous. I love looking at things in new ways and coming up with unique ideas, but sometimes I lack the courage to implement them. I also have fallen into seeing people as projects to be managed rather than persons to be encouraged, which is a mistake Montgomery warns against. As a Christian leader, it is important to remember that people are the reason we do what we do. Their lives, their stories, their relationships—they are what matter. And I sometimes let the business aspects of running an organization impede my need for rest, contemplation, and joy. This book is a reminder to find balance in these things and to appreciate others who are strong in areas I am weak.
To work together, we need humility. We embrace our strengths as God’s gifts. We also embrace our weaknesses; they show us our need for others.
If you, like me, are a Christian leader, Leadership Mosaic will remind you to evaluate your heart, your motives, and your relationship with God as it pertains to a role of responsibility. As we approach a new year, this is a great time to prayerfully consider the complex vision of leadership God has called us to emulate and reflect on the challenges we’ve faced, the failures we’ve overcome, and the successes we’ve celebrated through the one who gives us strength.
Image via Leadership Mosaic
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