Stop Failing to Plan – Start a Content Strategy

Churches, almost regardless of size, can inadvertently opportunistically take advantage of their audience through minimally prepared communications aimed at the most urgent needs. Even a small modicum of strategic planning would aid considerably in aligning the mission of the church with the opportunities in their communities.
October 29, 2014   Anthony Coppedge

When technology divides

I am a technology fan. I appreciate its power to help me stay connected to my wife, family, colleagues and friends. However, as we know, technology - mobile devices in particular - can get us into trouble. We can find ourselves engrossed in our devices when we are with our ...
October 27, 2014   Kent Evans

6 ways to "read" the room

Are we winning at the game of “Follow the Leader?” Are people really with us? This piece is about checking to see if, in fact, anyone is following our skillful cues.
October 24, 2014   Doug Lawrence

5 Reasons pastors need a sabbatical

The word “sabbatical” has different meanings, depending on the context in which it is used. It has one meaning in the academic community, another meaning in its biblical usage, and still another in many secular settings. For the purpose of this blog, I will define sabbatical in simple terms: time ...
October 23, 2014   Thom Rainer

Five things to do in your 2015 personal planning

I wish I had planned more when I was a young man. I treated each year pretty much like the one before, living life in one long stream of consciousness. Before I knew it, several years passed, and some of my dreams still seemed distant. I can see now that ...
October 22, 2014   Tom Harper

Joan Rivers and the hope of life after death

Comedienne Joan Rivers died recently at the age of 81. Her passing came just three weeks after the world also mourned the loss of comedian Robin Williams and actress Lauren Bacall. Rivers was a very funny lady.  Despite her frequently edgy and irreverent humor, she was a relentless worker and ...
October 21, 2014   Bob Russell

Multi-Congregation v. Multi-Site Churches

One current trend that has the potential to be a blip on the screen of church history is the multi-campus church. If not a blip, possibly a blemish. In business, the ma-pa whatever store disappeared with the growth of the big box Wal-Mart model. In the same way, many neighborhood ...
October 21, 2014   Phil Wood

Re:Vision Book Review

A turnaround pastor's life development plan
October 14, 2014   David Bowman

Great new book on pastoral succession and transition

The first article I ever wrote for Church Executive magazine was on pastoral succession.
October 13, 2014   Ronald Keener

4 ways to break out of “default” worship

Everyone who reads this title knows exactly what this discussion is about. We get stuck. We start to do everything the same way every time we do it. We move toward avoidance of the obvious because it’s what we do. We’re human.
October 09, 2014   Doug Lawrence

What's in a title?

At one time, I would have answered the above question: “Not much. Half the time the publisher will change it anyway.” I changed my outlook after my agent encountered a string of lukewarm reactions to a book proposal, which he attributed to a poor title. I dreamed up several alternatives, ...
October 09, 2014   Ken Walker

7 Habits of joyful pastors

I have in front of me the names of 20 pastors I know well. It did not take long to assemble the names by the specific traits I sought. Simply said, I wanted to find out whose names I would include in looking for pastors who are joyful. The list ...
October 09, 2014   Thom Rainer

Should you attend a friend's same-sex marriage ceremony?

Occasionally I receive e-mails from church members asking for my opinion on various personal or church problems. With this week’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling clearing the way for same-sex marriage in 30 states, an inquiry I received recently is relevant to all Christians—particularly pastors. Since many church leaders will inevitably ...
October 07, 2014   Bob Russell

What will the spirit be like at my funeral?

My very first funeral home visit as a new Deacon was both encouraging and challenging. I came face to face with a godly survivor sharing a Christ-centric legacy. It made me wonder about mine.
October 06, 2014   Kent Evans

When Churches Don't Fit Right

Is your church the wrong size for the ministries you are trying to support? This blog looks at some of the factors that contribute to a misaligned fit between size and ministries.
October 02, 2014   Steve Reynolds

Encourage healthy debate

Leadership Principle #56:  Focus on the positive while managing the negative. “But avoid foolish debates, genealogies, quarrels, and disputes about the law, for they are unprofitable and worthless. Reject a divisive person after a first and second warning…” – Titus 3:9-10 Have you ever been in a team meeting where ...
September 26, 2014   Tom Harper

5 Reasons churches benefit by seeking external help

The pattern is conspicuous. Churches that operate in an isolated and insular fashion are not as healthy as churches that regularly seek outside perspectives. Of course, there will always be exceptions. But, as a rule, those churches whose leaders and members are involved solely in their own ministries tend to ...
September 25, 2014   Thom Rainer

How Every Church Should Be Governed

“There is no definitive form of church government in the New Testament,” so wrote G. Campbell Morgan. Scripture has many examples of how local bodies were led, ranging from Paul or Timothy essentially mandating, to the Apostles as the final word, to the congregation empowered to take responsibility, to a ...
September 25, 2014   Phil Wood

The imaginary Jesus

Famed singer Elton John recently suggested if Jesus were alive today, He would favor gay marriage. A recent poll reveals 55 percent of Americans believe Jesus would have backed universal healthcare. I occasionally get responses from readers who insist Jesus would have written with more grace and understanding than me (likely true). ...
September 23, 2014   Bob Russell

3 critical mistakes many worship leaders make

Like pastors, worship leaders take lots of “hits;” they just make a lot less money and are often far less well trained to do their job. Oh, and they are frequently expendable. Can we help these people become better leaders? As a life-long worship guy, I get to talk about ...
September 18, 2014   Doug Lawrence

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