Monday, August 31, 2009

Probably worth the read.

During the decade plus I spent as a Church Leader*, I spent much of my reading energy devoted to reading about leadership and Church issues. While some of the best leaders in the world are Church Leaders (it takes some serious leadership skill to drive all volunteer organizations wholly based on one of life's taboo topics, religion), certainly not all the leaders and books worth reading are involved with the Church. Now that I am out of the game, as it were, for a time, I have tried to broaden my reading to take in some some other fields.

One of the latest I have finished is Lance Armstrong's "It's Not About the Bike". In this autobiographical work, Lance traces his career, from his start as a biking prodigy as a teen to his phenomenal rise to the top of his game. This provides a stark and jolting contrast to his diagnosis with cancer and his battle to beat it.

When I first picked up this older read (it was written in 2000, when I didn't have too much time for books of this nature), I thought it would be a Lance liked to race, Lance got cancer, Lance is really tough and beat cancer sort of work. It did have some elements of that, but the book tried hard to underscore the frustration and difficulty a very human man found in realizing how vulnerable and mortal he really was and his efforts to fight through the disease and ultimately to return to racing in spite of numerous set backs both physically and in his chosen field.

Ultimately, it was an inspiring and rewarding read.

I think I will buy a bike.

* aka clergy, clericals, ministry, priesthood, presbytery, the cloth, the desk., clergyman, divine, ecclesiastic, churchman, priest, presbyter, hierophant, pastor, shepherd, minister; father, father in Christ; padre, abbe, cure; patriarch; reverend; black coat; confessor., dignitaries of the church; ecclesiarch, hierarch; ebdomarius; eminence, reverence, elder, primate, metropolitan, archbishop, bishop, prelate, diocesan, suffragan, dean, subdean, archdeacon, prebendary, canon, rural dean, rector, parson, vicar, perpetual curate, residentiary, beneficiary, incumbent, chaplain, curate; deacon, deaconess; preacher, reader, lecturer; capitular; missionary, propagandist, Jesuit, revivalist, field preacher., churchwarden, sidesman; clerk, precentor, choir; almoner, suisse, verger, beadle, sexton, sacristan; acolyth, acolothyst, acolyte; chorister., [Roman Catholic priesthood] Pope, Papa, pontiff, high priest, cardinal; ancient flamen, flamen; confessor, penitentiary; spiritual director., cenobite, conventual, abbot, prior, monk, friar, lay brother, beadsman, mendicant, pilgrim, palmer; canon regular, canon secular; Franciscan, Friars minor, Minorites; Observant, Capuchin, Dominican, Carmelite; Augustinian; Gilbertine; Austin Friars, Black Friars, White Friars, Gray Friars, Crossed Friars, Crutched Friars; Bonhomme, Carthusian, Benedictine, Cistercian, Trappist, Cluniac, Premonstatensian, Maturine; Templar, Hospitaler; Bernardine, Lorettine, pillarist, stylite., religieuse,, postulant., [Under the Jewish dispensation] prophet, priest, high priest, Levite; Rabbi, Rabbin; scribe., [Mohammedan] mullah, muezzin; ulema, imaum, sheik; sufi; kahin, kassis; mufti, hadji, dervish; fakir, faquir; brahmin, guru, kaziaskier, poonghie, sanyasi; druid, bonze, santon, abdal, Lama, talapoin, caloyer.

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