20 Core Values for a Long and Effective Pastoral Tenure

I wrap up my twentieth year as the Sr. Pastor of Christ Church (Fairview Heights, Illinois) on the final day of June.  We have grown every single year from just over 200 to over 2,200 in worship.  It has been a good run.   Here are twenty core values that have propelled me to twoContinue reading “20 Core Values for a Long and Effective Pastoral Tenure”

Does Your Church “Get” It? (10 things churches must “get” to have a future)

  We all know that most churches are in decline.  We also know that some churches are growing and some are growing exponentially.  There are clearly some things growing churches “get” that declining churches do not. Here are ten things churches need to “get” to have a future.   Get strategic A decreasing number ofContinue reading “Does Your Church “Get” It? (10 things churches must “get” to have a future)”

A Baker’s Dozen (Quick Hitter) Leadership Lessons

  I was appointed to a congregation of just over 200 in 1997.  We averaged almost 2,400 in 2017.  Here is what I have learned about leadership in these twenty-one years in one place: Thirteen (Quick Hitter) Lessons in Leadership State Your Mission: We exist to connect people to Jesus Christ.  It is our language for everything.Continue reading “A Baker’s Dozen (Quick Hitter) Leadership Lessons”

You Can’t Avoid Leadership Stress (so manage it)

Some years ago (when I was still “young-ish” and in my early forties) my health was in a rapidly declining state.  Christ Church was moving from 400 in worship each weekend toward 750 and it was literally killing me.  Our staff was a dysfunctional mess, the congregation was kicking and screaming and I was doingContinue reading “You Can’t Avoid Leadership Stress (so manage it)”

THE NEXT FIFTEEN YEARS

THE NEXT FIFTEEN YEARS I have been amazed of late at how many people have asked me, “What are your plans for the next fifteen years?” Perhaps they see the new building completed, the campuses in place and the Student and Children’s Ministries booming and wonder, “What is the next big thing for Christ Church?”Continue reading “THE NEXT FIFTEEN YEARS”

Does the American Church Have a Future?

Does the American Church Have a Future? Fifteen years ago everyone was using the word “post-modern.” I used it a lot. Made me feel like a hipster preacher before there were hipster preachers.  I had more hair back then.  It was an easier sell. The definition of post-modern generally centered upon the premise that the modernContinue reading “Does the American Church Have a Future?”

Choosing Peace

Choosing Peace That night there were shepherds staying in the fields nearby, guarding their flocks of sheep. Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. They were terrified, but the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news that will bring greatContinue reading “Choosing Peace”

Seven Things EVERY Church Needs EVERY December

Regardless of your context or size, your church is going to need these things in December! 1. Encouragement At Christ Church, Christmas involves about 10 times the time, energy and effort of Easter. There are lots of extra services, staff is pushed hard and everyone is under time pressure. A little encouragement goes a longContinue reading “Seven Things EVERY Church Needs EVERY December”

The Essence of Church Leadership

The Essence of Church Leadership Know Where You Are Realism Know Where You Are Going Vision Have a Plan Strategy Move the People Motivation STEP ONE: WHERE WE ARE           Where We Are: The real disasters I see in leadership occur when leaders do not have a realistic sense of where the congregation truly stands concerningContinue reading “The Essence of Church Leadership”

A Place to Stand: Healthy Boundaries between Pastors and Congregations

  Most pastors I know have clear calls to ministry, work long hours, carry battle scars, sometimes get discouraged and struggle to balance vocation and family. They really do have servant’s hearts but they are human and there are a few considerate things the people in the pews can do to support their pastors. IfContinue reading “A Place to Stand: Healthy Boundaries between Pastors and Congregations”