(The following post is written with church leaders, preachers, pastors, and other ministers in mind. However, many of these comments will be useful to others.)
1. Pay attention to the basics. Well-meaning church leaders will sometimes expend great energy and other resources in order to attract guests to their assemblies. Yet, churches sometimes ignore the basics. Recently a young couple visited a church located in a large city. They had never been to an assembly in this church before. The couple came in just as the service was beginning. They found a pew and sat down. Then they heard a loud voice: “Well, there goes the view!” Meanwhile, the person at the microphone in the front proceeded to welcome “all of our guests today. “The couple said, “We won’t be going back. This is probably not the church for us.”
2. I just received my order from Amazon. As I looked through the books that had arrived, I thought about how many of them were purchased after I first read reviews or read them on Scot McKnight’s blog, Jesus Creed. What a wonderful ministry to church leaders.
3. I really enjoy the Journal of Spiritual Formation and Soul Care. It is published by the Talbot School of Theology, Biola University. The articles not only deal with individual spiritual formation but the church collectively as well.
4. “We want to get better.” This is exactly what my friend said the other day. I had driven to his home a few weeks ago. He preaches in a city a few hours from Waco. I was there to spend the morning with him. As we talked, he shared with me a conversation that he and his wife heard just a few weeks earlier. My friend and his wife are in their early 60s. He said, “We talked about the next ten years and how we want to get better.”
I like that. So I am beginning this year with the desire to get better in 2012. I do not want to be stuck in status quo. What about you? What would it take for you to get better this year?
5. Don’t miss Michael Hyatt’s post “Are You Operating in Your Strengths Zone?“ This is a fine post and would be helpful for ministers and any other Christian leader to consider. (By the way, as of January 1, I began working with a team of nine others as one of Michael Hyatt’s “Community Leaders” to help manage comments on his blog. I am enjoying the interaction with those who respond.)