Israel: faith-based travel tips & recommended sites

gardentomb

There’s a reason 2014 was the best year ever for North American travel to Israel: It isn’t a trip — it’s a spiritual experience. This surprising country promises a range of unique experiences which people of faith can only experience in Israel. And, thanks to several extremely traveler-friendly traits, it’s well within reach.

Share

4 reasons church leaders need to slow down

147318586

One of the worst feelings in the world is seeing those flashing red-and-blue lights in your rear-view mirror signaling that you’re being pulled over by a police officer. More often than not, those lights indicate that you were driving too fast for the road you were on … at least that’s my pattern. (Yes, it is, unfortunately, a pattern in my life — pray for me!)

As leaders — bosses, parents, coaches and leaders of all kinds — we often are also driving too fast for the road that we’re on in life.

Share

The missing ingredient in church leadership

woman-leadership

In the 1970s, one researcher noted: “There are almost as many different definitions of leadership as there are persons who have attempted to define the concept.” According to these definitions, leadership is influence, power, mobilization, motivation, processes, inspiration, among many others.

The same could be said of the church: “There are almost as many different ways of leading the church as there are persons who have attempted it.”

Share

An introduction to church facility stewardship

TotalCostOfOwnership40Years

I’m a firm believer that everything on earth belongs to God. Our money. Our houses. Our cars. The word of God. Our families. The people we encounter — and the facilities in which we worship. God has entrusted us with the stewarding of all these items.

For me, stewardship is less about what we give and more about taking care of what we have been given — of all that’s entrusted to us.

So, how do we define “entrusted”?

Share

Using 360-degree evaluations for improved performance

5.20.15-Using-the-360-for-feedback-300x124

In work or professional settings, the best feedback is face-to-face. However, I have found it is very difficult and utopian to expect that everyone will act this way. As a result, we have implemented the use of 360 feedback as a part of our annual reviews and, on occasion, as a part of time-sensitive feedback needs.

Share

Project team member combinations to avoid

avoid-300x225

In the world of church facility construction, renovation and development, there are several integral roles and responsibilities that are required for every project. They might or might not be paid professionals for each role, but they are present and the responsibilities to the project are no less important. Here are the basics that virtually every project must have as part of the church’s team.

Share

3 leadership practices every young minister can do right now

Blog-359_Atari

I recently had coffee with a young(er) minister. He asked a great question: What can I do right now? The young minister (he’s around 20) wanted to know how he could lead better. Starting today. He caught me a bit off guard. After all, leadership is learned and refined over time. Pastors spend years growing. He knew that, but he also wanted to know what could be done immediately.

I’m not that far removed from being a “young” pastor (at 35, many might still categorize me in this way), but I have learned — some things the hard way — from pastoring for 10 years. There are a few practices young ministers can do right now that will help them grow immediately. Here are three leadership practices I shared with him.

Share

Stop worrying about Millennials

let-it-go

Everyone is buzzing over the new Pew Research study that suggests Millennials are continuing to leave Christianity for the ranks of the “nones” (the religiously unaffiliated). A closer look at the data shows the bulk of the slide has occurred within Mainline Christian denominations and Catholicism, with Evangelical Protestants essentially holding the fort. While the bulk of the study didn’t isolate Millennials, its implications aim toward them. This means of course, the obligatory freak-out among some Christians who are afraid we are losing the next generation.

Here are some brief thoughts of my own.

Share

PHASE 4: Commitment

FORMATION

For church leaders, preparing for a capital campaign “commitment service” is similar to football coaches preparing for the Super Bowl. Here, Paul Gage weighs in on how to maximize this giving experience.

Share

A tale of two church cafés

Cup of Blessing was a passion project for Brother Bud Owen, senior minister of First Church of Christ in Garrett, IN.

Today, churches are offering a lot more than a cup of joe in a Styrofoam cup. With beverages and atmospheres that rival secular franchises, their champions have learned a lot in the process.

Share