Leading When Leadership Stops Leading Well

Leading When Leadership Stops Leading Well

The season was a challenging one for the church known for its innovative ideas and laid-back, “nobody’s perfect and everybody’s welcome” approach to sharing the gospel. Attendance was on the decline, and ideas to engage the congregation which looked solid on white boards were floundering in real life. Senior leadership grew distant from the rest of the staff, and concerns mounted when it was announced that the church was going in a “new direction” that seemed counter to its original vision.... Read More
It’s Time to Be the Welcome Mat

It’s Time to Be the Welcome Mat

At first glance, the little welcome mat looks much like something you’d find at World Market or Pier One. Strips of fabric sewn together make a durable gathering place for shoes that have journeyed near or far. But in the corner, a canvas tag is a reminder that this is much more than a rug. It is redemption. And it is a hopeful invitation to the church. The tag simply says, “Love Welcomes.” Tennessee-based Thistle Farms, a nonprofit dedicated to healing, empowering and employee women survivors... Read More
What is Our Real Purpose? Three Reminders from the Vicar in a School Cafeteria

What is Our Real Purpose? Three Reminders from the Vicar in a School Cafeteria

“You are never more like God than when you invest in other people.” Reggie Joiner The Vicar of the small church in a Texas suburb adjusts the colorful stole that’s draped over his blue jeans, boots, and button-down shirt. It’s a decidedly different look than the traditional vestments he wore when he pastored an Episcopalian church on the eastern seaboard. There, history was rich and long, and the pews and stained glass reminded all who attended that the building they were in was designed for... Read More
What a Small Clapboard Church Can Teach Us About Success

What a Small Clapboard Church Can Teach Us About Success

It was a typical July morning in Oklahoma, with the sun and clouds playing a game of keep away as thunderstorms threatened the horizon. The small clapboard church sat just off the highway that took most of the town’s residents to their jobs in the sprawling city nearby. Not much had changed since the church found its home on the corner near some railroad tracks. There was a narthex, the wooden panel walls held paintings of Jesus tending to His own, and the painted pews creaked a little. The... Read More
The Purpose of Fear in Authentic Leadership

The Purpose of Fear in Authentic Leadership

Leadership in ministry is not for the faint-hearted. We only need to look around us to witness the ravages of an unrelenting war on character, on relationships, on hearts and minds. Volumes have been written on building strong churches, growing high-capacity volunteer groups, and designing creative ministries that appeal to every age. Leadership books are quick to list tips for being more effective, more charismatic, more relevant, and more dynamic. But there is little offered to help those of... Read More