Thanks to each of you who read these posts and even comment.
Ray Edwards does great work. I have learned much from reading his words regarding writing. Check this recent post “Five Simple Ways to Get More People to Read What You Write.”
Love this story
A favorite book
One of my favorite books is Christopher Wright’s The Mission of God. I read this volume several years ago and learned much. See this review and the two videos of Christopher Wright.
Some ministers, elders, and other church leaders feel this way for a variety of reasons.
*An elder prays for a couple experiencing marital difficulties. This same church leader spends hours and hours talking and listening to them. Then one day they inform him that they are moving their membership to XYZ Church on the other side of town. They explain, Those people are so committed. Their leaders “get it.”
*A minister speaks at a retreat as a guest resource person for a church in a nearby state. At the end of the retreat, the people in attendance express again and again how grateful they are for his teaching. They talk about how much they learned. They ask for other resources on his topic. On the return flight, this minister thinks about how much he enjoyed the weekend. He wishes he didn’t feel so taken for granted by his home church. However, he does. He reminds himself that he doesn’t serve for anyone’s applause. Nevertheless, he does feel like so many people place little value on his ministry in the congregation.
*One particular couple becomes involved in serving meals to the congregation before mid-week Bible classes. They have invested their lives in numerous younger couples in the congregation for many years. Most recently they volunteered to help serve meals to the congregation thinking this would be a good way to serve an even broader spectrum of the church. They eventually become discouraged after several longtime members begin complaining because one night they ran out of corn. They feel taken for granted.
What can congregations do so that church leaders are less likely to feel taken for granted? What have you seen or experienced that might be helpful?
In those days, the evenings were spent playing baseball on the field right behind our house. What I remember was the competition each evening. No matter how the teams were chosen, each side really wanted to win. Those are good memories and the competition was healthy.
Some church leaders, however, seem to thrive on an unhealthy competition.
Tribute to A Mother
Stephen Colbert gave a touching tribute to his mother after her recent death. You can read the transcript here. You can watch the video here:
See this interesting discussion from Brain Pickings on Helen Keller’s book Optimism.
See “Presentation Secrets from a Master Teacher“ by Zach Gemignani.
You might want to read this post by John Stackhouse who teaches at Regent College in Vancouver. He is an excellent teacher, writer, and public speaker and is teaching a class this summer on public speaking. In this post, he invites readers to comment, giving their favorite public speaking resources. (Some good resources are in these comments.)
I once heard a former college president reflect on the years he had served the university. A colleague had recommended a particular person to him to possibly serve in his administration. The question from this college president was:
“Is she capable of high level thinking?”
That is a good question for all of us. Are we capable of thinking about those things that really matter? Do we ask good questions? Do we reflect on important matters?
Do we take the time to reflect on important questions?
I love this quote.
Feel the fear and do it anyway. It’s a cliché now, but when I first heard that idea 15 years ago, it was new to me and incredibly empowering. I’ve now gotten in the habit of chasing my fears. Overcoming my fear of flying is my best example. Ten years ago I refused to fly—now I’m on planes every week.
See Kelly McGonigal “How I Work” in Lifehacker.
From Real Simple ”50 Great Books That Will Change Your Life.”
From Farnam Street “The 8 Causes of Plateaus.”
Each Thursday, I write this post primarily for church leaders. Readers of this post are from many locations, a variety of traditions, and different congregations.
Ministry is tough. It is not for the fainthearted or thin-skinned.
Because it is difficult, it is very important to be intentional about maintaining your effectiveness. So many Christian leaders lose their edge because of their inattention to matters that may not seem important at first. Neglecting these, however, can catch up with you.
I love the following video on creativity. Worth thinking about.
Important questions from Margaret Marcuson regarding self-definition (think Systems Theory) for church leaders. ”Six ways to practice defining yourself at church.” You might also want to be aware of her book Leaders Who Last.
“Why the Boomers are the Most Hated Generation” from the Atlantic. Interesting.
“Here’s How Sonia Simone Writes.” This is the opportunity to look over the shoulder of this writer for Copyblogger to observe how she does her work. Interesting.
See Rachelle Gardner: “How Good Books Can Lead To Spotless Floors.”