Church Growth
Charles Stone

3 Lessons I Learned from 75 Cuban Pastors

A few years ago I experienced one of the most difficult yet rewarding weeks of ministry in my 39 years as a pastor. I trained 75 pastor-leaders in Cuba and I will never forget it. The group I trained is pictured below. I spoke 22 times in 5 days, 19 of those times crammed into

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Leadership
Charles Stone

Do Pastors Wield Too Much Power?

Several years ago during our weekend services I realized how much power I wielded as a pastor. I’ve served in vocational ministry over 39 years and I knew intuitively that my position brought with it power over people, but not until then did I understand a unique power my position, and every pastor, carries. When I say

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Church Growth
Charles Stone

7 Holes that Can Swallow Ministry

I have four earned degrees and my toughest by far was an industrial engineering degree from Ga Tech. That degree taught me to think systematically. In addition, I’ve added to my competency tool box many books on church planning plus two churches where I’ve served have engaged in year-long visioning processes with church consultants. So, I’m

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Church Staff
Charles Stone

Are You a Catalytic Leader?

The book, The Starfish and the Spider: The Unstoppable Power of Leadership Organizations by Ori Brafman and Rod Beckstrom, highlights the value of what the authors call, ‘leaderless’ organizations. Although I don’t advocate leaderless organizations, one chapter describes tools that successful non-leader leaders use to catalyze their respective organizations. These qualities also apply to catalytic leaders. I’ve summarized them below. Qualities

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Church Staff
Charles Stone

Reprimand at the Moment or Look for a Teachable Moment?

If you lead people in any way … in a church, a business, or a team, those you lead will screw up, fail, and often disappoint you. When that happens, and that employee or team member needs correction, when is the best time to correct? In the past, when a staff person who reported to me made

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Leadership
Charles Stone

8 Indispensable Qualities Every Leader Needs

Israel’s second king, King David, poses a question about character in Psalm 15.1, “God, what do you look for in those who draw close to You?” He them summarizes the answer in the first part of verse 2 with the words ‘blameless’ and ‘righteous.’ The NASB version uses the word ‘integrity’ for ‘blameless.’ These eight

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Leadership
Charles Stone

A Simple Way to Deal with Criticism

In the heat of the moment when someone criticizes us, it’s easy to react and make things worse. Too often when I’ve received a critical comment at church I’ve gotten defensive or said something in return that I wish I could take back. Has that every happened to you? When that happens, what can we do

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Compassion
Charles Stone

A Counter-intuitive Way to Manage Ministry Pain

Pain and ministry go together like peanut butter and jelly. Once you make a PB&J sandwich, there’s no separating the two ingredients. Neither can we isolate successful ministry from the pain it inevitably brings. I don’t like rejection, disappointment, or criticism. I don’t know any pastor who does. Sometimes, however, I do everything I can

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Body Care
Charles Stone

The Causes and Cure for Leadership Burnout

Leadership is tough. Good leaders understand this and manage their lives and leadership demands to avoid burnout. Sometimes, however, even the best leaders get burned out. If you’re now facing it, examine the cause list below to see what factors may be contributing to it. Then, take one proactive step this week from the cures list to take better

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Uncategorized
Charles Stone

How to to Give Effective Staff Evaluations

For years I’ve used this form below when I perform my twice-annual staff evaluations. I have every staff person complete the form on themselves and attach their goals for the previous and upcoming year.  These documents provide the talking points for the eval. Afterwards, I compile a one page written evaluation I give to them.

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