Catalyst: Andy Stanley (part 1)

The first session of Catalyst, the conference I went to near Atlanta a couple weeks ago, featured Andy Stanley as the speaker.  Some highlights:

  • As pastors and other Christian leaders, we’re called to influence people we don’t have official authority over.  In other words: “We can’t make them do anything.”
  • In order to motivate people into action, one essential is moral authority.
  • Moral authority comes from alignment between our creed and our deed.  That is, we do what we say.  We do what we’re asking others to do.
  • Moral authority goes beyond positional authority.
  • People expect this alignment from us–and they should.
  • When we compromise our moral authority, we lose our ability to influence people.
  • Our public & private lives must be consistent with each other.
  • Without moral authority, all the leadership practices in the world lose their effectiveness.
  • Three key areas where moral authority is applied in church leadership: (1) Forgiveness; (2) Family; (3) Finances.
  • Forgiveness is our message!  We must not harbor bitterness.
  • We must never carry with us into the future the hurts of the past.
  • There’s no excuse for bitter, vengeful church leaders.
  • We’ve been forgiven, so we must lead the way when it comes to forgiving.
  • I must never let my family feel like the church is my mistress.  If I do, I lose my moral authority.
  • Family must be prioritized over ministry, work, sermon prep, etc.
  • Never misprioritize when it comes to family!  Don’t sacrifice what is permanent for what is temporary.
  • Every dollar I receive in my paycheck came from someone who chose to give it to our organization.
  • If I want to lead generous people, then I must be generous.
  • Moral authority gives people confidence in our leadership.
  • Moral authority shows that we really, truly believe in where we’re trying to lead people.
  • Moral authority must be gained, maintained, and retained!
Published in: on October 21, 2008 at 5:09 am  Leave a Comment  

Church Elders, Job Descriptions, and Next Generation Leader

Last night the elders from CrossWay Church met for a couple hours.  After talking a little about what’s going on with everyone, we prayed and jumped into the business portion of the meeting.

Two of our current projects are composing a job description for the pastor and another one for the elders.  (Of course, there is some overlap between the two.)  Everyone had some good, thoughtful input.  Between now and the next meeting I’ll take that feedback and write a rough draft for each document.  We’ll review them next time, make any necessary changes, and officially adopt and implement them.  The new job descriptions will serve as the basis for what we do as the pastor and elders, and they’ll be the criteria on which we base an evaluation every six months.

Then we moved into a discussion of Next Generation Leader: 5 Essentials for Those Who Will Shape the Future by Andy Stanley.  We’d read the first section (three chapters) for this gathering, and had a great talk about it.  The gist of this first section is that a leader must discover his/her core competencies and devote most of their time to developing and using their gifts.  We add the most value to the church when we focus on exercising our strengths, not trying to improve our weaknesses.  We batted around some ideas about how we can actually do this as the eldership team.  I look forward to putting these principles into practice and working through the rest of the book with these men!

Published in: on October 16, 2008 at 5:05 am  Leave a Comment  

Awesome Week at Catalyst

Tuesday morning, and I’m still recovering from an amazing week at the Catalyst Conference near Atlanta, Georgia.  I was part of a 20-person team from four churches that traveled down there together.  We left for the 14-hour drive last Tuesday morning and got back around 6:45 on Saturday morning.

Catalyst 2008 was easily the best conference I’ve ever been to.  And the timing couldn’t have been better–it was just what I needed.  The speakers were challenging and encouraging, and it was pretty cool to worship God together with 12,400 other church leaders.  I’ll post some of my conference notes in the days ahead.

Published in: on October 14, 2008 at 5:19 am  Comments (2)  

Elders: More Than Just Old Guys

Last week the elders and I met for the first time in the new church year.  All four of us were there and it was great to get things moving again.  We’ve certainly got our work cut out for us!

One of the things I’d like to see the elders accomplish these next few months is the completion of some important projects, especially regarding important church documents and membership.  We’re also going to carefully study two books together.  From now through December we’re studying Next Generation Leader by Andy Stanley.  This is one of the best books on leadership I’ve ever read.  It’ll be great to read it and discuss it with the elders at CrossWay!

Last year was the first time I’ve led a group of elders, so it was very new.  I bombarded them with random messages and books on various topics, and there wasn’t much follow up discussion.  This time I’ve plotted out our agenda for the whole year so we can be strategic in accomplishing some things.

Published in: on September 16, 2008 at 5:12 am  Leave a Comment