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How Welcomed Are You?

Ministers and most (okay, many) church folk already know how important welcome is for guests and members. We know that welcome begins – or doesn’t – long before we get through the front or back doors. Everything from our parking lot to our signs and yard accoutrement tell folks – or should – what can […]

Better Than a Secret Handshake – SIGNS!

I was looking for the storefront church on Sunday morning. My GPS said I was at the right address, but nothing jumped out and said, "Hey You! Come join us for worship." I finally parked and walked down the sidewalk. I finally found the church right where it should be - but the stenciled church […]

Packaging Experience

Over the past five years I’ve seen a tremendous shift in my ministry. Ten years ago the bulk of my ministry consisted of local church consultations and workshops. Occasionally I would be asked to coach a pastor following a consultation. Today, almost one-half of my ministry is coaching pastors either before, after, or totally absent […]

The Ability To Focus

One of the things I’ve had to do over and over in my coaching of pastors is to remind them to focus on the major issues we’ve talked about instead of getting distracted time and time again. Pastors appear to be extremely vulnerable to distractions due to their high desire to please people. Often pastors […]

Following Jesus Into The Mission Field

Those who follow my writing know I believe we are living in a pivotal period of history in which everything that will be is being separated from everything that was. In such a traumatic period all of the rules of the game of life are called into question. Christianity and the Scriptures are the result […]

Five Secrets to Getting Volunteers to Perform

The Easter egg hunt should have been a huge success. Over 250 kids showed up and there were young parents by the bushel. But the pastor was beside himself. "It's not that we have trouble getting people to volunteer. We had over twenty people say they'd be here to help – but only seven showed up. […]

Are You Making These Five Hospitality Mistakes?

They had a problem. A BIG problem. Over nine out of ten first-time visitors who walked through the door never returned. It was like their visitors walked in, took a quick look around, maybe even "kicked the tires" and hung out for worship, but once they left the building their sentiments were, "Cross that church off […]

What Every Pastor Should Know About Church Growth

"I just didn't think it would happen to me." Those words played hide-n-seek in my head while I listened to his all-too-common story. Kenneth's first call to a church had started pretty well. He'd heeded the advice of his seminary professors and spent his first year just "loving on" his congregation and getting to know […]

Four Reasons Why Some Churches See First-Time Visitors Almost Every Week

The pastor was on vacation and I was invited to be the guest preacher. Before the service while I was being briefed by the worship leader, I noticed a significant hubub at the back of the church. A young couple had come in and they were nearly mobbed by one wellwisher after another. The music […]

Tired of Herding Cats?

You probably hear it as often as I do. "Trying to get them organized is like herding cats." Whether it's being applied to the stewardship committee, the congregational council, or the local minister's alliance, it's an apt simile whenever you come across a pack of individuals who are more interested in getting what they want […]