1. When a Sunday school teacher needs correction. "Teachers lose their cool sometimes. Before you have to call one of your volunteers on the carpet for inappropriate behavior toward his/her students, be sure you're following the biblical model for dealing with discipline among church members. Let these four basic rules guide you as you plan for a confrontation with one of your teachers:
- Examine your own spiritual well-being. There is no substitute for spiritual stability and dependence on the Holy Spirit to provide us with the grace to remain firm but gentle.
- Only by leaning heavily on the Lord can we stand firm while rejecting the temptation to abandon gentleness and respond to a sinner in kind. The cultivation of humility and brokenness before the Lord can guard us from the tendency to become judgmental, callous, and proud.
- Follow the pattern given by Jesus Christ in Matthew 18:15–17.
- Remember the goal: repentance and restoration of fellowship"
("When the Teacher Needs Disciplining," by Lehman Hotchkiss, Essential Guide to Children's Ministry eBook).
2. Killing church committees. "At some point in my ministry, I became allergic to committee meetings. I realized I was spending a lot of time in those meetings that could be used for productive ministry. To be sure, not all committees are bad, and not all committee meetings are unnecessary. Unfortunately, I have seen too many committees become the 'tail wagging the dog' in churches. Here is one of the most prominent problems:
- It's hard to kill a committee. Committees can live beyond their usefulness and intended purpose. Often times, it's easier to kill an elephant with a BB gun than to kill a committee. There can be emotional attachment to it. There can be the pervasive sentiment of: 'We've always done it that way.' I recently was in a church that had 17 committees. Only three of them were really necessary"
("Five Problems with Church Committees," by Thom Rainer, ThomRainer.com).
3. Who will lead your church next? A recent survey co-sponsored by Leadership Network asked large churches (weekly attendance of 1,000 and higher): 'How would you rate efforts at planning for the senior pastor's eventual succession from this church, relative to where you feel that planning should be at this point?' A surprising 44% rate their succession preparation as either 'poor' or 'fair'—the bottom two choices out of five total options. Only 8% picked the top choice of 'outstanding'" ("Succession Readiness: Surveying the Landscape of Large-Church Pastors," LeadNet.org).
4. Don't be afraid to ask again. "If you assume that someone who has turned you down once is unlikely to grant a subsequent request, your assumption may be incorrect. Research by Daniel A. Newark, Francis J. Flynn, and Vanessa K. Bohns shows that saying 'no' makes people feel guilty and therefore raises their likelihood of saying 'yes' to an asker's next request" ("You're Already More Persuasive Than You Think," by Vanessa Bohns, hbr.org).
5.Notable quote. "A leader is a dealer in hope." –Napoleon Bonaparte (via Jeff Haden, Inc.com).
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