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Growing In Place – Reframing Church Staff Development

Career advancement is not a term frequently used in church staff circles. Why? Usually there is not a definable ladder of success in ministry as there is in the business world. Career paths in ministry are notoriously unpredictable. Moving upward in the chain of command in a church is not always desirable as many staff feel called to a specific... Continue Reading

Are You More Goal Or Role Oriented?

In determining one’s life calling and truest self, many questions should be addressed. But maybe none as important as the question, “are you a more goal oriented, or a more role oriented person?” How you answer that question will impact critical decisions throughout your life. Goal and Role Definitions For purposes of this discussion, let’s take a closer look at... Continue Reading

Preparing To Provide Feedback

“Most people want to hear the truth, even if it is unpalatable. There is something within us that responds deeply to people who will level with us.” – Susan Scott, author of Fierce Conversations Brain researchers found that people experience a similar physiological response to feedback as they do to physical threats. Even though we want honest feedback, our hearts... Continue Reading

A Feedback Focus – A Church Leader’s Priority

I gained a new understanding of “feedback” when I considered the two words that comprise the word. It is appropriate the word begins with “feed,” as in “feed me.” Appropriate because feedback is a fuel we all need to grow. Management guru, Ken Blanchard, put it best when he said, “Feedback is the breakfast of champions.” The second half of... Continue Reading

Focus on the Future: How to Foster Staff Foresight

Recently I talked with an Executive Pastor friend who shared the frustration his Senior Pastor had with the staff’s inability to focus on the future of the church. I find this is a chronic challenge in many churches as staff focus the majority of their time on planning for the near term and executing their day to day ministry responsibilities.... Continue Reading

Discovering, Designing, and Developing Your Destiny

“The feeling of being hurried is not usually the result of living a full life and not having time.  It is, on the contrary, born of a vague fear that we are wasting our life.  When we do not do the one thing we ought to do, we have no time for anything else – we are the busiest people... Continue Reading

The Story of Three Bricklayers – A Parable About The Power of Purpose

The story of three bricklayers is a multi-faceted parable with many different variations, but is rooted in an authentic story. After the great fire of 1666 that leveled London, the world’s most famous architect, Christopher Wren, was commissioned to rebuild St Paul’s Cathedral. One day in 1671, Christopher Wren observed three bricklayers on a scaffold, one crouched, one half-standing and... Continue Reading

Restoring Midrash As A Spiritual Practice

The word Midrash is a Hebrew term with several different definitions, but perhaps the most ancient definition is the one that draws my attention. That is when Midrash is used as a mode of scriptural interpretation in which many different exegetical methods are employed in an effort to derive deeper meaning from a text. In this context Midrash is a... Continue Reading

Loving God With All Of Your Strengths

In Mark 12:28-31 Jesus tells a scribe that the greatest and first commandment is to “love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength.” How to love God with all of my strength is perplexing to me. What exactly does it mean? Does it mean loving God with all of my effort, intensity, fervor, or energy?... Continue Reading

The Less Is More Principle

In a recent post we cited Acts 6 as an example of the early church leaders’ willingness to place the good of the entire church over the good of a small special interest group. Acts 6 is also an excellent illustration of the principle “less is more.” Out of the myriad of responsibilities the 12 Disciples had in organizing and... Continue Reading

What Are Control Systems And Why Does Your Church Need Them?

Control. Now days that is a dirty word. People with control issues seem to abound, yet none of us enjoy being controlled. But, control can have a helpful connotation as well, as in a “control system.” What is a control system? A control system manages, directs, or regulates behaviors, devices, or processes. Control systems can be found in all industries... Continue Reading

The Clearness Committee – One Committee Every Church Should Consider

I know, all the church needs is another committee and another meeting to attend. That is my general sentiment as well, but there is one committee lacking in most congregations that is worth considering…..a Clearness Committee. A Clearness Committee is designed to provide a spiritual community approach to personal discernment, and comes from the Quaker tradition. The Clearness Committee approach... Continue Reading