Sermon Illustrations

LEADERSHIP WISDOM

Back in the 90’s there was a president of Harvard University named Neil Rudenstine. Now, one of the major roles of the college president is to raise money for the institution so they can pay the salaries and other financial responsibilities of the organization. And Neil Rudenstine was very good at meeting that need. For three years - since he became the school’s president - he methodically raised a $1 million a day for Harvard.

The reason he was so successful was that he was passionate about every facet of his job. He focused on both the big and small things in the college. Besides spending twelve hours a day on a demanding job, he fretted banquet menus, argued about his $10-15 medical co-pay and, wrote notes to the football coach, the editor of the school newspaper, the various staff as well as the dorm house masters.

But one morning in November, he overslept and just couldn’t manage to make himself go to work. When he went to the doctor, he was diagnosed with "severe fatigue and exhaustion." The directors insisted he took an indefinite leave of absence to recover.

So he did. And he didn’t return for the next seven days. In fact, he didn’t return for the next seven weeks. In fact, he spent the next seven months recovering from his fatigue.

(SOURCE: Jeff Strite, SermonCentral.com "Wise Advice" 6/30/08, Courtesy of Victor Yap, Sermoncentral.com based on stories from Newsweek 3/6/95, U.S. News & World Report 12/12/94)

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