Earlier this week at ThomRainer.com:
- Six Stages of a Dying Church
- Dealing with Private Distractions to Worship, featuring Mike Harland – Rainer on Leadership #336
- Twenty Relics of Church Past
- Six Memories from the 2017 Southern Baptist Annual Meeting
- Eight Signs That Point to Probable Church Death – Rainer on Leadership #337
What happens when frenzied news cycles, a culture of perpetual outrage, social media and political intrigue infect a religious event? We get a mess: Truth is distorted, intentions are impugned, and energy is wasted — all in the pursuit of self-reinforcing narratives that bolster our unhealthy tribalisms. Predictably, this sad spectacle repeated itself at the Southern Baptist Convention’s annual meeting, which ended Wednesday (June 14) in Phoenix.
Manipulative people familiar with the Christian faith can actually use Christian language to embolden their backstabbing. They can call someone friend and brother while manipulating and dividing. They can disguise their sinful behavior with the language of the people of God. It is pretty nauseating when you think on it. Backstabbing among the people of God is a deep violation of our faith and a horrible representation of our faith to the world. With that in mind, here are three ways you can spot “Christian backstabbing” (I put “Christian backstabbing” in quotes because there is nothing Christian about it):
For those in ministry, you could say that debt is a ministry killer. Personal debt places burdens and barriers on the lives of those in ministry. Let’s consider how debt can destroy your ministry.
The New Testament is filled with instruction on discipling believers generally. But now and then it also focuses on raising up church leaders in particular. For instance, Paul tells Titus, “This is why I left you in Crete, so that you might put what remained into order and appoint elders in every town as I directed you” (Titus 1:5). Then he describes what these elders should be like. Similarly, he tells Timothy to find “faithful men who will be able to teach others also” (2 Tim. 2:2). In the same way, I’d like to offer counsel on how I’ve personally worked to find, encourage, and raise up other leaders in my church, whether to serve in my church or eventually in other churches.
What’s true in church is true in any organization or business. We’re even working through rapid growth issues associated with this blog, my writing, and my podcast. You hope and pray people show up, but when they do, you get a whole new set of challenges. As things grow, everything gets more complicated. It’s the leader’s job to create simplicity in the midst of it all. Bottom line? Your struggles as a leader or as a church don’t go away when your church or organization starts to grow. They simply change. Here are 7 things every leader of a growing church or organization struggles with.
Want to do some new things at church this weekend? See if any of these suggestions would be a “new” thing in your life: