Monday, January 28, 2008
"Uncustomary Love" explores many of our culture’s everyday rituals and contrasts them with the uncustomary, and exemplary, actions of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Each day’s devotion looks at a timeworn, sometimes odd, custom, such as crossing one’s fingers or walking around a ladder, and suggests a practical “contemporary custom” or two to consider in their place. Written in a spirited, yet traditional style, "Uncustomary Love" will remind its audience that Lent is not only a season of reflection, but of doing.
"Writings from the Wilderness", on the other hand, is an open invite to readers who may not yet know the Savior or, if they do, to consider from another perspective the dynamics of a relationship with Him. These reflections allow room to explore the realities of our everyday existence, contemplate how these challenges take place in our life, and consider God's triumphant solution sealed by the resurrection of Jesus on Easter Sunday. Readers are challenged to keep a journal of their passage through the wilderness so they can look back and reflect on where they’ve been –and where they’re headed. These gritty and life-tested observations are written in a way that challenge readers and bring them into the faith conversation.
Both "Uncustomary Love" and "Writings from the Wilderness" have been created in a PDF format making them easily customizable when adding church information for distribution throughout your community.
To abtain these please visit: http://www.lentendevotions.net/
Bible-based.We believe that the entire Bible is the Word of God. It is the only source of all we teach.
Gospel-motivated.We proclaim the Good News that God has reconciled the world to Himself through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus.
Nurturing.Helping people grow in their faith through a K-8 grade school Sunday School, and Youth and Adult Bible Study.
Sacramental.Baptism and the Lord's Supper are central to our life together.
Balanced Worship.We blend newer worship forms with the time-honored liturgy of the Church.
Active and Caring.We seek to motivate and equip all people for service in Jesus' name.
Outreach Oriented.We seek to make Christ known throughout our community and the world.
There web site http://www.stlukes-oviedo.org/ offers an insight into a wide range of ministries, outreach approaches and resources with a Lutheran emphasis. If you are looking for ideas it may well get you started.
Friday, January 11, 2008
Something for us to think about is what does it mean for us to be a leader in a Lutheran context?
Surely it involves guiding, directing and influencing people in God's ways as revealled to us in the scriptures and especially as seen in the life of Jesus. And central to this is FORGIVENESS and welcoming all people, concepts that are not always popular or a high priority even amongst Christians.
And so like anything else, as we engage with the huge minestrone soup bowl of leadership material keep this in mind, keep asking the question what are we guiding, directing and influencing people to!!!
Type leadership into google and you will get over 134 million hits...now i would rather be looking for a needle in haystack (or a toy in my children's play area), so hopefully some of the information gives you a starting point...and of course if you have any recommendations, please feel free to email them to me so we can share them with others...
Please note: Some of the resources are from Lutheran sources and authors/speakers/organisations, others are simply resources that I know some Lutheran leaders and pastors have been using and have recommended.
Pastoral Leadership Institute is a virtual training arm for the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod. The mission of PLI is to provide advanced leadership training for pastors whose hearts burn with passion for the gospel and who have exhibited potential for leadership excellence. It is an initiative conceived with the express purpose of supporting a strong, viable church for the next millennium. The purpose of the Pastoral Leadership Institute is to operate an in-service, leadership formation program for pastors and others who desire to develop their leadership abilities helpful in pastoring churches in the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod and beyond. On their web site http://www.plinstitute.org/ you will discover information about conferences, mentor congregations, their programs and other leadership development.
Joyleadership Center The Joy LifeShapes Leadership Center serves mission-minded church leaders as a relational resource for those God is inspiring and calling through LifeShapes. Our vision is to see the church effectively reach this postmodern world. By providing training, discipleship, and other resources for LifeShapes, JLLC is partnering with churches throughout the United States and Canada so that all may know Jesus Christ and become his empowered followers. Visit http://www.joylead.org/ for more information
Changing Church Forum http://www.changingchurch.org/ Changing Church Forum is a ministry and mission of Prince of Peace, ELCA, to the church at large. Our focus is processing information, fostering change and renewal, and encouraging, in whatever way we can, more effective ministry.
Einstein was famous for his thought experiments. He would take puzzles and problems that presented themselves in the science of his day and by thinking differently about these issues, outside the traditional way of seeing these problems, he devised theories that were a whole new way of looking at the world. He and others would then test these theories through experiments to prove their validity and to address problems or create enormous new opportunities in the fields of science. It was during the long tenure of doing this that the now famous equation shown above was discovered. He summarized its enormous implication this way:
"This formula shows that very small amounts of mass may be converted into large amounts of energy and power."
This, in turn, released the beginning of the nuclear age in the world.
The Changing Church Forum adopts a similar philosophy toward the church of our day. Taking the puzzles and problems of the modern church, we think differently about these issues, outside the traditional ways of seeing the church in the world. We then test our ideas in real church settings. Our aim is to release the power and energy of each congregational member and congregation to thrive in the new context that the 21st century confronts us with. We are committed to this goal:
"That a small amount of investment with the Changing Church Forum will release a large amount of untapped potential in your church's ministry."
More specifically, we can help you and your congregation:
Expand your vision — Ministry of PoWeRSuRGe
Experience God deeply — Ministry of PoWeRSuRGe Worship
Enter into community with others — Ministry of Growing People through Small Groups
Equip people for service — Ministry of LifeKeys
Engage your world — Ministry of Thriving Churches Experiments
Injoy... www.injoy.com maybe you have heard of 21 Irrefutable laws of leadership......this was written by John Maxwell, a pastor who developed into pastoring leaders....In 1985, Dr. John C. Maxwell founded INJOY® in San Diego, California with a mission to develop leaders of excellence and integrity. INJOY® moved to its current location in the Atlanta area in 1997. The business develops thousands of leaders yearly primarily through its large events and training programs across the United States and Canada and high quality resources in the form of books, audio and DVD training kits, monthly mentoring subscriptions, and small group curriculums. To date, Dr. Maxwell has sold over 12 million books as an internationally recognized leadership expert, speaker, and author, and his organizations have trained more than one million leaders worldwide. Two of his books, The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership and Developing the Leader Within You, have each sold over a million copies. Their Mission: We passionately impact leaders at the heart level. Their Values: Character, Competence and Influence
Willowcreek Association.... www.willowcreek.com and http://wall.willowcreek.com/leaders/index.asp Their vision is that EACH CHURCH would reach its FULL REDEMPTIVE POTENTIAL. Their mission is to ENVISION, EQUIP, and ENCOURAGE Christian leaders to BUILD PREVAILING LOCAL CHURCHES. Each year they put together a quality Leadership Summit primarily for Christian leaders which is delivered in many locations around the world and offer a range of resources for churches and leaders in churches.
Lutheran Leadership Bible Study Series
by Mueller Kelm Rutschow Heins Lauersdorf
Newly re-formatted, these five 6-lesson Bible-based studies with probing questions will help you evaluate your parish needs and minister to your people with the Word. Open your leader's meetings, conduct special classes for new officers, or help long-time leaders see the value of getting back to the study of God's Word with these Bible Studies. Studies included in this book are: "Lutheran Leadership" by Wayne Mueller; "Jesus' Mission for His Church" by Paul Kelm; "The Biblical Concept of Planning" by David Rutschow; "Church and Change" by Ronald Heins; and "Priority in Ministry" by Richard Lauersdorf. Price: $11.00 from http://online.nph.net/cgi-bin/site.pl?10418&productID=387640
Christ based leadership by David Stark
Learn From the Top Leadership Experts As a pastor, layleader, or leader of a ministry you know what the Bible has to say about leadership. You’ve also probably read some leadership books or heard the experts talk about effective leadership. Now, how do you put everything you’ve heard together? In Christ-Based Leadership David Stark, a Lutheran pastor, business consultant, and trainer, has done that for you. In one of the most practical and useful leadership books you’ll ever read, you’ll learn about today’s best leadership concepts and how they measure up to the biblical leadership model. Then discover how to put the principles into practice to become a more effective leader in your church, ministry, or business. Just a few of the books and experts he draws from include
* Leading Change, James O’Toole
* Good to Great and Built to Last, Jim Collins
* Now, Discover Your Strengths, Marcus Buckingham and Donald O. Clifton
* Stewardship: Choosing Service Over Self-Interest, Peter Block
* Overcoming the Five Dysfunctions of a Team, Patrick M. Lencioni
Stark asks twelve questions about your leadership style and methods, including
* What is the truth of your ambition?
* Who is lord of your leadership?
* What is your definition of success?
* Who are you here to serve?
The Everyday, anytime guide to Christian Leadership by Walt Kallestad .
Chapters include: Love Unconditionally, Envision the future, Affirm continuously, Discipline with determination, Energize others, Risk boldly, Serve selflessly, Hope relenetlessly, Imagine immeasurably, Pray persistently.
PRISMS: New Insights for church leaders series from Augsburg Fortress http://www.augsburgfortress.org/store/itemseries.jsp?clsid=190779&categoryID=1008
Ideal for both lay and ordained Christian leaders, this series comprises short, accessible books that rethink key elements of being church in a postmodern era of formation, re-formation, and transformation. Encompassing a full range of topics?from membership and growth, to discipleship and teaching, to group dynamics and social justice?Prisms engages readers in new thinking about the survival, shape, and agenda of the Christian churches of tomorrow.
Breaking the Conspiracy of Silenceby Donald E. Messer (Author)Addressing a worldwide emergencyItem No: 9780800636418Release Date: Tuesday, February 24, 2004Format: PaperbackAvailability: In stock, usually ships within 24 hours.Eligible for Free Shipping on orders over $150. DetailsOnline Price: $12.00 (reg $15.00) 20% off
Healing Bodies and Souls: A Practical Guide for Congregationsby W. Daniel Hale (Author); Harold G. Koenig (Author)The next frontier: Ministries of health and healingItem No: 9780800636296Release Date: Friday, October 31, 2003Format: PaperbackAvailability: In stock, usually ships within 24 hours.Eligible for Free Shipping on orders over $150. DetailsOnline Price: $12.80 (reg $16.00) 20% off
A Servant's Manual: Christian Leadership for Tomorrowby Michael W. Foss (Author)Energizing a new generation of Christian leadersItem No: 9780800634537Release Date: Monday, June 10, 2002Format: PaperbackAvailability: In stock, item will be discontinued when sold out.Eligible for Free Shipping on orders over $150. DetailsOnline Price: $12.00 (reg $15.00) 20% off
Spiritual Maturity: Preserving Congregational Health and Balanceby Frank A. Thomas (Author)Building effective God-centered ministriesItem No: 9780800630867Release Date: Monday, April 22, 2002Format: PaperbackAvailability: This book is available through our print on demand program and will ship separately. Most titles will ship within 10 days of the placement of your order.Online Price: $10.40 (reg $13.00) 20% off
Moving Beyond Church Growth: An Alternative Vision for Congregationsby Mark A. Olson (Author)Character development for communities of faithItem No: 9780806643465Release Date: Thursday, December 20, 2001Format: PaperbackAvailability: In stock, item will be discontinued when sold out.Eligible for Free Shipping on orders over $150. DetailsOnline Price: $13.60 (reg $17.00) 20% off
Turn Your Church Inside Out: Building a Community for Othersby Walter Kallestad (Author)A primer for reinvigorating church lifeItem No: 9780806640341Release Date: Tuesday, January 30, 2001Format: PaperbackAvailability: In stock, usually ships within 24 hours.Eligible for Free Shipping on orders over $150. DetailsOnline Price: $15.00
Lead like Jesus by Ken Blanchard
The author defines leadership as influence in a positive or negative direction. Given this definition, Jesus was the greatest leader of all time. He was firmly grounded in the Rabinical Judaism of the time. With this background, He took the fledging Christian community on a Transformational Journey culminating in His own crucifixion and a fantastic earthquake conincidental with the Death and Resurrection. The author reminds us that the ultimate leader serves the community first and not himself/herself. Leadership comes from a variety of personal sources. i.e. - the heart is the center of the leadership thrust - the head formulates strategies and movement forward - the hands relate to crafting specific actions - the habits relate to consistency/predictability of actions Blanchard presents the contrast between the serving leader and the self-serving leader. The serving leader actively engages in acts on behalf of the community while the self-serving leader benefits himself mainly. In providing service, the serving leader implements specific plans to move the community forward. This was done very skillfully by Christ in His own time.
1. Religious leadership and paradoxPart One: Paradoxes in the Religious Leader's Role
A list of some other books recommended by a number of Lutheran pastors and leaders....