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Following a Beloved Predecessor

God's call to leadership is not a call to privilege and displays of power but a call to servanthood and humility.
—Lem Tucker

One afternoon in 1981, John Perkins, founder and president of Voice of Calvary, called my wife and me over to his home. I had some idea of what he might say. The last few years, John had made several overtures about resigning but hadn't carried through.

This time, however, it was different.

"Lem," he began, "I'm going to resign, and I want you to think about becoming president of Voice of Calvary."

Eleanor and I were poles apart in our reactions. She was scared, and I was excited. I was sure this was a chance to take a significant, nationally recognized community development ministry into the promised land. I was ready to fly; I had no intention of putting on the brakes. It took me only half a day to decide.

Eleanor, however, saw nothing but loose ends, problems, and entanglements. She figured I was buying a $100 ticket on the Titanic for $5 and boasting about the great ...

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