All posts in productivity

Live Lighter, Love Better is Available!

It is exciting to announce that Live Lighter, Love Better is available tomorrow morning! (Nov. 30) What a privilege it is to work with the Striving Together publications team to make this project available! I’m grateful for their excellent work. I received my advance copy this week and was excited to see the beautiful quality of…

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My Favorite Sermon Preparation Software

A friend recently asked me to do a post about the Bible study software or sermon resources I use. Here’s a quick snapshot of that part of my world, for what it’s worth. I don’t claim to have all the answers, but I do benefit from posts like this written by others. Maybe I’ll share…

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Five Great Books for Productivity

Are you striving to live a balanced life of good stewardship? Several times a month I’m asked “what are the best books on time or life management that you have read?” So here they are. Please note: this list is not a full endorsement of these writers or of everything these books contain. This is simply a great body…

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Guest Post: Qualities of a Healthy Church Team

By Josue Ortiz A Guest Post—The following post is from a friend of mine, from whom I have learned much. Josue Ortiz and his wife Bekah are currently on deputation to plant churches in Mexico. They are heading to the field very soon. I met Josue a couple of years ago, and my respect for…

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The Land Between Frenzy and Apathy

A rubber-band was designed to be stretched. Yet every rubber-band has a limit—a red-zone of danger and breakage. So long as you stretch a rubber-band within its safe-zone, you’re good. But cross into that red-zone, and breaking the rubber-band is only a matter of time. When rubber-bands break they become unusable for their intended purpose, not to mention the…

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The Crisis of God’s Call

Examining the Disruptive Call of God… Not long ago a young ministry leader facing a clear call wrote to me and asked about dealing with the painful reality when God’s call collides with everyone and everything you love and have given your life to. He is being called to leave people he dearly loves and…

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Do You Need Breakthrough?

Do you find yourself hitting your head against a ceiling in terms of your work-flow or organizational world? You’re not alone. This is a series of three posts on resources that have helped me have “breakthrough” at different times in organization or workflow. First a quantifier… Blogs really bother me when they seem to say,…

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Great Stuff to Do with Your Next Day Off…

Do you take a regular day off? You sure should! When God spent six days creating and one day resting, it wasn’t because He needed the rest. God expects us to rest and restore. He created us with this need, and when we ignore it, we do so to our own peril. So, in the…

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Your Schedule is Also Your Example…

If you serve in the ministry, people are watching you and your family. If you don’t want to be watched, then ministry is not the place to be. That said, we are commanded to be ensamples (or examples—a pattern to follow) to the flock (1 Peter 5:3.) As spiritual leaders we’re supposed to be saying,…

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A Collection of Posts on New Year Planning

This is a repost of reposts—how’s that for loser blogging!? Over the past few years, I’ve written a number of articles about creating an annual planner for life and ministry and about personal productivity. I thought it might be helpful to re-post these (AGAIN!) with titles, summaries, and links to the original articles. The planner…

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When We’re Too Busy

Life is busy. Honestly, in a given week or day, there is more stuff flowing at us (in the form of information and opportunities) than we can possibly comprehend, much less accept. Doing the right things in life means saying “no” to a lot more than you could ever say “yes” to. The challenge of the…

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An Effective Staff Member Commits

I’ve never written a ten part blog series, but here goes! Whether you hang with me for all ten parts, or just read one or two, I hope you will be encouraged. Do you serve on a ministry staff? Are you a member of a team? If so, you are no second-class citizen in the…

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Escaping Email Overload

Not long ago I was asked to teach a staff meeting on managing email. Rather than prepare a lengthy meeting loaded with “helpful tips,” I chose to make it quick and simple. We had a fifteen minute talk on the top three best and worst email practices. This not only made the meeting short (which…

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What Really Matters Most!

Have you ever rushed through your day at a frantic pace, crossing off as many things on your to-do list as possible? Have you ever finished a busy day, collapsed into bed, and wondered what you did of value that day? Have you ever sensed, deep inside, that you’re getting a lot of “stuff” done,…

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My Favorite iPad Bible App

iPad has pretty dramatically impacted my life and workflow, and the iPad 2 is an even better experience! For one thing, it has completely re-invented my “reading life” for the better. And reading the Bible on the iPad is a fantastic experience. In a previous post I wrote about the apps I use the most…

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You’re Too Busy If…

Do you ever have the feeling that you’re so busy, major values and priorities in your life are slipping? This is a sinking feeling—and bailing water doesn’t help. Time to plug the holes in the boat! Here’s a short list that might help you evaluate priorities and return to that which is most important in…

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A Collection of Posts About Annual Planning

Perhaps you’ve come across this blog in the past 12 months. If so, this post is for you. Over the past few years, I’ve written a number of articles about creating an annual planner for life and ministry and about personal productivity. I thought it might be helpful to re-post these with titles, summaries, and…

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iPad, iPhone, Apps, and Ideas…

(This one’s just for fun…) When iPad was introduced, nearly every blog and media outlet had an article about it. Some were sceptical, some critical, some more analytical, and some prophetic. Six months into using an iPad, and a couple years for the iPhone, I wanted to share how these devices have impacted my ministry…

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The Hidden Values of Preparation

Have you ever conducted an event that was ill-prepared? Have you ever been disorganized or caught off guard in some ministry environment? There’s nothing worse than being thrown off balance by a lack of preparation. I could fill the pages of a book with tough lessons learned through a lack of preparation. Even after years…

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7 Ideas for Your Personal Planner System

This fourth and final post on an annual planner is just for ideas. Please contexualize this series properly—I’m certainly not the expert on this stuff. Like you, I just enjoy comparing notes with others and gleaning helpful ideas. Thank you for the positive feedback. If you’re coming in late to the series, previous articles are…

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