The Leader in You: Discovering Your Unexpected Path to Influence, By Ebony S. Small alt

The Leader in You

Discovering Your Unexpected Path to Influence

by Ebony S. Small

The Leader in You
  • Length: 160 pages
  • Dimensions: 0 × 0 in
  • Published: July 14, 2020
  • Imprint: IVP
  • Item Code: 3184
  • ISBN: 9780830831845

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Have you ever been thrust into a surprising place of leadership? Are you looking for a mentor who has had similar experiences?

Ebony S. Small is a young leader with a wealth of experience in both churches and organizations. She's got practical and biblical wisdom to offer whether you are just starting or are looking for a fresh start in your life and leadership. Every life experience—good, bad, or indifferent—is a distinct marker that God used to hardwire you for purpose and help you lead from an authentic and healthy place. The power of God’s presence is not just for your benefit but also for all in your sphere of influence. This book invites you to discover your unique leadership gifts and skills, showing how our obedience to God unleashes a ripple effect that can alter the destiny of generations to come.

"Ebony Small has written an extraordinary book about her transformational journey in Christ. From New York City to the world, Ebony writes with great transparency and thoughtfulness. Be inspired."

Mac Pier, founder of

"I am proud to call Ebony Small a friend. Few young leaders have the intellectual, spiritual, and social qualities Ebony exhibits, and fewer still have the ability to share what they have learned quite so effectively. In The Leader in You Ebony uses her life story to share deep, practical advice on how all of us can become more useful tools in building the kingdom. We are all leaders in one way or another, and I am grateful that God raises up amazing young leaders like Ebony so that we can all become more effective."

Kevin Palau, president and CEO of the Luis Palau Association

"Ebony Small shares personal experiences that led to a transformational understanding of God's revealed purpose for her life. She also deftly weaves in examples of leaders—from men and women of biblical history to twenty-first-century visionaries in ministry, business, and entertainment—whose lives illustrate her insight on leadership development. The Leader in You also poses reflection questions that will inspire and empower emerging leaders committed to pursuing a God-honoring life."

Michael G. Scales, president of Nyack College and Alliance Theological Seminary

"Ebony Small is my friend and one of the most dynamic voices rising up in the church today. In an age of same-old leadership models and advice, The Leader in You offers a prophetic word from someone who can relate with anyone who feels they don't quite fit the mold. If you are seeking to find your place in God's movement, this book is for you. There is a generation waiting to be unleashed, and I believe The Leader in You could be the catalyst."

Nick Hall, chief communicator and founder of PULSE

"Ebony Small takes us through an inspiring journey of learning readily applicable leadership techniques while sharing her personal story of spiritual growth and leadership development. She provides a helpful roadmap for discovering the type of leader you are and applying it to multiple areas of your life. Read this book to understand yourself more and become a better leader."

Justin Tennison, president of PULSE

"In a time when leadership scholarship can be easily separated from practice, Ebony's words match her walk. This necessary resource provides an authentic account of leadership from a woman who has blazed many trails and invites readers to rediscover their God-given gifts. If you are questioning your courage to lead or looking for ways to embolden your calling, this book is for you!"

Nicole Martin, director of United States ministry for the American Bible Society

"The Leader in You is about Ebony Small's life . . . and your life! Ebony invites us into the 'God-story' of her life, revealing—with vulnerability, humility, and insight—how God has not wasted a single marker in her life for his greater purpose. And The Leader in You is about God's story in you! With wisdom and practicality, Ebony invites each of us to live courageously in discovering God's grander purpose for our life. Prepare for life change!"

Craig Sider, president and CEO of

"Ebony Small's emergence as a leading voice in her generation flows from deep wells of discernment and wisdom. In The Leader in You she shares how our meeting God's process of calling and shaping us as leaders with openness and obedience positions us for surprising outcomes. Regardless of the level of influence to which you are called, this book will bless you."

Claude Alexander, senior pastor, The Park Ministries, Charlotte, North Carolina

"It's been said that when Paul had a difficult letter to write, he was careful to dip his pen in tears and not in acid. Leadership is such a subject matter. My dear friend author Ebony Small certainly did the same in her book The Leader in You. It allows the reader to feel understood, exhorted, admonished, and encouraged, all at the same time. I recommend it highly!"

Jazmin L. Montes, pastor at Community Christian Center, Staten Island

"It's not often that a young author inspires readers to consider the role they can play to advance God's kingdom. Ebony's book is for all who seek to maximize their leadership potential. Her experiences and story will empower and guide you to be your best self in response to a higher calling."

Wanji Walcott, chief legal officer at Discover Financial Services

"The Leader in You belongs in the hand of anyone with a sincere heart desiring to lead and to be led from a place of truth. At a time when the church of Jesus Christ is being bombarded with carnal prescriptions for Christian leadership, Ebony Small brings an authentic account of how God will use human mistakes and mishaps to build and cultivate trustworthy servant leaders. Using lessons from her personal journey, testimonials, and biblical examples, Pastor Small illustrates the powerful, unimaginable ways in which God blesses and uses His leaders to fulfill divine purpose. This book will lighten the burden of equipping leaders and provide training for the saints who dare to struggle with the call to leadership. I resolutely endorse this book with the expectation that it will be implemented as another tool for theological edification."

Chermain Lashley, pastor of Grace United Methodist Church of St. Albans, New York

"In The Leader in You, Pastor Ebony has beautifully penned the road to transformational mentoring. Because her writing is so authentic, we not only witness her journey but receive concrete steps, courage, and hope for our own leadership journey. Pastor Ebony succeeds in making us feel as though we are reading a living epistle to be read by all. The Leader in You is a must-read for anyone called to mentor the 'now' and 'next' generations."

Annette H. Cutino, director of Advance, LEAD.NYC

"Two key words come to mind as I read The Leader in You: humility and integrity. The author shares her insights, gained through myriad experiences, with such transparency and authenticity that readers are sure to be rewarded. I believe the search for authenticity is a part of everyone's (spiritual) journey. I am pleased to say that an encounter with Ebony is one that brings great satisfaction in that regard, and this work is an authentic encounter with her."

Carlton T. Brown, senior pastor of Bethel Gospel Assembly, New York City

"I am so blessed to know Ebony personally, and I am perpetually inspired by her life, her leadership, and now her new book The Leader in You. She possesses the unique skill set to navigate the complicated landscape of leadership dynamics while walking the reader through the process of self-discovery. Ebony's ability to thrive in the midst of urban and suburban, young and not-so-young, church, nonprofits, and the social sector is fully put on display through the anointing evident on her life and her writing. I highly recommend The Leader in You!"

Adam Durso, New York City Mayor's Clergy Advisory Council and executive director of LEAD.NYC

Read an Excerpt


Introduction: How God Shapes Us

Part 1: Leadership Identity
1. The Power of God's Presence
2. Discerning the Times and Seasons
3. Developing Your Leadership Identity
4. Surrendering All

Part 2: Leadership Specifics
5. God's Calling Versus My Ability
6. The Path to Your Platform
7. Leading in the Church
8. Leading in the Marketplace
9. Transformational Mentorship
10. Lessons Learned


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Ebony S. Small

Ebony S. Small serves as an associate pastor at The River Church under the leadership of Bishop Ronald L. Godbee. Formerly, she worked with organizations like Pulse Outreach and Movement Day Expressions with She is the author of The Leader in You and president of Transforming Leaders Consulting.