Getting Dropped Off At The Airport

Thursday Morning

My college best friend, Zac Northen, called me on Thursday morning and invited me to go to Israel with him for free. He leads a college gap year program and one of his leaders dropped out, so he invited me to join him. I immediately told him I couldn’t do that, as I had a lot to do at work. I was gearing up for Flower City Work Camp and assisting to lead 800 students for their spring break, helping lead a conference, and I wasn’t sure how my wife would take care of the kids solo and work full time.

Zac and his family

Thursday Night-Monday

I mentioned it in passing to my wife that evening and she said, “What are you thinking?? You should totally go!!” We discussed some details as to how it might work and I called Zac back and we began planning. But there was a problem. Because the international flight was being changed within the last few days, the travel agent helping plan the trip said that Turkish Airlines was having trouble changing who the ticket could be assigned to. Then, Turkish Airlines moved to their skeletal crew for weekend hours and the travel agent could not get a hold of anyone. We would have to wait until Monday to find out if I’d be going on Wednesday to a 10-day trip to Israel.

At this point, it sounded like the trip was at about a 50/50 shot of happening. So we waited until Monday and hoped to the travel agent could get a hold of a representative to move the plane ticket. The morning went by. Lunch came. I kept pestering Zac to see if he had heard anything. Nothing.

All of Monday went by and the travel agent still could not get the ticket transferred. I was so excited about the itinerary: visiting Nazareth, the Sea of Galilee, Jerusalem, the Dead Sea, and more. And by end of the day Monday, the travel agent said, “You may want to tell your friend to bail on the idea.” I was extremely disappointed. I was really looking forward to hanging out with my good friend and seeing so many sites.

Tuesday Morning

I woke up Tuesday morning super grumpy. I rushed the kids out the door and went for a short workout before work. Midway through my life, I just quit. I felt defeated. I went to work and tried to go about my day as normal. I didn’t want to mope and set a negative atmosphere for my co-workers. But inside I was dull.

I was in the middle of a meeting when I saw Zac calling. I rushed out and picked up the phone. “You can go. It’ll now cost a little bit [due to the school being able to get a refund for an unused ticket/trip], but we can transfer everything. The travel agent is on the other line. You have 60 seconds to decide if you are committing.”


I told Zac I’d call him right back.

I called Sarah at work. She didn’t pick up.

I called again.

Then again.

Still nothing.

I paced my office.

The phone rings. It’s Zac calling me back and saying he needs an answer. Sarah had been encouraging me to go. In fact she was strongly urging me to go. She had been praying for time with a friend and an adventure (I found this out after). But now it was decision time. Sarah called me on the other line and I took it. I told her the scenario. She said “Are you serious?? Why are you calling me!?? Go!!!!”

So I said yes.

I scrambled to get a bunch of work done. I had an emergency meeting for Flower City Work Camp to figure out how we could get all the kids to come (hooray they can!). I bought a ticket from Rochester to NYC. I called my Mom, who agreed to come up from PA to stay with my wife for the whole time I’m gone. (Did I mention yet I have the best Mom in the world?). I took my son to soccer practice. Then explained to him I was going on a trip. He didn’t seem to care much at four years old, but made me promise when I got back to buy a race car for him, his best friend, and myself. “When I get home, we’ll go to Target right away, buddy.”

4-Year-Old Soccer Practice

Tuesday Night

As I’m putting Will down to bed, Sarah calls me with her concerned voice. She was doing substitute plans online, as she was going to stay home with our sick daughter, so I figured it was about that. Did I mention she’s had a fever hovering between 100 and 103 degrees throughout this whole saga? I finally came down and asked Sarah what it was. “They’ve cancelled your flight and re-booked you for 5pm, which is 6 hours too late for you to catch your flight to Israel. I’m not seeing any other alternative flights.”

I scramble to look on Delta’s website. There’s nothing. I hit a wrong button and signed up for a wrong flight on a wrong day to transfer my ticket to. Oh my gosh! I was so frustrated. I wanted to scream. Now I simply can’t get to NYC for this trip? Was I just not supposed to go?

I said a quick prayer. It wasn’t my holiest sounding prayer. It was an angry one.

I searched again on a separate site for flights. There was one more flight from Rochester to NYC remaining! I booked it immediately, while still on the phone cancelling with Delta. I was back in business!

Believe it or not, the story isn’t over yet. A huge winter storm was set to hit JFK airport in the morning and all day. It’s likely why my first scheduled flight was cancelled last night. They are calling for 10″-15″ of snow. Would I be able to get off the ground in Rochester to make it?

We went to bed last night unsure. We woke up at 3am and checked the flights and weather. We left for the airport at 4am. I said goodbye to my beautiful wife.

Wednesday Morning

And now I sit writing at JFK airport, waiting for the rest of the group to show up.

Life is an adventure. I plan to soak it all in on this trip. I just watched a short history of Israel and will be reading a book about it on my flight. I slept 3 hours last night. But I’ll walk the path Jesus took on his way to the cross. I will take a cruise on the Sea of Galilee.  And I’ll have communion at the tomb where Jesus raised to life. I’m so excited for the adventure, but even more excited about contextualizing the Scriptures. A friend prayed a powerful prayer for me yesterday – that this trip would spur on new insights for me to the life of Christ and have ripple effects in my preaching for years to come.

I’m excited.

I’m grateful for my wife, mother, and church staff enabling me to take a trip of a lifetime.


Billy Graham: A Faith Hero

February 21, 2018 — 1 Comment

“Someday you will read or hear that Billy Graham is dead. Don’t you believe a word of it. I shall be more alive than I am now. I will just have changed my address. I will have gone into the presence of God.”

-Billy Graham

We shared the same birthday.

You transcended political parties in an age of picking sides.

Faith drove all the decisions in your life.

Thank you for inspiring me with your passion, vision, dedication, and integrity.

facebook logo

Facebook and social media are an incredible way to stay connected to your church family. It also is a great way to create content that can help you to reach out to your community that is disconnected to God. At our church, we have had many visitors come to our church through engaging Facebook posts. One student in our student ministry came and checked us out as a result of our youth ministry page and months later gave his life to Jesus. He is now in Bible college! Our church actually helped find candidates for open positions we were hiring for through Facebook promoted posts in our area.

To give you an idea of the reach of the social media giant, as of the first quarter of 2015, Facebook had:

  • 1.44 billion monthly active users
  • 1.25 billion mobile users
  • 936 million daily active users
  • 798 million mobile daily active users

To put things in perspective, Facebook now has more active users than China’s entire population (estimated to be 1.40 billion).


So what are the questions you as a church need to ask? I have compiled the best 11 questions to ask to have a great launch and continued strategy for engagement for your church Facebook page.


1)      Who are we targeting with our content?

2)      What content is applicable to our congregation/target audience?

3)      Who is in charge of posting content?

4)      What is appropriate or inappropriate for our posts?

5)      What is our goal for frequency of posts? How much is too much?

6)      Who else can we get involved to help create content?

7)      Who can we get to commit to engage with the page (not managers of the page, other users)?

8)      Who will respond to comments and keep others engaged?

9)      Who is willing to do some of the graphic work to make the page look nice?

10)    How will we gauge success?

11)    How can we ensure this will not fall off someone’s plate? How can you ensure someone will be creating meaningful content long term?


Although this may seem like a lot of work at the start, the potential upside is incredible.

Note: I recommend applying these same principles to other social media platforms as well.

Facebook thumb

Leave a comment with other questions you believe to be helpful – or success stories you have seen or been a part of through social media…



Bill Hybels

Leadership is not about protecting a position or showing how smart you are, it’s about moving a cause/organization to some better place. It’s all about movement.
Can I do this?
Can I sustain this?
Can I take this across the finish line?
8 Critical Functions of Leadership

5 Intangibles of Leadership

1) Grit
How do people with less IQ and talent succeed more than others. A psychologist study
People with grit have long term tenacity
Use every last drop to move something ahead
Gritty people don’t quit, but can overcome whatever obstacle stands in their way
I think I can —> I thought I could.
Grit Assessment Test at
Can I develop grit?
Opposite of grit is ease.
Grit development demands difficulty.
Overcoming physical challenges is a way to grow grit. This overflows into other areas.
Most elite leaders volunteer for extra assignments and then kill it.
Don’t just deliver. Over deliver every time.
When senior leaders have grit, it creates a culture of grit.
Gritty organizations are unstoppable.
We must develop grit to be a great leader.
2) Self-awareness
When there is a big
Blind spot: something someone believes they do well, but everyone else on the team knows this is not true.
All of us have 3.4 blind spots
How do we identify our blind spots?
– direct supervisor
– peers, friends, and colleagues
Knowing how your past is messing with your decision making today is crucial for today.
Growing in self-awareness demands feedback from others.
3) Resourcefulness
– People with high learning agility start figuring out what they need to do
– Resourceful people figure it out.
– So much of our growth of a leader
Can resourcefulness be developed?
Yes. But you must be put in places that are confused, dysfunctional, and failing to figure out a way forward.
4) Self-sacrifice
– This is at the core of good leadership
– Self-sacrificing love has always been and will always be at the absolute core of leadership. Love changes people and cultures.
– Gallop: Do workers feel concern/love from their supervisor?
     – The entire organization performs better.
The greatest of these is love.
Tear down the professional veils that keep your heart closed off from co-workers.

If you missed Day 1’s notes, click here first! Enjoy!

Joseph Grenny – Mastering the Art of Crucial Conversations


Are there moments of disproportionate influence?
Moments where someone behaves has an enormous effect on every result you care about?
Big Idea #1:
The Principle of Crucial Conversations
Anytime you find yourself stuck, stop and ask:
What crucial conversation are we not holding or not holding well?
[If you don’t talk it out, then eventually you will act it out (negatively)]

crucial conversations


  • It is your job as a leader to make sure that you are paying attention to the crucial conversations that need to happen (model, coach, and act on these conversations!)  Candor is so critical!
  • They are either a pit or a path (accelerate to a new level – more intimacy)
  • Healthiest churches have better member growth, financials health, staff strength
  • Your individual influence is fundamentally based on your ability to have crucial conversations.

Talk it out or walk it out. Those are our options on crucial conversations.

Crucial conversations effect every area of ministry. The goal is to make the crucial conversations become the path instead of the pit.

The Bible is a history of crucial conversations.

What crucial conversation are we holding or not holding now?

Seven Crucial Skills:
1) Start with Heart
2) Learn to Look
3) Make it Safe
4) Master My Stories
5. STATE MY Path
6) Explore Others’ Path
7) Move to Action

2 Tasks in the Hazardous Half-Minute in order to be heard
1) Help them know that you care about their interest and their concerns (almost as much as you do). You create mutual purpose to allow the other person to exhale. This cannot be a gimmick. Must be sincere.
2) Create mutual respect – the other person knows that you care about them.

So how do you do that for someone you don’t respect? Let them know you are for them and always do it with respect.

The myth that we can’t tell the truth and keep a friend is keeping us from our greatest potential.


Erika Ariel Fox – Winning from Within

2014_Faculty_Erica_FoxThe reason we can’t negotiate well with others is because we cannot negotiate well with ourselves.

Have you ever said yes when you wanted to say no?

Have you ever really wanted to take a risk, but the other part of you told you to play it safe?

There’s a gap, called the performance gap, which is the distance between you doing your best (full potential) and what you actually do in real practice.

Identify your performance gaps and work to close those gaps to become the best of who you are.

How Do We Find Our Performance Gaps?
One way involves looking at yourself in a new way. Most of us think of ourselves as singular. But another way is to look at yourself in plural form. There are voices from centuries to centuries saying this.

The Dreamer: Creates Possibilities
Ex/ JK Rowling brought her book to 12 different publishers who said no. Then became the greatest selling author of a book series.
– Dreamers look at the dream underneath the dream.

The Thinker: Clarifies Perspectives (your inner CFO)

The Lover: (VP of HR)
– People want you to know that you care about them. As an end unto itself.

When you are feeling vulnerable or reactive, picture a person who you really love for 30 seconds. Then when you go into the meeting, let the other person know you care.

Find places in your life where you are saying yes and say, “Thanks but no.” Even if the only reason is burnout.

Choose the tough conversations and think about how you can find a loving way to have them.

Don Flow – A Grander Vision

2014_Faculty_Don_FlowHow does your faith effect your business?
Faith drives the culture – bringing hope and Christ’s redemption to the world in a pluralistic setting.
1) Through Prayer
2) Daily Interactions
3) Culture
4) How this animates how the company engages employees and the community

For a grander vision, live love and bring hope. Begin each day by saying, “Not my will, but Yours be done.”

As a leader, your organization will not be more truthful or graceful than you are. It starts with you.

Don Flow’s Company Does:
Covenant: A personal commitment and unbreakable promise. This means telling the truth, doing the right thing, and always keeping promise regardless of the cost.
– they intentionally limit their profits on car sales to ensure they don’t take advantage of uninformed buyers.

If business should exist, what should it look like?
Cultivate & organize Creation.
Bring justice and mercy to the world.
We must live faithfully to this vision, acknowledging that we will always fall short. 12 friends changed the world because they believe it happened.

You evaluate employees on the metrics you measure.

Leadership flows out of who we are, not just what we do.

Show Respect
Earn Trust
Reach for Perfection
Value Input
Energize Others

We will never achieve perfection, which means we must be a people of grace.

Allen Catherine Kagina – Ugandan Revenue Authority

just listened to her incredible story…wow!

Wilfredo De Jesus – In The Gap

2014_Faculty_Wilfredo_De_JesusPrayer is a weapon, but we must not rely on it as a crucial.
Your budget cannot dictate your faith!
When we see injustices, we can’t just say “Oh that’s so bad”. We must engage our community.
Ezekiel 22:30

Throw all sorts of lines/bait – the method doesn’t matter. The message does.

Fear is the absence of faith.

Nehemiah asked “How is Jerusalem?” and it changed everything. The walls were in ruin.

1) He Prayed
2) He Planned – we don’t like the process.
Ex/ in NFL they have 25 seconds to call a play. What if we got out of the huddle and into our communities?
3) He Proceeded
4) He Persuaded – there is always opposition, but God is with us and for us.

Courage is an inner resolution to move forward despite the obstacles.

Ivan Satyavrata: The Power Paradox

2014_Faculty_Ivan_Satyavrata On one hand you have an all-powerful God and on one hand you have overwhelming need all around you. This is the power paradox of leadership.

John 13:1-5

It was just before the Passover Festival. Jesus knew that the hour had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end.

The evening meal was in progress, and the devil had already prompted Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot, to betray Jesus. Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God; so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet,drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.

Jesus knows that all things are under his power and his self-awareness assumes him in the role of the powerless.

A leader must be able to wield power, in order to lead effectively. At the same time, be genuinely vulnerable. Absolute power and absolute vulnerability.

Knowledge is power. Jesus had the most knowledge of any human. The wisest thing we can do is share his message of hope and truth.

Knowledge of power sometimes corrupts and can fill us with intoxicating pride. How are we stewarding our knowledge bank for others?

Boldly invade the darkness.

Be patient and resolute in the face of evil.

Great leaders hold the scepter of power in one hand and a towel and basin of service in the other.

The greatest gift you can give to followers is to give them the ultimate safe place so they can soar to greater heights.

Great leaders refuse to use influence or intimacy for intimidation or control.

Combine humility with fierce resolve.

We are not called to be a Christian terminator who wipes out all evil. It can feel overwhelming. But then comes a moment of truth. An exploding realization: Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly about my weakness. I delight in my weaknesses…for when I am weak, there he is strong.” This is the joy in the power paradox.

When you feel the weakest, that is precisely when you are strongest. Your strength is made perfect in Him.

Is the world becoming a better place because of your power?

Power paradox leaders are accustomed to heartache, but have deep joy. Having nothing, yet possessing everything. Dependent conquers. Meek inheritors of the earth.

Tyler Perry: When Leadership Meets Inspiration

Tyler-Perry-to-headline-the-Global-Leadership-Summit What is your writing process? The artistic time needs to be separate for room to create – just in office for a few days a week. If the artist says I can’t stick to a schedule or a budget, can they work with you? “Nice to meet you, I wish you well on your struggle.” Clear the noise. Clear the clutter. How do you inspire people? Surround yourself with people who are like you in the sense of being an underdog who worked hard. Look for the best attitude, even if they are less qualified when hiring.

Below are my notes from the Global Leadership Summit 2014. This is Day 1 – and I plan to post more notes tomorrow!

Hard Fought Leadership Lessons by Bill Hybels

True or False: All leadership is intensely spiritual.

Every leadership decision you make has a direct impact on the spirit and psyche of those you lead.

We can become obsessed with the thrill of leadership.

Leaders with the highest level of passion have the lowest level of awareness of the spirit he or she has been assembled to lead.

When you look at the team through the “they don’t care” eyes – the leader can begin to think they are either too passionate or that they shouldn’t care quite as much. None of this is discussed openly, but everyone starts to sniff it and sense it.

Grunts feel expendable, not valuable. God values people over everything. Hybels saw this in his culture at Willow Creek. He repented and worked hard to change the culture. It’s one of his highlights of being a leader.

What Practical Steps Are Needed to Change the Culture
1) Use an outside firm to run an engagement survey. “The Best Christian Workplace”

2) Executive Team to own the turnaround. It couldn’t have been delegated to the HR department. Your culture will only ever be as healthy as the senior leader wants it to be.

3) Get real serious about training all people who manage people. Not everyone can manage people. People join organizations, they leave managers.

4) Increase the level of candor in performance reviews. Every worker secretly wants to know how they are doing. “Do you notice my work? Am I adding value in any way?” It is cruel and unusual punishment to not give feedback. The kindest form of management is the truth.

3 words: Start, Stop, Continue.
3 Ms at Willow Creak:
Move: Start meeting with what you are talking about, what you are trying to move ahead.
Modify – change conversation to how to modify.
Motivate people before meeting ends. Thank, bless, and inspire. Create an environment of inspiration.

– Specificity is so important in performance reviews and they get fired up to get better. Everyone wins when a leader gets better.

5) Ruthless commitment to relational conflict, regardless of how hard it is. “Reconcile” book (recommended book): “What if we all looked at conflict as the opportunity to strengthen a relationship, rather than the ruin.” This encourages us to move toward people with conflict. This could result in deeper level of trust when we lean into it.

In the average Christian organization, only 54% of the employees are truly engaged in their work. In the US corporate world, only 30% are excited about their role and engaged. Internationally, the rate is 15%.

81% at Willow are engaged. Heartbreaking for Hybels that 19% are not there.

Another hard-fought leadership lesson:

True or False Great leadership is by definition relentlessly developmental.

Every leader knows this is true – we must be developing. But where there are thick clouds of confusion is in the HOW. Then they give up on leadership development and feel guilty about it.

5 Top Ways to Develop Leaders:
1) Put them in high challenging roles
2) Assign them to a short-term task force
– We don’t buy cars before we test drive. The task force must:
A) Success or failure must
B) The emerging leader must take full authority
C) Leader…?
D) Must have pressure
E) End product must be evaluated by a senior leader.
3) Offer real time feedback
4) Provide coaching/mentoring
5) Offer them classroom seminars

His Dad forced him to be resourceful. This greatly influenced his life.

You must figure out how to help someone know what to do when they don’t know what to do. Do they quit? Dig in? Collaborate? And figure it out?

No senior leader can be ready for everything coming their way. So learning agility is so important.

2 tasks for executive pastor “application”: In charge of budgeting process for one season. Completed building project.

When is the last time you assigned someone to a pass/fail test? Look at the young people.

3rd Hard-Fought Leadership Lesson:
John 10 – Two shepherds.

Higherling types – they don’t care about your sheep. Short-term. If a predator threatens, this one will run to safety.

Owner types – this kind of shepherd cares. Long term view. If a predator threatens, this shepherd will lay down their life for the well-being of the sheep.

We as leaders need to master to discern between these two.

Find and develop leaders with a legacy mindset.

Average tenure for a Fortune 500 CEO is 4 years.

Who are the legacy leaders around you?
– Legacy leaders ride out rough patches.
– Legacy leaders are working through tough economic times.
– Legacy leaders are fueled to please the God they love. They want to leave something beautiful behind. Ex/ Nelson Mandela, Warden Boro Cain.

Forgiven much. Worship much.

We’re all given a birth and end date. But we all have a lot of space in that “dash” between the two. We can be a legacy leader. You don’t drift into being a legacy leader.

Have you given any real thought to the legacy you’ll leave? What if we shifted into legacy gear?

James 1:12 – blessed are those who endure trials.

The grander the vision, the greater the price tag.

The greatest vision ever: Jesus to redeem the sins of humanity and it cost him his life.

Legacy leaders have to develop endurance strategies to keep them in the game over the long haul.

It’s hard to hear God at Mach 2 speed. Solitude breaks are in his schedule.

If you’re feeling burnt out, humble yourself and call for help. This rough patch will require extra assistance.

Carly Fiorina – CEO of Hewlett Packard/Several Non-Profits


Human Potential & Leadership Definition
Most important lesson: What you are is God’s gift to you, what you do is your gift to God.

We have more potential than we realize. Human potential is limitless and amazing.

We are often afraid to take the leap. Sometimes people don’t have the tools, training, education, or opportunity. Sometimes people lose faith – in themselves, others, or even God.

There are things that crush potential. Bureaucracy crushes potential – rules based, hierarchal system. Bureaucracy always implode on themselves. They worry about all the things inside rather than focusing on the outside customer.

If human potential is the only limitless resource that can solve problems, what unlocks it?

The highest calling of leadership is to unlock the potential in others.

A leader tries to change the position. Leaders change the order of things.

Ex/ MLK Jr. – had a dream of “there” that was so different than where he was. Started by unlocking the potential in many nobodies.

What do leaders do?
– A great speech is not leadership. It is important in our words, but they are not enough.

Leadership Framework
Leadership Framework Global Leadership Summit
Strategy/Goals/Vision – Where are we going? Why are we going there? How are we going there?
– The more specific the goal and vision, the better. Where are we now? Where do we want to be (specifically)?
– Then measuring that is crucial.

– How are we going to get things done? Who is the leader? What kind of processes do we need in place?
– Problem: This doesn’t match the strategy/goals/vision
– Structure always has to follow strategy

Metrics/Results – How are we going to measure progress? How do we reward success? What counts as progress?

What gets measured, gets done.

Culture Behavior – Culture means “what’s it like to work around here.” This boils down to behavior. People will listen to the talk for a while. Then they start walking the walk. Watching the walk – seeing what the walk is like. Actions speak louder than words.

The leader sets the tone and models the behavior. Fancy value statements are nice, but people look around to know how to act.

20/20 Rule – When people embark on a leadership journey, 20% of the people in an organization are change warriors. They are people who get it right away. Harness those warriors.
There’s another 20% – “Hell no I won’t go!” – They have to be identified too. They are the source of resistance. That leaves 60% of the people – they are skeptics and they wait to see if it works. Success never happens unless the 60% are moved. When 80% are engaged, then forward momentum is possible.

Everyone has more potential than they realize. Everyone has the capacity to lead. Leaders are made not born.

True leadership requires faith. It’s not about the absence of doubt. A love of God makes leadership easier. Faith gives us the gift of humility. True leadership requires we understand it is not about us. It is about others. Faith gives us empathy. “I could be in the spot!” Faith gives us optimism. That people will rise to the occasion. Faith in others is so important.

Leadership is a choice. Choose to change the order of things. Choose the joy of unlocking the potential in others.

Jeffrey Immelt – CEO of GE: Positioning Your Organization for the Future


Your peers determine how far you can go. Be a giver, not a taker. Horizontal strength keeps institutions together and moving forward.

Be around a crisis if you can. That’s where your leadership shows and shines.

The best leaders go forward.

Leadership ideas that don’t change: Commitment to integrity, performance, change. But they also invest 1 billion dollars into it.

What about when the people you invest in leave? Don’t let them be in fear. You want them to be on fire.

What do you really love in someone? Or what do you want to get rid of in someone? Willingness to stand apart. Willingness to buck the system. You can’t run a big company without rules, but people who drive change and question authority.

Use authority wisely. Say “this is the way it is because this is the decision I’m making.” Don’t overuse this, but use it when it is needed (after discussion).

We’re all in the business of self-confidence. Give them feedback to help make them confident.

Susan Cain: Quiet: Challenging the Quiet Ideal


– 33-50% of people are introverted
– We must harness the power of introverts and extroverts
– At the end of 2 hours at a party, do you want more or are you really tired and want to be home? This is just a metaphor for what is going on inside our bodies.

Rethinking innovation and idea sharing.

Focus on service, not on networking.

Restore quiet to your culture.

Spend time reflecting on how to empower and equip those who are introverts to be able to use all their talents the best way possible.

Bryan Loritts: Instigating Change Through Personal Sacrifice

The last words Jesus said to his leaders before he left: Jesus doesn’t want it to be monopolized by the affluent, but to include the least of these.

Matthew 25:31-46

Story of William Wilberforce abolishing slavery:
William Wilberforce at 21 – runs for Parliament and wins.
At 25, Wilberforce understands the train wreck of the Gospel and puts his trust in Christ.
“The Clapinsack”
1807 – Wilberforce helps to abolish slave trade
1833 – slavery is abolished

Our leadership must be more than the things that will perish.

Jesus doesn’t say, “Do good things and you will get in.” His word: Fruit.

I will never accomplish enough good things, but we must look at our fruit.

John Wesley
At 19 years old, he decided he could live off of 28 pounds. That year he made 30 pounds and gave away two. Later in life he made over 1500 pounds and gave away 1482 pounds.
How much is enough? How much is enough houses? Purses? Golf clubs?
Our churches need to model this.

What is joy? Helping to pay someone’s medical bills. That’s joy.

Patrick Lencioni – The 3 Most Dangerous Mistake Leaders Make

– when we do these, it isn’t just bad, it actually hurts people.

1) Becoming a Leader for the Wrong Reason
Why do we become a leader in the first place? Notoriety? Fame? Power? Money?

Real reason we should pursue leadership:
To sacrifice yourself for the well-being of others, even when they don’t know if there will be any return on investment.

The only real payoff for leadership is eternal.

2) Failing to embrace vulnerability
“You have a hard job, I don’t know how you do it.” – Good opening to a challenge

“This is the part of my job that is extra hard for me.” -what we as pastors should say

3) Making leadership too important
Do the people closest to you feel like you place too much importance on work/leadership (as opposed to family)?
A legacy leader does not hope that the people standing by his bedside will be the people he managed, but his/her family.

Pride- the antidote is humility. Jesus gave us the ultimate example and showed us what true leadership is: humility.


Click here to see day 2 notes!

Pastors Should Laugh More

January 10, 2014 — 5 Comments

I have to be honest. Sometimes I feel pressure to not be myself.

I feel like in order to be viewed as having a pastoral gift and calling, I need to be much more serious. To constantly be talking about the spiritual – and as a result – to unintentionally neglect the emotional needs of those around me.

It often feels like there is this unsaid rule that pastors need to be pretty serious in order to gain respect.

But that’s not who I am. At least not all the time.

Now of course I’m not saying there isn’t a time and a place to be serious. As pastors we have the opportunity to walk alongside people in their darkest moments. To be at hospital bedsides, funerals, and gravesites. Even times of worship, teaching, preaching, and prayer. There are so many times to be sincere, deliberate, and thoughtful for a pastor.

But sometimes I think it would be more sincere to simply help someone crack a smile.

For me, one of my greatest fears is that I will become like what everyone expects me to be, rather than who I am made to be. To fall into an expectation of a position rather than pursuing my calling from God.

I feel like I have the gift of making people laugh. It may not seem very spiritual, but in a world that is filled with pain, a respite from the darkness by helping a huge grin can make all the difference in that moment.

Billy Graham said, “A keen sense of humor helps us to overlook the unbecoming, understand the unconventional, tolerate the unpleasant, overcome the unexpected, and outlast the unbearable.”

Maybe we as pastors just need to laugh a little bit more.