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Power and Wise Boundaries – EH Leader Podcast

Posted on July 30th, 2019

I spent 8 years writing The Emotionally Healthy Leader. But it was the lessons learned from pain around “Power and Wise Boundaries” that initially served as the impetus for the writing of that book. It was, by far, the most difficult chapter to write.

Almost every church, nonprofit organization, and Christian community I know bears deep scars and hurt due to a failure to steward power and set wise boundaries. I was no exception. In this podcast I give many examples of ways we can do this in a healthy way, attempting to nuance the different situations in which we find ourselves. I address two large challenges each of us confronts:

  1. Our exercise of power, i.e. our capacity to influence others. That power is God-given. When we under-use our power out of fear, a need to be liked, or an aversion to conflict, we hurt people. This is the most common problem I observe among many of us. When we over-use our power to manipulate and push, we also hurt people. Exercising power like Jesus requires we know our shadows and vulnerabilities, and that we build in healthy safeguards.
  2. Our navigation of dual relationships, i.e., when we have more than one role in a person’s life. Without the language and emotional maturity to talk about these complexities (I am not in favor of eliminating dual roles entirely), they inevitably lead to great pain and hurt.

I spend most of this podcast addressing the first challenge, our proper exercise of power, as it provides the foundation for managing dual relationships well.  Let me remind you, if you have not already done so, to download our free discussion guide for you and your team at



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