The Bold and Courageous Leader Podcast

The Bold & Courageous Leader podcast brings resources to Christian marketplace leaders thirsting for a deeper connection between faith and work. Hosts Rhonda Peterson and Andee Marks provide insightful discussion, interviews with front-line leaders and those who have discovered unique ways of integrating calling and career, and reviews of current and classic leadership cultivating essentials. If you want to develop clarity and focus, a keen sense of time and energy management, and hone your God-given gifts to release your full potential, then this podcast is for you.
RSS Feed
The Bold and Courageous Leader Podcast


All Episodes
Now displaying: September, 2016
Sep 20, 2016

Masterpiece Work Defined

"The Bible does not say you are God's appliance; it says you are His masterpiece.  Appliances get mass produced.  Masterpieces get handcrafted." John Ortberg.  Today we're going to talk about being God's masterpiece.  Specifically how our work is masterpiece work because we are God's masterpiece.

In The Deeper Journey, Robert Mulholland says, "Union with God results in our being a person through whom God's presence touches the world with forgiving cleansing, healing, liberating and transforming grace." That is the privilege we have in our masterpiece work.  Whether we are the CEO, the accountant, the mechanic, the pastor or the teacher - or any other job title, for that matter - in our masterpiece work, we have the privilege of connecting the world to God's presence by being who He created us, living out our true identity.  

We need to understand this, to internalize this truth.  It allows us to find our masterpiece work, the place where our life has deep meaning. Instead of being a cog in the wheel, we're stepping into our unique role as a child of the King, doing work He created specifically for each of us in the beginning.  

What is Masterpiece Work?

Masterpiece work is the work God created for each of us long ago.  We come to understand it as we are transformed, as we are created anew by growing deeper in our faith.  When we grow deeper in our faith, moving from a transactional faith to a transformational faith, we see the world differently, including our role in the world of work.  Our marketplace perspective shifts.

Where did this concept come from?

It stems from Ephesians 2:10.

We are God's masterpiece, created anew in Christ Jesus for the work he created for us long ago.

Genius Work vs. Masterpiece Work

Genius work is work that you are best at. Its work that gives you satisfaction, uses your strengths, and provides good outcomes.   It comes from inside you.

Masterpiece work is what you were created for.  There was a creator who knit you together with specific skills, strengths and gifts.  The way you are wired is not a fluke, but an intentional design by the God who loves you individually.  

The difference between genius work and masterpiece work is the recognition of God’s role in creating you for this work.

4 Components to Masterpiece Work

  1. It fits your strengths, gifts and passions.
  2. It is fulfilling.
  3. It is an extension of relationship with Jesus.
  4. You can do masterpiece work in any setting.  

What’s the path to Masterpiece Work?

  1. Journey inward, where we experience the Heart of God.  Here we learn how much we are loved and the fact that we are created for relationship with God.  
  2. We are formed in the image of Christ.
  3. Christ shapes us for the masterpiece work for which we were created.  He reveals in us those things that relate to our masterpiece work so we can connect to it.
  4. Christ’s image is reflected into the world in the work we do.
  • More space – we experience more space to live out our masterpiece work as we understand the meaning in our work.
  • More safety – we have no fear as we live fully into the masterpiece work we’ve been created to do.
  • More freedom – when we’re in that masterpiece work zone, we are free to express our true identity.  There are no constraints holding us back from fully engaging in our work.

 Masterpiece work looks different for every person

  1. The work you've done in the past, seen through different eyes.
  2. A new path that takes what you've learned in the past and uses it in new ways.  
  3. It may be work that springs from something you've done as a hobby or a new perspective on what you've experienced as a volunteer or a patient.  


The Deeper Journey, by Robert Mulholland Jr.

Sep 8, 2016

Leadership is a crucible of self-awareness.  As a leader, you’re out front, visible; that’s a key part of being a leader.  If others can’t see you, they can’t possibly follow you.  That visibility can be a benefit and a curse.  Your leadership is developed in the crucible of the life of your group, your team, your organization, your family.  That is an opportunity for succeeding and also an opportunity to fail.  Leading when at your best gives others a way forward, a vision for what can be and a way to get there. 

There is another side to leadership, though.  As a Bold & Courageous Leader you need to be aware of this side of leadership; the side that can trip you up and cause you to fail in your leadership. This side of leadership is often referred to as the shadow side of leadership.  Without awareness of this side, you will most certainly trip and fail in your leadership.  I’ve done it.  I’m sure you have, too. 

The Shadow Side of Leadership defined

Shadow side of leadership is any strength or behavioral style used to excess, going into overdrive. This overused strength becomes negative and creates toxic environments and relationships. It leads to resistance and a failure of leadership, rather than success.

How do we address the shadow of our leadership?

  1. Self-awareness – know your strengths and what the shadow of it looks like.
    1. According to StrengthsFinder, Maximizer is my top strength – the shadow of maximizer is perfectionism.  I struggle with this and have moved to a goal of excellence, not perfection.  This takes lots of pressure off and allows me to move forward.
    2. We've talked before about what self-awareness is, but as I was recently re-reading a book by Reggie McNeal, Practicing Greatness, I was struck by his comments about self-awareness. He uses six words to portray the meaning of self awareness:

Self-knowledge (knowing who you are)

Self-mindfulness (understanding your motives for doing what you do)

Self-vigilance (knowing what makes you tick and what ticks you off)

Self-consciousness (knowing how you come across to others)

Self-alertness (maintaining your emotional, physical, and spiritual condition)

The discipline of self-awareness then is the leader's intentional quest for self-understanding. The hazards of not engaging in this discipline can be disastrous for a leader! Hidden addictions or compulsions may lead to behaviors that create huge problems. McNeal points out the risk of being blindsided by destructive impulses and confused by emotions that threaten to derail the leader's agenda and effectiveness, as well as the risk of over- or under-estimating their abilities, leading to unpredictable responses. He makes the excellent point that for followers, credibility rides or falls on consistency—something leaders who are short on self-awareness usually do not have!

McNeal states that "leaders lacking self-awareness are besieged from within," making them their own worst enemy!

  1. Accountability Partners – others to walk the path with you.
    1. Find others you trust to speak into your life. Authorize them to speak, and then listen to what they say.
  2. Reflection time
    1. Set aside time to consider your leadership. What does it look like?  Is that how you want to interact with the world?  Margin is important here.  It gives you permission to evaluate your leadership and the relationships that are part of it.  How are you showing up?  Where are the gaps you need to address in your self?
    2. This speaks to self-alertness—if you don't have margin...don't spend time reflecting on what's going on internally, you will be unable to maintain your emotional, physical, and spiritual condition!


StrengthsFinder 2.0, by Tom Rath

Practicing Greatness, by Reggie McNeal

Sep 2, 2016

The concept of “margin” has been around for a long time. Margin is the white space in life that allows us to rest so we can work effectively.

Margin is critical for productivity.  

Margin provides us with: 

  1. Rest.  Our body and our mind need time to regroup.  Eventually we must stop and let our body and mind catch up.  It's been found that sleep is when the brain transfers information into memory so we can access it in the future.
  2. Creativity.  Margin allows us to see solutions or new potential. Doing something different provides new connections by giving you a different focus.  It’s white space in your brain. We make new connections because we can see things from a new perspective after we've had some margin in our life. 
  1. A fresh start.  A fresh start provides new energy toward accomplishing our goals....getting stuff done! 

This is why we need margin in our lives.  We are not machines!  We are human beings and we cannot keep a pace of perpetual motion if we expect to make our best contribution to our work, our family, our community.   

Margin is critical to doing our best work.  

Margin only happens when we make it happen.  Michael Hyatt says, "Margin doesn't just happen, you have to fight for it."  And that is so true.  


Our culture does not support margin, despite all the books out there that address it!

Building margin into your life:

Daily—power naps, a real lunch hour, limit the amount of time you spend working,  

Weekly—Sabbath/day of rest, turn off electronics 

Annually—vacation, extended time away from work/productivity (not time to get work done at home) 


Margin, by Richard Swensen

Essentialism, by Greg McKeown

The Best Yes, by Lisa TerKeurst

The Contemplative Pastor, by Eugene Peterson

Invitation to Silence and Solitude, by Ruth Haley Barton

Sacred Rhythms, by Ruth Haley Barton