- John Stott (1921-2011) lived a committed life as a Christian theologian and pioneer. Firstly a few brilliant facts of this man; He basically started the Evangelical movement across the world, he wrote numerous books on theological and sociological subjects which became the foundations for their respective fields of study AND was one of the most influential figures in the Christian church globally.
A great preacher at my Church went to the UK on a mission in 2010 to somehow meet this amazing man. He had no contacts or people he could call on to set up a meet but he was determined and eventually managed a meeting shortly before his death. I’m still quite jealous about this fact, but he came back and told of John Stott’s influential words and persona which spoke wonders to his character. He truly was a great man and leader.
Many of our visitors may wonder why I’ve included Mr Stott in our famous leader’s section, the truth is that we’re shaped by the people around us and speaking into us. I’ve read a lot of his books and have been profoundly impacted by his accomplishments in his life. If you’re open to being influenced by a diverse amount of people then you’ll be much better for it!
The truth is that often we’re shut off from alternative leadership figures around us! And although my Christian faith makes me open to theological work and leaders, I can’t encourage you enough to open your net a little broader to learn some gold from people who you may otherwise ignore.
John Stott: The life of a leadership legend
As he is a personal hero of my own, the information I could provide about him would not be enough to do just to the legacy he left behind. I’ve read several of his books but one particular book just stood out to me and has been read over and over again. It stands (very warn) on my bookshelf as a testament to the pain, suffering and issues of this world and is a brilliant work into a theological response to global issues.
If you’re a believer I can’t highly enough recommend reading it and being challenged. I’ll leave a link to the product on amazon, the book is called ‘issues facing Christians today’ and is absolutely brilliant.
Moving on from my little rant about this books brilliance, lets get into the leadership lessons we can learn from this exemplary man. What did he offer or do with his life which deserves such high praise and honor?
He followed his passion’s and calling – This is a basic, but foundational to any leaders life. Often we get a vision or idea and then drop it ‘like it’s hot’ or we find that we have a particular passion for something and decide it’s not economical or worthwhile. John Stott found a small niche for his life which turned out to be huge and he succeeded because he was passionate about it and he felt like it was his life work, may we all be so driven!
His values started a movement which will not cease – Although this sounds a little omniscient, he had a huge part in the evangelical movement which is huge around the world. His beliefs and values started a movement which grew excessively fast and impacted millions of people. If you’ve ever done that, my hat is off to you!
His work will continue on – The great thing about this leader is that he wrote down his work in books that will continue on being foundational for these subjects. The very things he valued most are in written word so that his influence and impact will not die with him but rather grow and be even more influential for future generations to read and be moved. What sort of legacy are you leaving?
He was a student of his given area – John Stott studied and read a lot about his chosen field, which made him an expert. We should all be described in this way if we truly want to impact our chosen profession or world around us. Education and learning are absolutely vital to increase our success and innovation, choose to be a learner and not a loser!
He changed the destiny of those he influenced – As I’ve said earlier on, I never met this brilliant man but he has influenced me and changed my own destiny in a powerful way. Although I only read his books, I found that my passions were moved by his words and therefore the vision for my own life changed vastly. I could only hope to have people one day say that about my influence on their lives. Let’s always choose to live with a sense of purpose which outgrows our own lives.