planning tools
Church Growth
Charles Stone

7 Benefits of an Often Overlooked Planning Tool: the Pre-mortem

Jesus recognized the role good planning plays in life and ministry. He said, Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Will he not first sit down and estimate the cost to see if he has enough money to complete it? (Luke 14.28) Unfortunately, lack of planning often torpedoes otherwise good ministry ideas. Scientist Gary Klein, author of

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Leadership
Charles Stone

5 Ways to Deepen Your Integrity

Daniel and his three friends are some of my favorite bible characters. They modeled what it means to live a life of integrity. Several years ago James Patterson and Peter Kim authored the book, The Day America told the Truth. They conducted a survey by asking Americans what they would be willing to do for 10 million

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change managemenet
Charles Stone

6 Tips to Keeping New Year’s Resolutions

Every January millions make new year’s resolutions. The top ones include lose weight, quit smoking, use money more wisely, and spend more time with friends. Unfortunately, 50% never keep their resolution for more than 6 months and only 10% make it through the year. So, should we avoid setting resolutions (goals) for the new year because

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Leadership
Charles Stone

How a Leader’s Brain Works, Part 2

In my previous post I explained how two basic systems operate in a leader’s brain. In today’s post I give an example to illustrate how this process might work in real life. Here’s an excerpt, however, to bring you up to speed. “The brain’s overall operational process incorporates two sub-processes: the X-system, from the ‘x’ in

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Leadership
Charles Stone

How a Leader’s Brain Works, Part 1

In this two-part post on how a leader’s brain works (part 2 follows later this week), I describe how two fundamental brain processes that affect leadership. First, we can view the brain functioning with an overarching organizational principle and a fundamental operational process. Dr. Evian Gordon, a neuroscientist, developed what he calls the Integrate Model

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emotional pain
Charles Stone

When Pastors Misplace their Identity: 10 Probing Questions

“No one is more influential in your life than you are, because no one talks to you more than you do.” When I heard this quote by Paul Tripp while I listened to his book Dangerous Calling: Confronting the Unique Challenges of Pastoral Ministry it caused me to pause and reflect. He’s right. No one talks to

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change managemenet
Charles Stone

Familiarity Blindness in your Church: 7 Ways to Cure It

Familiarity blindness is a malady that infects us all. It happens when we become so familiar with something that we no longer consciously see it. In fact, the brain does this all the time so it doesn’t have to work as hard. If you drive to church or work the same route each time, you

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change managemenet
Charles Stone

5 Brain Biases that Limit Leaders

Leaders would like to think that they lead in unbiased ways. However that’s easier said than done. The fall of man affected every part of who we are, including our thinking. Brain biases abound. A Google search reveals almost 200 different biases. Among those 200, what brain biases poses the greatest threat to effective leadership? In this post I

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emotional pain
Charles Stone

15 Ways You can Encourage Your Pastor

When I wrote my second book 5 Ministry Killers and How to Defeat Them, I surveyed over 2,000 pastors through LifeWay Research and through an online survey through Christianity Today. In the CT survey, I asked pastors to share specific ways someone in their congregation ministered to them. I probed how people could (and did) encourage them.

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A Science-based Sermon Note Taking Template

I invest 15-20 hours each week to prepare a Sunday sermon. If you’re a pastor, I’m sure you invest similar time. Have you ever wondered, though, how much of your sermons really stick in your listeners’ minds to help them become spiritually transformed? I have, many times. As I’m learning more about how God fashioned our brain to work in learning

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