One of the Most Important Ministry Skills That Nobody Talks About

What’s the most important skill you need to be successful in ministry? Knowing how to run a good meeting.

Ok, that’s not really true. Many other things matter more (a lot more!). But, running a good meeting still matters.  And more than you think.

Even those who’ve only been in ministry a short time know that meetings dominate your weekly schedule.  Sometimes, it seems that more than half your week is spent in some sort of meeting.  During meals. Over coffee. In a conference room. With the elders. With ministry leaders. With support staff.

And here’s the other reality we all know. Meetings vary widely in their effectiveness. Some meetings

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How to Make People Feel “Seen” Rather than “Watched”

As the tributes to Tim Keller continue to pour in, I was struck by a comment my wife Melissa made recently in a podcast with Collin Hansen. As they discussed Tim’s ministry, she made the observation that Tim had the ability to make a person feel ‘seen’ rather than ‘watched’ (starting at 19:33).

I thought that insight was so profound, and so critical for ministry, that I wanted to offer my own reflections on it. In fact, I think the “see” vs. “watch” framework can be a shorthand way to capture two very different approaches to ministry. So, here are a few diagnostic questions for Christian leaders (myself included) …

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My Tribute to Tim Keller

By now, you have heard the sad news. Tim Keller has just passed away.

I still remember the first time I heard a Tim Keller sermon. It was the mid-90’s, and I happened to be in New York City. Having just graduated from seminary, I had heard all the buzz about this new pastor in Manhattan who had (incredibly) built a thriving, growing church in the midst of one of the world’s most liberal cities. Since it was a Sunday, I figured I would go have a listen.

The church was meeting in an auditorium (part of a local college, if I remember). The stage was very plain, with a …

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Here’s Why I Wrote My New Book, “Bully Pulpit”

 

Since the release of my new book, Bully Pulpit: Confronting the Problem of Spiritual Abuse in the Church (Zondervan, 2022), I have done a ton of podcasts. Some of the most enjoyable have been with Collin Hansen at Gospelbound podcast, Warren Cole Smith at World Magazine, and Sean McDowell and Scott Rae at Think Biblically podcast.

But in nearly all these podcasts, the first question I get is: “Why in the world did you, as a NT scholar, write a book about spiritual abuse?”  And that’s a fair question. Nearly all my prior publications have been fairly academic and mostly on text/canon issues.

So, here’s a video giving …

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A Forgotten Fact about the Earliest Christian Movement

The lovable Disney film Moana, tells the story of a young girl who lives on a Polynesian island and is the daughter of the chief. Like many fathers, the chief is overly protective of his daughter, and also of the people he rules.

As a result, the people of Moana’s village are in a bit of a rut. They are rather uninspired and somewhat in-grown, not sure of their purpose or destiny. And Moana feels the same unrest. The core of the movie catalogs her struggle to discover her identity and calling.

But here’s the key. While she is curious about what her future should be, her breakthrough comes …

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