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Showing posts from September, 2004

Live for the Long Haul

You were designed to live for the long haul!

With that in mind, it's vital to keep the big picture in mind. Most of us get so caught up in the minutia of the moment, that we forget to look beyond our current circumstance.

Most of today's pressure points aren't really that important in light of the bigger scheme of things.

The next time you're worked up about something, ask this question, "Will it really matter ten years from now?"

That question will put things in perspective for you.

A long haul life requires some long range thinking.

What are you willing to sacrifice today for a greater gain tomorrow?

What habits today will destroy your health and/or relationships tomorrow?

If you continue in the same direction and at the same pace as you are going today, where will that lead you tomorrow?

If your money management patterns today continue, what will your financial picture be tomorrow?

What does your spiritual condition today say about your spiritual direc…

Ministerial Etiquette

From my years of ministry, and also being raised in the home of a very good pastor, I have developed the following rules of ministerial etiquette:

Phone:
Return all phone messages. (The only exception may be an out of town salesperson from a mega-corporation – but even then you have to be careful.)

Return all phone messages within 24 hours.


Mail:
Answer all letters within a week.
Be sure to send a thank you card for every gift. (vocal thanks is not enough)


E-Mail:

Reply to all personal e-mails within 24 hours.
No need to reply to forwards – but it might still be good, if you know the person sent it to you specifically.
Never correct or rebuke via e-mail. If it CAN be taken wrong, it WILL!
If it is a group e-mail which is a means of communication about something coming up, or something that needs to be addressed (ie. Staff memo) it is best to reply – so the sender knows you have received the info.

Appointments:

Always keep your appointments with people. It is a major violation to miss it.…

Facing the Storm

A Wyoming cowboy was once asked what was the greatest lesson he learned from his experiences of ranching.

"The Herefords taught me one of life's most important lessons," he replied. "We used to breed cattle for a living, but the winter storms would come and kill 'em off. It would take a terrible toll on the herd.

"Time and time again, after a cold winter storm, we'd find most of our cattle piled up against the fences, dead as doornails!

"They would turn their backs to the icy wind, and slowly drift downward until the fences stopped them. There, they just piled up and died."

"But the Herefords were different than that," he continued. "They would head straight into the wind and slowly walk the other way until they came to the upper boundary fence where they stood, facing the storm.

"We always found our Herefords alive and well. They saved their hides by facing the storm!"

When the storms of life are raging, our nat…

The Mega-Watt Church

The Megachurch has received a lot of attention in recent years -- and that's not bad. Huge, growing congregations such as Willow Creek, Saddleback, Fellowship Church and Mars Hill serve as an inspiration to the rest of us.

However, Willow Creek has more attendees on a weekend than the entire population of Sawyer County. Sometimes, it's difficult to translate what's happening in the larger context into rural/small town communities.

Considering where we live, Hayward Wesleyan is a large and thriving congregation (percentage-wise, we're much bigger than Willow Creek!)-- but, demographically, it is difficut to imagine ever becoming a "mega-church" (Megachurches are defined as having more than 2000 in worship attendance.)

I'm not really interested in developing a "megachurch" but I am absolutely dedicated to developing a Mega-Watt Church!

"Mega-Wattage" is not determined by the size of congregation or community. (In fact, some megachur…