Book Review: Leaders Who Last

I want to last.  I want my faith to define me and for my family to know that they are treasured.  I want to leave a legacy that really matters for all of eternity.  Dave Kraft shares some compelling thoughts towards these ends in his book, Leaders Who Last.  Tons of takeaways from this book.  In fact, I might have saved time to just highlight the things that I didn’t want to remember!  Most of my book is highlighted, underlined, or starred.

I’ve listed several of the things that I highlighted below…

  • The Christian journey is akin to a race–a marathon, not a short sprint.  The key is not how you start the race, but how you finish it.  Finishing well is what this book is all about.
  • A Christian leader is a humble, God-dependent, team-playing, servant of God who is called by God to shepherd, develop, equip, and empower a specific group of believers to accomplish an agreed-upon vision from God.
  • The leader must live in five areas:   1. with Jesus Christ in the center as your power  2. with Jesus Christ as you develop a purpose  3. with Jesus Christ as you develop a passion  4. with Jesus Christ as you set priorities  5. with Jesus Christ as you develop pacing for how much you accomplish and how fast you do it
  • As a leader, everything I am and everything I do needs to be anchored in my identity with Christ. Leadership begins and ends with a clear understanding of the gospel and being rooted in the grace of Jesus Christ as a free gift.
  • Great men and women of God are great because they enjoy exceptional intimacy with the Lord.  The failure to establish intimacy imposes a limit on genuine spiritual development and effectiveness.
  • Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord.  Zechariah 4:6
  • My purpose statement is to leave footprints in the hearts of God-hungry leaders who multiply.
  • Once I have a clear sense of purpose flowing out of my relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ, it is amazing how instrumental this purpose is in managing the day-to-day details of my life–the decisions I make, the people I spend time with, and the books I read.
  • Passion is contagious.  Passion will have more of an impact than personality. There is something compelling about leaders who love what they do and do what they love.
  • Passion is a God thing, not a personality thing.
  • Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm.  Proverbs 13:20
  • Bring on the fire that consumes, burns away the dross, and gives light and life to a dying world.
  • “Opportunity doesn’t equal obligation.” Andy Stanley
  • Decide what is truly important in life and what isn’t.  Then, discipline yourself to focus on what is important.
  • Taking time to prayerfully prioritize exponentially increases your chances of reaching a desired end.
  • You chart the path ahead of me and tell me where to stop and rest.  Every moment, you know where I am. Psalm 139:3
  • My call was and remains today a deep stake in my life, a watershed point in my journey.
  • “The dysfunctions of many leaders are rooted in a common reality: Their capacities have been extensively trained while their character has been merely presumed.” Bill Thrall
  • Who you are will take you much further than what you can do.
  • Better was a poor and wise youth than an old and foolish king who no longer knew how to take advice.  Ecclesiastes 4:13
  • I want my mind and spirit to be fertile ground into which worthwhile seeds can fall and grow.
  • One of the main contributors to my growth is my commitment and determination to dip my bucket deeply and regularly into the well of new and fresh thinking.
  • “The key to successful leadership today is influence, not authority.” Kenneth Blanchard
  • Followers don’t do what leaders say as much as they do what leaders do.  Modeling has much to do with Christlikeness–authenticity, genuineness, and the fruit of the Spirit.
  • “The leader needs a circle of associates who are willing to be both supportive and critical.  Pity the leader who is caught between unloving critics and uncritical lovers.” John Gardner
  • “I start with the premise that the function of leadership is to produce more leaders, not more followers.” Ralph Nader
  • Bear the burden of the people with you, so that you may not bear it yourself alone. Numbers 11:17

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