I receive volumes of blog comments, emails, and social media communications every day. On occasion, one of those comments will stop me in my tracks, like this recent blog post comment.
But what do we do with the concept of dual membership? As a rule, most of us believers should belong to one and only one local congregation. We need to be accountable to one body and ministering where we live. But I can see some exceptions.
I love rookie pastors. As I have worked with hundreds of rookie pastors over the years, I see a pattern of mistakes many of them make. I pray my highlighting of these eight common mistakes will be helpful to some of you.
There are times we are to plant ourselves firmly in the place God has called us. But there are also times to leave or uproot.
It's a sad story. But it's a story I hear many times. The church has an opening. The church advertises the opening. The church announces it will receive résumés.
It's one thing for me to state the obvious: the traits of a bully. But it's another thing for me to provide early warning signs so you won't be blindsided. Here are eight of those warning signs:
I need to write these words quickly lest I become too comfortable or too complacent.
Would you like every guest who attends your church to become an active and fruitful member?
So, what if we could look into the future ten years from now, and see the characteristics of the healthiest churches in America? Would you be willing to make changes now? Take a look.
I'm in trouble. I just read the title of this post, and I know I'm asking for trouble. I might have offended some people already.
What if I told you I could help you get 10 or more hours of your week back? That's like having an extra three weeks a year.
There it was: another email. This one had a clear and poignant subject: "Pastor Search Committee Nightmare."
"I don't want you take this personally, pastor, but we are leaving the church."
Okay, I admit it. I can't stand the terms. When you even speak of clergy and laity, you are implying that Christianity has a social caste system. There are the professional Christians and the ordinary Christians. Ugh.
Change or die. You read that correctly. In fact, if your churches don't make substantive changes in the next few years, your church will die.
In a previous post, I noted several things you should not say to the pastor right before the sermon. I was amazed at the number of responses I received.
Sometimes reading a church's bylaws is like taking a trip to the twilight zone.
As I promised in last week's article on weddings, I have fifteen stories from pastors about funerals.
Pastors and other church staff have a plethora of stories to tell about weddings they have officiated. Unfortunately, they are often constrained from telling the stories lest their church members become offended.
"So what are churches doing to reach people today, Thom?" I hear some version of that question on a regular basis.
It is critical that prospective pastors ask questions about the church. There are five questions, however, which are rarely asked. These questions could be key toward avoiding some of the unpleasant surprises many pastors encounter.
Much has been written in the past decade on leadership skills. The body of literature on the topic is massive and growing. I certainly have little to add in a brief blog post.
Church leaders, particularly, need to keep an eye on this generation. There are some fascinating trends taking place.
"Pastor, I have a rat in my house. Please come get it!" It's a true story. I was the pastor.
I am not in church. Sure, I have visited churches several times, but I gave up.