This is a highly readable and challenging little book on the topic of Christian leadership. Nouwen uses the temptations of Jesus--to relevance, popularity, and power--to encourage 21st century leaders toward prayer, confession, and theological reflection.
I appreciated Nouwen's own journey of serving at l'Arche community for the mentally handicapped and his friendship with 'Bill' as a very personal thread running throughout the book.
Recommended for seasoned leaders to reflect on the internal and external influences on their ministry.
This book feels like it is written for busy ministers. It's short chapters and consistent chapter structure makes it a useful tool, especially for a quiet day. This is not so much a book on "How to do leadership" but rather on "How to be a leader". At the heart of the book are reflections on the spirituality of Christian Leadership.
The book has three chapters that reflect and help leaders to lead as Jesus did: from relevance to prayer, from popularity to ministry, from leading to being led. Each chapter looks at the temptation that Jesus faced in the wilderness and Nouwen connects that to the temptations that leaders face and then suggests a way forward, based on Jesus' instruction to Peter on being a leader. Nouwen then suggests a relevant spiritual Discipline.
It's simplicity hides profound depths for personal reflection and does not treat the reader in a patronising manner. The structure of the book facilitates reflection on character and practice.
This book is all about humility which in Christian ministry sadly can be in short supply. Easily read in one sitting. For any church leader is really important to read to remind ourselves that those who are so easily overlooked can be agents for change by the work of the Holy Spirit. Great little book.
The profound effects of a humble man. Leadership at its best. Very easy to read, and can be read quickly (in an hour or so), or over a longer period of time to be more reflective of the impact we can have on others.
An excellent and brutally honest breakdown of what we usually consider to be ministry but that often takes the ministers further away from God, leaving them in existential and spiritual emptiness, and the cure, learning to love people again. A very short book but Henri has the wisdom not to use many words for something that can be said with only a few.