An electronic newsletter written for leadership in the Church of God in Virginia. Resources, Recommendations, and Reminders...
February 2014

 

Change - The Opportunity to Grow

One of the objectives of E-Lead is to provide relevant resources to pastors and ministry leaders in a simple to read format.  Very often we will use excerpts of articles, books, etc. to give you an overview of the material/resource presented.  This approach allows us the ability to present a broad range of information in an easy to read format.

One of the best resources for those in ministry leadership is a weekly blog written by Thom Rainer.  Thom is the CEO of Lifeway Resources.  The following is a summary of a recent blog he posted.
Seven Ways Pastoring Has Changed in the Past 30 Years
Like every level of life, a lot has changed in the past 30 years as it relates to pastoring.
  1. Thirty years ago, most people in the community held the pastor in high esteem.
  2. Thirty years ago, most people in the congregation held the pastor in high esteem.
  3. Leadership skills are required more today than thirty years ago.
  4. Interpersonal skills are required more today than thirty years ago.
  5. Outreach was accomplished by getting people to come to church services thirty years ago.
  6. Thirty years ago there were very few “nones.”
  7. The internet and social media have made pastoring much more challenging than it was thirty years ago.
For the complete blog posting please go to www.thomrainer.com.

Change is NOT an enemy but, an opportunity to grow.  Thanks for your partnership.  Together we are building the Kingdom of God.

Blessings,
Bishop Corder

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EVANGELIZING

How To Engage In God's Rescue Plan  by Linda Bergquist

Article Excerpt:

Everyone wants to save something, it seems. Some people focus on earth-saving issues like global warming, ozone depletion or rainforest deforestation. Others focus on creature saving­ by rallying to protect leopard frogs in Arizona, mountain salamanders in West Virginia, or California condors. There are all kinds of people-saving initiatives, too—efforts to assist victims of human trafficking or people who have no clean water or inadequate sources of medical care.

What are you hoping to save, or what have you ever invested in saving?

The posture of saving something outside of one’s self is a privilege to which not all humans have access. Self-preservation is rather the opposite stance. People who either need or choose to focus on self-preservation are less empowered to save, while those who are secure enough to presume self-preservation can focus on things outside of themselves.

People who save recognize at least some kinds of brokenness when they see it, even if they do not yet know how to call it sin, and even if they do not yet admit to their own sinful nature. Sometimes when I read Scripture, I think about how important it was for Luke, the physician, to help heal people and save lives. How helpless he must have felt sometimes when he tried to save lives, especially in those days of primitive medicine. It gives me great pleasure that God allowed Luke to tell the story of the coming of the Holy Spirit. Imagine the new empowerment to see God heal, and even when He chose not to heal, to know that there was such a thing as life after this life. People who care about saving need to know that in Christ, there really is a plan to save everything. They need to know how they can become saved, too, and how they can become Spirit-empowered to be more than they are in themselves. They need to experience what it means to jump on board with God’s huge saving plan. What would a new church start look like if it were filled with people for whom saving all kinds of things was a way of life?

Where can my church go from here?

  • Identify. Who are those in your community who are committed to save? What kinds of organizations do they represent, and what do they want to save?
  • Pray. Are you and the Christians in your church as passionate about saving as the people who do not already know Christ?
  • Practice. Learn how to share Christ in light of the circumference of God’s long-range plan to save, moving towards His desire that all people come to know Him.
  • Reassess. Study Scripture to reconsider the meaning of earth stewardship. What can your church do? How can Christians learn how to live with less material goods, use fewer natural resources, and learn how to reverse damage to the planet?

Without some kinds of practical and redemptive steps, the Church will never be in the best position to offer Christ to those who save.

Source: blog.exponential.org

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EQUIPPING

5 Essential Tools for Every Productive Pastor  By Artie Davis

Article Excerpt:

As pastors, there’s always a lot on our plate. We change hats and capes constantly. I’ve found that being skilled and gifted is not enough, it’s also about finding ways for your gifts to have the greatest impact.

  1. Electronic Bible reading (You Version)  In the age of instant share technology, we have the ability to record our thoughts and observations in Scripture with a swipe of our finger.
  2. Automated prayer list (Prayer NotebookThis allows me to sync my prayer requests over all my devices, have notes and determine how often I want to pray for each request.
  3. Portable calendar (iCal)  It’s so much better and much more effective to have a calendar system and a task system separately.This calendar system needs to be able to communicate over many devices just like your laptop, your phone, or your tablet so it doesn’t matter where you are or what device you have with you, you able to add or complete items in your calendar.
  4. Task management (Things)  An effective task management system is vital in your productivity system. A good task management system has the ability to work with projects and is time-based.
  5. Document management (Evernote You need a place to dump everything you need so you’ll have it no matter where you are. Evernote does the trick.
Source: Pastors.com

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ENCOURAGING

Seven Ways You Can Help an Introvert By Ron Edmondson

Chances are you have lots of introverts on your team, in your organization, at your church, or even in your family. If you’re an extrovert, here are some ways you can help introverts.
  1. Give us advance warning. Don’t put us on the spot for an answer or opinion. Give us time to formulate a response.
  2. Don’t assume we don’t have an opinion. We do, and it may even be the best one. But we are less likely to share our opinion surrounded by people who are always quick to have something to say and tend to control the conversation.
  3. Don’t assume we are unfriendly or anti-social. We may not be talking, but that doesn’t mean we do not love people or that we don’t want to communicate with them. Plus, we talk one at a time, so if there’s someone always talking, we may not get a chance.
  4. Give us time to form relationships. Introverts don’t form relationships fast. We may appear harder to get to know, but when we do connect, we are loyal friends with deep, intimate connections.
  5. Allow us time alone. All of us need personal time, but we require even more time alone than an extrovert. We energize during these times, not just relax. There’s a huge difference.
  6. Don’t expect us to always love or get excited about extroverted activities. The social activities where you get to meet all the cool people you do not know…that’s not too exciting for us. It may even be a little scary. We’ll find excuses not to go, even if we know we need the experience or will have fun once we do them.
  7. Allow us to use written communication when available. We often prefer emails to phone calls. We are usually more engaging when we can write out our thoughts ahead of time..

See More at:  http://factsandtrends.net/2014/01/15/7-ways-extroverts-can-help-introverts/#.UulKVbQpkxI
Source:  RonEdmondson.com

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EMPOWERING

A New Kind of Pentecostal By Robert Crosby

Abbreviated Article Excerpt:

Pentecostalism in North America has come a long way. It has moved from a faith to and of the disenfranchised to one that is recognized if not fully accepted across the board among evangelicals. David Barrett's monumental World Christian Encyclopedia states that in 1900, only seven-tenths of 1 percent of Christians were Pentecostal; today, approximately 25 percent are.

One of the prominent trends of North American Pentecostalism is a broader engagement in compassionate ministry and social concern. On numerous fronts and in an increasing number of ways, Pentecostals are engaging in compassionate ministries and social change.
 

A Different Kind of Awakening

"There is a huge awakening for social concern today," says noted Pentecostal leader Jack Hayford, "especially from age 30 and down. It is profoundly present, and it is a welcomed renewal."
 

The New Realities

What has contributed to the increased attention to social concern in North American Pentecostalism? The reasons are complex, but a few stand out:

Christianity's new center. Modern Pentecostalism is characterized and demonstrated as a social movement that is shifting Christianity's center of gravity to the developing world.  This concept is becoming better known in North America through meeting social needs and demonstrating social concern.

Demographics. While the predominantly white U.S. Pentecostal denominations have seen their growth rates level off in recent years, non-white churches are exploding. This is especially true for Hispanic congregations.

Developing theology. Jurgen Moltmann, professor emeritus at the University of Tubingen, Germany, says, "Theologically, the Pentecostal movement has come of age!"

A generational shift. Samuel Rodriguez, president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, says, “(The new Pentecostals) stand at the nexus of both dynamics—salvation and transformation, covenant and community, righteousness and justice, Billy Graham and Dr. Martin Luther King."

Billy Wilson, executive director of the International Center for Spiritual Renewal, an alliance of Pentecostal and charismatic leaders, says, "In my opinion, this generation has the strongest horizontal desire to change the world of any other one in history."

See More at:  http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2011/august/newkindpentecostal.html?paging=off
Source:  ChristianityToday.com

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MONTHLY MINISTRY RESOURCE
 
This month's resource is a free eBook: 5 Habits of Highly Missional People by Michael Frost from Exponential.org  (Source: blog.exponential.org) . 

Encouraging your typical church member to live missionally is easier said than done. Most people like the whole missional idea, but aren’t sure what it means for their everyday lives. In this new eBook by internationally recognized missiologist and author Michael Frost, The Five Habits of Highly Missional People: Taking the BELLS Challenge to Fulfill the Mission of God, Frost presents five missional habits that every believer can live out—habits that will send them out into the lives of others, as well as binding them to each other and connecting them more deeply to God.

DOWNLOAD eBOOK/PDF HERE

**For best results highlight link and "right-click" in order to 'save as' or 'save link as' to download PDF.**

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