Christ the King C: What Kind of King Do You Want?

Luke 23:33-43 Dear Partner in Preaching, “What kind of king do you want?” In one sense, this is the question Jesus put before those crucify him. Keep in mind that just days earlier the crowds of Jerusalem had greeted Jesus as their king, rolling out the “red carpet” as it were by spreading their cloaks on the road, and receiving him as the one sent by the Lord (Luke 19:36-40). And now he is rejected, derided by the leaders of the people, then the soldiers, and even one of the criminals next to them. They mock his titles, asking why, if he is Messiah, chosen One, and King, he does not save himself. “What kind of king do you want?”...

Prayers for Emerging Leaders Sep01

Prayers for Emerging Leaders

This past summer I ended up taking an unanticipated partial sabbatical from blogging. While I had taken part or all of the summer off in previous years, this summer I had hoped actually to catch up on writing in this space and a few others after a full, hectic, and blessed first year at LTSP. Alas, that wasn’t to happen. The summer was busier, and I was more tired, than I’d anticipated and apart from the weekly “Dear Partner” posts for preachers, I ended up writing exactly nothing. Once I realized that was the way things were going to roll, I intended to start up again after Labor Day. But then classes...

Learning to Lead…by Leading!

Note: Each month I write a short piece for our e-letter, P.S. Portions. While I won’t  normally republish that here, I think the story I try to share in that space this month – that the best way to learn how to lead is by being given the chance to lead now – is worth repeating. More than that, I think the video below about some of the leadership roles our students are playing is really, really cool. So even if you want to skip the column (I get it, you’re busy!), at least watch the video. 🙂   Hold this question with me for a moment: What is the best way to educate leaders for the future church? I promise...

Leadership as Making Opportunities

One more note on the TED Talk from yesterday about Nancy Frates’ story about the ALS Ice-Bucket Challenge. A few weeks ago I defined leadership as using the gifts God has given you to bring out the gifts of others in order to accomplish great things in and for the world God loves so much. And I stand by that. 🙂 But as I listened to Nancy Frates, I was also struck by the determination of her son to seize the opportunity in his ALS to make a difference. We don’t often think of tragedy as presenting opportunity of course, but Pete Frates did. In fact, he refused not to see an opportunity. And I think that’s part of being...

Leadership Defined

I wanted to follow up on one brief element of Susan Colantuono’s TED Talk on the Missing Third of Leadership that I posted yesterday. In particular, while she was identifying the missing third – that is, the strategic, operational and financial acumen and ability to execute mission and achieve goals – I want to tarry a bit with the other two, the two elements she believes we usually focus on. She defines these two as 1) using the greatness in you to 2) bring out the greatness in others. What strikes me about this formulation is, first, it’s a great shorthand definition of leadership in general and, second, that it may take some...