Category Archives: Serving

How Growing Older Can Become a Good Thing

How is retirement going?  It’s a question I’m often asked these days.   Since I’m well into my 80thyear I don’t think about it that much. Retirement was very much on my mind in my 60’s as I neared the end … Continue reading

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‘The Pastoral Role’

There came a moment when reading “When Breathe Becomes Air” (66 weeks now on the NY Times best seller list) that I put the book aside to reflect.   It wasn’t just that it is a heartbreaking memoir of a physician … Continue reading

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The Problem with Empathy

A few days after reading Against Empathy: The Case for Rational Compassion, by Yale psychologist Paul Bloom, I was stopped in Washington, D.C., traffic.  A disheveled, crippled man made his way between the traffic lanes past my car with a hand-written … Continue reading

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Howard Thurman’s Christmas

I’m struggling to find The Mood of Christmas that Howard Thurman (1899-1981), the prominent African American author, theologian, educator, and civil rights leader, wrote about in 1973.    The election turmoil with its uncertain aftermath makes it difficult to focus on … Continue reading

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What About a Servant Leader for President?

“We Need A Servant Leader” for President, wrote Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz in his New York Times op-ed piece prior to the first Republican candidate’s debate.  To correct reports of his intentions he announced that he is not running for the … Continue reading

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The Gift of Friends

In a recent Facebook post, Jess Middendorf mentioned a Christmas phone call he and his wife Susan received from their lifelong friends Eugene and Faye Stowe, now in their 90’s. Jess wrote, “They called saying that rather than send cards … Continue reading

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What Are You Going To Do About It?

A desperate mother was calling for help to defend her son as he was thrown to the ground and handcuffed by the ‘jump squad’ – plain clothed police officers battling the drug dealers.   From the commotion of a gathering crowd … Continue reading

Posted in Leadership, Serving, Trends | 14 Comments

UBUNTU “I am because we are” An African perspective on life and leadership

At an October leadership conference in Kansas City, Filimao Chambo from Mozambique, (Ph.D. in biblical studies) presented an African perspective on life as well as leadership.   He suggested that ‘ubuntu,’ a Zulu word for ‘I am because we are,’ – … Continue reading

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Compassion and Justice

Some of those who favor compassion are not so sure about justice.   It’s almost instinctive to alleviate human suffering – hunger, disease, slavery, extreme poverty, etc.   Other than extreme sociopathic disorders we are hard wired to empathize with those who … Continue reading

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Prophetic vs. Partisan Leaders

In this election year and the 50th anniversary year of President Johnson’s War on Poverty, politicians are debating the best way to reduce poverty and narrow our widening income gap.   (See “2 Parties Place Political Focus on Inequality” – NY … Continue reading

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