Despite its strange title, Leadership Beef Jerky (a reference to something that retains “its nourishment over time”) is a thoughtful, instructive manual for those interested in developing Christian leadership principles.
In a series of faith-inspired meditations on values, courage, and competence, Dr. Gregory W. Bourgond, the founder of Heart of a Warrior Ministries, stresses the importance of setting a clear, moral foundation that allows practical leadership principles to take root. Short chapters cover such topics as the importance of truth; starting everything with Jesus; and how to communicate more effectively as a Christian, drawing inspiration not only from the Bible but from some of the most important Christian writers of the day, including Leighton Ford, J. Robert Clinton, and Erwin McManus. Along the way, Bourgond offers advice on how to live and lead a fully robust life. The key? Passion. Without it, one’s purpose is “merely a dream with little chance of becoming a reality.”
While Bourgond contends that we all need to stretch who we are and what we can do with our talents and abilities, he doesn’t make lofty claims that everyone can be anything they desire. Instead, he admits that all leaders live by limitations. A good leader must use discernment to decide “which hills to die on, which hills to bleed on, and which hills not to climb at all.” To do so, he writes, provides a framework for knowing when to engage and when to stay by the sidelines.
Bourgond argues his points methodically and does so in a simple and informed way that makes for easy reading. While there is some repetition that could have been edited out—for example, the overuse of the phrase “leadership styles” on page 138—this book is useful and motivating.
Beef jerky can be hard to chew, but Bourgond’s book is easily digestible for those Christians looking to jumpstart their ministries, lives, and careers.
Also available in hardcover.