Most leaders are starved for time. We cram as much as possible into our to-do lists, trying to maximize every spare minute we have. We’re often scattered, distracted, overloaded, and tired. So, instead of being who we are and where we are, we are frequently on the way to someone or something else. Amidst the busyness and hurry of life, few of us have a sustainable, long-term plan that answers the question: How can I live and lead in a way that is calm, relaxed, and filled with contentment in Jesus? The answer is found in deliberately structuring our lives around God’s rhythms, in ancient treasures of spirituality that I have been integrating for over two decades: Daily rhythms Weekly rhythms Annual rhythms Larger rhythms every 7-8 years Let me invite you to Part One of this very important theme, a topic that comes up in almost every conversation I have with leaders. And. Read more.
The word “listen” or “hear” is found more than 1500 times in the Bible. The problem is that it is easy to lead FOR God without listening TO God. That is why the most important question every one of us must ask throughout our days is: “God, how are you coming to me, what might you want to say?” The question then needs to be applied specifically to different areas of our lives. Let me provide you with a few examples of what that looks like in my life: Time with God. “God, how are you coming to me in Scripture and silence today?” At times he leads me to linger over a passage, a phrase, or a text for days – even weeks. At times he leads me to read whole books of Scripture in one sitting. While I practice 20 minutes of silence and stillness each morning, I am also listening to. Read more.
Jesus said we must lose our lives to find it. One essential way we do this is by learning the art of interior silence. This choice to turn away from internal and external noise in order to be with Jesus is work…a difficult work. Externally, we face the unrelenting pressure of our culture– the noise, the clutter, the grasping, the confusion, the distractions, the excessive amount of information – all of which make it difficult to hear ourselves think. Internally, our stillness and silence muscles are weak. As beginners, we have problems focusing attention and facing the normal distractions of body and mind. Just like we cannot simply read a how-to book on running a marathon and run, so we must build up muscle and stamina slowly over time. Maggie Ross, in her Silence: A User’s Guide – Volume 1: Process, argues that the tradition of silence was handed down unbroken from the time. Read more.
One of our greatest temptations as leaders is to want to be more, have more, or do more than God has given us. We discard the gift of God’s limits and take charge. We try to do things only God can do and attempt to fix people and situations only God can fix. This has consistently been my greatest spiritual challenge. When we cross over the line of God’s limits, symptoms such as the following surface: anger, tiredness, anxiety, frustration, judgmentalism, a lack of compassion, and discontentment. When we go beyond our limits, we end up in the Evil One’s territory and the consequences are severe. (Consider Genesis 3). Our loving union with God is disrupted and, like Adam, we end up hiding behind our over-activity. When we let go and surrender to God’s limits, however, we meet Him in surprising ways. I recently implemented a new practice that has served me to prayerfully. Read more.
Measuring ministry impact with numbers is biblical. The book of Acts uses numbers to describe the impact of the gospel — about 3,000 baptized (Acts 2:41), about 5,000 believers (Acts 4:4), crowds coming to faith (Acts 5:14). We have a whole book in the Bible called Numbers. So, in the context of the church, it is good to measure things like attendance, baptisms, membership, number of small groups, and financial giving. The problem comes when that is all we measure. Measuring deep, beneath the surface transformation in people’s lives is also critically important – if not more important. (Consider Paul, Gal. 4:19, Jesus mentoring the 12). The specifics of these internal markers will differ from ministry to ministry and from context to context. The following are several examples we set to measure at New Life Fellowship Church: Each leader at New Life will develop his or her relationship with God by spending ten to. Read more.