For the last 35 years one of the most impacting voices in my
life has been Jerry Cook. Jerry formed the theology of many leaders in the Church. Recently,
Jerry went home to be with the Lord. Just before his death, Jerry wrote the foreword to my book, The Leadership Rock, that contained several stories about Jerry. He
left behind so much for so many. His
impact will unfold like a progressive gift for decades to come.
When I last heard Jerry speak it was to a group of pastors in Oregon. The setting was intimate and casual. Jerry sat upon his iconic stool and shared
without notes from the pool of wisdom that refreshed so many of us over the
years. As Jerry spoke, I took
notes. I have included these
“one-liners” that Jerry was known for that continue to help adjust our thinking
toward a deeper revelation of God and His Kingdom.
Here are those simple, yet profound, words from Jerry:
“We wear masks in fear of the consequence of exposure.
Biblical fellowship allows the mask to be removed without fear of rejection.”
“The only atmosphere we can control is the one around us.”
“Don’t create images. When you get close you will see they are only made of stone.”
“Image is nothing. That is why it is called an image – its
“When you come and meet with us you are meeting with
Him. He is in us.”
“Be the person you want your church to become.
“I treat all people as people who are on their way to
Jesus. He said, ‘I will draw all people
to Myself.’ Don’t make it difficult for people.”
“Why do we focus on behavior? So we can judge another
“Familiarity only breeds contempt if you are contemptible.
You breed who you are.”
“Jesus uses our scars to heal people. He used His scars to
“Transparency is not knowing everything about me – it is seeing
the real me. Jesus didn’t disclose all of Himself to everyone.”
“Public image is created by what people need you to be.”
“The greatest thing a leader can do is to have a right view
“Our greatest neurosis is guilt towards God. We will use
others to fill our deficit to be loved and accepted.”