Discipleship in a Time of Pandemic

An interview with Viviana Escobar, Barry Cunnigan and Pat Dirkse, City Church Compton, California “Our discipleship is not robust enough to handle the trials of a pandemic and the realities of racial struggle.”  Over and over, I hear pastors and church leaders lament that we did not make disciples for such a time as this. Our discipleship was thin. We … Read More

Easter More Than Our Resurrection

Easter is the wonderful good news of Jesus’ resurrection and the promise of the resurrection to eternal life for all who believe in him. But hidden from view is a greater and more stunning reality. In the beginning all is well. God lives in harmony with his creation and with Adam and Eve. Adam and Eve live in harmony with … Read More

Sign Me Up To Lose More

Congregations long to get back to February 2020, but a recent Gallup poll (U.S. Congregations) shows that 2020 is the end of a significant 20-year decline in church membership. To go back is to go back to the ways of decrease. Gallup’s latest study on membership in the U.S. reveals that for the first time in 80 years, less than … Read More

Envisioning Life Together: A Simple Tool Part 2

What does life together look like in your congregation? Can members describe it? In Part 2 of Creating a Life Together picture, we discover a pathway to a deeper understanding of the picture. If you ask a member of the congregation for a picture of living life together, could they describe the picture? Would they envision that life together in … Read More

Envisioning Life Together: A Simple Tool for your Congregation

If you ask a member of the congregation for a picture of living life together, could they describe the picture? Would they envision that life together in a way that is compelling and appealing? There is so much information bombarding people that it’s hard for them to grasp what our congregations are about and what it looks like to do … Read More

Three Podcasts to Make you Into a Masterpiece

Paul writes stunning words in Ephesians, For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. (Ephesians 2.10 NLT) Being a masterpiece created by God is amazing.  What is even more impressive is that we are not, first of all, individual masterpieces, but together … Read More

Beanie Babies and Staying Engaged in God’s Mission

Most of our homes are scattered with the leftovers of our desire to be part of something bigger than ourselves. Those of us who are older may even bump into that pet rock that we bought in the 1970s. Others of us have closets bursting with Beanie Babies. We have trinkets, books, magazines, clothes with logos and trademarks—every one of … Read More

Engage: 4X4 Leadership Essentials

What leadership essentials exist for a pastor as she/he leads a congregation in fresh steps in ministry and mission? Are there ways of leading that are non negotiable for successful fresh steps? In previous posts, we saw that the first 4 essentials are trust, compassion, stability, and hope. In the following post, we will look at the 4 e’s of … Read More

Empower: 4X4 Leadership Essentials

Leadership essentials. Good leaders are trustworthy, show compassion, give stability, and instill hope. Good leaders also engage and empower people in ministry and mission. Once people are involved in living out the ministry and mission, the pastor takes the next step by supporting people in their work. To bring this support, the pastor follows Jesus in being a servant leader. … Read More

Equip: 4×4 Leadership Essentials

We are exploring the leadership essentials that pastors need for successfully taking their congregation into fresh steps in ministry and mission. So far, we’ve seen the first 4 essentials are trust, compassion, stability, and hope. In our last post, we saw the first of the 4e’s of leadership: engage. The second of the 4e’s is equip. Pastors engaged in fresh … Read More