Tag Archive for: Ministry

The Nines Online Event: Game Changers

8:30am: poured my coffee, opened my laptop, and for 9-hours was blown away by a one-day event called, “The Nines.”

The Leadership Network (@LeadNet) has made possible an online one-day event to capture some of the best voices in church growth and leadership. The response was so overwhelming that this year almost 100 speakers submitted personal videos and had 6 minutes to share on the topic of “Game changers in your life or ministry.”

As I scrambled to take notes on their six-minute-sermons, it occurred to me that there were a few common themes in their speech. Here’s a summary of their Game Changers…

1) Be true to yourself and your purpose: God uniquely gifted and designed you with a specific purpose. It is not productive to compare and copy. Although, it is important to learn and model what we see, the measure of success is in our obedience to God, not the approval of man. I think Pastor Steven Furtick of Elevation Church said it best, “Mediocrity is mass produced, but destiny is uniquely designed.”

2) Seize opportunities: In times of crisis or confidence, there’s an opportunity to expand the Kingdom with the Gospel. Create and seize those opportunities to bring Jesus to your family, your church, your community and your world. As Michael Hyatt of Thomas Nelson said, “Don’t ask ‘Why me?’, ask “What does this make possible?'”

3) Simplify: One theme that frequently came up was the, “less is more” concept. From church plants to mega-churches, leaders are learning to do more with less – less money, less people, less stress. Doing more can take away from your core value and mission as a church, focusing on what you are uniquely called to do. Pastor Craig Groeschel of LifeChurch.tv made it clear by saying, “Fewer resources lead to greater innovation.”

What has been a game-changer that has shaped your life or ministry? When was that time when you dared to dream, took a risk and stepped out directly into a failure or success? Game changers don’t always have to be a success, we can learn a lot by failing forward. The success is in the ability to move and change as God leads. Share your story here, leave a comment, and encourage someone else.

Bring the Solution

Recently I heard Pastor Matthew Barnettt speak at Angelus Temple in Los Angeles. His message was on forward motion! These two words define the ministry of Renue. He went on to share a powerful set of statements comparing an activist and an actionist.

An Activist makes people aware of problems.

An Actionist creates a solution.

An Activist points the finger at those who should be solving the problem.

An Actionist takes personal responsibility to be the solution.

There is nothing wrong with being an activist, we need them, but there is a time for actionists to arise and put feet to their desires. Playing it safe and always talking about what you “will” do does not get things done. If God has put something in you to do, then take the steps necessary to do it.

There’s a song that Hillsong United sings, and one line reads, “God be the solution. We will be Your hands, be Your feet.” We act in partnership with the Lord to accomplish His will on the earth.

James 2:15-17 & 22 reads, “Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, ‘Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed.’ But does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead…You see that his faith and his actions were working together and his faith was made complete by what he did.”

What are you doing right now to serve God’s heart in your sphere of influence? Check out the video to see how you can get involved in projects happening right now. i-heart.org

Your Thoughts?

Social Media Revolution – The Landscape has Shifted

The media landscape has shifted dramatically in the past 4-5 years and even more so in the past 1-2 years. The flow of communication, information and media isn’t a one-way channel anymore, it’s a two-way channel. Watch the video below. It will be interesting to watch how it impacts the church and ministry leadership landscape.

Know the Language of Your Audience; Not the Language of Your Denomination

Ever been to a church service where the style and flavor of the service was not connecting or relating at all with the people sitting in the audience? Have you ever felt that the people leading a service were more concerned or equipped to serve a denominational style than the audience that God placed in front of them to connect with at that given moment?

Well, unfortunately I and about 4,000 other college students and young adults experienced one of these services just a couple of weeks ago. All I could think was…How sad can this be? 4,000 college students unengaged with the service and bored out of their minds. It’s sad when very smart and gifted leaders who have been called by God to preach the Gospel, still choose to minister through a denominational filter instead of an understanding of the audience he or she is about to minister too.

Let me say this. Church and ministry are changing. Why? Because the millennial generation is getting older and more influential in today’s culture. And, because of this fact it will and in some ways already is beginning to affect how church will be done in years down the road. So, buckle up and get ready, it will be an interesting ride.

When you begin to plan a church service and your audience are millennials, please, put aside the language or the style of your denomination. And, try to connect in relevant ways with the language of this generation. 1990’s worship music, a stage that looks like it just came out of a Christian TV set and a sermon that would make you fall asleep is not the language of the millennial generation.

Most of the time, this generation don’t want to hear another sermon, they just want to be a part of a conversation surrounding Biblical truths about what it means to be a dedicated Christ follower.

The truth is this generation needs mentors more than ever. But what is sad is a lot of older leaders in the faith are not allowing themselves to change how they connect with this generation. Some are more interested in staying to their denominational style of ministry than embracing what God wants to do through the next generation.

If you want to impact and connect with millennials, then know their language. Understanding the millennial language will help you gauge the effectiveness and spiritual impact on the environment, worship/music, teaching and relational community of your church service.

Your Thoughts?

Ministry Has Faces

Ministry. When you think of this word, what is one of the first things that come to your mind. Something or someone involved in a Church, correct? Or how about someone that serves as a pastor, church staff leader or a missionary to a foreign country. All of these are great examples of individuals who are in “full-time ministry.”

However, I want to share a different perspective on the word — ministry. When I was at the Exponential Conference in Orlando a couple of weeks ago, Craig Groeschel, pastor of LifeChurch.tv made a statement that stuck with me. He said, “Don’t be conformed to the patterns of the Western-American Church, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”

According to Western- American church standards, ministry is defined as a profession, thus this is where we get “full-time and part-time ministry.”  According to the Gospel, ministry is defined by action of service.

We have limited the use and terminology of ministry to only serve the local Church context. Which is ok, but it’s not good enough. In this day of an age, we must recognize that ministry should be a much broader term that embraces every context in life and career. I was just in the Hollywood and Beverly Hills area of California last week, and you will be surprised at how many people I met that are passionate about Jesus and who are willing to use their influence to help people discover what it means to be a Christ-follower. Now, if that’s not ministry, I don’t no what is. This is just a different face of ministry. These actors and social entrepreneurs I met in Hollywood love Jesus and are influencing people and leading them to Jesus. So, do they work at a church or a non-for-profit organization? No. Are they ordained ministers through a Church or denomination? No. Should they be considered full-time ministers. Yes. Why? Because they are doing ministry. They are doing it with a different look and face than you who might do while working at a church or para church organization. This is how ministry will be defined by next generation leaders.

Ministry is not defined by your profession or place of employment. It is defined by what you do!

You might be a businessman, doctor, restaurant owner, editor, pilot, government official, actor, model, journalist, banker, salesmen, musician, singer, songwriter, author, or you might even be a pastor or church leader. The point is ministry has faces. It can be expressed through service and influence in many different areas of context and career in today’s culture. When we limit the word ministry just to the church context, we begin to suppress people and limit their full potential in the ministry God has called them to do.

I’m reminded of a business leader I knew in Atlanta. His name is David Salyers. He is the Vice President of Marketing for Chick-fil-A. David is a great leader in Chick-fil-A. I’ll never forget what he told me one day, when I sat in his office there in Atlanta at the Chick-fil-A corporate office. He said, “working here at Chick-fil-A is not my job, it’s my ministry. Serving the people is my ministry and that is why I have been able to influence the people within this corporate context. I don’t need to be on a church staff to be in full-time ministry, all I need to do is renew my thinking, serve people, and let my life and influence be it’s own platform.”

Ministry in definition is being re-defined for the next generation of leaders. Ministry Has Faces. Which one are you?

Your Thoughts?

Church World vs. Corporate World: What They Can Learn from Each Other to Work Together! – Pt.2

In my experience, corporations and small businesses seem to value organizational structure and administrative systems a whole lot more than churches or non-profit organizations.

Why do we view churches that have horrible and unprofessional systems and organizational structure like its a normal thing or just check it off as if that’s the way it is in church world.  Just for the record, I will always disagree and I will never settle for that mindset. I believe the Church should have the most excellent organizational systems and structure in place in order to advance the Gospel message.

If you work in a business or company that demands high level excellence through your performance  with solid systems and administrative structure in place, the same standard should be expected if you work on a church staff or non-profit organization. If it’s not, something is wrong with the thinking somewhere at the top.

If there is one thing church leaders can learn from business leaders is how to build high level employees that can be empowered to create healthy and excellent organizational structure and systems in their non-profit organizations.

Your Thought?

Church World vs. Corporate World! What They Can Learn From Each Other to Work Together – Pt. 1

I want to do a series of posts called, Church World vs. Corporate World – What they can learn from each other to work together! There are so many different directions we can go with this topic. But, lets begin with the obvious.

Why Does the Church Exist?

  • To reach people
  • To lead and set the spiritual tone in a community
  • To give a context from where people can grow in God and each other
  • Provide a context where people can grow in their calling and purpose

Why Do Businesses Exist?

  • To make profit
  • To stimulate the economy in a community
  • To provide a product or service
  • Provide jobs for people to grow professionally

There are probably a million other reasons we could add to these lists. But, what I would like to challenge you to do is try to find the spiritual dynamic comparisons between these lists.

For example, #1 The Church exists to reach people. Businesses exist to make profit. The main goal for a church is to reach as many people as possible for Christ. The main goal for a business is to make as much money as possible. What would happen if the spiritual enterprise of the community and the economic engine of the community partnered together to better the life and overall function of humanity in a community?

What would happen if the church could set the tone for the leading spiritual direction in a community and the businesses could stimulate the economy to its full power of potential? What would happen if The Church and Corporate America would work together to strengthen their communities for Christ spiritually and economically?

The two most powerful resources on the planet is #1 People and #2 Money. Let the church strengthen and raise the leadership caliber in people. And, let the businesses strengthen the value of the dollar in the community.

Your Thoughts?