The Most Important Productivity Tool for Pastors Is…

…your knees. “The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working” (James 5:16). A lot of us are at the beginning of a very busy week. I’m the kind of guy who gets to work, and then half an hour later remembers that I haven’t prayed about my work yet. Bring [...]

Do You Avoid Taking Risks on People Who Want to Serve or Lead?

When you put someone up front, it says a lot. You essentially give them your pastoral stamp of approval. This puts your reputation as a leader on the line. If they don’t work out, it shows that you shouldn’t have put them in that position in the first place. You might lose the confidence of others [...]

The Gospel-Centered Way Paul Starts All of His Letters

You hear a lot about the “functional centrality of the gospel” these days. The idea that the gospel ought to be central in how we function has people has given rise to organizations, conferences, books, blogs, and even rap CD’s (not that anyone buys CD’s anymore). But is this really biblical? I like it. It [...]

The Difference Between Being an Effective Preacher and an Effective Pastor

I heard about a pastor who fell away from the faith in a staff meeting at a church where I used to intern. It shocked everyone because he was a successful pastor. We wondered aloud how a pastor, who now seemed never to even be a Christian, could save so many others. The lead pastor [...]

The Anatomy of an Ineffective Sermon

If you try to write an effective sermon in as little time as possible, you’ll end up with an ineffective sermon. Darryl Dash has an article on “Six Keys to Poor Preaching.” Each key is a shortcut. You can’t write an effective sermon if you’re going for a personal best time. But here are six ways [...]

How the Storyline of the Bible is Summarized in Exodus 1-2

I’m starting my summer series on Exodus this coming Sunday, and it struck me how the first two chapters of the book are a microcosm of sorts for the storyline of the Bible. Creation (1:1-7): The book kicks off by painting Israel with colors from the palette of Genesis 1, “But the people of Israel [...]

4 Roadblocks to Achieving Your Goals

Pithy and profound, as usual, from Seth Godin. Which of these four roadblocks is holding you back from achieving your goals? “You don’t know what to do. You don’t know how to do it. You don’t have the authority or the resources to do it. You’re afraid. Once you figure out what’s getting in the [...]

No Trailing Off! How to Conclude Your Sermons With Power

You can tell a bad sermon conclusion by the audible punctuation it ends with. Audible punctuation has to do with the tone, confidence, and intensity of the sentence you say. It doesn’t necessarily match the punctuation in your sermon notes. Powerless endings to your sermon Audible punctuation is more important in your conclusion than any [...]

How to Avoid Fake Buy-In to Your Vision

Leaders know that buy-in is crucial to the success of a big vision. The chain of your vision is only as strong as its least invested link. But not all buy-in is created equal. Some is fake. Some is real. Everyone knows how to achieve buy-in: gather everyone involved into a meeting, discuss the vision, [...]