Make Sure You Don’t Forget the ____.

leaders. Don’t forget the existing leaders in your ministry. They need you to keep inspiring and investing in them.

A few years ago one of the small group leaders under my care said something that forever changed my approach to ministry:

“It seems like once you reach a certain level of leadership, you stop getting poured into. It’s assumed you’re doing fine. But I still need help to keep growing.”


This is why we have a regular event at Redemption Church Gateway designed to refresh and encourage our existing leaders. We call it Leadership Summit. Some details:

  • It’s quarterly (February, May, August, December)
  • All the leaders and spouses are invited (small groups, kids, students, serving teams)
  • It’s a high priority night that leaders are expected to attend, and we make it worth it
  • We serve dinner and provide childcare
  • We prioritize fun
  • We make it a “non-compete” week and cancel all other mid-week events
  • We change it up every time so that nobody knows exactly what to expect

Leadership Summit has helped in the following ways:

1. It blesses and encourages leaders. Leaders don’t want another meeting. But they do want to be encouraged and inspired.

2. Inspired leaders help everything. If leaders are drained, they don’t lead well. But if they sense what they are doing is important and have energy to do it, it’s contagious.

3. It creates synergy. Having an environment for all of our leaders in all of our ministries to come together gives us a common sense of direction and helps avoid silos and us/them mentality.

4. It creates a platform for some of our other staff and elders. The smaller environment allows us to leverage the strengths of our multi-talented leadership team.

5. It forces vision to the forefront. If you want to inspire leaders, you have to have a compelling vision. This event has forced me to keep our vision clear and central — and to communicate it in fresh ways.

If you are involved in leading a church or ministry, make sure you keep investing in the engine that keeps it running — your existing leaders.


What other ideas do you have for supporting and encouraging existing leaders?

Published by Luke Simmons

I was born and raised in Denver, CO and lived there through high school. Then I moved to Champaign, IL where I attended the University of Illinois and played on the Fighting Illini baseball team. I was married in December, 2001 to Molly, who I met at the U of I. In June of 2002, we moved to Phoenix and have been here ever since.

5 thoughts on “Make Sure You Don’t Forget the ____.

  1. The Leadership Summits are such a blessing and after speaking to many people after the event, everyone felt refreshed and closer to the flame. Thanks

  2. I agree with Wade. Those evenings are exactly what I need. I considered missing the last one, but told my wife that I hate to miss them. I’m never disappointed. The entire team of people who give are amazing–those events are incredibly valuable and cherished.

  3. Twenty years later, I still think one of the best ideas we had in Austin was to have an annual Leadership Banquet. All leaders gathered for a banquet in their honor. We thanked them, looked forward a bit, and gave out silly awards (although meaningful), like “the golden ruler” award to the person who demonstrated leadership with excellence, measuring the difference between good and great in mere inches. It isn’t the exact same as pouring into them for growth throughout the year, but it was a GREAT addition. They felt included, recognized, appreciated which all goes a long way.

  4. The quote at the top from a leader is so true! We have definitely always experienced that. It would have been so unbelievably helpful and encouraging to have a leadership summit type event in our past experiences.

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