This week, I have been reading ‘Hit the Ground Kneeling: Seeing Leadership Differently’ by Stephen Cottrell, Bishop of Chelmsford.
As the title suggests, the book proposes that leadership most fruitfully begins from a place of contemplation and, for the Christian, prayer.
I am not good at taking time out to kneel before God, and to contemplate the role of pastor to which he has called me. When I do take a day retreat, I can easily feel guilty about all the other things I should be doing. So on this day, when I am on retreat, it’s been good to have the wisdom of this book. For now, I’ll share just a couple of snippets:
‘Being available must never be the defining characteristic of effective leadership.... The wise leader will make wise choices about how time is managed, giving first priority to that space for refreshment and discernment where decisions about the right use of the rest of the time can be profitably made’ (p17).
‘Many leaders rush around doing lots of things because they are seeking affirmation in the wrong place, trying to keep everyone happy rather than being engaged in the more noble vocation of making them holy, helping them become themselves’ (p22).
It’s good stuff, and there’s more where this came from. It’s well worth reading!
Oh, and Cottrell does recommend a day away every month, where Christian leaders can rekindle their first love. Amen to that! Now, all I need is to do it….