A Leader’s Prayer for Wisdom

"The difference between a leader and a follower is perspective. The difference between a leader and a better leader is better perspective.” (Bobby Clinton)

There are things we can do to acquire perspective. Ways we can gain what I like to call, altitude. But perspective is more than a strategic issue. The greatest perspective comes from seeing beneath the surface to the dynamics of the deeper issues at play. That kind of perspective unlocks true wisdom.


Deep into the later pages of the Bible, James wrote that anyone who needs wisdom should ask of God who promises to give it generously. Can you imagine a leader who doesn't need that?


Therefore, I wrote this Prayer for a Leader.


I wrote this prayer ten years ago and used to carry it with me. Looking at it today, I am stunned at how it still speaks to me. This week, with the explosive cries for justice across our land, it gives me a fresh way to pray, all over again.

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A Leader’s Prayer for Wisdom

Lord, help me see beyond…


Help me see beyond…

… the borders of my own experience

… the constructs of my training and upbringing

… the limits of my own wisdom and insight

… the brokenness of my intuition

… O Lord, help me see beyond myself.


Help me see beyond…

… the surface

… the urgent

… the competing agendas

… the reactivity of others

… the easily accessible ideas, familiar approaches, and predictable personnel

… O Lord, help me see beyond the obvious to see where you are at work


Help me see beyond what my eyes take in, to see from your perspective

Help me see beyond what is, to see what could be


O Lord, help me see beyond…

the words and actions and plans right in front of me

to see the heart and longing and needs of the people around me


In every situation,

help me see the hidden part of the iceberg

that I might navigate the true spiritual

and human dynamics in play


O Lord, Give me your eyes, your ears, and your grace

to know your wisdom for all the decisions and responsibilities before me.


And, while helping me see beyond…

would you also grant me the ability to stand secure

in the reality of the present

in your presence

with unwavering courage.


Help me see beyond...

…So that I might be a non-anxious leader

patient with people

impatient with what is broken

focused, yet, open-handed

with all you have assigned to me


Help me be the kind of leader

that the people

the world around me

and you

need today.



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© 2020 by Gary Mayes