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    Entries in Church Leadership (15)


    Hand Written Notes

    Handwriting is an art form all of its own.  My own handwriting is unique.  It is far from "neat."  And it doesn't take long before my hand begins to cramp.  I tire quickly.  Typing is much easier.

    It has been observed by more than one essayist or philosopher that handwriting reveals something that the printed or typed word cannot, such as emotions, calmness of mind, or harriedness.

    Nearly eight years ago, I was given a lesson on leadership that I will not soon forget.  I was told that leaders write letters.  They do not all have to be handwritten.  But the handwritten notes seem to be the most treasured.  Thank yous.  Notes of encouragement.  Brief memos pointing out this or that insight or directing attention to this or that resource.  Leaders write notes.  They communicate ideas.  They bind people together.  They open a window to the heart.

    I spent over an hour on Monday writing notes to people that I have served alongside.  In the process, not only did I ponder each life, I grew in love and appreciation for these people.  While my hand might've cramped or quickly tired, my heart was strengthened.

    Do you write notes?  Who do you need to write today?


    Rebooting to Jesus

    I've got a lot of friends who are interested in church renewal.  Here's something to think about:

    If it is not already clear, let us state it emphatically: We believe that Christology is the key to the renewal of the church in every age and in every possible situation it might find itself.  The church must always return to Jesus in order to renew itself.  When, for whatever reason, the church gets stuck or loses its way in the world, it needs to recover its primal identity in its founder.  It is not good enough to return to the founder of whatever denomination or organization we find ourselves in, although revitalization of that kind is not without merit.  For Salvationists to rediscover the fire and fight within William Booth or for Methodists to have a re-encounter with John Wesley's passion and theology is valuable.  But, when there is something fundamentally wrong in the basic equation of the faith, then it is time to recover a vital and active sense of Jesus: who he is, what he has done for us, the way of life he laid down for us to follow.  His passions and concerns must become ours.  In other words, as stated earlier, Christology must determine missiology (our purpose and function in this world), which in turn must determine our ecclesiology (the cultural forms and expressions of the church).
    -Michael Frost and Alan Hirsch, ReJesus: A Wild Messiah for a Missional Church



    Tim Keller on Movements, Ministry, and the City

    In case you missed it on my Twitter feed, I stumbled upon this archive of Tim Keller's plenary talks from the 2009 Global Cities Initiative Conference via my blog reader.  If you care about cities, renewal, movements, prayer, the gospel, and ministry, I'd recommend checking out these talks.  Thanks to Steve McCoy for making them available.


    Seeing All They Have Done, Bless Them.

    Yesterday I was reading in Exodus, specifically chapters 30-40.  This is a passage of Scripture we might often gloss over, as it contains the LORD's instruction for the construction of the tent of meeting, the making of vestments, and specifics for offerings, sprinkled here and there with a bit of narrative about Moses, the people of Israel, and the ups and downs of their relationship with the Holy One.

    In 39:43, we are told this:

    When Moses saw that they had done all the work just as the LORD had commanded, he blessed them.

    I marveled at this one line, for what had come before was incredible.  The detail, the immense sacrifice of the people, and the craftsmanship of those the LORD had given skill, taken as a lump, amounts to a monumental task.  Moses looked on, saw that it had been done according to plan, and he blessed them.

    If you lead a group of people and give them direction, put this bit of biblical wisdom in to action.  When you look upon the work, see that is well done, and sense that you have accomplished what the LORD has set out for you to do, bless your people.  Thank them.  Speak words of encouragement.  Recognize accomplishments.  Build them up.


    "Lost People Matter to God." ~ Language Matters

    Last week Ben Arment issued a warning, saying that the phrase, "Lost people matter to God" might be the most dangerous phrase in the church.  He wrote:

    We can use it to justify every - and I mean every - decision in ministry. They might not be bad, but it's impossible to argue back when you sling out the "lost people matter" phrase.

    Install a $1 million LED wall?... Lost people matter to God

    Tolerate a mistake in the service? No way... lost people matter...

    Eliminate worship in the service?... Yep, lost people matter to God

    Take a risk on a church plant or succession plan? Heck no... lost people...

    It's not the phrase that's dangerous. It's what we do with it.

    Check out the post, and read the comments.  There is some good stuff here worth pondering.  Some of those leaving comments noted how this phrase can be used in good ways, so check those out as well.  Language matters, and we need to exercise special care when capturing our mission and stating our purposes in a way that opens up discernment and dialogue.

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