I received a pre-release review copy of this book and I was quite interested in reading it. Maxwell is well-known for his self-help books and is obviously a good Christian man. I really tried to like this book. Honest, I really did. But after reading this book, I jsut can't like it. I just think it's trying to be everything and ends up being nothing.The binding -- why have a sewn-in, keep the book forever, type of binding but then have lines for writing in your thoughts (which would change over time). Also, and this is a pet peeve when many of these: the lines are too few and too narrow to allow much soul-searching.The "meditations" -- having both scripture and Maxwell quotes on each page is a bit daunting. The scripture quotes are deep enough without adding the Maxwell thoughts. And then on top of that, to have a question with lines to answer -- that's ALOT of work. And the book is a DAILY devotional. When would I have time to pray or do anything!Third, and this may be because I'm a Catholic, but I don't Maxwell's emphasis on everyone being leaders and growing the pyramid ... Jesus told us to follow Him; those who are usually the "bad guys" in the Bible are the leaders who forget who is truly in charge. Leadership, in my experience, comes from charitable leading thru word and action.I'm sorry -- I really tried to like this one!
I do not read many leadership books thoroughly. I tend to ignore the antidotes and stories while looking for the main points and the leadership principles that are being espoused. In my opinion, this is the primary strength of Maxwells new devotional journal A Leaders Heart."The leadership principles are divided into 365 daily leadership devotions, which are concise and clear straight to the point. Each one of the devotions is followed up by a question and space for writing personal reflections. The topics include success, stewardship, teamwork, mentoring, etc. The leadership principles in A Leaders Heart are pulled from 11 of Maxwells other books, so you get the best of his leadership principles in one succinct volume.My primary critique of Maxwells A Leaders Heart involves his application of biblical passages. The challenge is grounded in the fact that this book will primarily be marketed to Christians, plus the word devotion has sub-cultural ties to properly reading and applying Scripture among Christians. One of the usual pitfalls of niche books like this, marketed to Christians, is that Scripture is often used in ways foreign to its primary meaning.Each of the 365 devotions in A Leaders Heart begins with a passage of Scripture. Maxwell then applies that scripture with a leadership focus. The primary problem lies in the fact that for some of the passages a leadership principle can only be vaguely implied as a secondary application, if at all.Without this caveat most readers will not discern this hermeneutical leap. This can be extremely dangerous since there is no explicit Christ-centered focus in this book, which is marketed to Christians. Another concern I have is for the non-Christian reader, there is a hazy call to believe in Jesus, the ultimate leader tagged on at the end.Books like this seem to loose their sincerity when they are bent to fit the literature mold of Americas Christian sub-culture.
If you are a fan of Maxwell, youll like this daily devotional book. There isnt anything new here but it will allow you to review things you probably havent read in a while and need to revisit. Along with a leadership principle, each day provides a related verse of Scripture and a question with space for reflection.This would also make a nice gift book or addition to your coffee table.In an attempt to provide full disclosure: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers Review Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
i tend to think "leader" and "leadership" and "lead" are among the most over-used words in the Church and ministry. i also tend to think there are more books written on the subject than anyone needs. the "leadership" sections of bookstores are overflowing with titles and selections from all kinds of authors and leadership experts. one of the most read and respected names we'll find in these sections and on these shelves is John Maxwell.A Leader's Heart is a daily devotional and personal journal. the daily readings are made up of Maxwell's concepts and principles, along with beatiful meditations on scripture.A Leader's Heart is like a greatest hits album. the readings are selections from Maxwell's best-selling and most beloved books.each entry is accompanied with space for writing/journaling personal thoughts and reflections. this is an extremely practical and helpful element to the book.the topics covered through the year include stewardship, teamwork, mentoring, success, as well as many others.A Leader's Heart is geared as a gift book towards those in leadership positions. however, the readings are wonderful for anyone and everyone on spiritual journeys and involved in a community of faith serving others.A Leader's Heart is a great book. the readings are informing and inspirational.*Full Disclosure: I received this book for free from Thomas Nelson as apart of "Book Sneeze." They give free books to bloggers for honest reviews.*