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Over the summer, I exchanged several emails with my friend and former tennis colleague Paula Vergara. Our conversation was about the difference between a shepherd, a leader, and a nurturer. You can read the first part of the discussion here. Today, we conclude the conversation with a look at some personal examples of leadership.


Paula’s comments are in italics and mine are in standard font.


Wow, very interesting perspective.

When it comes to families, I guess I’ve always seen my Dad as the shepherd, and my Mom as the nurturer. My Dad was such an amazing leader, nurturer (as a doctor), and was head of the household. In some ways, it could be that the shepherd role is inherited, once a parent dies. It could be that shepherds are “chosen” for that role. For my family, we’ve been “shepherd-less” in many ways since my Dad died 12 years ago. Some of us have tried to step into that role, but they are BIG shoes to fill! My Dad also had a strong faith in God, and a tremendous respect for all of His creations. He did his best to care for and protect his family, his patients, and animals. Even his tomato plants were well protected!

Faith has always been a big part of my family as well, and those examples were set by my parents–not in an overt kind of way, but simply by example.

When it comes to “hirelings”, I think all families have some of those, lol.

Thanks so much for the book! I look forward to reading it.



Your father sounds like a very special man, Paula, and one who left behind a fantastic example of a shepherd. I agree completely, when a shepherd leaves his organization or his family, it’s very hard shoes to follow.

I think that’s why it’s so important that we work to raise the next generation of shepherd, nurturers, and leaders. Our legacy as leaders should be to equip, enable, and engage those coming behind us.

I hope you enjoy the book and thanks again for this fascinating discussion! I think our readers at DuoParadigms will enjoy it!



He was a special guy. As a young kid, I used to get up extra early during the summer to have breakfast with him before he went to work, because I knew he would tell me a story that would make me laugh. My sister just recently told me that hearing me laughing in the kitchen at 7am was her alarm clock!

Thanks again for the book! It arrived a few days ago, and I just started reading it.


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Aaress Lawless

Aaress enjoys helping small businesses and ministries, having budget travel adventures with friends, and blogging about life lessons on Instagram.

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