Book Review & 4 Book Giveaway: The Impossible by Joyce Smith

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There is no denying the power of story. When you read a story of amazing faith, it captures your attention. You lean in and begin putting yourself in the shoes of the author. The Impossible: The Miraculous Story of a Mother’s Faith and Her Child’s Resurrection by Joyce Smith shows readers the power of prayer as a mother pleads with God to save her son.

The Impossible pulls readers in by reminding us that our lives can change in a moment. Joyce Smith writes, “I’ve heard about these scenes. I’ve seen them in plenty of movies. But never would I have imagined that the one sitting in a hospital waiting room and needing consolation would be me. I didn’t want their pity, I didn’t even want their words of comfort. I yearned for—I needed—their prayers.”

As Joyce approached her lifeless son, she pleaded with God. “All of a sudden, everyone and everything in that room faded away and it was just me and John and God. With a voice that I thought was quiet, but that actually bellowed through the room, down the hallway, and throughout the entire emergency room, I declared, ‘I believe in a God who can do miracles! Holy Spirit, I need you right now to come and breathe life back into my son!’ I sobbed an exhale and closed my eyes. And in that instant, I heard the sound of a miracle. Beep…beep…beep…John’s heart monitor—and John’s heart—sprang back to life.”

This moment in time will impact everyone who comes in contact with John Smith. Pediatric critical care physician Jeremy Garrett said it best when he explained, “There was no controversy in the sequence of events. If we put it into a medical algorithm, we’d say, ‘Patient’s dead. Mother prayed. Patient came back to life.’”

This book will be available beginning November 7th and you can find it on Amazon.
For more information, please visit: www.theimpossiblebook.com

To be entered into the drawing for one of these 4 books: Share this post to social media!

 

Valuable Life Lessons from Mom: Yes Be Yes

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Did your mom say short repeatable statements that have stuck with you through the years? Maybe they were just silly little phrases like, “Someday your face will freeze like that,” or  “You can’t judge a book by its cover.”

Growing up my mom quoted either the Bible or Benjamin Franklin. She would quote Franklin saying, “A penny saved is a penny earned,” “A place for everything, everything in its place,” “Early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise.” And she would quote the Bible saying, “Do to others as you would have them do to you,” “Trust in the Lord with all your heart,” “Let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No.’” These were simple phrases, but over time they shaped my character.

James 5:12 says, “But most of all, my brothers and sisters, never take an oath, by heaven or earth or anything else. Just say a simple yes or no, so that you will not sin and be condemned.” This verse teaches the value of our words and from it, we can draw a few life-changing principles.

When you say you are going to do something, do it. 

Deuteronomy 7:9 says, “Understand, therefore, that the Lord your God is indeed God. He is the faithful God who keeps his covenant for a thousand generations and lavishes his unfailing love on those who love him and obey his commands.” If we want to resemble our Father, we must keep our word.

As a Christ follower, we are called to honor our commitments so never make a promise you can’t keep. If you forgot about an important meeting, don’t promise to remember in the future because your memory will let you down and mistakes will happen. Instead, repent and determine steps you can take and systems you can put in place to plan better for your next meeting.

When you give your word, keep it. 

James 1:26, “If you claim to be religious but don’t control your tongue, you are fooling yourself, and your religion is worthless.” Keeping your word matters in both the big things as well as the small. If you commit to selling a phone online for one hundred dollars but then someone offers to pay more, do you fulfill your commitment to the first buyer or do you try to make a little extra cash? Your integrity and honesty matter more than any amount of money.

To be a high-level leader you must be trusted. And to be trusted, you must have integrity. When you say “yes” to something, this will most likely mean “no” to something else down the road. Be ready to keep your word even if it might cost you something later.

When you speak, speak truth.

Proverbs 12:22 says, “The Lord detests lying lips, but he delights in those who tell the truth.” When you are telling the truth or making a promise, avoid the extra jargon and simply let your words be true. When you are a person of integrity, you don’t need to swear by anything or make an oath, you just give a straightforward answer. James 5:12 says, “But most of all, my brothers and sisters, never take an oath, by heaven or earth or anything else. Just say a simple yes or no, so that you will not sin and be condemned.”

My mom was wise to teach me to “let my ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and my ‘No,’ ‘No’” because it set me on the path of integrity. Is there a verse you are repeating over and over to your kids to set them down the right path? If not, consider adding James 5:12 to challenge them in their honesty and integrity.

Book Review & 2 Book Giveaway: Don’t Quit by Jessica Bealer & Gina McClain

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Hey ministry leaders! Have you checked out this brand new book—Don’t Quit: The Best Things in Ministry Come Over Time. This is the latest leadership book from Orange and I want you to check it out.

Share this post on social media and I’ll send two lucky winners a copy of the new book! 

Here are some of my favorite quotes to give you a taste of the great content:

“At times, you will question your calling, but don’t sacrifice your mission for the security of the easily maintained. Take a risk and watch God move.”

“Every action you take, every event you host, and every procedure you have in place is your strategy in action. If your strategy is not moving you closer to your goal, then the strategy is not working.”

“God has big plans for His church and He’s willing to use anyone to accomplish them. The only requirement is obedience.”

“Limitations don’t have to be negative. Many times, they can be catalysts for creativity.”

“Unrealistic expectations paired with a fear of failure make for a disastrous combination, a dumpster fire waiting to happen.”

“Creating a common language that both conveys your values and unites your team is deceivingly hard. To be memorable, it has to be clear, easy to say, founded in vision, purposeful, and have a touch of cleverness.”

“God never intends to leave you where you are. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying it’s time to start looking for another job. What I mean is that you should be consistently growing in wisdom, discernment, knowledge, and capacity. A great leader is never content with the status quo.”

“You’ve got to own your development, set your pace, get accountability, and invite inspiration.”

“Awareness of growth opportunities means you will be prepared to respond when God is moving in the heart of your volunteer. Knowing when a leader is ready for more is great. Knowing where you can give them more is strategic.”

“We don’t lead in a bubble. When we decide to stick our heads in the sand and pretend we don’t need to grow, everyone around us suffers. But when we choose to remain on the wall—to face what needs to be faced, open ourselves up, and become ridiculously teachable—those we lead are inspired to do the same. Grit is contagious.”

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Camp KidJam: A Valuable Gift for Your Church

 

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Does your summer camp contribute the strategy of your church? Are you looking for a camp solution that your students will love, and your small group leaders will love even more? Last year, I explored Camp KidJam and found it to be the complete package I was looking for in a summer camp experience.

Camp KidJam Is Built on a Strategy
Camp KidJam is part of the strategy developed by Orange and designed around the principles of 252 Kids. Students will grow in wisdom, faith, and friendship and the lessons learned will flow seamlessly into your weekend environment. Camp KidJam is built around the small group model so after every Jam Session, you will have the opportunity to make the lessons personal through a designated small group time.

Camp KidJam Develops Leaders
Both students and small group leaders experience leadership training. While students are participating in challenges and tracts, SGL’s get a chance to recharge and discuss tough ministry questions. Students sign up for tracks matching their interests and are challenged to grow musically, athletically, or creatively. These intentional leadership opportunities are a unique element of camp that both SGL’s and students love.

Camp KidJam Delivers A Quality Program
If you asked your students today to name their favorite experience from camp last summer, could they remember something? Camp KidJam creates unique memories that will bring a smile to your student’s faces. From the Awesome Sauce Leader to the full worship experience, your preteens will create memories that will last a lifetime. The skits and teaching time will leave students at the edge of their seat wanting more.

Camp KidJam delivers a top-notch program that is a proven gift for your church. The students will grow closer to one another as they grow in a personal authentic faith and the small group leaders will thank you for being a part of the week. To learn more about Camp KidJam check out http://campkidjam.com and also watch this highlight video from our experience last year.

Leading When You Are Running on Empty

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“If your soul is healthy, no external circumstance can destroy your life. If your soul is unhealthy, no external circumstance can redeem your life.” John Ortberg

You matter to God, not just the work you do, or the ministry that you fulfill, but YOU matter to God. He is your provider and can meet your every need, He is your guide and can give you wisdom when you’re feeling lost, and He is your savior, who is your perfect superhero. You matter to this God, and He loves you.

And life happens. Ministry can lead you to a place where your motivation and drive feel like a dry desert, screaming for water. And the work doesn’t stop. Just because you are broken or feeling hollow doesn’t mean that everything can be put on hold. Right now, you might be running on empty but you still have to lead.

It might not be you but sometimes the soul of a leader needs help. So how do you refuel your soul in the midst of the chaos? Here are three quotes from the greatest leader of all time and a few challenges to help you lead when you are running on empty.

1. Soul Fatigue

“Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me.” – Jesus in John 15:4

If you are finding that your spirit is drained or tired maybe you need to focus on the Word and abide. Abide is a verb meaning to stay, remain, continue, or wait. To abide in Christ embodies a relationship with Jesus. It’s not asking the question, “Did I read my Bible today?” but rather, “Did I spend time staying connected with my Friend, today?” It’s not just praying before a meal, but honestly talking with your Father about your struggles and heart.

First Tip for Soul Fatigue: Be still, and know that I am God. Psalm 46:10. At this to your calendar as a reoccurring reminder. Pause, reflect and refocus because this time is topping off the tank in my soul.

Maybe for you, it’s the first thing you do in the morning.

“Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.” Mark 1:35

Second Tip for Soul Fatigue: Read the Word. Go on Bible Gateway and start The One Year Bible.

In order to lead others, you must first make sure that you are abiding in Christ, connected to Him, and allowing Him to refuel your soul. So before we move into the next point, Abide in this verse. These are the words of Jesus:

Matthew 11:28-30, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

To abide in Christ is medicine to your soul fatigue.

2. Soul Insignificance 

Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” – Jesus in Matthew 28:18-20

With all authority and with the promise of being by our side, Jesus charged us with the mission of reaching the lost, and that is by no means insignificant. If your spirit lacks worth or you are struggling to feel valued, remember that Jesus has placed a high calling on your life. When our soul is struggling to find meaning we must remember that we serve a God who knows the number of hairs on our head and who meets all of our needs according to His riches.

You exist to “love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength and to love your neighbor as yourself.” Part of loving your neighbor is to open the door and introduce your neighbor to the God who loves them, and this is one of the most significant things we can do.

First Tip for Soul Insignificance: Step into your calling. Here’s what I think, maybe the reason you soul is feeling insignificant, is that you are failing to step into the mission that God has called you to. When do you feel most alive? What is the burden that God has placed on your heart? The way Andy Stanley puts it is, “What breaks your heart?”

Second Tip for Soul Insignificance: Share your faith. And no, I’m not talking about teaching the Bible lesson to the kids at church, I’m talking about talking with someone who is far from God and sharing with them the hope we profess. Yes, you are busy, but what is more important than making a disciple? Who is the last person you discipled? Can you name them, and how long has it been?

Stewarding your time and energy towards discipleship will energize your soul.

3. Soul Filth

Kill the Spider: Getting Rid of What’s Really Holding You Back by Carlos Whittaker

He spent decades trying to figure out how to be a “better person.” Time and time again, he strived for holiness only to get caught in the web of destructive habits, behaviors and thought patterns.

In Kill the Spider, Carlos shows us that it’s not enough to try and “stop sinning.” He teaches that knocking out deep-rooted habits and issues comes by treating the issue, not just the symptoms.

The greatest teacher of all time, Jesus, helps us out when it comes to discovering out soul filth. In Luke 6:45 Jesus says,

“A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.”

If you have not dealt with the sin in your life, then this will be reflected in your words and actions. Unrepentant sin causes a leader to have a short fuse, say things they will later regret, and lose the trust of those they are leading.

It’s been said that “Sin will take you farther than you want to go, keep you longer than you want to stay, and cost you more than you want to pay.” 

You can go through the motions and focus on surface level issues, but if you want to truly begin leading then you need to repent and get your soul right with God.

First Tip for Soul Filth: Confession – Talk with a counselor, coach, or mentor about the cobwebs in your life and determine the spider that you need to kill. Stop putting it off. Right now you could send a text and say, “Hey Richard, we need to talk. Can we meet Tuesday at lunch?” I know you’re busy but unless you make a plan your good intentions will always just be a future plan. Start that plan now and take your first step.

Second Tip for Soul Filth: Think the Word. My mentor, Jim Wideman has challenged me to take every thought captive to obey Christ. I have scripture memorized to put my spiders in their place. So here’s your tip, think the Word. Before leaving this room, use google and find a verse that speaks directly to the filth in your soul. Write it down and begin committing it to memory.

4. Soul Distractions 

Jesus said it best in Matthew 16:26, “What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul?”

I actually want to push back a little on this being busy statement. I think we have more time available than we give ourselves credit for. We overestimate how busy we are because we are so distracted.

Do you have an extra 5 minutes? What most people do…is fill ANY downtime, with their phone in their hand distracting them.

CBS News reported in 2012, 75 percent of Americans admitted to using their mobile phones while in the bathroom.

The time U.S. users are spending in mobile apps is continuing to grow; according to new data released in March by analytics firm Flurry, we’re up to 5 hours per day on our mobile devices.

So, is your soul distracted? I realize this is a weird week for your schedule but how many hours do you think you’ve been on your phone this week?

To find this information, iPhone users with the at least ios9 software can go to the ‘Settings‘ menu then select ‘Battery‘ (green icon), wait for it to load. They can then see a breakdown of their activity in the past 24 hours or 7 days, for example, with the apps they have spent the most time on at the top of a list, and the least popular at the bottom. Click the clock to see how many minutes or hours you have spent.

Android users, download the app “AntiSocial”

First Tip for Soul Distraction: Redeem the Distraction. Instead of trying to find the very last post on the bottom of that Facebook feed, read something that fills your soul tank. Instead of trying to amass more friends on social media, write a short prayer to your best friend. Later today when you pull your phone out to fill a void, recognize that and realize that only Jesus should be filling that space.

Second Tip for Soul Distraction: Set a time budget. What would it look like if next year when we pulled up the time we spent on our phones our number one app was the YouVersion Bible? Take a step in the right direction now by maybe saying that you won’t allow yourself to spend more than X amount of hours on such and such an app. Clear out this distraction, your soul doesn’t need it and there are more important things for you to spend your time on.

In order to lead for the long haul, you must continually get back on track and refuel your soul. Remember to abide in Christ, remember the significant mission He has called you to, deal with unrepentant sin, and remove distractions.

Probably one of the greatest tips that I can give you is a question that Jim challenged me with that has continued to roll around in my head. He asked:

“Has there ever been a time in your life where you were more in love with Jesus than you are right now?” And if the answer is yes, it’s your responsibility to fix it.

 

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Why Your Team Needs to Break Away From the Daily Grind

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With so many pressures all weighing in on you at the same time, how could it be even possible to break away? It might seem like taking a few days away from the office would cause everything to crash down, but maybe this time is exactly what you need for your team to reach the next level. When you understand the benefits of time away with your team, it will be easy to see why you need to make this a priority.

When you get away, you connect with each other.

Deeper relationships are formed through extended connections and shared experiences. The moment you and your team break away from the office you begin a shared experience. The travel along the destination can lead you to new discoveries about your team. You will see how your team reacts during detours or when you are deciding what to eat for dinner. Something as simple as seeing who drives the van and how that decision is made can provide insight into your team. As you sit around the dinner table, your conversations can move past the superficial to gain a better understanding of what motivates each member of your team. These connections will transition into the office, break down silos, and propel your team forward.

When you get away, you connect ideas. 

In the office, most members of the team are doing their own work. Breaking away brings people together who each have different points of view and life experiences. As you work through topics or as you sit through a teaching session, each member of your team will hear things from their own unique perspective. When you begin to brainstorm or talk through takeaways, your team can connect ideas in a way that works best for your organization. As you dream through possible futures your unique backgrounds can connect ideas that would have otherwise never fallen in line. Time away can really put legs on a dream and take your team to the next level.

When you get away, you connect with God.

Maybe you’re like me, and for some reason, you see God in a new perspective when you are in a new environment. Maybe your team gets away to the mountains and you gain a deeper appreciation for the magnitude and majesty of our Creator. Maybe your team gets away to the lake and you see how God is peaceful and His burden is light. Or maybe your team gets away to the city and you see how God is at work in so many different lives and that He has a big plan. You might also be like me and enjoy the change of pace where time away seems to bring about a revival in your soul. Simply being in a new environment with your team may allow you to hear from God in a new way. Maybe a speaker at a conference says something that captures your heart, or maybe just sitting on the porch swing with your team helps you see that the pace of your life needs to change. Time away might just be what your team needs to get away from the busy and hear from God.

Without intentionality, breaking away with your team will never just happen. Look at your calendar, sit down with a budget, and begin to make a plan. Maybe your team will attend a conference like the D6 Conference for family ministry, or maybe your team will just drive down the road to a coffee shop. Either way, begin making a plan today so that you can connect with each other, connect ideas, and connect with your Lord.

(Originally shared to the D6 Family Blog at https://d6family.com/team-needs-break-away-daily-grind/

Breakout Notes from #D62017 with Michael Bayne and Brian Haynes

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Pacing Change – Michael Bayne – @michael_bayne

If people get left behind, are we really leading? Are we just a loud voice or are we actually helping people take steps?

Change is a must in any family ministry setting. We are all leading change…
Spiritual Growth: People have to change
Parent Partnership: Our ministry has to change.
Empowering the home to be a place of discipleship: The home has to change.

The right pace leads to lasting change. You don’t just want your dreams to last today. 

The wrong pace leads to 2 extremes…lack of momentum or confusion. When you don’t move fast enough you create a place where your leaders don’t see progress and get bored. They question if you have a vision. When you don’t move slow enough you create a place where people disengage.

Pacing change really hinges on our ability to be patient.

“One thing people in my Infuse mentoring and coaching program always tell me, it blows them away how patient I am with change. It’s because I realize that anything of value takes more time to build. The difference between a five-story building and a little lean-to is the value, and it is going to take a lot longer to build that five-story building.” – Jim Wideman

In Joshua 2, you can see the best leaders in scripture were able to look ahead and strategically said, this is a big deal, let’s get as much information and plan this out. Our problem isn’t faith, as ministry leaders, we haven’t thought through the strategy for the best environment where God can move fully. Joshua picked carefully, the right people, the right volunteers. Joshua paced forward. He looked ahead to figure out his next steps.

“Pacing change matters because we are leading people to a spiritual place full of promise and full of resistance.”

When planting the church. Spend hours, and hours and hours working through all of the next steps.

Before your Start…

Create a Map – What are the challenges coming up? Where are you starting from and where are you going? Your strategy ultimately determines the success of your ministry.

“Human nature is to need a map. If you’re brave enough to draw one, people will follow.” Seth Godin

“Your strategy impacts your success almost more than your heart does. Sometimes we forget this in ministry.” – Carey Nieuwhof

Vision and energy are not enough. Vision is the spark but the plan protects the vision.

Before you Start…

Gather the right team. Not just doing ministry aimed at people but doing ministry with people. Good strategies for change are focused on the right people at the right moments. Think through your staff and volunteers, who do you have on your team?

“Good strategies for change are about focusing on the right people in the right moments.” – Carey Nieuwhof

Surround yourself with the right people to enact change or the change will fail. Who to put on your team: People with passion, people who are servants, and people who you trust. Who to avoid on your team: People who complain, big talkers who are little investors, and the inconsistent.

Pacing the Change…

Limit the Scope of Change
For your to lead effective change you have to choose what not to change. Change leads to progress but it also causes stress. Too much stress will cause people to disengage and doubt to the point where they walk away.

Launch Change at the Right Time
Success and Timing are powerfully linked! You need to make sure you time your changes to have the maximum success and maximum engagement with the target audience.

“Don’t think. Act. We can always revise and revisit once we’ve acted. But we can accomplish nothing until we act.” Steven Pressfield

Make Sure Change Does Not Detract from Weekly Excellence
People are attracted to excellence and will endure change one some things when most other things are stable and thriving. What are you good at? Leverage what you are good at to have an opportunity to lead change in another area.

“If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones. But if you are dishonest in little things, you won’t be honest with greater responsibilities. Luke 16:10

Keep Your Leadership Informed
When you keep your senior leaders informed then you give them info and vision to share with opposition when they go above your head. People opposed to your change will go above your head because it’s easier. Your opponents don’t want to hurt you but they love things to stay the same. Your team can be in sync and can answer the questions being asked of them. Don’t allow your pastor to be caught off guard.

Connect With Complainers and Lovingly Cast Vision
(embrace how we should respond not how we want to respond)
We have to make sure that we don’t take opposition personally. A change will bring friction and goal is to address the friction in a way that is kind, clear, and patient.

“Loud does not equal large and volume does not equal velocity the loudest people affected by a proposed change are those who are most opposed. The more opposed people are, the louder they tend to become.” Carey Nieuwhof.

Celebrate Intentionally
You look ahead at your plan and plot out a few places where you will celebrate with your team. Celebrate intentionally and with purpose. We want to be purposeful partiers! Celebration keeps the team on a mission. People want to be part of a winning change.

Adjust and Learn Along the Change Process
Don’t wait to make changes when you are leading through change. Make adjustments to your lessons learned as you advance the mission. People rally around leaders who are committed to solving problems.

“Everyone has a plan ’till they get punched in the mouth.” – Mike Tyson

Push Through Resistance
Lasting time demands patient effort and encouragement if the change has a chance to merge into the culture.

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Building Teams – Seven Questions to Answer Before You Hire a New Staff Member –  Brian Haynes – @brian_haynes

Question 1: “What are we doing really?”

If you asked your leadership team this question, would you get 5 different answers? The work that you have to do is slow. You need to gain alignment with mission, vision, values, and strategy before you go into the hiring process.

What is your goal? Understand how everyone’s job contributes to the mission.

Vision is where we are going. The more you can spell out what you are doing, the better you can onboard people into your leadership team as well as volunteers at every level.

Values answer the question, “Who are we?” What are we all about?

Strategy answers the question, “How are we going to do this?” The lead pastor holds this piece. When you answer this question it frees everyone up in the downstream.

Question 2: “How do we staff to do it fruitfully?”

Hire to shared values. Don’t hire to strategy because strategy changes. Values also play into longevity. Has this person already done what we are doing before? Does this person value the same things we value?

The way you find this is to look at the fruit of their lives. Find ways that you have expressed this value over time. If he is inwardly focused he will tell you what he has done within the church. If he is externally focused he will tell you what he has done in his personal life. Is this person a love your neighbor guy or a love your church guy?

Question 3: “Who am I looking for exactly?”

Now we are looking into specific skill sets. What do they do? What is their competency? What is their education? What is their culture fit?

Don’t just ask this question in your own head. Ask key people you are working with already. Latch onto the themes being communicated from your team.

Question 4: “How do I search properly?”

First search in-house. You’ve seen these people grow, develop, and change.

Next look outside of the church. Start with your network and if you need to look through a search committee. Share the load of the work. You can also use a search firm but they often cost a lot of money.

Question 5: “How do I onboard a new team member effectively?”

As they come in, they need clearly written documents for salary, benefits, and team structure. Create clear job descriptions. Money doesn’t have to be the last thing that you talk about. If this number is a deal breaker for you, just let me know, I want to be upfront. When you are onboarding, everything needs to be in writing.

What are the expectations? In year one, here is what I’m expecting in your role. Help your family transition well, build community, join a group, cultivate 15 new leaders, etc. Put this in writing and come alongside the hire every 2-3 weeks in a casual way to ask questions.

Is the space set up and ready for him? If they have an office, is it set up and do they have the tools ready to start the first day? Computer? Email? Business Cards?

Question 6: “What staffing mistakes do ministry leaders/churches make notoriously?”

Sometimes we hire a professional instead of a discipler. In a company, you hire a pro to create a product. In a church you onboard a discipler.

We hire to strategy instead of values. The strategy can change and values stay the same.

Neglecting to hire champions to church and home to the highest level. Don’t compartmentalize this area because ministry is both church and home not just at a building. We miss it if we hire a great preacher but he can’t connect the church and the home. It comes from the top.

Neglecting to develop leaders from within intentionally. Not just swapping sheep from one church to another.

Avoiding necessary endings. When you have someone on your staff who is pulling the other direction or becoming toxic you need to cause a necessary ending. *Henry Cloud Necessary Endings Book. Help them find a different way of living out their calling. Give clarity and love. “I love you, and I know what I’m about to say is going to hurt.” Sometimes you need to say these 3 things need to change and next month we are going to see if you are making progress. You might also need to say, “You have 30 days to change your negative vibe, and here are the 3 things that you need to change.”Make it uncomfortable and hard because if they want to work through it they will be so much better on the other side and if not then they will move on. Trust your gut but test it with clear conversation.

Question 7: “What should I do when I hire erroneously?”

We ran out of time for this question.

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Developing a Winning Family Ministry Team – Michael Bayne – @michael_bayne

Change that lasts is not only owned by you. You have to stop leading like a mega phone in isolation shouting where you are going. Link arms with other people on your team and empower them to be what God called them to be.

Equipping the saints means actually letting them lead and giving away leadership

“Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ.” Ephesians 4:12 NLT

Your ministry will grow to the level of your leadership ability. Yo have to figure out what your leadership level is and continue to develop yourself as a leader. You aren’t done. You haven’t arrived.

Stop Leading Alone! You Need A Team!

One of the ways you can be abetter leader is to stop leading alone. You need a team. The easiest way to improve your leadership ability is to gather people around you who can fill your leadership gaps.

“Your ministry will grow to the level of your leadership ability. It will center on your strengths and will buckle under your weaknesses.”

Why do I need a leadership team?
Because I will hold back the ministry I am called to lead)

If I’m going to be a part of your thing, then I want to do something. I want to be challenged.

If you only attract loyal followers they will let you run yourself off a cliff. Leaders will see things that need to be changed. They will loyally run the ministry into the ground. The group leader might not be the best communicator but on the long run they’ll catch up.

What does a leadership team look like?

“A leadership team is a small group of people who are collectively responsible for achieving a common objective for their organization.” – Patrick Lencioni

Not everyone can be on your leadership team. A team can be too big. When the team grows beyond 6 it gets difficult. Every team has a head coach. A team without a leader is not a team.

Jesus built a team and empowered the team.

“Passing alongside the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and Andrew the brother of Simon casting a net into the sea, for they were fishermen. And Jesus said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you become fishers of men.” And immediately they left their nets and followed him. And going on a little farther, he saw James the son of Zebedee and John his brother, who were in their boat mending the nets. And immediately he called them, and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired servants and followed him.” Mark 1:16-20 (ESV)

Jesus get’s two people who are out doing the work and calls them to follow Him. He then goes to those who are fixing the nets and not out doing the work to follow Him. He calls people from different perspectives to join His team.

Jesus was immediately thinking beyond himself when he launched his ministry. You need to think about who will carry on when you are done leading in your current role. Lead for the future through a team!

When you build a team you can stay healthy and your ministry can get healthy.

If you want to grow bigger, you need to structure bigger. – Carey Nieuwhof

If you want to get healthy, you need a healthy structure – Michael Bayne

Chasing big leads you to think short term. Chasing healthy leads to processing growth and long term sustainability. You also need a team that will come along side you and remind you that you aren’t as big as you think you are. You need people that come beside you and let you know they have your back.

When you build a team you add influence, gifting, and encouragement to your ministry.

Not finance. Not Strategy. Not technology. It is teamwork that remains the ultimate competitive advantage, both became it is so powerful and so rare. Patrick Lencioni.

Look for people outside your current volunteers that are good at what they do outside the church and invite them to leverage their ability in the church. Look for people who you are afraid to ask and go for it. Look for people who have strengths you don’t have. Look for people who you enjoy being with. Look for people with servant hearts. When you build a team invest in them first so they can invest in others.

“The key lesson: humanity and connection are trumping the desire for corporate scale.” – Seth Godin, We Are All Weird

People need to know they are not being used. Burnout and disillusionment follow manipulation.

Your team gets your first thank you. Your team gets all the credit.

Your team gets to celebrate first. Your team gets to have access. When you have big news, always make sure your team knows this first. Let them come into the next meeting celebrating. You can’t give everyone complete access but you must give a few people complete access.

When you build a team you give away real authority and influence. Don’t ask people to come and be a part of things if you aren’t going to allow them do do something. Let them make decisions for you. If they decide to use blue cups instead of red, who cares. Let them lead. Say things like, “ don’t know if that’s going to work but let’s try.”

“Responsibility without authority only brings frustration and never leaves fruit that remains. You must dare to trust people to represent you well.” – Jim Wideman

You must allow your leaders to make mistakes.
You must allow your leaders to care for and lead people.
You must allow your team to have real input into ministry direction.
You must invite your team into regular evaluation.
Leading the team to win.

Winning teams are characterized by…
Progress
Communication
Trust
Evaluation
Celebration

“Great teams make clear and timely decisions and move forward with complete buy-in from every member of the team, even those who voted against the decision. Patrick Lencioni

Do you have people fighting agains the winning team characterizations above? When these things are not happening you may have the wrong team or inherited the wrong team. Time does not heal disfunction. Have the hard conversation. Have the courage to empower the right people with authority and move people pulling against you into roles with less influence or onto another team. Get the right people in the right seats on the bus.

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How To Align Church and Home For Effective Generational Discipleship –  Brian Haynes – @brian_haynes

Simplicity matters. The guy working and living a busy life needs to know just a couple of things. Where to go. What to say when there. And resourced to make it happen. Behind the scenes it can be complex with systems running but in the front it needs to be clean and clear.

Total alignment requires clarity.

Doctrinal Clarity – there is a thread from the beginning to the end that aligns the home and faith community.
Deuteronomy 6:4-7
Proverbs 22:6
Matthew 28:19-20
Ephesians 6:4

Discipleship is a two-sided coin: Church and the Family. If the church and family are to work together to equip the generations, we must have a common path on which to walk. We call this the path of Legacy Milestones and it is our desire to focus everything that we do to help people mature along this path.

Philosophical Clarity – Without clarity you pull in opposing directions. How you do things is forged in doctrine. The church comes alongside the family.

Missional Clarity – What are we doing? Our mission is making disciples who make disciples.

Values Clarity – Who are we? Share values cause us to move in the same direction. Christ in me. We are family. Love does.

Vision Clarity – What direction are we going? How are we going to do that at the end of the day?  City Station

How do we do it as a staff?

Shared Strategy: http://legacymilestones.com

Milestone 1: Parent/Child Dedication.
Milestone 2: Salvation & Baptism
Milestone 3: Preparing for Adolescence
Milestone 4: Purity for Life
Milestone 5: Rite of Passage
Milestone 6: High School Graduation
Milestone 7: Life in Christ

Celebrate Milestone: Milestones can best be described as “an event, preceded by a period of instruction from parents, which celebrates a spiritual development point in a child’s life.” We believe that these Milestones are critical markers in the life of every individual and these Milestones help to provide a clear path for Spiritual development throughout all of our ministries.

Faith talk: At least one time a week. Faith Talks are intentional times set aside at least once each week for conversation around the Scripture with your family. We see this as a priority because we are convinced that spiritual training takes place one step at a time in the context of everyday life. While leading Faith Talks, relationship is your priority, the Bible is your handbook, and life is your classroom. For parents with young children, Faith Talks are the primary vehicle for leading your children along the path between each milestone.

God Moments/Stories: God moments are opportunities to teach our children spiritual truths informally as God moves in their lives.  These moments can appear at any time, such as a good question from an inquisitive child or an unexpected blessing of family provision.  We must be careful to capture these God Moments for the sake of discipleship.  Our families need to see that God is working in the world and by capturing these moments we provide clear evidence of this reality.

How do parents self disciple?
How to have faith talks?
How to have God Moments?

The secret to Milestones is #7. Real life begins and grows in relationship with Jesus Christ.  From that relationship, a Christ-follower grows in each Core Competency throughout the journey.

I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. – John 15:5

How do we build bridges to the home?

Equipping – An annual event called parent summit. One Saturday, 9-3pm, Speakers and then seminars on each milestone.

Resources – It doesn’t have to be a huge book store. You need to be pointing parents in the right direction to self disciple.

Easy Wins – If you’ve never had a faith talk with your kid and all of a sudden feel like you need to be leading, the first ones are so hard. Give them easy on ramps that are mostly successful.

Technology – Apps, Social Media, etc.

Secret Sauce of Effectiveness

Lead Pastor has vision for generational discipleship.
The conversation is alive in every small group. How celebrated a milestone this week? Who had the best or worst faith talk this week? Any God moments you’d like to share?
The conversation flows out of worship services.
Every group leader carries the DNA of generational discipleship.
Modeled by ministry leaders at home.

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