In Essentials, Unity; In Nonessentials, Liberty; In All Things, Love.
Reinvigorate your ministry as you help others. Author Dr. Karen Scheib says that to experience a new sense of freedom in caring for others, we must first help them attend to their story and connect their story with others and God. But to do so effectively, we must be willing to revision our own story, so that we can exemplify Christian happiness and offer others a path toward fulfillment. As Scheib points out, Christian flourishing is less a destination than a journey and rarely a direct route.
Prepare your church for take-offA majority of churches are grounded - shrinking in membership and resources, unsure how to make the changes needed to be vital again. Pastor and pilot Cameron Trimble has helped hundreds of congregations get airborne again, and Piloting Church: Helping Your Congregation Take Flight guides you through the steps to getting your congregation out of the maintenance hangar and back into the skies. Using piloting as an engaging framework for organizational transformation, Trimble addresses the process of planning, executing, and completing a church revitalization project in 10 easy-to-read chapters:· Decide You Want to Fly· What Kind of Pilot Will You Be?· The Fundamentals of Flight· Your Flight Crew· Charting Your Course· Preflight Checklist· Funding Your Flying Habit· Managing Comms· Mayday Moments· Making a Successful LandingTrimble is the executive director and CEO of the Center for Progressive Renewal (CPR) and has years of experience helping to start new congregations and revitalize older congregations. Piloting Church reflects her learnings as a congregational consultant and national faith leader. Having worked with twelve denominational partners and their congregations, she believes the Church's best days are ahead.
If "these are the times that test men's souls," never more than for the leader's ability to think clearly, to be present calmly, and to challenge effectively. It's a time when leaders cannot be as anxious as those they serve; otherwise, the system is leaderless. Anxiety flows down like water from a leaky pipe. To lead effectively we must understand the impact of powerful emotional forces on people's behavior, especially in anxious times. Uproar: Calm Leadership in Anxious Times helps leaders understand the powerful impact that emotional processes have on the people they lead. Peter Steinke, bestselling author of Congregational Leadership in Anxious Times draws on decades of work on system conflict and personal experiences to share real stories of challenges leaders have faced and how understanding the power of emotions has dramatically influenced their success. In this book, readers will observe important leadership characteristics such as separating oneself from the surrounding anxiety, making decisions based on principle and not instinct, taking responsibility for one's own emotional being, staying connected to others including those who disagree with you, being a non-anxious presence, focusing on emotional processes rather than the symptoms they produce, knowing people naturally influence one another, and recognizing leader and follower as complements. At the end of each chapter, there is a Leader's Notebook, a short section to illustrate, enrich or engage your thinking about leadership. As Steinke suggests, being anxious causes you to lose perspective, and leaders do their best thinking when they are not overly stressed and can think about options, doing their best work when they work on themselves. So where are you in your leadership journey? No matter where you are--beginning, middle or end-- this book will be one the most significant leadership books you'll read.
When the unexpected comes and you can't find the words to pray, 99 Prayers Your Church Needs (But Doesn't Know It Yet) will provide the starting point that will help lead you to the prayer your congregation or pastor needs. From prayers for a family who has lost a loved one to addiction, to a prayer for the new pastor in a new congregation, these 99 prayers will help you respond to a multitude of unexpected prayer requests -- whether celebratory or grieving, or somewhere in between -- in the course of your congregation's life.
As we make our way into the twenty-first century, many Christians are looking for an expression of discipleship that speaks meaningfully to our time, a faith yearning that is at once personally intimate and relevant and that grows out of and nurtures authentic Christian community.
The Pilgrim's Compass shepherds readers through a metaphorical pilgrimage to consider one's life a journey for faith formation. Using this book as a guide to help Christians consider their journey as they walk through the four stages of intentional faithfulness, disciples will encounter God, wrestle with God, be wounded as will God, and be reborn as a new person with a new name. The Pilgrim's Compass encourages individuals to embrace the ancient practice of pilgrimage both as metaphor for the daily walk of discipleship and as an intentional journey of faith, which uses prayerful travel to assist an inner transformation.
The renowned and beloved New York Times bestselling author of An Altar in the World and Learning to Walk in the Dark recounts her moving discoveries of finding the sacred in unexpected places while teaching the world’s religions to undergraduates in rural Georgia, revealing how God delights in confounding our expectations.
Barbara Brown Taylor continues her spiritual journey begun in Leaving Church of finding out what the world looks like after taking off her clergy collar. In Holy Envy, she contemplates the myriad ways other people and traditions encounter the Transcendent, both by digging deeper into those traditions herself and by seeing them through her students’ eyes as she sets off with them on field trips to monasteries, temples, and mosques.
Troubled and inspired by what she learns, Taylor returns to her own tradition for guidance, finding new meaning in old teachings that have too often been used to exclude religious strangers instead of embracing the divine challenges they present. Re-imagining some central stories from the religion she knows best, she takes heart in how often God chooses outsiders to teach insiders how out-of-bounds God really is.
Throughout Holy Envy, Taylor weaves together stories from the classroom with reflections on how her own spiritual journey has been complicated and renewed by connecting with people of other traditions—even those whose truths are quite different from hers. The one constant in her odyssey is the sense that God is the one calling her to disown her version of God—a change that ultimately enriches her faith in other human beings and in God.
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