Hopeful Signs for United Methodists Abound in Len Wilson’s 2017 “Top 25 Fastest Growing Large Church Report”

I am thankful to Len Wilson for compiling his Top 25 each year but even more grateful for his analysis of the statistics. http://lenwilson.us/top-25-fastest-growing-large-umc-2017/ Here are a few statistics Wilson reported that I find very encouraging as a United Methodist: 1) 13 of the 25 have joined the list in the past two years! We haveContinue reading “Hopeful Signs for United Methodists Abound in Len Wilson’s 2017 “Top 25 Fastest Growing Large Church Report””

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?”

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”

Ten 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 around the missionContinue reading “Ten Things Churches Must “Get” (To have a future)”

What I See Coming for the American Church

We all know that our world not only has changed and is changing but we are beginning to realize that our world is change. You see, change is no longer the obstacle around which the fish swims, it is the water itself. Many years ago, a wise mentor named Dr. Roderick McLean taught me toContinue reading “What I See Coming for the American Church”

Characteristics of an Ineffective Church

Characteristics of an Ineffective Church 1. A lack of clarity about the mission 2. New Christians are not being made 3. People are not being baptized 4. Evangelism is non-existent 5. Preaching has digressed into self-helps 6. The Bible is not being taught or studied 7. There is no numerical growth 8. There is noContinue reading “Characteristics of an Ineffective Church”

7 Thoughts for those Discouraged in Ministry

Are you discouraged in your service to the Lord? It happens to all of us. As much as we would like life to move “up and the right,” we will all endure seasons of feeling inadequate, dejected and downright pessimistic. Sometimes we just want to become 10 years old again and “take our ball andContinue reading “7 Thoughts for those Discouraged in Ministry”

I am Joining WCA (but I am not in a bad mood about it)

For years now, I have been standing in the middle ground of the United Methodist Church.  Right-middle to be sure but middle none-the-less.  My plan was to batton down the proverbial hatches, keep Fairview Heights Christ Church growing (we have grown for twenty consecutive years) and hope the denominational storm would pass.  When asked aboutContinue reading “I am Joining WCA (but I am not in a bad mood about it)”

The Unanticipated Upside of Capital Campaigns

 The Unanticipated Upside of Capital Campaigns Let me begin my stating my purpose.  I am not being compensated by a capital campaign company, nor do I “moonlight” for one.  I will make no money off of this article (though I am open to it).  Let’s face it; no one makes money writing anymore. I haveContinue reading “The Unanticipated Upside of Capital Campaigns”