Tag: Church

Extremism

How many times in the political arena do we hear the thought expressed of someone being extreme left or extreme right?

Being extreme, however, is not limited to the political arena. We quite often find the beast of extremism within the church.

Brethren often become extreme in their approach and teaching, which leads to division in the church.

Our responsibility is to learn the difference between Biblical teaching and personal opinion.

In a time where we need to prevent the world’s influence on the church, let us not become so extreme that our actions portray what we are trying to prevent.

Generous Leaders

Leaders should exemplify generosity. Leadership is built on giving our time, energy, money, emotions, and ability.

When leaders demonstrate generosity, others learn the value of the gift. However, our generosity must be checked.

Intention: What is the motive behind our gift?

Object: What is the object of our generosity? Work? Family? Church? Lord?

Planned dedication: Is there a planned purpose?

Action: Are we ready to start giving?

Self-examination: What are we losing by holding on to it?

What suits our giving? Do we give what is left over, easy and convenient, or is our generosity suited by the best?

Passing the Torch

The older I get the more I find myself realizing how temporary life is on earth. It becomes increasingly important to consider my replacement.

No one likes to think about death, but someone must carry on without us. I am not trying to be depressing. However, we need to pass the torch, but to whom?

There is a necessity of preparing men to shepherd the Lord’s church, fill pulpits, and train teachers to lay the foundation for the future of our children.

It is all about passing the torch. Who will replace you? To whom will you pass the torch?

Learning In Community

Few times are more exciting than sitting around a table with others to collaborate ideas. Discussing and planning every area of life serves to improve leadership.

These times provide inspiration by gleaning from the wisdom and experience of those closest to us. Here we find guidance from others who care most for us. They desire to see us succeed.

Spiritually, few opportunities are more important than to examine ways to strengthen the church and lead others to a greater hope.

The change in life that makes the greatest difference in who we are and what we do is born from the benefits of what is learned in community.

Value and Worth

Although the source is unknown, consider this thought, “Surround yourself with people who know your worth. You don’t need too many people to be happy, just a few REAL ones who can appreciate you for who you are.”

Confidence and esteem are lacking in general.

Leaders have the responsibility of showing appreciation for those who need to grow in their confidence.

Think about what it would do for the church to know the value and worth of our contribution and to help others see their value and worth.

Negativity is destructive. We must find a way to avoid negative influences and surround ourselves with positive ones that build worth.

Who, How, and Why

Three significant questions surface in your leadership.

First, “Who are you trying to reach?” Churches often talk about trying to reach their communities, but rarely are they willing to take the necessary steps to do so. The answer here makes a difference in the direction and steps taken in the next question.

Second, “How will you reach them?” It may take specific marketing technique, extra time in the community, developing stronger relationships, financial means, or additional people. You must be willing to do whatever it takes.

Third, and perhaps most importantly, “Why are you doing this?” If you can’t answer this question with certainty and clarity, people will not follow long.

Agree or Disagree?

One of the most common phrases used when people cannot come to an agreement is “we will just have to agree to disagree.” What exactly does this accomplish in the realm of spiritual leadership?

If agreeing to disagree allows both expressions to be correct, then we are headed for a train wreck in the spiritual realm.

Imagine the difference in the church today if leaders applied the same principles of interpretation and agreed to work together until unity could be achieved.

Imagine if the pride of self-righteousness were put aside with the intent of seeking to truly listen to God’s word and simply follow it…only.

What’s Missing?

What seems to be missing from the type of leadership God needs for His people?

If you were asked this question, how would you respond? What kind of answer would you give? What is missing in leadership today?

Perhaps the list would include courage, patience, wisdom, character, vision, compassion, or even decisiveness.

The answer to the question may rest in the nature of each situation. The culture in one congregation varies from that of another. The needs of one congregation are different from another.

Before we think about what’s missing somewhere else, maybe we should begin at home.

Take the Risk

“Nothing ventured, nothing gained” is an idiom related to risk. Few areas in life witness true and great success without some level of risk.

The willingness to take risks opens us up to an area that allows God to demonstrate the greatness of His power, exceeding our ability to think.

Instead of hiding behind a fear that inhibits our growth and development as the church, leaders need to explore the possibilities of what can happen if we just allow God to work through us, beyond the comfort zones of our past traditions and extend our abilities into areas that promise faith and hope.

Questions for the Heart

“Did I offer peace today? Did I bring a smile to someone’s face? Did I say words of healing? Did I let go of my anger and resentment? Did I forgive? Did I love? These are the real questions. I must trust that the little bit of love that I sow now will bear many fruits, here in this world and the life to come.” Henri Nouwen

Imagine a congregation where, at the end of the day, everyone took the time to answer these questions affirmatively. If we focused on putting the needs, concerns, cares, worries, and desires of others first, the church and this world would sure be a different place.