Leading With Love

There is a little-known book out there that can be a big benefit to anyone in any form of Christian leadership or Christian service. It is called Leading with Love. I am currently in the middle of reading it.

This book, written by Alexander Strauch, helps us in our understanding of love and in our applying it to leadership situations or areas where we might have spiritual influence with someone. Strauch has written many books, the most popular and likely the best known is Biblical Eldership.

Strauch takes Paul’s outline and definition of love from 1 Corinthians 13 and uses these as a framework for the book. In essence, he wants to help us define love in leadership contexts and refine how we apply it from our biblical understanding.

The author lays out in simple and an easy-to-understand way reminders about what love is and new ideas for applying what we know about love to leading others.

If you want to live and lead with love, this book would be a good one to pick up. the ideas he presents can be applied to local church ministry, in marriages, work settings, or even in friendships.

In short, I am discovering ideas about applying love to leadership and I am being reminded about how crucial it is for life and leadership today.

This book is solid biblically and is a great recommendation for anyone looking for something to read in the upcoming new year.

If you pick it up and find some nuggets of truth that help you in your leadership, would you mind sharing them here? Maybe you have already red it. Feel free to share your highlights as well. They might encourage or enlighten others.

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Ood Gay Ommunication Cay

Does the title of this article make sense to you?

Would it help you if I mentioned that it says “Good Communication” in Pig Latin?

Someone said, “The greatest mistake in communication is to believe that it has happened.”

This is true in life, friendships, marriage relationships, and work relationships. It is also true in church world.

The biggest task people in church world have is to communicate. This relates to preaching and teaching, but also to communicating vision and who is responsible for what in your organization.

We want to traffic in truth. We want to speak the truth and do it in a loving way – Ephesians 4:15.

What is at stake if we are sloppy in our communication? Clarity. What can happen if we weren’t clear? Confusion.

To be clear here, God cares about what we say, but He also cares how we say it.

I am trying to help you by encouraging clarity and good communication.

In my role at the church where I serve, I want things to be more clear, not more cloudy. I want clear communication, not chaotic confusion.

A phrase that can help us all in this area is, “Don’t communicate to be understood. Communicate to avoid being misunderstood.” The second way drives us to strive for clarity.

May this help you in your speaking, your communication with your staff, communication with new people, casting vision to others, communication with people in your community…really with everyone you come in contact with.

Is it harder to communicate to avoid being misunderstood? Yes. Does it take more time? Yes.

But will it be better in the long run? Yes, in a multitude of different way.

It can help you more if you start today.

May God give us clarity of mind, clarity of heart, and clarity of  speech…for His Kingdom and His glory…amen.

“Christian Paramedics?”

In an effort to blog more and interact more, I share the following quote from a book I read about three years ago.

“Christians should stop trying to be the police and start being the paramedics.”
Kyle Idleman, AHA book
aha-book
  • Do you agree with this statement? Why or why not?
  • What do you think has lead this to be a more dominant attitude in the Christian church in America than it should be?
  • As Christian leaders, what are some successful ways you have lead people to this kind of urgency related to God’s mission and sharing Jesus with friends and family members?
Let’s interact some regarding this idea.

Gracefully Leading

I love what one author has written about. I  love it so much that I keep coming back to it in my mind and my ministry.

It is a simple truth, but very profound. It is easy to understand and has implications in a myriad of situations (from parenting, to work, to friendships, etc.)

GraceTruthParadox

Here it is. Jesus was full of grace and truth John 1:14). Simple, yet far reaching. Key for us as Christian leaders, but deep enough to challenge us at every turn.

Jesus was full of grace and full of truth. He didn’t fall too hard on one side or the other.

So I need to ask myself, “Based on my belief in Jesus, am I full of grace and truth?” If we aren’t full of both, do we lean too heavily to one side at the expense of the other?

Let’s meditate on this thought (filling our minds with it) and ask God to help us live and lead full of grace and truth. When we do, we will be like and lead like Jesus.

PrintAs leaders in church world, we want to be both gospel-centered and grace-centered in our leading. And really they are both inextricably linked.

We want to lead others in a way that’s full of grace.

So let’s lead other as we follow Jesus and let’s gracefully lead them.

Called to Lead

We can go to many examples in scripture regarding God’s call in different people’s lives.

Abraham, Noah, Elijah, David, and Samuel are just a few that come to mind.

But there are few calls that are as clear as God’s call on the life of Jeremiah in Jeremiah 1:4-19.

After reading that, we uncover some key principles for us and how to lead others for God’s kingdom and God’s glory.

In other places in scripture, we see and know that how we lead is what sets up apart as Christians (see Mark 10:42 & 43).

So some principles we can glean from God’s call in Jeremiah’s life are:

  • God knows us and calls us – 1:5.
  • We need to take action on this call – 1:7, 17.
  • We find courage as God’s presence goes with us – 1:8, 17.
  • God provides for and protects His own – 1:8, 19.

These thoughts and ideas can bring us hope, strength, and comfort during those times when we like Jeremiah here and Moses centuries before, are humanly reluctant to accept what God has called us to.

So lets’ go forward, knowing that He who called us is faithful. Let’s take action trusting that He will provide the strength, the words, the wisdom, and whatever other resources we may need. And let’s move ahead with faith in God and determination in spirit.

 

 

 

Decisions or Disciples?

One question we must ask ourselves as leaders in church world is, “Am I leading people to make decisions or am I making disciples?”

Which one of those do you think Jesus prefers according to Matthew 28:18-20?

What is the difference between the two?

With all this in mind, I feel more and more compelled to be about making disciples. It is not only in written about in books and spoken about at pastor conferences, but it’s on my mind and heart a lot.

That being said, I’d love to hear from you.

What are some success stories you’ve had in making disciples in the last 6-12 months?

What are your best practices for doing so?

Please feel free to share comments below. I look forward to reading them.