Doctor of Leadership in Global Perspectives: Crafting Ministry in an Interconnected World

Leadership Assessment

Written by: on April 20, 2024

Rethinking Leadership

In Rethinking Leadership, Annabel Beerel explores various leadership theories and shortcomings, emphasizing the skills essential for leading effectively in uncertain times. She uses our concept of “leadership bankruptcy” as she opens up the book to question the apparent scarcity of true leadership. She asks, “What happened to all the leaders?”[1] Her experiences shaped Beerel’s process of writing this book during the COVID-19 pandemic, which not only enhanced her credibility but also provided her with a firsthand perspective on theoretical models and widespread deficiencies. Overall this book equips leaders with the tools to cultivate awareness and adopt a proactive stance in managing chaos, alongside the wisdom to evaluate new challenges effectively.

Rethinking, Rethinking Leadership

Stress has long been a formidable adversary for me. I’ve spent years trying to manage it alongside developing my emotional resilience in stressful situations. Stress manifests in various ways, and my frustration with it often stems not from the workload itself but from the uncertainty of circumstances, amplified by life’s demands and the devil’s efforts to lead me astray with distractions. Regrettably, I frequently find myself on a tumultuous journey of control that I have yet to master. The aim is to turn this into a peaceful, lazy-river type of experience rather than an unyielding roller coaster, but this transformation isn’t an automatic perk that comes with a degree, title, or business card – or is it?

Despite my “antifragile”[2] tendencies, which occasionally draw me into chaos, leading to challenging and recurring lessons, I recognize the need for ongoing growth in integrating these experiences with my faith. Reading “Rethinking Leadership” served as a perfect catalyst for reflection and a wonderful way to culminate this blog journey. This book sparked meaningful thoughts and prompted a much-needed period of sincere and humble prayer, during which I reevaluated my approach to leadership, as well as my calling, opportunities, and responsibilities.

As I navigate the concluding phase of seminary, I’m experiencing an emotional shift that underscores the importance of this reflective period. Now more than ever, it seems crucial for us all to reassess our leadership styles and spiritual direction as we boldly step into the realm of doctoral leadership.


We find ourselves at a critical point in our lives and leadership journey, similar to the transformative phase immediately following baptism. A time to “up our game.” Beerel highlights the skills required such as “poise, reflection, and discernment.”[3] It’s an exhilarating yet perilous period, given the heightened awareness of dark influences that recognize the significance of this juncture. Beerel reminds us, “Leaders need to remember that everything is changing, and every possible outcome is probable.”[4] Leaders must recognize that the landscape is constantly shifting and that any outcome is not only possible but likely.

I am eagerly anticipating this phase of the journey but I am not anticipating this to get much easier and it would not surprise me if a dip or low in the emotional ride is due considering the high. While I may not embark on a 40-day fast like Jesus and many others have, I do intend to use this graduation season as a time to prepare both mentally and physically. As I cross this threshold moment in my journey of faith I am committed to readying myself for the practical application that lies ahead.

As we navigate through this landscape marked by elections, war, identity politics, doctrines, and scandals, it can often feel like corruption is inevitable. Despite this, we continue to forge ahead with Jesus in our hearts. My prayer is that we all strive to lead with confidence in His kingdom, embracing our roles as both devoted followers and courageous warriors.


“But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.”[5]


[1] Annabel C Beerel, Rethinking Leadership: A Critique of Contemporary Theories (New York: Routledge, 2021), 9.

[2] Nassim Nicholas Taleb, Antifragile

[3] Ibid, 114.

[4] Ibid, 114.

[5] 1 Corinthians 9:27

About the Author

Michael O'Neill

Director of Operations / Executive Pastor at Kinergy, Inc. Federal 501c3 Non-Profit Organization. An experienced entrepreneur, leader, father, wellness professional, and owner of a multi-location medical practice with my wife, Nicole O'Neill, MD.

11 responses to “Leadership Assessment”

  1. mm Shonell Dillon says:

    Congratulations, on completing your last post. I pray that God gives you the strength and power to forge through the evils of the world and make a difference. Many blessings to you on your journey forward.

  2. Tonette Kellett says:

    Your friendship has been such a blessing to me. I’m so thankful we were placed in the same peer group these past two years. You are a bright light for Jesus in a dark world. I’m thankful for your love for him and for your constant example. Looking forward to seeing you at graduation very soon! Keep pressing on!

    • Michael O'Neill says:

      Thank you, Tonette. I echo your words back at you. I am so grateful for our peer group and time together. I also love and feel that connection to you in our shared hope of positioning Jesus first, always. Don’t ever forget that strategy. It works every time and the rest of life will figure itself out…

  3. mm Daron George says:

    Dr. O’Neill,

    What stands out in this post is your candid discussion of your own struggles with stress and control, which you view through the lens of leadership development. It is really what I enjoy about all your posts, your ability to be candid.

  4. mm Chad McSwain says:

    Dr. O’Neill, Thank you for an authentic and transparent post. I connected with the emotion of coming to the end of this journey. I and excited, yet somewhat struggling with the void it will leave in my life. I am not a disciplined person on my own and need real structure that pushes me to grow. I will need to find something else that will stir on a new season of growth. I’m not sure what that is yet but I know that God will lead me when the time is right.

    • Michael O'Neill says:

      Thank you. I also need a game plan to be my best and things will definitely be different. God has our back though. I pray the Spirit continues to use you and your family in profound ways to move His kingdom. Stay in the Light, my brother.

  5. Kristy Newport says:

    Dr. ONeill

    I like how Dr. Clark has encouraged us to be looking for the opportunity to discover more. If we could have a coffee chat …or a circuit work out…I would like to hear more from you on this:

    “Despite my “antifragile”[2] tendencies, which occasionally draw me into chaos, leading to challenging and recurring lessons, I recognize the need for ongoing growth in integrating these experiences with my faith.”

    I love the humility
    I love the transparency
    All of this makes me wish to continue to have iron sharpen iron.
    May 2nd I hope to meet your family. It will be a privilege to hug your wife, look into the eyes of Zion and tell your parents how much I respect you!

  6. Michael O'Neill says:

    That would be a great discussion. You are so kind. You’ve been my cohort coach this whole time and I can’t thank you enough for the encouragement and interest you’ve had in my family and ministry. You are such a blessing.

  7. Alana Hayes says:

    What an amazing post! Stress is in fact a wicked problem for me too. Beerel was a pivotal book for me too this semester! I am praying with you as we navigate this!

Leave a Reply