Pain-bearing leadership

Pain-bearing leadership

Leaders bear pain.  It’s been a theme of mine recently.  For strength does not mean being impervious to pain.  And leadership reframing of reality means first staring death in the face. It’s been a theme in this space because I’ve seen it again and again in the space of my daily living.  Leadership means carrying the pain … Continue reading

A strength learned

A strength learned

The measure of strength as a virtue of character is not how much pressure one can exert against others but how much stress one can absorb without breaking apart.  The strong person is not impervious to pain but persevering in purpose. Ray Anderson, Soulprints I have learned about strength over recent months.  I have learned … Continue reading

Naming for reframing

Naming for reframing

Naming reality and then reframing it. I’ve done a lot of that again this week.  In conversation after unplanned conversation.  And as I’ve done so, I’ve heard that whisper which might be God’s.  A tendril of thought, drawing my attention to what it is that I do and to how others respond. In the midst … Continue reading

Land unknown and unfamiliar

Land unknown and unfamiliar

Spiritual direction is an art, a creative process by which, together, we dare to imagine wild and exciting new possibilities for ourselves and God’s world.  It is a dangerous business because it involves the transgression of limits and our entering into the unknown and unfamiliar. Alan Jones, Exploring Spiritual Direction. The last twelve months I’ve certainly … Continue reading

All fire

All fire

Photo credit Vulnerability, she said. That’s what I’ve learned about leadership this year. How to be vulnerable in leadership, to share appropriately my weakness to create a space for others to share theirs. As I listened to this young leader whom I had mentored over recent months, I nodded. Yes, this the theme of my … Continue reading

I love and he is love

I love and he is love

She loves.  He is love.  She is thirsty.  He is a fountain. Bernard de Clairvaux on the Song of Songs. I’ve found myself entangled again lately with the Song.  It’s crept into my readings of Scripture.  Ostensibly I’m reading Matthew.  That’s what I’d say if you asked.  But the truth is that I’ve been reading … Continue reading

After Cherith

After Cherith

After Cherith would it ever be the same again? Days of blistering heat and boredom, nights of bitter cold and silence.  This had been Cherith.  Temptation constant to escape the silent lonely.  Hidden from the plots of men – yet somehow not the strife of tongues.  Voices in the prophet’s mind relentless.  Incessantly crying for … Continue reading

Halting embrace

Halting embrace

The mystics witness to this paradox of intimacy and distance – the dark night of the soul comes not to those who do not know God but to those who do. Sallie McFague, Metaphorical Theology. I’ve been interested in apophatic and kataphatic mysticism recently.  I knew about mysticism as apophatic but I’d never particularly given … Continue reading

Surfing the chaos*

Surfing the chaos*

What will help you stay on the surfboard? One of the best kind of coaching questions, this, one of the ones which build on the metaphor you were using and hit you sideways.  The kind of questions which sometimes elicit an answer deeper than you knew you had.  Yes, I do so love powerful questions. … Continue reading

Ferocious amounts of fortitude

Ferocious amounts of fortitude

It’s been a while since I posted about leadership here.  I admit it.  I got sideswiped by Jesus and have spent months of blog posts trying to work out exactly what he has done to me. And I haven’t totally got it yet.  Judging by the weekend I’ve just had, I predict many more months of … Continue reading