Today’s Saint

Daily Journey with the Saints

January 14 | Leading by Example

Saint Sava

A.D. 1175–1236

There is nothing more powerful than authenticity. Great leaders don't lead with words, they lead with action. Example trumps all else when it comes to leadership. It doesn't matter how grand your vision is or how good you are at communicating that vision. Being willing to get in and do what you are asking others to do will always be respected by those you are trying to lead. How does the old saying go? 

“What you do screams so loudly that I cannot hear what you say.”

Saint Sava didn’t just preach humility. He left his life as a Serbian prince, became a monk, and changed his name. He didn’t just preach living an ascetic life away from society. He climbed Mount Athos in Greece to live in a mountaintop monastery.

Saint Sava knew that Serbia needed a spiritual revival, so he founded the Serbian Orthodox Church and became its first Archbishop. He knew Serbia needed greater access to education, so he founded centers of learning like the Studenica Monastery. He knew the Serbian Church needed a formal code of worship, so he wrote it: The Nomocanon.

The list goes on and on. The point is, Saint Sava led by example, and others followed. He was a great leader.

Where are you called to be a leader in your life? Maybe it’s as a parent, raising children. Let your example inspire your children to love and serve others. Maybe it’s at work, taking on bigger responsibilities. Be an example of diligence and hard work. Maybe it’s in your parish, helping others encounter God. Let them see you live faithfully and joyfully. Whatever the case may be, lead by example, and soon you’ll find others following.

Where am I called to be a leader in my life? What are some new habits I can develop to lead by example?

I will lead others to be the-best-versions-of-themselves by my own example.

This reflection is brought to you from book title.

Patron Saint of: Serbia, Education, and Medicine

Symbols: Holding a Book

Feast Day: January 14

Feast Day Shared by: Saint Felix

Image of mountain and man reflecting in the water below.

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