The One Solution Out of Our Reach

Posted by on Oct 1, 2014 in Leading the Local Congregation, Main, Society at Large, Theological Thinking | 0 comments

My blogfeed fills with solutions every morning, all from smart people. But no one seems to have an answer to the one solution out of our reach. What do you do when the efforts you are making stop working? What do you do when people don’t seem to want to do much of anything? Techniques The Memphis Conference of the United Methodist Church, my home conference, pursues solutions with a great deal of zest. Ministry in varied locations evolved...

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Creating Covenant Accountability

Posted by on Mar 13, 2014 in Discipleship, Leading the Church, Leading the Local Congregation, Main | 0 comments

The hardest thing about creating covenant accountability is the decision to be accountable in the first place. This year, I’ve renewed my participation in a covenant discipleship group. I also continue to be in covenant with a group of leaders here at the church. My pastor, Dr. Richard Clark, is participating in covenant with my Bishop, Bill McAllily. In the next few weeks, the SPRC and I will hammer out our covenant for work together as...

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Remember Your Baptism and Embrace Your Healing

Posted by on Jan 26, 2014 in Leading the Local Congregation, Main, Sermons | 0 comments

There’s a beautiful story that I heard not too long ago. The tale recounts the birth of a young man in a small village in Africa. The tribe varies in the telling, but the story is apocryphal, so it is to be expected. A young woman decides it is time to have a child. She begins the preparations not with the gathering of clothing or building a crib. She begins by going apart from her people to discover the song of this new life. She sits beneath...

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You’ve Got to Want To

Posted by on Jul 26, 2013 in Christian Beliefs, Discipleship, Leading the Church, Leading the Local Congregation, Main, Pop Culture, Uncategorized | 0 comments

I am about 9. The lights are in my eyes, and I feel like I need to throw up, go to the bathroom, or maybe pass out. There are adults cheering. My parents are encouraging me. And the kids around me are either yelling or staring at me like I am a mortal enemy. If you’re thinking I’m talking about Little League Baseball, you are a very astute individual. The pitcher is throwing the ball towards me. It isn’t really to the catcher,...

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The Difference Between “Now” and “Then”

Posted by on Jun 17, 2013 in Leading the Church, Leading the Local Congregation, Main, Memphis Conference, Methodism | 3 comments

Some things never change. There are still hot dogs at baseball games. There are still fish in Kentucky Lake. And there are still Methodists meeting on a yearly basis to talk business and make decisions. In the past two weeks, I’ve been to two Annual Conferences. And, at those sessions, I spoke with pastors and leaders of the Church at length. Something was different. In years past, Conference was a coming together of factions. Sounds...

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Growing at Grace

Posted by on Apr 16, 2013 in Leading the Church, Leading the Local Congregation, Main | 1 comment

What makes for a good leader? Most folks think that “followers” would be the required component. But anyone who has led anything more than a rousing chorus of “Row Row Row Your Boat” understands that the measure of leadership is the number of leaders you produce, not the number of followers you attract. Leaders don’t just magically appear. Yet, many congregations still expect their leaders to arrive. Rare are the...

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