I think the ultimate test of the efffectiveness of a leader is what happens in their home. What are their kids like – healthy, dysfunctional, drug addict, corporate leader, artist, confident. Too many leaders have left in their wake so much pain and hurt among those closest to them that it has diminished their star. This is especially true if we take the definition of leadership as the ability to influence others. If we cant influence those closest to us positively then whatever else we do will count for little. For example the late Kerry Packer's relationship with his family. From an outsider's perspective there is no mistaking the genuine love that his children had for him. From all accounts Kerry could be a very difficult man but in my mind he passed the ultimate test of leading first at home. I want to be a great man. When I was younger I thought of greatness in terms of the empire that I would create and the size of the my bank balance but time has mellowed some of that ambition. Now my primary quest for greatness is in the eyes of the five people that I live with. They see me for what I really am, they know my faults and weaknesses and sensitivities yet they are so forgiving Here are some choices that I must make if I am to be an effective leader in my home: Choose words that build up – Words are such powerful tools. We need to choose our words very wisely if we want to be an effective leader at home. It is very easy to let slip words that tear down when I feel stressed or tired or even selfish when everyone wants to invade my space. I need to choose words that say good things to those around me – I love you, sorry, can I help, you look lovely, you are very special, thank you, that's great, how wonderful. Choose to spend my time doing the important things – Even if I say that the kids are important if I don't spend my time with my family and kids then my words count for very little. Its what we do that counts in their eyes. And, they are the ones who get to really see what I am doing with my time. The important things in my life at the moment are being home so I can help bath the kids, read with my eldest daughter, pray before they go to sleep, wrestle with my son and sitting with everyone at the dinner table. Choose to love unconditionally – This means giving when I am not receiving. Washing up when everyone else is too tired at the end of a hard day. Not making my needs the first priority in the family. Choose to make the hard decisions – But do it in a way that makes the family feel better. We can't always do everything that we would like to do or we sometimes have to choose between two very good options. Sometimes I can't be everyone's friend. In these situations its important not to be a friend but a father. Choose to listen instead of talking – It can be very easy to think that it is only my perspective that matters. Communication is always more about what I don't say or what I do when I stop talking.
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In the Psalms I have discovered firsthand some of the rawness and pain experienced by the Psalmist. This ebook is the first 40 Psalms that I have put in my own words. They are a reflection of what was written by the original writer and then brought to our world today. They reflect many of the themes that are common to discouraged, depressed, anxious, fearful people. At times some or all of these things have been true for me. I have used some of these experience and cried out with the Psalmist in my writing.
One definition of found poetry is, “it’s the literary version of a collage”. In finding these Psalms I have gathered together my emotions, feelings and pain and sought to “find” my understanding of what David was saying. It’s the worst possible translation methodology but it’s been a great personal re-discovery of God.
The 40 day journey is a chance to take some time out and listen to God’s voice. God’s praise will last for eternity, we have the great privilege to begin that praise now.
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