Top 10 Resources for Pastors & Church Planters

I was recently asked by a pastor friend to recommend my top 10 most influential resources for pastors, church planters, or those aspiring to high-level ministry leadership. He wasn’t looking for explicitly theological resources as much as tools that explore ministry design, pastoral leadership, and developing a disciple-making ministry. While a number of these resources flowContinue reading “Top 10 Resources for Pastors & Church Planters”

10 Lesser-Known Apps That Improve Productivity for Ministry

I love learning from other people, and I especially like getting behind-the-scenes looks at how they do what they do. I have a folder on my computer where I’ve kept examples of people’s weekly schedules. I love asking other pastors about how they do sermon prep. It’s fascinating to ask people what their typical dayContinue reading “10 Lesser-Known Apps That Improve Productivity for Ministry”

How Do People Really Grow Spiritually? (Lessons from Move)

Every pastor wonders how much difference he is making. I’m no different. I want to know to what degree my personal ministry, as well as our church’s ministry, is really helping people grow in their faith. I ask questions like: Are we truly making disciples or are we just keeping people active? Does activity/participation =Continue reading “How Do People Really Grow Spiritually? (Lessons from Move)”

5 Steps to the Personal Retreat Day You Need

Do you ever feel like the urgent is crowding out the important? Like there’s so many things that have to be kept up with that you just can’t seem to get ahead? I do. Everybody does. I often talk with other pastors about how ministry is a “black hole” where there’s always more you could do.Continue reading “5 Steps to the Personal Retreat Day You Need”

8 Lessons for Pastors on Christmas Eve Services

Christmas Eve is one week away. I have the privilege of coaching four of our Redemption church planters on a regular basis, and I recently shared with them some of the key lessons I’ve learned from doing Christmas Eve services. They gave encouraging feedback, so I thought I’d share it more broadly. 1. Evaluation. SoonContinue reading “8 Lessons for Pastors on Christmas Eve Services”

How to Determine the Best Way to Do Something

What’s the best way to exercise? What’s the best way to read the Bible? What’s the best way to teach your children about Jesus? What’s the best way to keep track of your diet? What’s the best way to show appreciation to the volunteers in your ministry? What’s the best way to plan your week? What’s theContinue reading “How to Determine the Best Way to Do Something”

5 Lessons From Touring the Amazon Fulfillment Center

Recently I took our staff to tour the Amazon Fulfillment Center (it’s named “Phoenix 6”). “Fulfillment Center” sounds like a place where all your dreams would come true, but it’s really just a giant warehouse where Amazon orders are processed and shipped (maybe the same thing if you like shopping online). It was amazing. The firstContinue reading “5 Lessons From Touring the Amazon Fulfillment Center”

Life Through Death: Jesus, the Gospels and Gran Torino

As the year ends, I’m marking the end of my first semester of seminary through the Missional Training Center. One of my assignments has been to pick a movie, and reflect on its strengths and weaknesses as a metaphor of the role and character of Jesus in the story of the Gospels. I picked GranContinue reading “Life Through Death: Jesus, the Gospels and Gran Torino”

Sermon Notes & Preparing to Preach

I’ve been teaching a Preaching Lab this summer, where a bunch of men and women are learning the basics of preaching and then preaching a practice sermon. This week one of the participants asked me a good question about the sermon prep process and sermon notes, and I thought I’d share my answer. Q: When you prepareContinue reading “Sermon Notes & Preparing to Preach”

Think-Pair-Share: How to Lead Engaging Discussions

Leaders must lead engaging discussions. Rallying people always involves conversations that elicit their feedback and encourage their participation. Whether you’re a pastor, a kids ministry teacher or a small group leader, you must lead engaging discussions. One of the most helpful tools for this is “think-pair-share.” First a story… About 11 years ago I was helping lead a collegeContinue reading “Think-Pair-Share: How to Lead Engaging Discussions”