Leadership Links 10/2/2019

MINISTRY

7 invisible weapons of ministry (David “Gunner” Gunderson): So many of God’s weapons are slow, subtle, almost secretive. Like yeast in bread or water coming to a boil, God loves to work in ways that require extended faith and the wisdom of spiritual foresight. With that in mind, here are seven secret weapons in ministry. Read more at The Gospel Coalition.

The way to greatness (Jared C. Wilson): Jesus here tells his followers not to worry about their position, their power, their respect and renown. God will take care of that. If we will humble ourselves, God will exalt us at the proper time (1 Peter 5:6, James 4:10). Vindication will come. So he promises them thrones (v.30). The way to true greatness, in the meantime, is to get low. Read more at For the Church.


LEADERSHIP

Acedia: What it is and why you should know about it (Harold L. Senkbeil): There’s one area of temptation especially common among clergy that I want to bring to your attention. It is nearly unknown, though its sad results litter the wreckage of many a ministry. I’m talking about something the ancients called acedia. Read more at Gospel-Centered Discipleship.

12 ways we over complicate church leadership and church growth (Chuck Lawless): Often as I work with churches, I’m reminded that church leadership and church growth aren’t typically “rocket science.” We leaders are the ones who make them more difficult than they ought to be. Here are some ways we do that. Read more at ChuckLawless.com.


SPIRITUAL LIFE

Maintaining confidence in the process (Tim Challies): In all of the Christian life, we need to have confidence in the process and we need to maintain confidence in the process. We need to believe that God really does work and that he really does work over time. Too often we overestimate the growth we can gain in a week, but underestimate the growth we can gain in a year. Then we overestimate what God will do in us over a year, but underestimate what God will accomplish in us through a lifetime of submitting ourselves to his process, to his great means of sanctification. Though it’s right to be harsh with our sin, it’s also right to be patient with our growth. Read more at Challies.


CHURCH

Your church needs you to sing (Nick Aufenkamp): Your brothers and sisters in your local church need you. They need you to show up. They need you to be engaged. And, perhaps more than many of us realize, they need you to sing…I want you to hear that your church suffers when your voice is silent. Read more at Desiring God.

10 fears for the American Church (Thom Rainer): I spend a lot of time on the mission field working with missionaries. I LOVE the local church wherever it is, but I fear more for the American church every time I go overseas. Here are some of my fears. Read more at ThomRainer.com.

One of the most revealing questions to ask your church (Sam Rainer): Some of the best learning experiences as a leader come when you ask a good question and listen. After twenty years of researching churches, I’ve found one question more than any other seems to get people talking: “What gets your church most excited?” Or if you want a personal perspective, “What gets you most excited about your church?” Read more at SamRainer.com.


PREACHING

Two kinds of preaching that seem expositional but really aren’t (Matthew T. Martens): Let’s be more specific. Two kinds of preaching are often confused with expository preaching because of a superficial resemblance: “sequential preaching” and “observational preaching.” We’ll discuss them below. We pray that this discussion will be edifying to preachers as you seek to feed your flocks. Read more at 9 Marks.

Unforeseen benefits of expository preaching (Skylar Spradlin): I recently finished preaching through the gospel of Luke in three and a half years. That is over 36 months and a little more than 150 sermons. Here are the unforeseen benefits that our church experienced as a result of this long-haul look at Luke’s Gospel that I hope will encourage you in your own expository preaching. Read more at For the Church.


THE GOSPEL

Your gospel keeps people from God: 10 appeals to prosperity preachers (John Piper with Scott Hubbard): What shall we say about the prosperity gospel? The first thing we should say about the prosperity gospel is that wealthy Westerners are probably as guilty of its excesses as are the poor in the Global South. The difference is that the poor don’t have wealth and want it, while the rich have it, expect to keep it, and get angry if God takes it. Both have their hearts set on prosperity. Read more at Desiring God.


BIBLE INSIGHTS

Context matters: He who began a good work in you (Peter Krol): Perhaps you’ve heard that the one who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ (Phil 1:6). Perhaps this promise has encouraged you to press on in the Christian life, maturing and becoming more like Jesus day by day. And while this could certainly be part of Paul’s intended meaning in this verse, perhaps there is something more in the context we tend to miss. Read more at Knowable Word.