Wednesday Wisdom With Wyndham – 7

Treasures of wisdom, especially in leadership, are scattered throughout today’s post from Michaela Iiames. Take in the these treasures–not only as you read these lines, but as you read between the lines. 

Our friendship with the Iiames has spanned numerous miles and years. John is a doctor of environmental studies and Michaela a teacher. They recently took 6 weeks off to help serve and inspire our small sister church in Sofia, Bulgaria, because that’s the kind of hearts they have for God and his people. As you read this, please say a prayer for their current service there, and for the church in Sofia. 







Wisdom Keeps Adding to Learning

Let the wise listen and add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance.   (Proverbs 1:5)

The wise ADD to their learning. They are attentive to readjusting preconceived ideas or “conventional wisdom” in order to learn. Wyndham has never come across as having it all figured out. His understanding of God, others, and himself has been a work in progress, and I am confident, to this day, he is still learning.

When John and I were moved to their ministry in January 1991, our very first time together was driving back from an all church Bible Talk leaders’ meeting downtown. John drove. Wyndham and a weeping Jeanie rode in back. The conversation started something like this, “We’re having a disagreement and wondered if you guys could help us out. We can’t get on the same page…”

We froze. What?!  They were experienced leaders, ahead of us in life and ministry…and they were training us. Yet, this was only the beginning of the many times when Wyndham solicited our input on matters of ministry, personal relationships, marriage, etc. In the ministry regions in his charge, the non-staff men were called on for their strengths, talents, and collective wisdom to make the ministry the best it could be.

Since Wyndham was in a constant state of learning, getting input from so many others did not challenge his sense of position, and the men felt valued under his leadership. Wisdom has security based in humility…always looking to learn.

One of the most laughable moments that has endured more mileage than any other “Wyndham story” was the one that took place in their kitchen one afternoon. Jeanie was serving soup for lunch, and without really waiting for Jeanie, Wyndham continued asking for salt, pepper, bread, butter, water refill, etc., to the point that it seemed she would not ever have time to sit with us to eat. In an exaggerated way, I leaned over and peered under the table, catching his eye on my way up. Wyndham questioned the look on my face, and I replied, “I just wondered if your legs were broken.”

Truth be told, his immediate response was not entirely happy, but within a few moments, he realized his lack of consideration. John and I have been long gone from Boston, and through the years I have received calls from other disciples after a marriage retreat to laugh with me about this story. Wyndham shares it, because he learned to be a better husband. He has consistently added to his learning.

Years ago I affectionately nicknamed him “Wisdom,” and these are only several of many reasons why.

I could fill a daily blog for years with wisdom I have learned from Wyndham. However, I’ll stick with one day a week. Each Wednesday I will share wisdom gleaned, not just from me, but from our family who saw him day and night and from friends near and far whose lives he has touched.

Many of you have already told me you wish to share wisdom you learned from Wyndham. If you wish to contribute to this collection please email me at with the subject line—Wednesday Wisdom. If you wish to receive these blogs in your inbox, feel free to sign up to follow the blog.

I’ll look forward to meeting you here on Wednesdays. And if you would, please remember us in your prayers. It’s a privilege to have you in our lives.

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About Jeanie Shaw

After retiring from forty-five years in full-time ministry, Jeanie Shaw went back to school to earn her master’s and doctorate in spiritual formation and discipleship. She also serves as a certified Christian life coach who loves helping people discover the joy, peace, and purpose that come from finding and following God’s plan for their lives. She has taught classes and workshops all over the world and has written numerous books. She has four grown children, eight grandchildren, and a golden retriever who thinks he is human. When she is not reading, writing, coaching, teaching, or enjoying her family she might be found walking along rivers, learning new lessons about life.

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