5 Things to Remember When It Comes to Church Size

Chad Hall: “If you are a pastor, church planter, or key leader, you need a healthy and theologically sound attitude for dealing with church growth, size, and numbers.”

This is absolutely a must-read for anyone in church leadership. #5 is especially key: “The litmus test for truth is not growth.”

(HT: challies)

Bearing Good Fruit

Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will recognize them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? So, every healthy tree bears good fruit, but the diseased tree bears bad fruit. A healthy tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a diseased tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus you will recognize them by their fruits. (Matthew 7:15-20)

When taken in light of the previous few chapters, this passage is convicting for me as a leader because I don’t think our human nature has the same definition of “good fruit” that Jesus does. In today’s society, I think we evaluate leaders, including ministry leaders, based on things like eloquence of speech, the leadership model they use, how charming and personable they are, and how much their organization or ministry grows and/or earns. I know I can even fall into the trap of evaluating myself by those those things. And while it’s obviously not wrong to look at secular techniques and practices to improve what we do as churches or individuals, it’s important to remember that our success is not based on the same criteria that Apple or Google or McDonald’s are judged by. Continue reading Bearing Good Fruit

Characteristics of a Godly Leader

As Christians, we are to display the qualities of leaders even if God has not called us into a leadership position. In Nehemiah 1-2, we are given a paradigm as to what a godly leader looks like.

1. A godly leader has a concern for the people and purposes of God.

“…Hanani, one of my brothers, and some men from Judah came; and I asked them concerning the Jews who had escaped and had survived the captivity, and about Jerusalem.” (1:2)

“When I heard these words, I sat down and wept and mourned for days…” (1:4)

“Remember the word which You commanded Your servant Moses…” (1:8)

Nehemiah’s did not ask about Jerusalem and the Jews just to make small talk with the visitors from Judah. It is clear that Nehemiah, like Daniel, knew the Scriptures and the prophecies about the Jews’ return to their homeland. His despair at the bad knews came from both a genuine concern for the well-being of his countrymen, and a knowledge that things were seemingly not going according to God’s plan laid out in Scripture. Nehemiah’s rise to action flowed not from a self-seeking, power-hungry spirit, but a spirit that was seeking to obey God and care for his people. Continue reading Characteristics of a Godly Leader