"I'm tired of helping others enjoy God—I just want to enjoy God for myself."

With this painful admission, Ruth Haley Barton invites us to an honest exploration of what happens when spiritual leaders lose track of their souls. Weaving together contemporary illustrations with penetrating insight from the life of Moses, Strengthening the Soul of Your Leadership explores topics such as

  • responding to the dynamics of calling
  • facing the loneliness of leadership
  • leading from your authentic self
  • cultivating spiritual community
  • reenvisioning the promised land
  • discerning God's will together

Each chapter includes a spiritual practice to ensure your soul gets the nourishment it needs. Forging and maintaining a life-giving connection with God is the best choice you can make for yourself and for those you lead.

This expanded edition includes a new appendix for self-evaluation, "How Is It with Your Soul?" and a flexible six- or twelve-week discussion guide for groups.


Foreword by Gary A. Haugen
1. When Leaders Lose Their Souls
2. What Lies Beneath
3. The Place of Our Own Conversion
4. The Practice of Paying Attention
5. The Conundrum of Calling
6. Guiding Others on the Spiritual Journey
7. Living Within Limits
8. Spiritual Rhythms in the Life of the Leader
9. Leadership as Intercession
10. The Loneliness of Leadership
11. From Isolation to Leadership Community
12. Finding God's Will Together
13. Re-envisioning the Promised Land
Afterword by Leighton Ford
Discussion Guide
Appendix: How Is It with Your Soul?


Ruth Haley Barton (Doctor of Divinity, Northern Seminary) is founding president/CEO of the Transforming Center, a ministry dedicated to strengthening the souls of pastors and Christian leaders, and the congregations and organizations they serve. For over twenty years, she has ministered to the soul care needs of pastors and leaders based upon her conviction that the best thing we bring to to leadership is our own transforming selves.

Trained at the Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation and the Institute for Pastoral Studies Loyola University Chicago, Ruth is a seasoned retreat leader and spiritual director. A sought-after speaker and preacher, she has served on the pastoral staff of several churches and teaches frequently at seminaries and graduate schools.

Ruth is the author of numerous books and resources on the spiritual life, including Invitation to Solitude and Silence, Sacred Rhythms, Longing for More, Pursuing God's Will Together, and Life Together in Christ. She continues to share her thoughts and perspectives on soulful leadership through an online resource called eReflections: Spiritual Guidance via Email as well as a series of podcasts entitled Strengthening the Soul of Your Leadership.

Follow the Transforming Center on Twitter at @TransformingCnt.

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