NCLS Research

Spiritual Foundations

Our research points to the critical importance of faith development, and real spiritual anchors for what is often a challenging and difficult leadership journey. Since 1991, our findings have suggested, not surprisingly, that an alive faith among Christian leaders is important to effective and sustainable leadership.

In relation to emotional exhaustion, a faith that is alive and growing matters more than the nature of a leader’s beliefs, explaining six times more variation in levels of emotional exhaustioni. Leaders with active personal devotional practices - praying regularly, reading the Bible regularly, experiencing God's presence at worship and in daily life - appear less prone to emotional exhaustion. An alive faith is an important characteristic of leaders who thrive both personally and at work.

Spiritual foundations can provide a solid base and strength to keep going, a sense of meaning, direction and self worth. Active and ongoing spiritual formation and connection with God are important and critical resources on which Christian leaders can (and must) draw.

Many of the most effective leaders in times past and present have had a sense of purpose drawn from a spiritual perspective. As Christians, at the heart of leading is a faith that discovers and recognises God’s call on our lives and to which we respond, in God’s strength.

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