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Leading on Empty: Refilling Your Tank and Renewing Your Passion

ISBN: 9781441263711



It was a balmy California evening. I had gone for a jog before I was to speak at a leadership conference. I still can’t recall how I got there, but I found myself sitting on a curb weeping uncontrollably. I couldn’t tell if it took place suddenly or gradually, but I knew something had broken inside. I remember lifting my trembling hands and asking out loud, “What in the world is happening to me?”

I had been leading on empty. That incident began a three-year odyssey I could never have imagined. It was a journey through a season of burnout and re-calibration that would radically change my lifestyle, my values, my goals, and even adjust my calling.

Are you leading on empty? If you’re a church or ministry leader, you probably identify with Wayne Cordeiro’s experience of being overwhelmed by the demands of ministry. At times you may find yourself depleted of energy and longing to escape the constant pressure.

In Leading on Empty, Wayne Cordeiro candidly shares his experience with the hope that it will encourage others headed down the same path. He was able to get back in touch with his life, get back in proper balance, and allow God to reenergize his spirit in a way that propelled him forward to greater levels of service. Learn from his experience how you can continue a fruitful ministry. Better yet, take advantage of Wayne’s helpful advice early on and avoid burnout altogether.

In the Logos edition of this volume, Scripture passages link to your favorite Bible translation in your library. With Logos’ advanced features, you can perform powerful searches by topic or Scripture reference—finding, for example, every mention of “spiritual formation” or “leadership.”

Resource Experts

Key Features

  • Equips pastors, leaders, and laypeople with tools to avoid physical and spiritual burnout
  • Provides insight into transforming your lifestyle and ministry
  • Emphasizes the importance of an intimate relationship with Christ


  • When the Needle Points to Empty
  • Forced to Failure
  • Power Perfected in Weakness
  • Early Warning Signs
  • Solitary Refinement
  • Finding the Still Waters
  • The New Perspective
  • Seven Lessons Hard-Learned
  • Finding the Way Back Home
  • The Intentional Life
  • Finding Solitude in Sabbaticals

Praise for the Print Edition

This is a must read for all leaders. God often calls us to lead smarter, not harder, for the sake of his Kingdom. We can all learn from a veteran leader like Wayne Cordeiro as he shares his decades of experience in this book.

Bill Hybels, senior pastor, Willow Creek Community Church

Having experienced burnout personally earlier in my career I can attest to all Wayne has written, and especially to the fact that out of such a fire can come spiritual growth and maturity. I particularly want to encourage young pastors and Christian leaders who are just starting out in their ministries to devour this book and follow its wise counsel.

Archibald D. Hart, senior professor of psychology, Graduate School of Psychology, Fuller Theological Seminary

Sooner or later, we all find ourselves trying to lead on empty. It’s a tough place to be. But the wisdom, transparency, and godly advice Wayne offers in these pages can spare us the grief. He shows how to keep the tank from running dry—or how to refill it if it’s gone empty. If you’re in ministry, you need to read this book.

Larry Osborne, senior pastor, North Coast Church, Vista, CA

I strongly recommend Leading on Empty to any church planter, seasoned minister, or emerging leader. This book will help protect your flame and passion for ministry until we all reach our God-intended purpose and destiny.

—Talo Sataraka, senior pastor, New Hope Tokyo

Product Details

Wayne Cordeiro (born October 20, 1952) is Founder and Senior Pastor of New Hope Christian Fellowship in Honolulu, Hawaii.


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