The Internet's Best Practices for Ministry

Welcome to our site. Our mission and dedication is to equip leaders for innovative ministry. Look. Explore. Share.

Welcoming Guests and First Impressions

The sermon starts in the parking lot, and the impression you make for your guests on Sunday morning during the first 10 minutes will be indelible.

Technology and The Church

Leveraging technology for ministry can be an incredible asset and blessing. But it can also be fraught with problems and pitfalls. Learn how to use tech well.

Vision and Leadership

Our God longs for leaders to request of Him to do that which they cannot. Faith filled vision is a key and essential ingredient for ministry.

Preaching and Communication

You know and understand how challenging it is to communicate. It is hard to get and capture people's attention. Learn how to communicate effectively.

Creativity and Innovation

Being creative means asking the right questions and making new associations. Discover new and creative ideas.

Stop The Presses!


The convergence of old media and new media happened last week, when I was interviewed by a reporter, Molly Rossiter from the Gazette newspaper out of Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

Molly wanted to interview me about the intersection of Social Media and the Church

You can find the print article HERE, on the Gazette's "new media" site.

The Three Questions


Here are the three questions that I ask myself everyday. I have these on my computer desktop and so I can review them in order to orient me for the rest of the work day. These are questions for not only me, individually, but also for the teams that I may be leading.

1) What did I accomplish yesterday? How did I help the team succeed yesterday?

2) What do I need to accomplish today? How will I help the team succeed today?

3) Is there anything blocking me from getting the work done? Am I doing anything that is blocking the team from getting their work done?



Free Leadership E-Book

The folks at Exponential Network have recently provided a wonderful resource. They sifted through thousands of blog posts from some great church leaders and compiled an e-book of the best of the best. The e-book contains articles authored by...

Ben Arment
Mark Batterson
Chris Elrod
Dave Ferguson
Mike Foster
Seth Godin
Craig Groeschel
Alan Hirsch
Scott Hodge
Michael Hyatt
Gary Lamb
Brad Lomenick
and more.....

You can get your free PDF copy right here... Download Leadership-learnings

(ht: Tim Stevens)

Top 100 Leadership Blogs


Thank you Best Universities Website for listing Ministry Best Practices as one of the Top 100 Leadership Blogs.

Organize Your Life Through Your Phone



If you are like me, I live by my phone. I use it to check email, my calendar, the web and it has all my contacts. My daily productivity and organization happens through my phone. Also in my work, I am in the car a lot and I need to access and contribute information via the phone while driving. Unfortunately, texting and writing emails or adding events to my calendar while driving is terribly unsafe.

In order to do this in the past safely and effectively, I have used Jott.com - a voice recognition application. Jott.com was my most used application, in fact, I had listed Jott as one of my most used applications in the past. However, they have slowly transitioned from having all of their features for free to offering no features for free today. Because of this, I've needed to find other options.

Therefore, I have been looking for other free solutions and in the process have come across Dial2Do - and I love this new app.

"Dial2Do is a phone-service for drivers. It lets you send text messages, emails, reminders and access lots of internet services hands-free, by just phoning a number and speaking. Think of it as a kind of personal assistant that you can phone while you are on the move to get things done."

How Does it Work?

Signup at Dial2Do.com and we'll give you the phone number to call. Then for example, when you are driving or even walking along, you call that number and say ''reminder', and what you want to be reminded of. We'll convert what you say into text and email it to you so you don't forget. For other things, just say what you want to do 'email', 'listen to email', 'text', 'calendar' and so on.

They have about 30 things you can do with Dial2Do and the list is getting longer. You can completely personalize the list and the way the various services work. You can use Dial2Do to phone in your expenses, add events to your calendar, Twitter updates, listening to sports updates and more.


Leadership Lessons From Mr. Rogers


About a month ago, a friend gave me a little book called, I'm Proud of You, My friendship with Fred Rogers by Tim Madigan.

Granted, the book isn't a leadership book in the traditional sense. This book doesn't instruct you how to become a high impact leader, visionary and change agent all wrapped up into one Type A package. Rather it is a book about a friendship. It about a friendship between a newspaper writer and a a children's television icon, Mr. Rodgers.

What is so compelling about this book is way Fred was able to generously give away his life to a man he hardly knew. But that initial genuine investment become a deep abiding friendship over many years. And their friendship ignited all because Fred was able to say to Tim, "I'm Proud of You" - words that Tim never received from his own dad.

I'm Proud of You, is a beautiful portrait of spiritual leadership. Fred Rogers was a man so secure in who he was that he had deep resources of love, affection and affirmation. Those resources he was then able to give away to so many people, Tim being just one of many recipients.

Pastors and ministry leaders would learn a lot from this special man, Fred Rogers - who not only brought joy into the lives of hundreds of thousands of children, but also to one man, all because he uttered the words, "I'm Proud of You".

Why Should Your Church Invest In Social Media?


Sure Social Media and Networks, like Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and Twitter etc.., have a big "gee-whiz" factor. Everybody is hopping on the bandwagon. People are telling you that if you and your church don't get connected to this new media that you're going to get left behind and miss out.

But there has got to be a more compelling reason for a church, ministry or non-profit to sign on to these social media applications than "everybody else is doing it."

The question you have to ask concerning your organization is, "Why get on board and get involved with Social Media?"

The answer to that question comes from business -they call it ROI, Return On Investment. What is the ROI of Social Media for ministry and your church? In this post, I don't want to address the quantitative aspect of ROI, but rather the qualitative.

How does social media improve the quality of ministry and help move the church's objectives forward?

I believe there needs to be 3 ROI Quality Goals and Objectives for Social Media

1. Communication
2. Connecting
3. Call to Action

Let me break these down:

1. Communication
- Social Media must help the church effectively and efficiently communicate it's message. Certainly Social Media isn't the only medium. A church can communicate to it's people on the Sunday morning platform, bulletins, mailings, phone calls, emails, face-to-face conversations, television, radio etc... Social Media, though, becomes just another effective tool to add to the church's communication mosaic. But Social Media has some unique benefits all it's own in effectively communicating:

  • - it's easy and effortless, it doesn't take much money or manpower to implement or use it.
  • - it's ubiquitous, since it is so available and pervasive it isn't hard for people to miss the message.
  • - it's variety, social media takes many different forms, words, audio and image.
  • - it's viral, the beauty of social media is that your message can expand well beyond it's intended audience - therefore exposing and introducing new people to your cause and community.

2. Connecting - Social Media must connect your community. Unlike communication which most often pushes information in a "one-way" direction, connecting must create a conversation. You must ask, Will Social Media create conversation within the community? Are people able to talk to you the minister/ministry team leader? Can they talk to one another? Also, part of the conversation involves other key elements:


  • - contribute, can others contribute in helpful and meaningful ways to the conversation? Are they even able to shape the conversation?
  • - collaborate, does your social media allow the benefits from the collective hive of experience, skills and knowledge from your community?

3. Call to Action - Social Media must prompt people to do something. It can't be passive. Some of the calls to ACTION might include:

  • - Go, are you asking someone to go and serve others in some way?
  • - Give, are you asking someone to give either of their time or financially to the cause?
  • - Pray, are you calling people to act in concerted and persevering prayer?
  • -Mobilize, are you asking people to spread the message of the cause to their friends and networks?

So as you think about Social Media for your church, ministry or non-profit, you must ask yourself....How will this new Social Media "thing" help our church, ministry or organization Communicate, Connect our Community, and Call People to Action?

If you have a clear answer to that question, then most definitely your church should invest in Social Media.



How To Help Those In Your Church Navigate Troubled Economic Waters




It doesn't matter what part of the country you may live in -everybody and every place is facing the strain of the current economic situation. And if you are a ministry leader or a pastor, your newest and biggest challenge is to help and care for those in your church to be able to navigate through these uncertain times.

What are the resources out there to assist the people in your church and those in your community? Believe it or not, there is a ton of stuff available, and most of it free. In the course of my own personal transition, I have come across a wealth of valuable resources to assist those either struggling financially or in a job transition.

Here are some of the things that I have discovered:

Personal Networking and Support

Crossroads Career Network
Crossroads is a national Career Ministry and Network that is in churches throughout the country. This ministry partners with local churches, providing resources and networking to help those going through a job transition. Plus, they have a ton of resources on their website as well as job postings.

Christ Centered Career Groups (C3G)

C3G is one of the best networking groups I have been a part of. The idea is that during a job transition, you shouldn't go it alone. C3G provides real networking and support while going through a job transition.

Local Church Job and Career Ministries
Now more than ever, churches are starting their own career ministries. Maybe they are partnering with Crossroads or perhaps they are going it alone. Regardless, you want to check your area for these opportunities. In the Atlanta area, there are more groups out there, then there would be time to attend. Most of the larger churches are the ones starting these ministries because of the volume of people and resources at their disposal. Many of these church based ministries provide networking, resume coaching, prayer and helpful seminars and training.


Social Networking

Linkedin
If you are not using Linkedin, you need to. LinkedIn is the premiere Social Network for business and working professionals. If you have a LinkedIn account, but haven't done much with it, you need to spend some time discovering more of what this tool can do for you. Linkedin is a powerful networking tool that you can effectively leverage during your job transition. If you have any questions on how to use Linkedin, feel free to drop me an email, I would be glad to help.

Job Sites and Experts on Twitter. You can find companies now posting jobs on Twitter, for example:
http://twitter.com/attjobs
http://twitter.com/JobsatIntel
http://twitter.com/chicagowebjobs
http://twitter.com/seojobs

Also Twitter is being used to be a great aggregator of jobs and postings:
http://www.jobfeedr.com/ (this site was done when I last checked, I hope that interruption in service is only temporary)

Also check out Alison Doyle's Top Job Sites and Career Experts on Twitter. This is a great list of Twitter resources to assist you in your job search.

You also want to check out powerful job search engines such as Indeed.com

Financial and Business Coaching

Score.org - Perhaps your next move is to start your own business, or maybe you need help with your current one - you definitely want to check out SCORE. SCORE has 389 chapters throughout the United States with 10,500 volunteers nationwide. Both working and retired executives and business owners donate time and expertise as business counselors. SCORE is a great source of free and confidential small business advice for entrepreneurs.

Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University - Financial Peace University is a life-changing program that teaches you how to make the right decisions with your money. You'll be empowered with the practical skills and confidence needed to achieve your financial goals and experience true financial peace!

Rethink Money - Rethink money provides proven financial coaching based on scripture that will help you and people in your church win financially, therefore becoming more like Jesus Christ! It helps people become a success with their finances.


What tools or resources can you add? What have you found to be helpful during this time?

7 Habits Of Highly Defective People


This list is borrowed in part from John Maxwell with a little addition from me...

Defective People...

• They have a losing attitude. People generally get whatever they expect out of life. Life can become a self-fulfilling prophecy. If you expect the worst, and that’s most likely what you’ll get.

• They quit growing. People are what they are, no change, no growth. Every day provides an opportunity and challenge to learn, grow and transform. If you are exactly the same person tomorrow that you were today, then you are not living.

• They have no game plan for life. As William Feather, author of The Business of Life says, “There are two kinds of failures: Those who thought and never did, and those who did and never thought.”

• They are unwilling to change. Some people would rather cling to what they have rather than embrace what might be better because they are afraid of getting something worse. Change is inevitable in life, resist it and you will be perpetually frustrated.

• They fail in relationships with others. People who cannot get along with others will never get ahead in life.

• They are not willing to pay the price for success. The road to success is uphill all the way. Anyone who wants to accomplish much must sacrifice much and work hard. There is no substitute.

• They are unwilling to risk. The only way to avoid risk is to do nothing, and that stifles growth and avoids opportunity. Be willing to risk, fail if necessary, learn and then risk again.

As a leader you must battle against those defective attitudes and behaviors. You must lead from a strong, Spirit-filled core -living in the assurance that "in Christ" you are fully loved and accepted. In Christ, there is no "real" failure. In Christ, there is real power to change. In Christ, there is real power to love others.