The following is a story based on the life of Abba Anthony from the Sayings of the Desert Fathers that I have pondered for years: Abba Anthony received a letter from Emperor Constantine to visit him in Constantinople. He wondered if he should go and asked Abba Paul who said, “If you go, you will be called Anthony, but if you stay here (in the desert alone), you will be called Abba Anthony.” What makes this story so important is that it speaks to the inner anchor of a life rooted in the love of God. We assume our overactive spirituality is normal. It is not. In fact, our tendency to seize more and more opportunities for God has destroyed many a good leader. Innumerable demands and distractions confront every one of us. Doors of new opportunities swing open before us – to speak, to strategize for further expansion, to intervene in ministry problems,. Read more.
A key to good leadership, and good preaching, is reading broadly. I continue to read a few of these books very slowly over time (e.g. The Interior Castle and The Writing Life). Others I have read in a couple of days (e.g. Making Friends Among the Taliban). Enjoy! Interior Castle – St. Teresa of Avila Making Friends Among the Taliban – Jonathan P. Larson The Little Way of Ruthie Leming – Rod Dreher Fill These Hearts – Christopher West Resilient Ministry: What Pastors Tell Us About Surviving and Thriving – Bob Burns 24/6 – Matthew Sleeth The Writing Life – Annie Dilliard Dead Man Walking – Sister Helen Prejean Delighting in the Trinity – Michael Reeves I Thought It Was Just Me (but it isn’t)…” – Brene Brown Grieving a Suicide – Al Hsu