Give ear, O Shepherd of Israel, you who lead Joseph like a flock! You who are enthroned upon the cherubim, shine forth before Ephraim and Benjamin and Manasseh. Stir up your might, and come to save us!” Psalm 80:1-2 Introduction to Advent Devotions This is the first Sunday in Advent, the beginning of the season in which Christians throughout the world prepare for a fuller, richer celebration of the birth of Jesus. Advent is a time of expectation, waiting, and… Read more

Note: The following devotion is from Life for Leaders, a daily digital devotional. You can subscribe to Life for Leaders at no cost here. When I read Genesis 1:11-12, I can’t help but think of my life in the Texas Hill Country. For seven years, my family and I lived in this beautiful region to the west of Austin and San Antonio. It features rolling hills, rocky outcroppings, winding rivers, and millions of oak trees. If you’ve never been to… Read more

This post is from Life for Leaders, a new daily devotional I am writing as part of my work at the Max De Pree Center for Leadership. You can learn more about Life for Leaders or sign up to receive a daily email devotional here. “In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth, the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep, while a wind from God swept over the face of the waters.” Genesis… Read more

This post is part of Life for Leaders, a new daily devotional I am writing as part of my work at the Max De Pree Center for Leadership. You can learn more about Life for Leaders or sign up to receive a daily email devotional here. “In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth, the earth was a formless void and darkness covered the face of the deep, while a wind from God swept over the face of the… Read more

“The first responsibility of a leader is to define reality. The last is to say thank you. In between the two, the leader must become a servant and a debtor. That sums up the progress of an artful leader.” – Max De Pree Don’t you love this quotation. Such wisdom in so few words. Later on, I want to think with you about what all of this means. How does a leader define reality? In what sense is a leader… Read more

This post is part of Life for Leaders, a new daily devotional I am writing as part of my work at the Max De Pree Center for Leadership. You can learn more about Life for Leaders or sign up to receive a daily email devotional here.   “You call me Teacher and Lord—and you are right, for that is what I am. So if I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For… Read more

To borrow and butcher a line from Poltergeist II, “I’m ba-a-ck.” After a long time away from active blogging, I’m beginning again as a part of a new professional season in my life. During the last few years while I was working for the H. E. Butt Family Foundation (AKA Laity Lodge, The High Calling), I had little time or energy for blogging. Most of my writing effort went into the Daily Reflections, devotionals that were emailed to more than… Read more

Glassdoor just announced its 2015 Employees’ Choice Awards for the Best Places to Work in the U.S. and HEB came in at #7. Congratulations, HEB. Now, if you’ve spent much time in central Texas, HEB needs no introduction. You know it as an outstanding grocery chain, with more than 300 stores in Texas and many in Mexico as well. But if “you’re not from around here,” as they say, then you might not know HEB. It’s time for some learnin’…. Read more

In my last blog post, I asked the question “Does place really matter?” In our increasingly digitized, flattened, and shrunken world, does our physical location make a real difference? Most of those who answered this question, through comments, social media, or email, said, “Yes. Place does matter.” I think most people have a gut sense about this. Even though we can communicate with people across the world as if they were right beside our ears, and though many people can work… Read more

Increasingly, it seems as if we live in a “placeless” world. Oh, to be sure, you and I occupy places in this world. But with technology flattening and shrinking the world, we might begin to wonder if place really matters. Perhaps we are now inhabitants of “noplace.” Take the workplace, for example. We use the word “workplace,” but increasingly people are not working from a particular place known as “the office” or “the store.” A 2013 article from Wired puts… Read more

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