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Important Reading for Anyone Who Leads Anyone
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By Haydn Jensen


Parents, pastors, teachers, supervisors, business leaders, team captains--this is for you. London author, pastor and seminary professor Dr. Jon Korkidakis has a message for anyone in leadership and it all stems from that legendary story of the Trojan Horse. Ever heard the saying, “Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth”? Well, in the case of leadership gifts, that's pretty much bunk. In Jon’s recent book, The Trojan Horse of Leadership, he offers wisdom on being careful with what looks like a good thing, because all too often it can lead to great difficulty.

For the past almost twenty years Jon has served as Adjunct Professor at Heritage Bible College and Seminary in Cambridge. He’s also the Lead Pastor at Village Green Community Church in London. Together with his wife Darlene, he is a parent and grandparent. His many years in leadership in all these roles has taught him a great deal about what good leadership looks like and where the dangers lie. Through his blog it’s easy to tell that helping people lead better matters a lot to him. Fitting, then, that this should be the subject of his first book.

Nowadays, we hear more about Trojan horse computer viruses than about the old story from the Trojan War. So, here’s a quick refresher: The Greeks had been trying to take the city of Troy for ten years with no success. That city was protected by an amazing wall that no enemy could get through. Knowing the Trojan’s love for horses, the Greeks built a huge wooden horse, left it outside the city, and went away. A single Greek soldier remained, explaining that the Greeks had sailed for home, but left him behind with the horse. The horse, he says, was a tribute for a war well-fought, and an atonement offering to the goddess Athena for the desecration of her temple at Troy. Seeing no Greek soldiers or ships around, the Trojans revelled in the unexpected victory, and also the now silent battlefield after a decade of fighting. Ignoring a few who suspected a trick, they brought the victory gift horse inside the city and began celebrating. Greek soldiers were secretly hiding inside the horse and the warships were really just out of sight around the corner, waiting for a signal. That night, the Greek soldiers emerged from the horse (while the Trojans were asleep or passed out from celebrating), signalled the waiting ships, and opened the gates from the inside, leading to the downfall of Troy. The enemy now inside Troy, those walls which had been their greatest strength now became a barrier to prevent the Trojans from escaping the merciless Greeks.

OK, so how does Jon connect the Trojan Horse story with his book's subtitle, "Battling the Enemy We All Face"? Jon noticed that leadership culture today tends to focus on promoting strengths while ignoring weaknesses. This, he says, is true in both church and marketplace culture. Although promoting strengths is fine, Jon remarks, “it says nothing about the potential that strengths have to derail you, as much as weaknesses do.” He has found that only a few have written on the topic and feels that more attention is warranted. To help us, Jon examines the leadership examples from the Bible and frames his book using these basic ideas:
  • Our greatest strength can become our greatest weakness.
  • Our greatest asset can become our greatest liability.
  • Our greatest virtue can become our greatest vice.

He shows how leaders today can learn from biblical examples such as Abraham, Moses, David, Solomon and others, by outlining a pattern where these leaders have, at certain points, failed God at their strengths and not their weaknesses. Because the Bible so often shows us people at their best and their worst, it's a useful mirror, proving yet again that human nature is as flawed today as always. Some examples explored include fear of the unknown, indignant anger, pride, infidelity, and impulsiveness. Jon also looks at plenty of positive leadership lessons and how we can get better at protecting ourselves. At the end of his book he offers thirteen practical tips on the mechanics of Trojan Horses and how to recognize a potential enemy.

Jon says that the core lessons offered in his book are good life principles for anyone. He hopes that every reader would see themself as a leader, because the truth is that most of us are leaders in some capacity. But, he also intends his book particularly for people officially in a leadership role, whether in the church or marketplace. Jon feels leadership is very important, and sees great value in protecting leaders in their roles.

It's a good read--practical, thoughtful, engaging, and full of valuable Bible lessons and insights.

For more information or to order your copy for yourself or your church library:

Jon's website and blog--focussed on spirituality and leadership: www.jkorkidakis.com
In-Store through Creation Bookstore
Kindle Edition or Paperback through Amazon.ca