Monday, 29 May 2017

Four leadership "Idols" that can really hu

No leader sets out to be an idolater, but it happens anyway, and will seriously hurt your leadership effectiveness. Eric Geiger share four idols to be aware of.
Originally posted by Eric Geiger

The fruit of a leader must be another leader as leaders are ultimately the ones responsible for the development of other leaders. From a Christian vantage point, the kingdom of God has multiplied as Christian leaders have developed and deployed others to make disciples and raise up new leaders.
Leaders have been given the holy responsibility of developing and equipping others. Just as in other areas of our lives, our idolatry, our longing for something other than God, keeps us from obeying Him with glad hearts. A leader’s idolatry will prevent a leader from the holy task of developing other leaders.
Tim Keller, David Powlison, and others have thought more deeply and written more eloquently about the idolatry that plagues our hearts. They have identified four common idols beneath the surface, idols that drive sinful and destructive behavior:
Power: a longing for influence or recognition
  •  Control: a longing to have everything go according to my plan
  •  Comfort: a longing for pleasure
  •  Approval:  longing to be accepted or desired
 How do these idols prohibit leadership development? What does a leader with these idols likely think or say about the responsibility to develop others? Below are the four idols with accompanying thoughts or phrases leaders have muttered:


  • I just want to ensure this gets done the right way.
  • I don’t trust another to do it as I can do it.
 If you have thought or said either of the above, your struggle with control is hampering your development of others. A leader with control issues is a leader who fails at a chief leadership task: developing others. A leader who struggles with handing significant responsibility to others fails to provide necessary experiences that aid in development.


  •  The people need me to be the one who does this.
  •  If someone else does this, people will flock to that person instead of me.
If you have thought or said either of the above, your longing for approval is hurting you and the people you lead. A leader who needs affection and approval from others is reluctant to develop and deploy other leaders because the leader fears the affection and approval could be divided.


  • If someone else does this, I won’t be needed any longer.
  • If someone else does this, people will think I am not doing my job.
 If you have thought or said either of these, you likely love to be a leader so you can be seen as a leader. You love your title (leader) more than your task (developing others). Augustine wrote, “No one can be a good bishop who loves his title and not his task.” A leader whose chief desire is to be perceived as a powerful leader will ignore the greater and more important work of developing others.


  •  It would take too much time from other things for me to develop leaders.
  • I would have to adjust my leadership approach to include others.
If you have said or thought either of these about developing others, your desire for comfort or the status quo is keeping you from doing the difficult, messy, and painstakingly slow work of investing in future leaders. A longing for comfort will keep a leader focused on the short-term, the temporary, and the easy. Leadership development is none of these as it takes time, has eternal ramifications, and is hard work.
Are any of these idols stopping you or your team from developing others? We are wise to heed the apostle John’s encouragement: “Dear children, keep yourselves from idols.” If we don’t, we will neglect one of our chief roles as a leader.

Sunday, 21 May 2017


A Great post by Dan Rockwell.

For many, it’s easier to talk about what sucks than what’s great. There’s a negative voice in our heads.  Personally, you can’t speak well of yourself. Why?
  1. Humble leaders don’t brag. They talk about the strengths and successes of others.
  2. Considerate managers don’t demean others. They don’t want to make others feel inferior by outshining them.
  3. Wise leaders avoid the humble-bragging. It’s obvious, offensive, and ineffective.

A culture of beating down:

We beat down others because we often beat down ourselves.
Negative feedback feels more substantial than positive affirmations. Most leaders feel more effective when giving criticism and less effective when giving positive feedback*.
In truth, many leaders don’t give any feedback at all. No feedback also feels like beat down too.

A culture of affirmation:

Imagine a culture where affirmation exceeds correction by three times!

What concerns you?
  1. Affirmations feel frivolous or fake, especially when people have weaknesses?
  2. People might feel they’ve arrived and stop giving their best?
  3. Your status might go down if you affirm others too much?
  4. Giving too many affirmations might make you look weak and needy?
You can’t energize people and beat them down at the same time.
Affirm team members’ humanity. A leader told me that one of the simplest things she does receives the most positive feedback. She sends birthdays & anniversary cards. She sends them in the mail with hand written addresses. All are hand signed. Many use personal notes.
A culture of affirmation treats people like human beings, not tools.

3 ways to move toward a culture of affirmation:

  1. Invite team members to tell you about their accomplishments in private. Give feedback that affirms accomplishments.
  2. Have team members encourage one another in meetings. “When I see you at your best I see you…”
  3. Honor effort not just results.
How might leaders create a culture of affirmation?

When might affirmation go too far?

Monday, 15 May 2017

Investing in children’s ministry is crucial for church growth (Part 2)

4. Invest in volunteers.
As Christians we are saved to serve. There are people around you who will have a passion to serve in children’s ministry in the many roles it can offer: set up and take down, teaching, welcome, check in, technicians, small group leaders, helpers, and so on. Invest in your volunteers all the time by training, appreciation, and events. Thank them regularly and show you value their contribution. A growing church engages and thrives on a wonderful team of volunteer.
5. Invest in your children’s buildings / rooms or area.
Give your best to creating a warm welcome, fun environment and a positive learning environment for children. Do whatever it takes and be generous! This will mean investment into good signage, backdrops, props, screens, projectors, audio equipment, lighting, musical equipment, microphones, TV’s, game consoles, games, toys, art and crafts, Bibles, a good check in system, t-shirts & food! Church should be a fun place to be for Children. The right environment and the right people are attractive, so create it!
6. Discipleship
Yes you have heard it a thousand times but I will say it again… We are not just looking after children; we are discipling children to follow Jesus. Every weekend we have the incredible opportunity to invite children into an environment where they can hear about Jesus, get to know Him better and to learn how to follow Him. Discipleship is our business as the church and we should give time to create great systems to do this effectively. Be committed to delivering age appropriate teaching that helps them to grasp God’s wonderful word.
I hear it almost every Sunday, ‘Pastor, our children love to come to church, your children’s ministry is making such a positive impact on our children’s lives’. I am always excited to hear this and it confirms that our investment at Milton Keynes Christian Centre in our children’s ministry is making a difference in families lives.
I want to encourage you if you are a church leader to INVEST in your children’s ministry and make it a priority if you want your church to grow.
A few actions you may want to consider?
1. Who should you appoint as children’s pastor and how can you empower them to succeed?
2. What resources do you need to develop this ministry? Create a wishlist… prioritise and action it.
3. Look at your venue with fresh eyes; what can you add/change to make it the best environment it can be?
4. Look at your budget again and allocate more money to children’s ministry.
5. Encourage all you team to ‘shoulder tap’ their friends, asking them to come and serve.
6. Encourage everyone to smile and BE HAPPY.
Elements Children’s Ministry Conference will equip your children’s ministry leaders and teams to build a ministry where children can discover Jesus for themselves, grow in their faith and are transformed from the inside out. For more information about times, tickets and location, visit:

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Investing in children’s ministry is crucial for church growth (Part 1)

If you’re a church leader, committed to growing a church in your local community, then you have to make investment in children’s ministry a priority! Developing a family ministry is crucial to the church and your community, and must involve your best leaders to help develop the vision. A good leader knows their role is to empower their team to develop the vision.
As a leader, it is crucial that you see the importance of children’s ministry in the growth of your church and champion its development. It is also just as important that the church knows it is important to you and see it as key building block to the future of the church.

Why INVEST in children’s ministry?

1. Children matter to Jesus; therefore they must matter to us!
Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.” Jesus loved children and wants them to know him and have a relationship with him. Statistics tell us that 85% of people who come to Christ do so before the age of 18 – I think that requires our attention!
Jesus also used children as key illustrations in his teaching of how God wants us all to approach him, in simplicity, faith, love and obedience. Children are part of God’s plan for His church and we are to embrace them in the same way that He has embraced us in His great love and grace. The church should be passionate about teaching children about Jesus and His purposes for their lives.
2. Begin to see children’s ministry as a major growth engine in the church.
When you reach children, you reach parents. In our Sunday services we can enjoy great worship and engaging messages, but if the children are not connecting, mum and dad won’t stay around. I once heard someone say, “There’s a reason people stand in line for hours waiting for their kids to see Santa.” Think about that! When your weekend services become a place where children want to be, families will attend and invite other families too.
3. Invest in your children’s team!
Appoint a children’s pastor as a key appointment as soon as you can to develop the ministry and invest in their personal growth and development as a leader. Provide training for them, send them to conferences, give them access to buy materials and books to help them to be creative and grow in their leadership. As a leader grows, they will be able to train others and develop and grow a team that is key to growing a vibrant children’s ministry.
We have seen the great benefit to our church and children’s ministry of an investment in practical training and conferences that gives achievable next steps for staff and volunteers. We would love to invite you to join us on Saturday 17 June, at Elements children’s ministry conference, as we share some of our learning’s and experiences to help children’s ministry leaders and teams from across the UK to grow and impact their towns and cities for Jesus.
Elements Children’s Ministry Conference will equip your children’s ministry leaders and teams to build a ministry where children can discover Jesus for themselves, grow in their faith and are transformed from the inside out. For more information about times, tickets and location, visit

To be continued......

Friday, 5 May 2017

How to daily increase your energy!

Lots of leaders are always tired and living on empty. Is there a way to increase your energy level without becoming addictive to energy drinks or talking some pill? Dan Rockwell shares ten ways to find more energy every day.
Originally posted by Dan Rockwell

10 Ways to Find More Energy Today 

1. Reject the need to be right all the time. The person who needs to be right, ends up drained by fools.
2. Say yes to activities where you make the most difference. Shoot to spend at least 70% of your time in meaningful activities. Do the stuff you hate early in the day.
3. Make fewer commitments. Regret drains energy. Learn to say no, kindly and without defensiveness. The bad feeling you have when you don’t fulfill a commitment weakens your soul.
4. Stop trying to change people. Accept your team and organization as they are. Acceptance isn’t approval or agreement.  People change themselves.
Frustration over battles you can’t win drains energy. Help people improve, when they want to improve. The frustration you feel about them, drains their energy too.
5. Surround yourself with people who aspire to be better. Look for people who know enough to know that they don’t know. Be one, too.
6. Look forward to something. Anticipation is energy. Tap into the “I just want to get this done” energy. But, be sure there’s something positive on the other side of “just getting things done.”
7. Don’t depend on people who are undependable.
8. Notice small acts of kindness. Appreciate people who hold the door open, for example.
9. Work within the framework of established authority. Only buck the system when you can make it better.
10. Look up and breathe deep. Stop looking at the ground so much. People who look down are down. Looking up doesn’t solve problems, it improves outlook.

Bonus: Deal with negative emotion, even if you can’t solve negative issues. The way you feel about a thing change you, not the thing.

Where might leaders find energy today?

Which of these 10 ways to find energy today are most useful to you?