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

One thought about thinking

Written by: on September 4, 2013

In this concise and challenging book, The Miniature Guide to Critical Thinking Concepts and Tools, Paul and Elder have exposed the heart of my personal leadership journey. The capacity to think critically is a continual battle that must intentionally take place in each conversation and each decision that is made. The sobering realization is that in many ways my personal experience often leaves me muddled in the middle of the Stages of Critical Thinking Development (Loc 259, Kindle ed.), while trying to minister to, come alongside of or help others, some of whom seem unable (sometimes unwilling) to advance beyond being an “unreflective thinker”.

 It would be easy to assign blame to another, considering them less informed or unprepared to efficiently evaluate a matter.  However, the challenge of this book for me, is that there is great internal work still to take place in order to develop my own capacity to consistently and critically think through the challenges and decisions that come my way.

 While egocentricity and sociocentricity are identified, in this book, as two of the major obstacles to making advancements in critical thinking, it may also be worth considering that they likely feed off of one another in our ever-connected world. What I mean is: An opinion is considered and without much consideration it is posted on some medium across the cyberspace globe and within minutes there is enough approval to tighten one’s hold on, what was, until recently, a thought loosely held.

 Whichever way you look at it, these Ancient words sound new and necessary once again:

 “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of others.” (Philippians 2:3-4)

The humility to value the insights and perspectives of others prior to advancing with our own preconceived notions is not natural. The capacity of a leader therefore must include the willingness to allow the Spirit of God to filter the details of life through the Word of God and then be willing to act upon those convictions. There is humility required to make the courageous decision that flow from critical thinking.

Paul and Elder’s call to cultivate humble courage and to develop intellectual traits required for critical thinking are essential to navigating the quickly shifting landscape of our cities. Both of these tools are becoming more essential for those who would find themselves in positions of leadership and influence. For me, they stimulate the process of identifying these very traits, recognizing them as essential tools in the toolbox for leaders in a world where cultures are increasingly intermingling.

 Let the journey begin.

About the Author

Deve Persad

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