Did you know you are a part of a Global Movement of leaders? Share with us when you first took part in the GLS and the impact it has had in your leadership.
Liz Wiseman, President of The Wiseman Group and Summit 2013 Faculty Member, joined us last fall for a WCA webcast. Liz unpacks what it means to be a Multiplier in your organization, leading inspiration and getting problems solved.
Are you a multiplier in your organization?
Post By: Chris Brown, Co-Senior Pastor and Teaching Pastor, North Coast Church
The last bit of candlelight cast long shadows across the cobblestone floor, while the artistry of brass and gold reflected the rhythmic movement of the flame. It was the darkest hours of night, and outside the only slight movement was from the corner of the shade canopy when a random breeze would creep through camp. It was in that hour that the whisper came. The call was faint, yet deliberate enough to wake him from his sleep. He lay frozen in silence somewhere between the land of dreams and reality trying to figure out where the voice had originated. A church at night can be a scary place for anyone, but sleeping in one when your name is whispered down the corridors is a completely different story. The young man jumped to his feet and ran to the old priest to see why he had called, only to find that the whisper hadn’t come from him at all.
In a way that only the Bible can, the lens of scripture has taken us into the first five verses of first Samuel chapter three, and yet the scariest part of the story is still two verses away. In the midst of God calling Samuel in the temple, there lays one of the most chilling statements in the Bible. And if we aren’t careful, it could be our story. Surrounded in the text by suspense and mystery, verse seven simply states that “Samuel did not know the Lord, the Word of the Lord had not yet been revealed to him”. What? Are you kidding me? How did I miss that for so many years? Or better yet, how are we still missing that today?
Remember the context of the story. These events are taking place in the very epicenter of all things spiritual. The boy is sleeping in the Temple of God, next to the ark of God, and his roommate is God’s high priest of the chosen nation of Israel. Can you really find a more spiritual location than that? On top of all this, Samuel’s daily routine is to take care of the temple, and to help with all of the religious services and sacrifices that would happen there. Are you starting to see why verse seven is such a shocker? How can someone be in that place, at that time, surrounded by those things, and not yet know the Word of the Lord? But then again, how can we?
There is a chilling warning here for those of us who busy ourselves on a daily basis with the things of God, the people of God, the work of God…and yet can still completely miss the Word of God. We can easily get caught up in so much hurry, busyness, and noise that we fail to hear that deliberate whisper of Yahweh yearning for relationship. All too often, we rely on our own gifts, rather than on the Giver.
Let me ask you a simple question: If the Holy Spirit left your ministry today, how long would it take for you to find out?
A pastor, passionate about developing communication skills in young leaders, who has the unique ability to bring biblical passages to life through narrative storytelling. As a 2013 Summit Faculty, Chris will share insights on a biblical leader in a way that is both fresh and compelling. Follow him on Twitter: @_chris_brown
Register for The Global Leadership Summit 2013
A letter from Gary Schwammlein, WCA Executive Vice President, International Ministries
As I continue my journey through India, let me share with you what I have experienced since I left Mumbai. Out next stop was Kolkata, or as it used to be called, Calcutta. Coming in from the airport I thought I was in China or Dubai because of the endless construction going on and buildings going up everywhere. India is one of the BRIC countries where economic growth is strong and it is certainly apparent on the road from the airport to the city.
However, it does not take long to be made aware of the huge needs this country is facing. We met with Compassion International (CI) staff and witnessed once again the tremendous work they are doing. I heard many heartbreaking stories about families and children that face incredible odds to ever escape the cycle of poverty, and how through child sponsorship their lives are dramatically changed for the better. I, for one, am so deeply grateful that God led our family many years ago to support several children who are helped by CI.
Our next stop was a church in the heart of Kolkata that is such a perfect example of a church working right. Not only do they have a hospital with several hundred beds and a school for 3,000 pupils, they also feed 10,000 children one nutritious meal a day, every day.
Think about it – 10,000 meals a day provided by one church that is not well off by any standard.
They are truly living out the gospel, and do many other things to help spread the gospel and make a difference in a city where less than 1% of the population are Christians. The pastor of this church also pledged his unequivocal support for the GLS and will do everything he can to make it happen, and in a way that will impact this city. He assured us he will make all the resources of the church available because he considers the GLS so important for the churches in this city.
We then stopped in the city of Chennai and met with a group representing most of the key pastors in this city. One of the highlights for me was to have Pranitha Timothy, a speaker at last year’s GLS, attend our GLS planning meeting. What a joy to meet this brave woman and to hear more about the ministry of IJM.
Sunday morning reminded me once again of the incredible beauty of a church when it’s working right. The church I attended, among other things, looks after 80 widows who have been abandoned by their families after their husbands died. I can’t tell you the anger that welled up in me when I heard a story of a son who kicked out his mother from the home that she and her deceased husband had built, and that he, through deception, had taken ownership of. Many of the women there asked me to pray for them, and I was glad to oblige and commit them into the loving care of Jesus.
In Chennai as well, the committee voted to host the GLS later this year. In closing, one more brief report from the neighboring country of Pakistan. 310 people attended the GLS in Lahore in late April, a city where only a few months earlier an angry mob burned down over 130 homes of Christians in a Christian enclave in that city. The GLS was an amazing experience in many ways, as this short report shows: The GLS provided an opportunity to the Leaders of Punjab Province to experience the Holy Spirit move in their unity…they say it was never experienced before, some testified that they have never ever sat with other denomination leaders, GLS-Lahore created an atmosphere for National Heads of different Missions and Organizations and Christian Secular Professionals to sit together for 2 days and experience God’s Special blessings.
Thank you Lord for allowing your Church to prevail, even in the midst of great persecution, opposition and poverty. And thank you for allowing us to be a part of it through the teachings offered through the GLS.
My next stops are Hyderabad, Goa and Bangalore, before heading to Myanmar.
Gary Schwammlein will be traveling for the next 4-5 weeks working with leaders around the world. Please be praying with our team for safe travels, intentional conversation, divine appointment, and for world leaders will capture the vision for the GLS in their country.
WCA works year-round alongside 7,000 member churches and is privileged to serve pioneering pastors and leaders around the world by curating inspirational leadership, intentional skill development and experiences. 2013 has been off to a great start, and as we continue to serve you, your team and your church, be sure to mark your calendar with these important dates:
Tuesday, May 21st: Super Early Bird Deadline for The Global Leadership Summit: Register for the Best Rates of the year!
May 23rd – June 1st: Pray for John Burke and his team as they put on events in 4 South African cities: East London, Cape Town, Durban, and Johannesburg, (If you are in the area, you can register HERE)
May 31st – June 2nd: Pray as 2,500+ Student Ministry Leaders gather in Germany (If you are in the area, you can register HERE)
Tuesday, June 25th: Early Bird Deadline for The Global Leadership Summit
Thursday – Friday, August 8-9th: Reaching 70,000+ leaders in the U.S., The Global Leadership Summit launches live near Chicago
Friday, August 9th: Registration for Summit 2014 opens
September 2013-January 2014: The Global Leadership Summit is taken to 300+ cities in 90 countries and translated into 42 languages. Want to help make the Summit happen globally? Find out how you can help HERE
Looking forward to what God will do in the year ahead!
Re-post by Tony Morgan
Several weeks ago I read Move: What 1,000 Churches Reveal about Spiritual Growth by Greg Hawkins and Cally Parkinson. Greg is the executive pastor at Willow Creek Community Church. Cally is Willow’s director of communication services. The book is based on their research of over 1,000 churches. It takes a hard look at spiritual formation in our churches with a focus on best-practice ministries.
This book is by far the book that has most challenged my thinking regarding spiritual formation in the church. My Kindle version has highlights throughout. This morning I went through all those highlights and tried to narrow them down to the twelve that I found most challenging to current church practices. Unfortunately, these statements only provide a snippet of the findings and best practices outlined in the book.
Here’s my Amazon link if you’d like to read the book. I strongly encourage you to do that and wrestle through what you read with your ministry leadership team. If you are honest with yourselves, this book will shift the way you do ministry in your church.
Tony is the Chief Strategic Officer and founder of TonyMorganLive.com. He’s a consultant, leadership coach and writer who helps churches get unstuck and have a bigger impact.
Words from Mindy Caliguire, Executive Team Member at WCA and friend of Dallas Willard.
As we mourn the loss of visionary, mentor, and friend Dallas Willard this week, I’d like to share one of the many gifts he gave to leaders through the Willow Creek Association: Encouragement.
In this video excerpt, Dallas speaks directly to pastors and leaders about how you too can live as a disciple of Jesus, immersed in grace, right in the midst of ministry. We all know how elusive this experience can be.
Dallas tirelessly alerted us to the reality of life in the Kingdom of God—in this very moment, right here and right now. We are forever grateful, and forever changed.
He freely gave of himself on behalf of the WCA, so that in turn, we might bless you.
So give yourself the next five minutes, turn off your phone, settle into a comfortable seat, and allow these words to speak to your soul.
WCA is humbled and thankful for the work Dallas Willard contributed to the Kingdom of God. His words of wisdom and teachings left a legacy that will live on forever.
Post by Nancy Grisham, Thriving: Trusting God for Life to the Fullest | From Chapter 8: Saying No to Fear
We’ve all got a fear radar. It blips with the doctor’s report, a dreaded meeting, the late night phone call, the monthly bills, and at the onslaught of difficult circumstances.
There was a time when fear seldom registered on my radar. But the more I moved forward to trust God, the more I was taunted by it. One day I realized that fear had gradually colored my thinking a murky gray.
Suddenly, part of a Scripture popped into my mind, “…I was afraid, and went out and ______.” However, I drew a total blank on what the man did in response to fear. The phrase fraidy-blanks popped into my mind for the wrong things we’re tempted to do in response to fear. When I got home I read the rest of the verse.
“And I was afraid, and went away and hid your talent in the ground…”
Fraidy-blanks lure us away from confidence in God.
The What Ifs of Fear
We’ve all heard the droning of the fraidy-blank giant. He taunts us with doubts. “What if something happens to your…kids, marriage, health, parents, finances, job, ministry or you fail? What if God doesn’t come through for you? What if (fill in your fear)?”
Whenever we allow negative what if scenarios to hold us back from God’s best there’s a fraidy-blank lumbering through our minds.
God wants our fraidy-blanks filled with faith.
We Choose Our Focus
We can’t choose our fears, but we can choose where we focus and how we respond. There’s a story in Numbers 13 and 14 that gives us insight into conquering the fear giant. It’s about the reconnaissance troop that scouted the Promised Land. All twelve scouts experienced the same circumstances but…
|Ten Men Saw…Problems…Giants and the land devours…Grasshoppers – self’s inability…Defeat…||Two Men Saw…Opportunity…Promised Land…God’s faithfulness…Success…|
Ten men chose to focus on the problems and themselves. As a result, they became negative, buried their hope, and were paralyzed by fear. Two men kept their eyes on God and planted their confidence in Him. Eventually, those two, Joshua and Caleb led a new generation into the Promised Land.
Like the twelve spies our perspective greatly influences our response. In this story, and in life, there are three primary grids of focus.
1. GIANT GRID—focus on people, problems, and circumstances
2. GRASSHOPPER GRID—focus on ourselves, inabilities (or abilities)
3. GOD GRID—focus on God, His promises and greatness
We can choose where we focus. Seeing difficulties through the God Grid gives us true perspective – God is always greater.
We Choose Confidence in God
When you face the fear giant what’s your default grid? Is your focus usually on the problem, on yourself, or on God? In every circumstance, you and I can choose to lock our focus on Christ and on His Word. Only then can we see clearly to fill our fraidy-blanks with faith and plant our confidence in God and His faithfulness.
 Mat 25:25 (NASB)
 Mat 25:25 (NASB)
Nancy Grisham is the author of Thriving: Trusting God for Life to the Fullest. Through the speaking ministry of Livin’ Ignited she helps people to live to the fullest in Christ and equips churches in outreach. She has a PhD from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, has been a faculty member at Wheaton College, and an evangelism pastor in a church of 6,500. She left a business career that included executive-level management to enter full-time ministry. Contact her through www.livinignited.com.
Vision Leaks. -Bill Hybels
Ask key staff, “How full is your vision bucket these days?” Ask volunteers, Do you sense progress around here toward our vision?” Ask members of your congregation, Which part of our church’s vision is the most meaningful to you?”
Get a gauge on how full buckets are around you, leader, and then get busy topping them off.
Be challenged, equipped and inspired. Register for The Global Leadership Summit 2013.