Book review of Richard D. Allen’s ‘The Genesis Principle of Leadership: Claiming and Cultivating Your Created Capacity’ – Key foundation of leadership skills (Every effective, authentic, and global future leader should Know)
What is the key principle of leadership? The brainstorming book review of The Genesis Principle of Leadership: Claiming and Cultivating Your Created Capacity by Richard D. Allen is a class assignment inspiration.
The author’s thesis draws readers on this primary principle of leadership – that “Leaders are not born! … not made! … but created!”. This owes to a biblical fact that leadership was God’s first instructions to Adam and Eve. As stated in Genesis 1: 26-28, Abba Father commanded mankind to be fruitful, multiply, fill the earth, subdue it, and have dominion.
What is the Principle of Leadership?
Richard Allen proceeds further on to draw the reader to a fatal flaw in the society’s current understanding and thinking. This flaw about leadership has crept subtly amongst Christians.
What is the flaw?
Sanctified, adopted, and recycled worldly secular leadership models have infiltrated Church leadership. What have they produced? Defective, anti-biblical, and unbiblical notions of leadership imbibed by a leadership-hungry society.
“Instead of waiting for a leader you can believe in, try this: Become a leader you can believe in.” ― Stan Slap
Did Abba Father create leaders in His image and likeness? Paul Allen tells us that the human race, largely, thinks otherwise. Totally oblivious of this understanding, whirlwinds of doctrine have tossed mankind about it.
Similarly, to the purpose of creation, this is a tedious and difficult notion to fathom.
The loudest voice in the secular world and church says that leaders are born and made.
The creation and shaping of human being is such a sight. Mankind is the most distinct of all creation. The author clearly points out the role of man (woman). To reflect our Lord and King, impacting every facet of life and all creation here on earth as a ruler.
Nevertheless, disobedience was beginning of the distortion of total dependence and responsibility to our Creator in leadership roles. All because to the sin and fall of the first family (Adam and Eve).
This sets the foundation of the genesis principle of leadership.
Core Principle of Leadership Development
Richard denoted the ‘behind the scenes’ active purpose of Yahweh in refining, molding, and shaping humanity in leadership.
Not only that. He singles out how life experiences count for something, no matter the scope or magnitude. It is a challenge to see Jehovah in the business of molding us to effective transformational leaders. These circumstances, situations and experiences are heavy to bear.
“A transformational leader who was often related to charismatic and visionary leaders, is a leader who can “change the culture of organization and of its member, by possessing new attitudes, values and visions” Click To Tweet
But because of them, we a equipped, ready to groom others to be better.
Could this be the reason leaders shy to share their ‘grass to grace’ encounters, experiences, or stories? Society’s cancel culture has cultivated the fear of disgrace, peer pressure, and judgment.
The emphasis is to ‘fake it till you make it‘, hence living a façade. On the contrary, these experiences mold, encourage and admonish the body of Christ.
Read also: One or more days training program sample
Mr. Allen call attention to the deliberate and intentional commitment worldwide to raise the next generation of effective and transformational leaders.
However, there exist pockets of a mature and older generation of luminary leaders who do not delegate tasks or roles. They’re in perpetual fear of losing face – or is it source of income? Therefore, they don’t expose upcoming young leaders to opportunities for training and development into effective leadership roles.
Thus the slogan, ‘leaders for life.’
The result? A widening gap in leadership views and intense conflicts between these perceived ‘old school’ and ‘old fashioned’ leaders. The contrary is with modern, trendy, and vibrant young millennial generation.
Emerging leaders thirst for creative and innovative solutions in the church leadership. Mimicking and emulating secular work offers a timely, lasting and beneficial change to the constantly evolving world. The author clearly directs the reader to impactful effective leadership that transforms circumstances and people.
There is an evident emphasis on leadership styles that makes others more powerful.
However, African leadership, for fear of losing power and authority by coup, or redundancy, restrain from training up leaders. Those deemed more powerful and stronger the old guard get transfers to very remote and harsh environments.
Isn’t this a very common occurrence? Upcoming leaders ‘cancelled’ and hidden away from the central business districts – just in case power changes hands.
Coaching and mentorship of leaders
The effects of colonization and past communal leadership practices are NOT dead. However, In the genesis principle of leadership, Allen singles out westernized coaching and mentorship programs as being frowned upon.
Additionally, the gap in effectively entrenching the attribute of dominion with excellence in society gets wider and wider. The author observes that the society has a distorted view of dominion. The bias in society is to easily accept power when associated with the man, the powerful, tall, strong, and wealthy.
The handicapped minority and women do not hold key leadership roles. A woman leader is exceptional and extraordinary. The walls are slowly falling down and allowing this classification of society taking up senior and crucial leadership positions.
Moral and Ethical Traits
On the issue of ethics, this my view on the decay of morality in the African culture.
I do not agree with the author. What was the hard earned work of the first missionaries to visit Africa three generations back? It was the strategic and systemic distortion plus deviation of culture and traditions from ancestral norms.
Newer rules and regulations
In the African culture, morality and ethics start in the home. Habits, behaviors, code of conduct, rule, and regulations that were already in place. Al these while, the African community knew what to do and how to do it to live in harmony. For this reason, it was tough to teach the way of westernization, unless they were ‘plucked out‘ of their environment.
Notably, fundamental ethical values like the respect of the elderly cuts across all tribes, communities, and nations.
African leadership is an enigma. The paradox emanates from communities grappling with the conflict of whether or not to follow new traditions. What a paralyzing breakdown of norms?
This the the devastation, harm and damage witnessed in African society. And as a result, an emerging generation has arrived on the global scene.
New age leadership
This generation has adopted the ‘cool’ and ‘chic’ pop culture with allures of freedom of speech and choice. The great distinction comprises:
- Lack of respect for the elderly
- Abandoning the old folk in the homes of the aged
- Talking back at those older
- Not heeding advice because it is ‘old skool’
In view of this, it is no wonder that bitter and careless utterances are exchange on social platforms. The once revered chieftains are at the forefront.
Yet the inspiring written word in the book is explicit in matters of respect; that we are to respect those older than us and pray for those in authority.
Moral and ethical traits are very wanting amongst administrators of power today. They do not seem to reflect on the core principle of leadership. Hence, in the African setting, all cultures and traditions should have an encounter with the holy scripture.
Accountability and the Leader Army
The illumination from the good book on all rules, habits, vices, taboos, traditions, culture, and regulations in the society, community, tribes, and nations give moral agents reasons for their behavior and response to any stimuli.
How prayer and fasting shape the history of nations
A case in point is the political climate of Kenya. Church leaders’ voices get tested, like clock work, every five years.
Pastor Dennis White
Pastor Denis White once called the nation into prayer against the ugly head of tribalism because of lacking unifying verdict by the church. As the world watches, the nation gets curtailed and crippled by irrationality and indecision.
The church leadership of Kenya seems to lacks a firm voice that gives political, social and economic direction. Instead of being at the forefront, Christians seem to take comfort in trailing secular leadership – that too is undecided.
As a result, the inhabitants of the land grumble and complain, full of bitterness, as evidenced by the famous trending Twitter handle Kenyans On Twitter (hashtag KOT). Who is to blame for the passionate fanatics and their actions?
The clergy in Africa should take after Derek Prince, a prophetic bible teacher. He saw Kenya saved from a communist takeover by prayer and fasting on behalf of Christians in the 1970s.
Right after he witnessed a remarkable move of God in western Kenya, Prince wrote a book with this testimony (and others).
South Korea could be emulated under the church stewardship of Pastor David Yonggi Cho. ‘God’s General,’ the Rev. Cho Yong-gi, an emeritus pastor at the Yoido Full Gospel Church preached “hope” and “positive thinking,” to people struggling under postwar penury. that religious faith would bring three rewards: .
Against the background of the two Koreas tension over the North’s nuclear weapons program, Christianity grew in leaps and bounds. It supplanted Buddhism, Confucianism and shamanism in South Korea.
Yonggi Cho was one time well known to the Canadians, than the the President of the country. One of the worlds wealthiest economies, South Korea enjoyed wealth, health and spiritual comfort (the words of God’s general).
The moral ethics exerted on the nation were unquestionable. He too would sign every bill signed into law by the President.
Transformational Leadership Skills
Learning to lead
We cannot deny a few outstanding leaders under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.
They have inherited immense and valuable effective principles of leadership attributes through training, development, coaching, and mentorship. They emulate and tap into the wealth of wisdom, understanding, and knowledge from their teachers, mentors, coaches, and exemplars. Spiritual growth, learning, and mental/emotional development.
Raising effective leaders
Success comes to those who have an entire mountain of gold that they continually mine. Not those who find one nugget and try to live on it for fifty years.”
John C. Maxwell
A chain reaction is set in motion to train, mentor and raise other effective leaders. With a mandate to fulfill their purposes and roles in the church and the secular world, they develop servant leaders. Leadership mentors have made it their mission and passion to develop and restore the created attributes of those under their jurisdiction. like the author of this book.
Revenge, forgiveness, and love
Human nature is inclined to love and forgive those that reciprocate.
The rise of the underserved, underprivileged and poor youth, feeds into massive recruitment of terrorist cells. The seed of revenge is entrenched in the society of today. Selfishness and manipulation puts emphasis on ‘tooth for a tooth’ and ‘an eye for an eye.’
On top of that, it is old fashioned to forgive, love and regard others highly than self, especially those that do not reciprocate.
Lo and behold solace is sought amongst Christians, only to find the church filled with hurt, wounds, pain, and sorrow. The Risen Lord Jesus came to save the lost, repair the brokenhearted,
The stems of dysfunctional and broken homes not dealt with effectively have creeped into congregations. As a result, the principle of leadership in the society today propagates revenge and showcases the strong, wealthy, loud, and majority that oppress and exploit the weak and minority without mercy, love, and compassion.
Merciful and gracious leader
It is interesting to note that the author points out that acts of mercy and grace should extend favor and compassion done in silence. An effective leader is admonished to extend compassion and mercy to those who seem not to deserve it just as God extended to the world with salvation and forgiveness of sin.
Richard unveils this truth about leadership: The majority of the leadership in the secular world and the church advertise their acts of mercy to the world.
There is a lot of speculation and scrutiny of magnitude, source, and intention which creates competition on who has outdone the other. This trait is very wanting in society yet the word of God calls for secrecy. Also, the author has explained how glorious and wasteful generosity of time, talent and treasures provide indescribable and unspeakable joy and fulfillment to a leader.
In society today, the hoarding culture is a menace. Giving is limited to used, torn, and useless items. Man is very busing amassing more wealth and can only avail him/herself in their spare time and for only a few minutes.
Do We result to Army Leadership Styles Instead?
Richard Allen has not left out conflict resolution. To be reconciled to another in alignment with the word of God grants us all living in peace. This is another function of an effective, transformational servant-leader in the church, the community, and the society.
Truth and reconciliation commissions have been established in some African countries, with emphasis on healing ethnic and tribal conflicts.
At the church level, this matter is handled very lightly. The irony is conflict resolutions are part and parcel of servant’s principle of leadership. Love and forgiveness at the center stage of a servant leader in accordance with the word of God. So what salt or light is the Christian leadership projecting to the world?
Why do church leaders work independently in their ministries and callings? If only they would encourage relationships with other congregations? The magnitude of fulfilling the great commission would be humongous if all resources, gifts, and talents are pooled together.
Politicians and some leaders that seek a position of authority in the church take advantage of this division. They use this to sway votes and do not depend on God, the One who appoints, qualifies and predestines leaders.
Contrary to this, the millennial and current society advocates for independence. Across the globe is the emergence of real estate empires of gated communities where neighbors do not know each other.
To solve the rise of terrorism in the world, the society is forced society to reverse this living model. The emphasis on knowing neighbors.
Today’s leaders are neither reliable to those they serve nor trust others to accomplish tasks unless external pressure is exerted. Instead we have witnessed atrocities including:
- Exploitation and oppression of followers is the order of the day since the creation of man.
- Rampant unfaithfulness
- Gaps in delegation
- Lack of compassion
- Immoral unethical behavior
- Unbearable weight of the ‘imposed’ pressures of life
- Unapproachable rock leadership roles
- Contracts, promises, treaties, covenants, agreements, and vows are broken every day
Society is not alarmed at all.
This is the evidence of unreliability by leaders of today. The massive and recurrent collapse of churches, families, corporations, and governments. The phenomenal influx of unfaithfulness cuts across leaders from all walks of life with scandals of every shape and size.
Dependable founding fathers
The majority of the African countries gained independence from colonialist. They used to work together with the leadership of one courageous and fearless spokesperson who ended up being a President in some cases.
Very little is written about the other team members. At the fight for independence, other leaders too played a crucial role in achieving the goals or purpose – freedom.
The founding fathers trusted each other, shared all they had. They were dependable and vowed to secrecy. Once they decided to revolt against the existing governments, they took responsibility for their actions. Some were exiled, and in other cases, other leader faced death.
The persistent voice of expression of freedom in society
Richard Allen points out the emergence of a peculiar and unique community: The transgender and gay. Today we witness gay pastors, gay marriages and an increasingly gay-tolerant society.
Do not get me wrong here. Its true. We have to exercise our freedom of expression. The gift of making the choice of who we are and how we live in society is not for misuse.
But, don’t you ask yourself, … if past generations deemed it an abomination, what happened? What changed that overtime society grew numb and tolerant with increased applause and acknowledgment of this type freedom of expression?
Leadership in the home
The challenge now lies in the primary principle of leadership at the family setting. A leader has to shield the naïve and growing children. Guidance and counselling should not be left to social media influencers. Yes, its the responsibility of leaders in the home to help young children make the right choices in life and exercise freedom of speech. in alignment with the written word of God.
Fanatics in the political scenes across the globe, do not exercise moderation. Neither do social and celebrity influencers, who by the minute, upload controversial photos of themselves online.
True standard for leadership and service in the Kingdom of Abba Father is trust in Him, not any particular talent.
In closing, I only encountered one bias reviewing this book. The failure to include examples from cultures of other continents like Africa, Asia, and Australia. There are leaders who conquered odds. Their exemplary display of the principle of leadership attributes exist.
My rating is 5 out of 5 stars.
Share these quotes inspired be Thirteen Rules of Colin Powell’s principles of leadership
Thirteen Rules have been shared with millions of people in many different forms.
Here are Powell’s Thirteen Rules:
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Western, S. (2008) “Leadership: A Critical Text.” London: Sage.
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