The Servant Leader Paradox Poem

Strong enough to be weak, Successful enough to fail

Busy enough to make time, Wise enough to say “I don’t know”

Serious enough to laugh, Rich enough to be poor

Right enough to say “I’m wrong”, Compassionate enough to discipline

Mature enough to be childlike, Important enough to be last

Planned enough to be spontaneous, Controlled enough to be flexible

Free enough to endure captivity, Knowledgeable enough to ask questions

Loving enough to be angry, Great enough to be anonymous

Responsible enough to play, Assured enough to be rejected

Victorious enough to lose, Industrious enough to relax

Leading enough to serve

Poem by Brewer — as cited by Hansel, in Holy Sweat, Dallas Texas, Word, 1987. (p29)

Benjamin Franklin’s Epitaph

Here’s a great quote regarding the epitaph of Benjamin Franklin:

The body of Benjamin Franklin, printer (like the cover of an old book, its contents worn out, and stript of its lettering and gilding) lies here, food for worms. Yet the work itself shall not lost, for it will, as he believed, appear once more In a new and more beautiful edition, corrected and amended by its Author

Success ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

To laugh often and much;
To win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children;
To earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends;
To appreciate beauty,
To find the best in others,
To leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child,
A garden patch or a redeemed social condition;
To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived.
This is to have succeeded.

Don’t Quit ~ Unknown

“Don’t Quit.”

When things go wrong, as they sometimes will,
When the road you’re trudging seems all uphill,
When the funds are low and the debts are high,
And you want to smile, but you have to sigh,
When care is pressing you down a bit,
Rest, if you must, but don’t you quit.

Life is queer with its twists and turns,
As every one of us sometimes learns,
And many a failure turns about,
When he might have won had he stuck it out;
Don’t give up though the pace seems slow–
You may succeed with another blow.

Often the goal is nearer than,
It seems to a faint and faltering man,
Often the struggler has given up,
When he might have captured the victor’s cup,
And he learned too late when the night slipped down,
How close he was to the golden crown.

Success is failure turned inside out–
The silver tint of the clouds of doubt,
And you never can tell how close you are,
It may be near when it seems so far,
So stick to the fight when you’re hardest hit–
It’s when things seem worst that you must not quit.

– Author unknown

It Couldn’t Be Done ~ Edgar A. Guest

It Couldn’t Be Done
by
Edgar Albert Guest

Somebody said that it couldn’t be done,
But, he with a chuckle replied
That “maybe it couldn’t,” but he would be one
Who wouldn’t say so till he’d tried.
So he buckled right in with the trace of a grin
On his face. If he worried he hid it.
He started to sing as he tackled the thing
That couldn’t be done, and he did it.

Somebody scoffed: “Oh, you’ll never do that;
At least no one has done it”;
But he took off his coat and he took off his hat,
And the first thing we knew he’d begun it.
With a lift of his chin and a bit of a grin,
Without any doubting or quiddit,
He started to sing as he tackled the thing
That couldn’t be done, and he did it.

There are thousands to tell you it cannot be done,
There are thousands to prophesy failure;
There are thousands to point out to you one by one,
The dangers that wait to assail you.
But just buckle it in with a bit of a grin,
Just take off your coat and go to it;
Just start to sing as you tackle the thing
That “couldn’t be done,” and you’ll do it.

Book Review: The Hole in Our Gospel

by Richard Stearns, President of World Vision

There’s a few books that I read on a regular basis each year that continue to inspire me:

Celebration of Discipline by Richard J. Foster
The Dream Giver by Bruce Wilkinson
A Whack on the Side of the Head by Roger von Oech

As I read those books, they constantly remind me of various concepts about God and creativity that I never want to forget. I’ll be adding the book The Hole in Our Gospel to this select group simply because it is one that reminds me of what the church should look like.

I had a difficult time reading this book, not because it was a difficult read, but rather because as I read it various people were brought into my life that I felt I needed to share the book with. I gave my first copy of the book away to a denominational leader because he asked to read it. I loaned my second copy of the book to a friend so that he could read it. I bought a third copy of the book for a visiting speaker. And I finally had to steal my wife’s copy just so I could finish the book.

It’s a humbling and inspiring sense of understanding to know that as you read through this book that there are glaring points of inadequacy that exist in your relationship with God because of the blessings that the American church has received. I found myself time and time again having to put the book down and walk away simply because I was affected and convicted of some of the core values that are missing in my walk as a Christian.

I walked away from this book with the understanding that God is calling me personally not just to do something, but rather to join Him in what he is already doing and to do that which He has created only me to do. It’s that understanding that is provoking many substantial lifestyle changes for my wife and I. It’s not going to be pretty for a while, but I am fully confident that it will be worth it to step alongside God and join Him in the work He is doing.

Thomas Nelson is the publisher of this book. There’s a website for the book that you can go to and learn more about the book and it’s author. And of course, you can purchase the book at Amazon.com – I highly recommend it to you.