April Leadership Share

RESOURCE: “Designing Your Ideal Week”

This month’s resource share comes from a from Michael Hyatt, an author, speaker, podcaster, and blogger in the realm of leadership.

Disclaimer: Michael Hyatt appears to be “somewhat Christian” but I do not know much about him beyond that.  I read Hyatt for leadership and spit out the seeds.  I trust you can do the same.

I first came across the idea of “designing your ideal week” when I was struggling to figure out how best to spend my time as a church planter.  Hyatt’s counsel was helpful in getting a handle on how to “schedule” certain priorities and keep things from getting totally out of control.

Now as Christians, we must always be led by the Spirit and not simply subscribe to the world’s ideology of "control your calendar lest your calendar control you’ or ‘tell your time where to go’; however, it also behooves us to think critically and deliberately about how our time does get spent.  

  • What are my priorities?  
  • What things do I need to make sure happen (such as creating time for communing with God through habits like Bible reading and prayer or ensuring that exercise is a part of my life).  
  • How do I know how to say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to good opportunities as they come along.
  • If I’m serving in the local church in various roles, how much time does that actually consume and do I have the margin to say ‘yes’ to all I’ve said ‘yes’ to?  
  • Am I ministering to my family well?  
  • Am I planning for sabbath rest?

This is where exploring some of the concepts that Hyatt talks about in his blog post “How to Better Control Your Time by Designing Your Ideal Week” can be helpful.  

Whether you have a super flexible schedule, or whether you have some big rocks on your calendar (like your day job), it’s still helpful to think through how you are spending your mornings, evenings, weekends, lunches, etc.

At the end of the day, what gets scheduled gets done and sometimes, not walking through an exercise like this becomes an excuse for having an out of control life where you’ve said yes to too many things without prayerfully (and deliberately) counting the cost first.  

Two final words: Don’t shy away from this if calendaring-out your life seems too restrictive.  But also, don’t allow your calendar to become a god you must bow to.  Maybe a better way to think about this would be in terms of being deliberate and intentional, yet flexible.  Think in terms of entering the tension more so than solving the riddle.

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GET IT:

Below is a link to the blog post on Michael Hyatt’s site:

“How to Better Control Your Time by Designing Your Ideal Week”

Why You Should Buy ' Gospel Eldership' by My Friend Bob Thune

I first met Bob Thune in 2007, while living in St. Louis and discerning a call to move back to Lincoln, Nebraska and plant a church.  Since that time, Bob has been my lead church planting assessor with Acts 29 and served on the External Advisory Board for 2 Pillars Church in the early days of planting.  He's also been my coach, my friend, and brother and walked alongside me while I raised up and installed the first two additional elders at 2 Pillars Church—helping even to assess these men for the office of elder.

His new book, Gospel Eldership: Equipping a New Generation of Servant Leaders drops today and if you’re a church leader looking to train and equip godly, biblical, gospel-formed and gospel-shepherding elders, you should pick up a copy of it.

I’ve personally benefited from early, unpublished revisions of this work and know the body of 2 Pillars Church will continue to benefit from this now published edition for years to come.

Below is a video of Bob talking a little more about the book, but I’d also encourage you to check out what others are saying about this work and consider taking advantage of some of the sick deals the publisher is offering right now (buy 5 at less than $9/piece - compared with Amazon’s $15 price tag).

Go get it.

 

 

Consider the Work of God

This Sunday I'll be preaching from Ecclesiastes 6:10-7:14.  As we've been working through this series at 2 Pillars Near South, one of my favorite resources has been Zack Eswine's excellent work from The Gospel According to the Old Testament commentary series (P&R Publishing).

The below is an excerpt from his words on the passage I'll be preaching this Sunday.  As a preacher, sometimes you come across stuff that is written too well to rip off, tweak, and make your own... and yet simultaneously too good to not pass along to others.  

Eswine is masterful in his prose and I encourage you to read this slowly and ponder what it means to "consider the work of God" in this life, under the sun:

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"Daily life under the sun is infested with the loveless schemes of human beings.  The character and purposes of God shine like an eclipsed sun, radiating light and heat and hidden from view by what looks like dark shadow and feels like cold.

Beneath the shadows, what do you do? Start admitting your inabilities and instead throw your thoughts and affections in God’s direction.  You cannot fix most of what is broken.  Unlike mechanical parts and unglued wood, the crooked parts of the people, the places, and the circumstances that you will encounter today are beyond your ability to repair.  In contrast, the work of God constantly shows us that broken bones can dance again in him.  For this reason, your main task each day is to learn how to contemplate each thing you experience in light of who God is and what God does.  The Preacher says it this way: “Consider the work of God: who can make straight what he has made crooked?” (Eccl. 7:13).  “Consider” means pay attention.  You will want to lose focus.  Or you will want to pay all of your attention to the works of men and women—scouring these human works beneath the dark and the shadow for a power big enough to make straight what breaks you and your neighbors.  You can try this.  God will let you.  But it won’t ultimately help you.  Learn to pay attention to God.  Turn your mediations to his work.  Take your crooked things and set them in his presence."

-Zack Eswine, Recovering Eden: The Gospel According to Ecclesiastes, p188-189

March Resource Share

This is the second installment of my monthly resource share for leaders.  This is something I'm doing internal to 2 Pillars Church with our leaders, but then post it here as well for wider dissemination.  If you missed last month’s post, you can snag that HERE.

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RESOURCE: Acts 29 Fall 2015 Heartland Regional Content

This month’s resource share comes from an Acts 29 Heartland Regional gathering that Pastor Adam and I participated in last fall.  The speaker is Kevin Cawley from Redeemer Fellowship in Kansas City.  Kevin is one of the three regional co-directors for the Heartland Region of Acts 29.

There are three talks here in video format, all of varying length.  I strongly encourage you to watch all three (there is a strong cumulative and crescendo effect to the three together).  

Through these talks, Kevin paints a picture for what it looks like for us, as leaders, to be cultivate a prayerful, prophetic presence.  He also helps to raise the bar for our self-awareness and how our leadership is received by others.  Finally, in the last talk, he makes a really strong point that what a leader is really called to is to create a context (or a container) where true transformation can happen.

I’ve been ruminating on these ideas a lot since I originally sat under this teaching back in October and gladly invite you into ruminating as well.

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GET IT:

The three videos are embedded below.  You can also find them on Vimeo via the links below.

Vimeo Links:

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Enjoy!

 

I Love the Near South

I live and pastor a church in the Near South Neighborhood of Lincoln.  Last fall I got to be part of helping organize an aerial video promo for my neighborhood through my involvement as a Near South Neighborhood Association board member. 

Well, the video is finally done and I’ve linked it below.  Watch and enjoy and praise God for the beauty of “place.”