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Being Before Doing -- January 2018 e-news

Dr. Samuel Wells, noted author and minister in London, England, recently released his latest book, Incarnational Ministry: Being With the Church. [1] Wells explores various dimensions of ministerial leadership, using the reality of the Trinity to guide his helpful insights. One of those insights that particularly stands out to me (and something I’ve noted before), is the primal nature of discipleship for leaders.

Before I can speak or act as a leader, I must first reckon with my identity as a believer in Jesus Christ. My primary identity is found in discipleship; not my role as pastor, elder, preacher or educator. Discipleship – my relationship with God – is lived out daily as a relationship comprised of mystery and grace, hope and failure, repentance and renewal. Who I am as a disciple constructs and nurtures my being, while the various forms of leadership that I may take on or that may come to me are things, tasks or roles that I do. Being and doing are related but quite distinct. For me (and for many others, I think) we often can get these confused!

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