The Five Bare Minimums of Church Growth

Over the years, I’ve worked with a lot of pastors and congregations who claimed they were ready to grow their churches. I’d love to tell you that virtually all of these congregations flourished, but the truth is, that’s rarely the case. The fact is, most churches fail to grow because they miss out on […]

The Father Factor

My father died in a car accident when I was 16 years old and it was one of the most significant moments of my life. I was fortunate to have had my father around during my formative years. In the years that followed, I sought out lots of substitutes to fill the hole that […]

Longevity in Monarchies and Ministries

At the time of this writing, I have just watched on television the beginning of four days of celebrations honoring Queen Elizabeth ll’s Platinum Jubilee, commemorating her 70 years on the throne. The 96-year-old queen is Britain’s longest-reigning monarch and the first to reach the milestone of seven decades of Royal service.

It got me […]

Let’s hear it for thoughts and prayers

During national tragedies like natural disasters and mass shootings, the phrase “in our thoughts and prayers” is often used by officials and other public figures to express concern in difficult times.

The phrase has recently received criticism for its repeated usage in the context of gun violence and has been labeled by a word […]

Re-New

When I talk to pastors a common phrase I hear is ‘getting back to normal’. That is never going to happen. Because of the very nature of change, things are never going back to whatever you think normal was. I also hear pastors mention ‘a new normal’. Forget about it. Churches should never conform […]

Learning to be an effective listener

There are two sides of the communication coin. Asking good questions is on one side of the coin, on the other is being a good listener. Effective listening will earn the trust of those you engage and will convey your respect for the other who is speaking. Everyone wants to be heard, and we […]

Implementing Your Mission Statement

First a word about most church mission statements.

They’re beautifully word smithed

They’re gorgeous

They’re suitable for framing.

But a mission statement that’s suitable for framing, is rarely a mission statement that’s suitable for much of anything else.

A quick reminder that the founder of the church is the one who set its mission and that mission can be […]

Find an Accountability Partner

Throughout the 30+ years I served in pastoral ministry I have witnessed too many church pastors in America lose their positions of church leadership because of financial or sexual indiscretions coming to the light of day. This long list of ministry tragedies might have been avoided had there been accountability relationships in place.

Accountability can […]

Grow Your Church on Mothers Day

I saw a post on Facebook this week that reminded me of a very practical church growth principle. The image said, ’The best gift you can give your Mother for Mother’s Day is to sit with her in church.”

Behind only Christmas and Easter, Mother’s Day is the third highest church attendance day each year. […]