Leadership Paradox #2: Spontaneity or Planned

A couple days ago I suggested a leadership paradox leaders face: trust God or trust others? Although both Ezra and Nehemiah were both men who trusted God, each took a different route in a leadership decision. Similarly, leaders face another paradox. Do I act upon the Spirit’s promptings to make a decision or should I

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What I Learned from a Sour Leadership Meeting about Planning

Every year our staff takes an overnite retreat in September to map out plans for the next year. Our process is relatively simple. The elders determine the 2-3 broad objectives for the coming year. Then we translate these into strategies and then involve our ministry teams in developing the tactics. Sounds simple enough, doesn’t it?

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Incredible Quote From Ravi Zacharias

Heard this on a recent Ravi podcast. Incredible. “Jesus Christ continually contradicts us in the way we experience ourselves as alive…. and compels us to radically redefine what we mean by life. He encountered us the way we encountered the disciples on easter sunday. They were the ones marked out for death. Those who survived

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Leadership
Charles Stone

5 Tips for a Personal Planning Retreat

My undergrad degree is industrial engineering. So, planning is second nature for me. As a busy pastor, I’ve found that I can never get adequate long-term planning done unless I carve out regular extended times away, by myself, away from the office. Here are a few tips I suggest. Schedule 3-4 personal planning times each

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6 Learnings from Sunday’s Text Messaging Sermon

This past Sunday our church used the sermon time to answer questions from the congregation. We received the questions via text messaging from attendees cell  phones. In two services we got over 100 questions. Three pastors were on stage to answer questions plus one who moderated it and got the messages off his laptop. This

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The Churro Girl’s Sad Eyes

The sign read Elephant ears, Churros, Funnel cakes. I had just finished a burger and fries and my wife Sherryl and I were strolling along Navy Pier on Lake Michigan when I noticed the sign. It had been years since I had eaten one of those fried “looks like a serrated wooden dowel with sand

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God on a Baseball Diamond

I’m working on a series on the Beatitudes called Jesus Uncensored: Words of Hope in Uncertain Times. I found this touching story in my file. I’m not sure where it came from, but it beautifully pictures how God showed up one day on a baseball diamond. Having a daughter who never got to enjoy many things

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When Passion Quashes Courtesy

Today I did something I’ve done only once before, I publicly demonstrated against an issue about which I feel very passionate. I attended a rally in the small town of Batavia, IL with about 100 other people directly in front of my congressman’s office, Rep. Bill Foster. We were there wanting to speak to him

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Are We Trying to OutTweet Others?

I’m new to Twitter but really enjoy it. In 140 characters or less I can say something I hope is meaningful, funny, or encouraging. I’ve also  linked Twitter  to my Facebook so that my tweets appear there as well. It’s always cool to see feedback from a tweet. I follow several church leaders and writers

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Compassion Illustrated…you will need tissues for this one

My daughter, one of the most gifted writers I know, served two weeks in Thailand last year with her husband, Charlie. They served those caught in sex trafficking there. She posted something on her Facebook one morning that brought me to tears. As you read it let your heart be touched. _______ I found him

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