Free On-Site Training & Coaching for Your Church

In the first quarter of 2017, I’m calendaring an in-person consulting time for a church. I will do these at zero cost* for the church I select (I’m grateful for serving a church who wants to serve other churches and allows for this).

If you’re interested for your church…

Consider  the “practical takeaways for everyday church leadership” topics I’ve blogged about at Brian, and if you feel I may helpful to you as a church leader, to your leadership team, or perhaps to a larger group within your church—I’d be honored to consider a day long or day and half long trip to your church.

My selection of the churches to consult will be based on:

  • Your preferred date of consulting time working on my calendar
  • My assessment of whether I can be of help to you in your ministry context
  • Perhaps geography (I’m open to long U.S. travel if I believe it’s a good use of time)
  • And there will be preference given to those who subscribe to my weekly blog


If you’d like to submit a request that would occur January-April in 2017, email me and respond to the following:

Who: (church/organization and website if you have one)
What: (preferred topic[s])
When: preferred dates
Where: (geographically)
Why: (Why you feel you could use the help/outside perspective—just an idea is fine, it doesn’t need to be lengthy)

I’ll follow-up with all who submit a request within three weeks.

*If I agree to serve you in this way, there will be no financial cost to you, nor will it be accepted.

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The Church’s Large Donor You Don’t Know About

Rolled Up Money

Do you have a “large donor” in your church? Or as some call them, a “high capacity” giver?

I’d say, “Yes, you absolutely do.” It’s you. It’s the church leadership. The church leadership has the responsibility of stewarding well whatever resources God has brought to the local church. And if you steward well and maximize what you already have, you’ve effectively become a large donor for your church.

Sure, most every church would like to have people who could write a check and end their church’s debt, or help them construct an attractive building, or even replace that 40 year-old carpet.

But first, as church leaders we have to put on the hat of steward. Grade yourself as a steward – currently, how well do you:

– Effectively train your volunteers?

– Handle responsibly the dollars you do have?

– Cast a compelling vision for why people should give their resources (talents, time, and treasure)?

– Connect the dots between vision and practical ways to give their resources?

I think a lot of our churches are not resource-rich for two reasons:

  1. We’re not stewarding well what we already have (so why should there be more given?)
  2. We haven’t compelled our people with a vision or convinced them of a need

God says He loves His church, and the Bible says He has equipped it. As church leaders, we have to see ourselves as stewards. At times, that might requiring active curating, but the people and resources are there – we just have to be intentionally looking.

You might already have a large capacity giver. You might already have a person who’s willing to give 300 man hours in volunteerism. You might have a graphic designer who’s willing to give work in-kind to the church, or a capable handy man who would work at a discount and could lessen your church’s maintenance fees.

God has given us what we need to serve His church, and as stewards, curators, and discerners, we can accomplish His ministry with what He has already given.

Don’t allow yourself a victim mentality… “That church (down the street) has everything.” But instead, know that God may have already given your church what it needs, but it will take some prayerful discerning, curating, and excellent stewardship of those resources.


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A Simple Tool for Measuring Idea Support

Counting Hands isolated over white background

How do you know when your idea is gaining consensus within the group? In groups, there are usually two kinds of people – those who express their thoughts without prompting, and those who rarely express their thoughts.  If you’re not careful, you’ll allow those who do speak to speak on behalf of those who don’t, and you may start believing that the ideas of those who spoke up are reflective of the whole group.

And then there are times when most everyone speaks up. You exchange ideas and opinions about a new idea or initiative and yet, you can’t quite determine where the group is with it. For it? Against it? Indifferent?

When I arrived at Brentwood Baptist Church the church’s senior leadership team used a simple tool to quickly ascertain how a group felt about an idea. By simply holding up a finger to represent a number on a scale, you could get a snapshot of how the group felt about an idea.

In our case, Jim Baker would scribble the following words on the white board:

Love it – 5

Like it – 4

Live with it – 3

Leary of it – 2

Loathe it – 1

Then all at the same time, each individual in the meeting would hold up their hand and represent their feeling about the idea with a certain number of fingers. We’d total the group’s finger count, divide by the number of those voting, and get a snapshot of support for the idea.

The vote average will come out 3.7 or 2.1, or some days, 4.9. (This is usually when we ask questions like, “Are you in favor of adding vacation days for our staff?”)

I use this tool from time to time in meetings I lead, and when I do, it can usually tell me if…

  • The idea already has traction
  • The idea is going to require more talk, work, and support gaining
  • The idea is Dead On Arrival

I’ve written before about the importance of you as a meeting leader establishing whether you’re looking for consensus or simply asking for input. If you employ this voting tool, I suggest you let your group know how and why you’re using their votes. (You can read the consensus blog here.)

It’s a simple tool that’ll allow you real-time results during a meeting to gauge how far along an idea or concept is from getting instituted or going away.

I hope this blog post gets a 3+.

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