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Posted by on Mar 15, 2012 in Blog |

Family Ministry | Setting Milestones for Family Faith Development

Family Ministry | Setting Milestones for Family Faith Development

This week we are convening the final meeting of our Family Ministry InnovationLab (Group 2) at Leadership Network in Dallas.  Over the past year, six teams from across the country have been pouring into their strategies for helping parents become the primary spiritual developers of their children.  The gathering started with “The Great Reveal” where each church shared some of their biggest learnings and developments over the past 12 months.  Some of the big ideas and implementations included: Establishing ministry unity and integration around a cohesive family ministry plan.  Several churches commented that they were having success in ‘silos’ (children, youth, or adult ministries) but had nothing to pull all their efforts together.  Being a part of this InnovationLab helped them to develop an intentional structure that aligned their efforts and created a synergy that multiplied their efforts. “Family Map” development.  Two churches (Parker Hill and Mt. Gilead) invested a significant amount of time developing “Family Maps” that helped families visualize where they should be headed and plan their...

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Posted by on Mar 14, 2012 in Blog, Media |

How Great Leadership Inspire Action | Simon Sinek on TED

How Great Leadership Inspire Action | Simon Sinek on TED

Simon Sinek has a simple but powerful model for inspirational leadership all starting with a golden circle and the question “Why?” His examples include Apple, Martin Luther King, and the Wright brothers … In 2009, Simon Sinek released the book “Start With Why” — a synopsis of the theory he has begun using to teach others how to become effective leaders and inspire change. Watch the video above, then ask: What is the “why” of what you do?  How do you communicate the “why” to your team and those you market to or those you serve?  Are you investing your time and energy in things you believe in, or do you just find yourself busy perpetuating something else? Think about this: How would you communicate differently if you really believed that people follow you for themselves and not for...

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Posted by on Mar 9, 2012 in Small Group Resources |

3 steps to impacting your community

3 steps to impacting your community

You have probably heard some of this before.  You may have seen Steve Gladen talk about his street in a conference.  Maybe you read Randy Frazee’s book The Connecting Church. You may have bought the book 101 Ways to Reach Your Community by Steve Sjogren.  But still wonder how to impact your neighbors with Christ’s love. Here are three easy steps to get started impacting your neighbors this spring. 1. Draw your streets: What would you consider your neighborhood?  Do you already have friends on your street?  If you have a dog or like to walk for exercise, the spring time is a great opportunity to walk the streets of your neighborhood.  As your walking notice every house, car, swing set, pool, etc.  Pray for the family who lives there and watch for opportunities to build a relationship with your neighbors.  When you return home, draw your streets and place a square marking each home. 2. Place name on each house:  Begin to place a name on each home...

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Posted by on Mar 7, 2012 in Small Group Resources |

A Resource to Avoid Awkward Moments

A Resource to Avoid Awkward Moments

Have you ever had one of those moments while discussing Scripture when a group member looked to you and asked, “What does that mean?” Ever felt that pang of panic when you didn’t immediately know the answer? Maybe it was as you discussed Matthew 11:28–30 and someone asked what a yoke was or how it could be easy. Maybe it was as you used the terms justice, mercy, and grace in conversation, and someone asked how they were different. Thanks to Keri Wyatt Kent you may run into fewer of these awkward moments. Kent, author of nine books including Oxygen, Simple Compassion, and Listen, provides two great resources: Deeper into the Word: Old Testament and Deeper into the Word: New Testament. These books each provide 100 reflections on common words in the Bible, providing insight into the original language and the historical context. So, for instance, if that question about the yoke comes up, you could flip to the entry on yoke, which fleshes out four things the terminology...

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Posted by on Mar 5, 2012 in Small Group Resources |

John Ortberg Encourages Small-Group Leaders

John Ortberg Encourages Small-Group Leaders

As February ends, we’ve got a bit of cabin fever here at the offices of Christianity Today. We’re a little antsy, our attention spans are growing shorter, and we need something to keep us going. So I figured you might, too. In our Fall 2010 digizine, SmallGroups.com interviews John Ortberg in an article called “No, You’re Not Crazy!” Ortberg shares his wisdom with small-group leaders, inspiring us to keep on. SG.com: How do you feel that small groups as a whole have impacted the kingdom of God? What have they brought to churches, and to the Church? Ortberg: I think it was Robert Wuthnow who said that the small-group movement is the biggest social revolution in America. In an era where people have become increasingly mobile, uprooted, and disconnected from family structures, I think small groups have become a huge vehicle for people to experience relationship, intimacy, and community. And in a lot of cases that comes to people who might not have it otherwise. SG.com: If you had...

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