remembering Elisabeth Elliott

Elisabeth Elliott – I read the notice of her death today with a mix of sadness and nostalgia.  That notice brought back memories – huddling with students reading Passion and Purity. Holed up in my bedroom reading Keep a Quiet Heart. Going with a group of friends to hear her speak at Elmbrook Church outside Milwaukee. Waiting for A Chance to Die to be in bookstores.

She ministered to me with her willingness to surrender all that she was and had to the Lord.  With a voice of a prophet, she could cut through all your arguments and bring you to the bottom line- Jesus is worthy of your trust, every day, every way, no matter what you’re going through.

I have never met her, but she was a mentor. Continue reading

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on suffering as a leadership development tool

“There’s nothing in our framework about the role of suffering in developing leaders.” My colleague spoke with conviction and urgency. “I take your point,” I said. I’d been considering where that truth would fit in our framework. It’s not like we can manufacture the suffering that God desires to use to shape a leader. What he was saying is important – that as leaders, we need to recognize the work that suffering does in our hearts, and embrace it.

Difficult circumstances make us look at what is really important. True suffering, not just the discomfort of inconvenience, always is a clarifying function. It makes us see what really matters. When you lose a loved one, most other things fade away. The ultimate reality of life and death are purifying.

In those moments, we can see what really matters.

And in those moments we can see ourselves.  Continue reading

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on the year of rest

“No one should ever pick ‘rest’ as their word for the year!” my friend exclaimed.  She had spent quite a lot of time in the hospital that year with some life-threatening conditions.  “Too late for me,” I thought. I knew that ‘rest’ was my word for 2015. What the year of “now” revealed was the frenzy inside.  Rest was the right word.

time lapse trafficwhite water rapids

Like my friend, I have had surprises in this theme of rest.  Ironically, this is my busiest travel year in a while.  On top of that, there are major projects requiring a lot of time, thought and energy, leaving me wondering how things will get done.

To actually “Rest” means you respond to an invitation.  Continue reading

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