St. Josemaria Escriva was a natural leader. In the world of business or politics, he could have been what the world would consider a “great man.” Instead, he became a priest and dedicated his considerable talents to the advancement of the Kingdom of God, pouring his heart and soul into raising up an army of apostles who sanctify the world from the inside out.
Through the course of his priestly ministry, St. Josemaria left many letters of advice and spiritual direction, many excerpts of which are contained in the three books, The Way, Furrow, and The Forge. Here are 15 pieces of leadership advice from St. Josemaria’s writings for those who seek to sanctify their work and be leaders in the Church and in the world.
1. Don’t compromise your principles
‘One must compromise.’ Compromise is a word found only in the vocabulary of those who have no will to fight — the lazy, the cunning, the cowardly — for they consider themselves defeated before they start.
2. Don’t waste time
Don’t let your life be barren. Be useful. Make yourself felt. Shine forth with the torch of your faith and your love.With your apostolic life, wipe out the trail of filth and slime left by the corrupt sowers of hatred. And set aflame all the ways of the earth with the fire of Christ that you bear in your heart.
3. Pay attention to the little things
Will-power. A very important quality. Don’t despise little things, for by the continual practice of denying yourself again and again in such things — which are never futile or trivial — with God’s grace you will add strength and resilience to your character. In that way you will first become master of yourself, and then a guide, a chief, a leader: to compel and to urge and to inspire others, with your word, with your example, with your knowledge and with your power.
4. Embrace sacrifice
The Lord’s calling — vocation — always presents itself like this: “If any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.”
Yes: a vocation demands self-denial, sacrifice. But how pleasant that sacrifice turns out to be — gaudium cum pace, joy and peace — if that self-giving is complete!
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