Church Health

I love God’s church. After 38 years of ministry I am not naive about they ways that people (including me) can mess up a great thing that God established through Jesus. For some reason God chose to use flawed, sinful people to build His kingdom on this earth. He promised that nothing will prevail against his church. People have a long history of fouling up a great thing by refusing…

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The Main Thing

Following an embarrassing loss, the Green Bay Packers followed Coach Vince Lombardi into the locker room. The odds were high for the players to be taken to the shed by Coach Lombardi. After a period of silence, Lombardi’s voice interrupted the calm, “Men, in all my days of coaching and playing I have never witnessed such a poor exhibition of football. We did not tackle, run, throw or catch the way…

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Problem-solving Flow Church

In John Maxwell’s book “Developing the Leader Within You,” he included the following flow chart by David McGinnis. It made me chuckle! I can see myself in this chart, failing to “own” blunders, shifting the blame and I have worked with others who always seem to find a scapegoat. I have found that as long as I have someone else to blame, I will never learn to be responsible for…

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Lame Excuses

Our goal is to have at least 80% of our weekly worship service attendance connected to a small group. Currently we have 1647 people involved with 5-6,000 attending worship services, which comes to about 30%. 80% is doable, but it is going to take the coordinated efforts of a lot of people in our church to pull it off! Our first step is to overcome the many excuses for why…

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Learning from Mistakes

Why don’t people learn from their mistakes? Read this article, “Why most people don’t learn from their mistakes” and you will learn about which prisoners and which heart surgeons continued to learn and get better and which prisoners and surgeons feel bad about their mistakes and fail to learn and therefore repeat their mistakes and ultimately continue to fail in the future. “First, if we want to learn from our…

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Advice to New Pastors

The following outline is from a great podcast by Michael Hyatt on “Advice to New CEOs.”. It strikes me that these principles are so important for new pastors, and all pastors as well. The self image can get wrapped up in the position and status of being the point leader, so that it makes it very difficult to pass the baton of leadership to another pastor, or to serve on…

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Five Faith Catalysts:

Click here for an iBook curriculum of this topic.  There were two times in the Bible when Jesus was “amazed.”  Once by lack of faith, and the other by great faith. When Jesus said, “oh you of little faith,” it wasn’t a good thing.  BIG faith is what pleases God, and even a little faith, mustard seed sized faith can accomplish wonders as faith is what restores us to a…

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Helping Everyone Find and Follow Jesus

This fall Real Life Church will be expanding to a multi-site campus in Canyon Country. Our facilities are maxed out and our strategy for making room for more of our friends to join us, is to go out to the people.  Pastor Brennan Conklin will be the campus pastor, and he is currently putting a core team together so that everyone will be cared for by somebody. Several years ago…

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Ten Questions for Formulating a Discipleship Process

Developing a clear pathway for discipleship in the church is one of the most strategic projects for helping people grow to maturity in Christ. I am currently meeting with a group of staff members, evaluating how we develop fully devoted followers of Christ, how we develop the kinds of spiritual leaders who will effective shepherd and care for the flock. Chuck Gaines addressed the issue of discipleship process. He presented…

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Life Long Learning

I served on a church staff with Dr. Jim Talley who taught me about his habit of outlining the books he read. It not only helped him to remember what he read, but these outlines helped him to organize his thoughts as he prepared his own content for numerous seminars on various topics that he conducted regularly. Dr. John Maxwell says that every day he reads, writes and files… every…

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Resources for Small Group Ministry

A leader is a reader. Howard Hendricks commented, “I would rather have my students drinking from a running spring, than a stagnant pond.” The following books have been a life giving stream to me as I have served to lead God’s people to obey Jesus’ call to make disciples to the ends of the earth. Discipleshift by Jim Putnam Simple Small Groups by Bill Search Multiply by Francis Chan Prepare…

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Next Generation?

What if the next Chuck Swindoll, Billy or Ruth Graham, Dwight L. Moody or Jonathan Edwards, Mother Teresa or even a Francis Chan just happened to be a young person in your neighborhood, your class, your ministry, or your church? What would ensure that this future world-changer would be set up for spiritual success? What kind of spiritual foundation would be most helpful for a lifelong, world impacting ministry? What…

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Turning 60

January 30th, 2016 I turned 60 this week. Time marches on and I can do nothing about that. How do I respond to this milestone? What is next in this third period of life, should I be so fortunate to experience it? Othersof my friends have already finished their race, some through death, and some by choice of complacency. Some peaked long ago and are resigned to a slow downward…

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Dangerous Apathy

Lewis Thomas’s autobiography, The Youngest Science: Notes of a Medicine Watcher (Viking, 1983), illustrates the danger of knowledge without action, apathy, failing to do something. In the late 1930s, Lewis Thomas was working as a junior resident at a hospital in Boston when a medical case, unique to the this hospital, caught his attention. Complaining of chills and fever, the patient’s blood samples revealed malaria, which was so unexpected in…

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