Lead Like the Real You

Wisdom for Women on Finding Your Voice, Pursuing God’s Calling, and Leading with Courage

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Amy Orr-Ewing has learned a lot of lessons the hard way.

As an internationally known speaker, theologian, and apologist, she has navigated through many challenges: battling abuse, finding and using her voice, building a lasting ministry, leading with confidence, thriving in friendship, relying on God in hard times, and more.

Now, she's sharing the wisdom she has gained over 25 years with other women so they, too, can grow in Christian leadership. In Lead Like the Real You, Orr-Ewing pens a deeply personal and engaging collection of letters that explore the unique challenges women face.

Rooted in honesty, practicality, and biblical guidance, these letters speak to women who lead in the workplace, classroom, church, and home, as well as those who support them. This book empowers the next generation of Christian women who hope to change the world to live and lead well, knowing they are not alone.

Part 1: Learning to Use Your Voice
1. Proclamation
2. Speaking in Public
3. Owning Our Embodied Voices
4. Don't Hold Back
Part 2: Work and Calling
5. Calling Unfolds
6. God Calls Work Good
7. Parenting and Work
8. Becoming Lovers of Truth
9. Embrace Curiosity
Part 3: Facing Chauvinism in Christian Spaces
10. On Being Female
11. When Others Are Threatened by You
12. Misogyny and Complementarianism
13. What to Do with 1 Timothy 2
Part 4: Pursuing Leadership Success
14. Learn to Say Yes!
15. Who Gets the Credit?
16. Watch Out for the Narcissist
17. Shortcuts and Storms
Part 5: Addressing Abuse and Injustice
18. My Experience in an Abuse Crisis
19. When Institutions Cover Up Abuse
20. When a Leader We Respect Harms Others
21. "What about All the Good the Leader Did?"
22. Gaslighting
23. The Danger of Exceptionalism
24. Justice Takes a Long Time
Part 6: Finding Hope in Dark Times
25. Anxiety
26. Trauma
27. When You Can't Pray
28. Consolation
29. Reframing Forgiveness
Part 7: Navigating Friendship
30. Hold On to Faithful Friends
31. Jealousy and Rivalry
32. When Friendships Become Transactional
Part 8: Leading Like Jesus
33. Why Love Matters
34. Running the Race Well
35. Power and Authority
36. The Power of Empathy
Part 9: Growing Deep Roots
37. Discipleship and Cultivation
38. Wild
39. Home and Hospitality
40. The Body
Part 10: The Value of Stories
41. Knowing the Storylines
42. There Is Hope
43. Remember That God Is God


"Amy Orr-Ewing has written another book that every female Christ follower must read. In each of her letters we find invaluable, practical information about leading--from fighting anxiety when speaking to navigating work and calling. Amy does not shy away from the more controversial questions, such as whether women should teach in the church. I needed to read every page in this book. Thank you, Amy."

Rev. Lisa Wink Schultz, Chief of Staff, US Senate Chaplain

"Amy's letter-writing style provides women with digestible key lessons for leading in the church, in the family, and in the workplace--or in all three. After beginning with gentle letters of encouragement, she leads readers to the hardest and perhaps most important lessons: how to respond to others, care for them, and heal when a Christian organization's leadership has been harmful, deceitful, and abusive. The wisest of men will seek out this book as well."

Elizabeth Berridge, Baroness Berridge of the Vale of Catmose

"Intelligent but heartfelt, sophisticated yet raw, Lead Like the Real You hits every key theme in modern female leadership right on the head. This book courageously digs deep into each issue commonly faced by women leaders, including the tabooed and glossed-over ones. This is a manual for every faithful female pioneer who wishes not just to survive but to flourish in the workplace and in life."

Ilaria Chan, chairwoman, Tech for Good Institute

"Amy Orr-Ewing has given a tremendous gift to every woman who has longed for a mentor. In these pages, you will find letters that come with love and wisdom. You will know that you are not alone and that the God who made you has called you to lead. I pray this book provokes the rise of a new generation of female leaders in all spheres of life--for the glory of God and for the good of the world."

Glenn Packiam, lead pastor, Rockharbor Church; author, The Resilient Pastor; coauthor, The Intentional Year

"Amy's book is a pearl of wisdom, soaked with the honest, practical realities of a life spent pursuing Jesus. She speaks as a lover of truth, in kind authority, with bold freedom. I want to read and reread this book and give a copy to every young leader I know. I'm grateful that Amy lives all that she has written in these pages, modeling the authentic intimacy of one who has spent her life saying 'yes' to Jesus. Her example invites me to follow Jesus more bravely and beautifully."

Canon Sarah Yardley, mission lead, Creation Fest UK

"In Lead Like the Real You, Amy Orr-Ewing writes with courage and biblically sound conviction, shedding light on the vital role women play in the church. I love the way she structured the book as letters to a young female leader, sharing her heart, struggles, and convictions as she steps into challenging situations and tackles real-life hurdles faced by females in male-dominated spaces. Amy Orr-Ewing equips female leaders for stewardship while at the same time successfully stewarding others on every page of this book."

Megan Fate Marshman, speaker and author

The Author

  1. Amy Orr-Ewing
    Hazel Thompson

    Amy Orr-Ewing

    Amy Orr-Ewing (DPhil, Oxford University) is an international speaker, theologian, and apologist. She is the author of multiple books, including Where Is God in All the Suffering? and Why Trust the Bible? Orr-Ewing speaks at churches and on...

    Continue reading about Amy Orr-Ewing