Archive for 2011

United—Fighting for the Next Generation

The contemporary church is seeing a mass exodus of young adults walking away from their faith in their late teens and early twenties. Some studies say the percentage is around 80% while others estimate it to be much higher. The statistic highlights major failures in many contemporary church ministry on a number of levels, but…

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Are You a Builder or a Destroyer?

Two profiles of Christian leaders are spotlighted, center-stage in this tale. Both would call themselves servants of God. The Builder One is a giant—in every imaginable way, a joyful, godly, spiritual giant of encouragement and mentorship—a builder. He has spent his life building. He builds everybody he comes into contact with. He loves, he gives,…

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On Becoming an Encourager…

My friend and childhood pastor, Dick Hester recently sent me this challenge, and I wanted to share it here. I’m not nearly the encourager that I wish I was, or that I strive to be—but by the end of my life, I hope it can be said that I was an encourager. Pastor Hester is…

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The Difference a Day Can Make!

Hurricane Irene just churned her way up the East Coast leaving a swath of destruction and brokenness. My friend took the photo above and the one below—one day apart, and these photos struck me along with his statement, “What a difference a day can make!” Have you ever had a day like the one in…

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A Thief With Principles

You may have seen this. My son found it and passed it along to me. It’s a true story that makes for a humorous but powerful illustration of how the human heart can rationalize sin. Perhaps you can use it. Dennis Lee Curtis was a thief who was arrested in 1992 in Rapid City, South…

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Spiritual Leadership Downloads 2011!

Spiritual Leadership Conference 2011 was held last month. I’m late in posting this information, but wanted to share it none-the-less. It is our desire to share Spiritual Leadership Conference with people who couldn’t attend. I’m posting several links below that will help you access videos, audio, photos, and resources that were available at the conference….

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An Effective Staff Member Grows

This is part two of a series on an effective staff member. You can read the first article here. The big question we’re answering is simply this: What qualities make an effective staff member? What characteristics produce winning teams? If God has placed you “in the middle” of the organization chart somewhere—welcome! Many of us…

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Repost: The Right View of Spiritual Leaders…

There are two very different attitudes towards spiritual leaders. Some Christians seemingly never see anything good, and in fact have given themselves over to criticism and fault-finding. While other Christians opt to be prayerfully and joyfully supportive and encouraging toward leaders. Which position have you taken in life? Just a couple of quick thoughts to…

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How We Keep Our Marriage Fresh

When Dana and I were engaged, there was one thing we dreaded—someday becoming one of those married couples that appear to barely tolerate each other. You know—those couples who never even hold hands or exude joy in being together. We vowed to each other that we would do everything within our power to resist the…

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Stuff My Daughter Taught Me About Fatherhood

Recently, while away on family vacation, the Lord gave me some special moments with my kids. On one particular day, it seemed that God gave me some moments with Haylee that reminded me of my Heavenly Father. All day long, I kept seeing Haylee’s longing for her own father as echo’s of each of our…

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Praying for Your Wife

I recently received the following post written by my friend and childhood pastor, Dick Hester. I asked his permission to post it here because I know it will challenge your prayer life for your spouse. Praying for your mate: How are you praying for your treasure? It’s one of life’s great “mixed emotions” moments for…

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Repost: Spurgeon on Carnal Contention

The Lord gave me a recent personal reminder of the damage that a carnal spirit, lies, slander, and envy can do through ungodly and hurtful communication—especially online. The following is an excerpt from C.H. Spurgeon that speaks powerfully to how we as Christians should invest our time, our efforts, and our words. May we live…

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New Resources from Striving Together

Over the past few weeks, Striving Together has introduced a great new line up of resources for spiritual growth and local church ministry. These include several new books, new Sunday school curriculum, new children’s curriculum, new mini-books and booklets, and several other items. Our team has labored for a year or more on many of…

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Off Script is Now Available

It’s amazing how the Lord allows the timing of events to unfold. Yesterday I left the hospital in Hollywood after my last radiation treatment! It was a moment I will never forget. Only minutes later I received a message from my secretary that the first copy of Off Script was sitting on my desk. You…

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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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Repost—How to Discern God’s Will

My Dad originally sent me this excerpt from the life story of George Mueller. I decided to repost it because it is powerful, timeless, and frankly, it speaks very personally to me in continuing to discover God’s will for my own future. This is how Mueller discerned the will of God. Don’t rush through this—take…

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SL Podcast – Christlikeness in the Church

Don’t miss this month’s Spiritual Leadership Podcast from Pastor Paul Chappell. The topic is “How to Develop Christ-likeness in the Church.” This lesson will challenge you to evaluate the spiritual health and development of your church family. More than that, it will provide some thoughts for measuring progress and evaluating what a “Christ-like church” looks…

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A New Book—Off Script

Over the past eight months, people have asked me if I was going to write a book about this cancer experience. At first, my answer was to laugh and say, “probably not!” But the Lord overruled me. It’s been two and a half years since I’ve written a book personally. My writing time between then…

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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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A Man, a Boy, and a Bible…

I love the way God shows up in ways we least expect. This morning is another McDonald’s morning. As my system is coming out of chemo effects, the stomach was asking for pancakes and my heart longed for some quiet time with the Lord. (Funny thing is, before cancer I was no fan of pancakes.)…

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