Perilous Leadership

Uzziah is probably best known as the king referred to in Isaiah 6 – in the year that king Uzziah died – yet as a king of Judah he has a somewhat checkered history.

Initially he starts well seeking and serving God, look at 2 Chronicles 26:5-7;

He set himself to seek God in the days of Zechariah, who instructed him in the fear of God, and as long as he sought the LORD, God made him prosper… 7God helped him against the Philistines and against the Arabians who lived in Gurbaal and against the Meunites. 8The Ammonites paid tribute to Uzziah, and his fame spread even to the border of Egypt, for he became very strong.

Then the great danger comes in, pride, a temptation which every leader has to deal with, look at verse 16;

But when he was strong, he grew proud, to his destruction. For he was unfaithful to the LORD his God and entered the temple of the LORD to burn incense on the altar of incense.

No matter what position you are in, no matter how many years you might have served God, pride never gives up, so be alert at all times.

Really Useful Sites

In the midst of millions of webpages there are some that I regularly go to in order to help with sermon or note preparation. I will update you on these through the semester but to start with try these two:

Bible Gateway – has the Bible in many different versions as well as numerous languages – great to be able to pull up a passage in multiple versions and compare them.

Precept Austin – loads of commentaries on every book of the bible, and so much more – invaluable in researching, getting insight and background information – be careful not to plagiarise this material – to plagiarise is to, ‘take without referencing from someone else’s writing or speech; of intellectual property‘ (

Introduction to Christian Education – Assignment 1

Assignment: You will be assigned one of the four quotes given below. You are required to write a paper critiquing (evaluating) the quote – do you agree or disagree with it, why?
Quote 1
“In the search for good teachers, I always look for FAT people – those who are Faithful, Available, and Teachable.”
(p. 20)
Quote 2
“…effective teaching comes only through a changed person. The more you change, the more you become an instrument of change in the lives of others. If you want to become an agent of change, you also must change.”
(p. 21)
Quote 3
“The two factors that will influence you the most in the years ahead are the books you read and the people you’re around”
(p. 27)
Quote 4
“Experience does not necessarily make you better; in fact it tends to make you worse, unless it’s evaluated experience. The good teacher’s greatest threat is satisfaction – the failure to keep asking, ‘How can I improve’.”
(p. 35)
Assignment length: (250 words +/- 20%).
The paper should be typed as per college requirements.
Due date: Tuesday August 10th
Late submissions will incur a deduction of 10% of your mark for each day late
This assignment will count for 10% of your mark for this course

Go on Jesus, do it!

Reading Mark 3:1-2 I found myself ‘shouting’ at my Bible, “Go on Jesus, do it!” (Of course he did, I have read it before – see verses 3-6 for the full story). Yet there is still something so amazing about Jesus. In the midst of people many of whom had no desire to see anyone healed on a Sabbath, there he stands and defeats religion, defeats unbelief, defeats the effects of sin, and stands in all conquering power.

Renew your works in my day, in my life, King Jesus.

LORD, I have heard of your fame;
I stand in awe of your deeds, O LORD.
Renew them in our day,
in our time make them known;
in wrath remember mercy.

Habakkuk 3:2

Self Actualisation

This extract is taken from Wikipedia.

Self-actualization is a term that has been used in various psychology theories, often in slightly different ways (e.g., GoldsteinMaslowRogers). The term was originally introduced by the organismic theorist Kurt Goldstein for the motive to realize one’s full potential. In his view, it is the master motive—indeed, the only real motive a person has, all others being merely manifestations of it. However, the concept was brought to prominence in Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs theory as the final level of psychological development that can be achieved when all basic and mental needs are fulfilled and the “actualisation” of the full personal potential takes place.

The Lord is…or maybe I am

Realising that we all come to God because of need rather than our innate desire to worship I went through a load of potentials;

Someone suggested the Lord is my ATM – true for so many of us! The Lord is my politician, councillor, panchayat leader – yuk no! The Lord is my nurse, doctor, therapist, analyst – too self referential, it’s all about me, Jesus. The Lord is my parent, dad, mum, big brother, nuclear family – umm. The Lord is my cosmic policeman – watching over me to protect me, but also to ‘get’ me if I do wrong.

Maybe the real problem is that I didn’t consider the idea of being a sheep fully enough – the Lord is my shepherd, doesn’t that make me a sheep? Not a great idea in this age of self actualisation and realisation, yet there is a beautiful simplicity and dependence in the image of being a sheep. Yet a shepherd led, cared for, protected and disciplined his sheep all the time seeming to have an intimate knowledge of them.

Still I am left with a nagging thought that there is a contemporary image out there that needs to be found.


I am Richard Chamberlain – bald, portly, passionate and English.

This blog deals primarily with lectures, notes and addenda for students at Life Transforming College international run by Leadership Training Centre, Siliguri, West Bengal, India. The courses I am teaching this semester (Autumn 2010) are Introduction to Christian Education and Spiritual Formation.

Additionally I will occasionally post things that interest me and that might be of use or interest to students, though I should emphasise that the opinions offered here are personal and do not necessarily reflect those of LTC or LTCi.