Tag Archives: Leadership

Mission Drift and how to Avoid It.

Mission Drift

“In its simplest form, Mission True organizations know why they exist and protect their core at all costs. They remain faithful to what they believe God has entrusted them to do. They define what is immutable: their values and purposes, their DNA, their heart and soul.” (p. 27)

Mission Drift is a book that will help any organization, charity, church face the future with a steadfast foundation. What is that steadfast foundation? God. This book builds on research that helps the reader realize that any organization is prone to wander from its original mission. Many Ivy League universities started as places to train young men for the ministry. However, if you look at them now, they have strayed from that purpose and are far from what the founders intended. You can go all around the globe and find many ministries, charitable organizations, trust funds who were founded for one specific purpose and with a mission in mind, who have now drifted. This happens over time and to keep it from happening, it takes intentionality. Staying true to your mission does not just happen, it has to be made to happen. For some organizations or charities, it might mean turning down donations from companies or people who want you to change who you are, or maybe just not mention God or Jesus Christ as much.

What will you do as you go through life? Do you have a mission that is founded? What is it? How do you know that you will not drift from it in the future? Do you work at a church, charity, or any other organization that is currently Christian? What will keep it from changing in the future? This book is written to help you answer that question. Mission Drift is for leaders and people in leadership positions who help make decisions that guide organizations or ministries into the future.

The authors Peter Greer and Chris Horst write Mission Drift not simply from observing and researching, but also from experiencing it themselves in their own lives. They write from a point of view of having experienced what it takes to remain mission true. They combine their own personal experience with research to help the reader understand the importance of this topic. As time continues to march towards the return of Jesus Christ, life is not necessarily going to get easier for Christians. As a matter of fact, according to the Bible, it will get more difficult. So as Christians, should we fold or continue to stand true and not drift from the mission God has given us? The Bible only gives one answer to people who claim to follow Christ: to persevere regardless of circumstances. We need to be equipped and ready for what lies ahead, and Mission Drift will help you.

As a youth pastor, I can see the effects of drifting from a mission. It is not always a dramatic shift all at once, rather, it is something that takes place over time. So if you are in any kind of leadership position with a ministry, church, charity or Christian organization, read this book.

Disclaimer: In accordance with FTC regulations, I received this book from Bethany House Publishers in return for a review of the book.

 

Advertisements

Essentialism

Essentialism

Essentialism is for the busy person looking for a way to take control of their lives. Essentialism, as the front flap says, is not about “getting more done in less time, but getting only the right things done.” Focusing on the right things can be a difficult task, especially for the person stuck wearing many hats. This book is similar to What’s Best Next by Matt Perman, you can read my review for that book here, but without the Gospel woven into everything.

Essentialism is divided into 4 parts: Essence, Explore, Eliminate and Execute. Essence is all about the mindset of someone who wants to focus on the essentials of life and goes through how what we do with our lives is basically our choice. When it comes to our day and how we plan it out, we have the choice with most things we do. For many businessmen or women, there are things that are required but Greg talks about how each person needs to choose what they take part in and what they wind up giving their time to and learn how to say no to things that are not essential. He uses personal stories to help drive this story home. Along with that he speaks of needing discernment and learning how to make trade-offs when it comes to our choices.

The second part goes deeper into the idea of discernment and how if we are to be successful at becoming an essentialist, we need to determine what is essential to our lives. Greg drives this point home with these essential parts of what every “essentialist” should have in their lives: escape, look, play, sleep, and select. Each of these parts is important for a person to keep their wits about them. I specifically enjoyed the section on play. He mentioned a couple companies that strategically placed times of “play” in their employees work day and the benefits that resulted from those times.

Part 3 is about elimination, what can be eliminated from our lives that keep us from focusing on the essentials. This starts with clarify, the moves on to dare, uncommit, edit, and limit. So far, you can see that Essentialism is pretty basic but the author’s intention is to help people make the decisions necessary to become more focused and not allow the things on the peripheral to get more attention from us then they need. This part is probably the hardest for most of us because sometimes we do not want to eliminate anything from our lives, no matter how trivial it may seem or no matter how much we know we need to cut it out. It can be compared to the person who knows they need to diet but loves food so much they do not want to cut anything out. For us to gain control of our lives elimination is a must and this part helps lead someone through deciding and discerning what can be cut out.

The last part is what most everyone struggles with: execution. Even the best laid plans fail if there is no execution. No matter how many books you read on productivity, or how many apps you have on your smartphone to get things done, it does not matter if there is no execution on our part. Imagine a sports team training for a big game. They go through drills over and over again, they watch film of themselves, they watch film of their opponent, and they plan. Coaches will sit down and come up with a plan of attack on how to play their opponents and then they will practice that plan, and keep practicing until they feel they are ready. However, at the end of any big game, if you ask the coach of the losing team what went wrong, many times you will hear something similar to this: “we just didn’t execute our plan.” This is where the rubber meets the road. If you fail to execute what you just spent time reading, then nothing will change in your life and years will pass by and you will wonder what happened.

Overall, this book is a good book for someone wanting to simplify their lives and learn how to become an “essentialist.” I cannot say it is my favorite but the author makes some great points and it helps that he has actually experienced what he is writing about. This is not a bad book though and if you find yourself struggling to catch your breath because of everything pulling at you, pick up this book as it is simple and easy to read but also practical.

I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review as a part of their Blogging for Books program in exchange for an honest review.


Links for Leaders

Leadership-1

Do you consider yourself a leader?

Are there people who come to you for advice or guidance?

 

Do you want to learn more about leading or how to lead?

Do you want to learn how to become an effective leader?

If any of these questions apply to you, you should take the time to check out these links.

Charles Specht has compiled a list of the top leaders online: 50 Top Leaders in Leadership Blogging.

Michael Hyatt is one of the most recognized leaders today. He is definitely a go to source for anything regarding leadership: Michael Hyatt’s Blog.

If you are in leadership now, or see yourself in some position where you lead others in the future, you need to check out Catalyst: Catalyst Conference.

The director of Catalyst is Brad Lomenick. Check out his website here: Brad Lomenick.

Right along with Brad, is Andy Stanley, another key component of Catalyst: Andy Stanley.

This list is not all inclusive as I know there are other leaders out there who are extremely effective at leading and helping others lead well. This is just a beginning list to help get you started and pointed in the direction of people who truly understand what leading is all about. So check out these links and get on the road to becoming a better and more influential leader.

 


Weekly Scoop

scoop

 

After a couple weeks hiatus, the Weekly Scoop is back, so without further ado, here are the links you should take the time to check out.

The movie Frozen has been a huge hit. Here is a great review of the movie: The Cold that Bothers Us.

A couple weeks ago, Donald Miller stirred up the waters in a post about why he does not regularly attend church. Ed Stetzer responded in a great way: Should I stay or should I go.

As a father to a daughter, I can definitely relate with this father’s open letter to his dauther: From the make up aisle.

Trent Hunter blogs his response to a question his son asks him: I hope my son’s life is in danger.

If you are young and see yourself as a leader, check out this post from Catalyst Conferences: 5 Ways to excel as a young leader.

A great post by Tim Challies regarding how Christians should respond to the new “Son of God” movie coming out: Writing checks to Mel Gibson.

Kevin DeYoung brings a great post about who in the church should be able to baptize: Who can baptize?

Well, thanks for checking in and I hope you take the time to check out these links. If you feel there is an article I should post to, please comment below and I will look into it for next week.


Weekly Scoop

It started with my daughter, moved on to my wife and then finally caught up with me. It is not often I get sick but unfortunately, this time, I caught the bug. I am slowly starting to regain my energy and will hopefully be fully recovered this weekend. With all of that said, I am glad I can still share my Weekly Scoop with you and with that said, here are some links I believe would be worth your time:

Here are a few pictures of baby animals in the womb. It’s amazing we still call them babies, but human babies in the womb are only fetus’? Something that can be easily disposed of? 12 Unborn Animals in the Womb.

Are you working with youth in any capacity? This video is for you: How to Ruin Young People.

Celebrity pastors and the issues they can create: Pastor rolls up in a tour bus.

Fathers can and will fail at something in their parenting…but even our failures can be and are redeemed by the blood of Jesus: Daddy Fails redeemed by Jesus.

Here is a challenging but encouraging read for the mothers out there: Steps to overcome anger in the moment.

Are you making any of these mistakes that hinder your child’s leadership development: 7 Crippling Parenting Behaviors.

Do you often post to social media in the heat of the moment? 5 Question to ask before posting.

Are you considering quitting social media? If so, here are two posts that will help you make the right decision: How can I know if I should quit and Why I kissed social media goodbye.

Thanks again for checking out my Weekly Scoop. Feel free to share this with others if you find it beneficial to yourself. Also, if you read anything you believe I should be aware of, share it with me in the comments.


Weekly Scoop

It’s Friday and here is the first Weekly Scoop of 2014. I have taken a couple weeks off from the Scoop but am happy to get it going again. I am excited about what this New Year and look forward to what God is going to do. This Weekly Scoop is more for people in the ministry but regardless I believe they would be worth anyone’s time. Without further ado, here are a few links you should check out:

Last year I came across Justin Lathrop through Twitter and I am glad I did. His posts are great and I would highly recommend you look him up. Here are two posts of his you should look into: Becoming a Great Leader and Becoming a Better Storyteller.

Tony Morgan is another individual I recently came across who commonly posts very insightful articles for anyone to read. The articles I am linking to today would be great for anyone in ministry to take the time to read: Mistakes Teaching Pastors should Avoid and Things People want to know before they will give to your church.

Scott Williams is yet one more person you should look into. He served for a couple years as a Campus Pastor for LifeChurch.tv’s Northwest Oklahoma City Campus. He currently serves as Chief Solutions Officer for Nxt Level Solutions. He has a heart for Jesus and helping people use their God given abilities. Here are two posts of his for you to check out: 14 Things God Says About You and How To Effectively Manage your Time in 2014.

If you have ever wanted to see 50 of the most extraordinary churches in the world, then you have come to the right place. Click on the link to see some strange, unique, beautiful as well as some downright weird church architecture: 50 Most Extraordinary Churches in the World.

Lastly, here is a link to some free curriculum from Brad Hambrick. If you are looking for some curriculum for your church, this is worth your time: 7 Free Video Curriculum from 2013.

Thank you for taking the time to check out this Weekly Scoop. If you like what you see here, feel free to share with friends or on Twitter or Facebook. You can also subscribe to this blog and have every post sent straight to your email. Thanks again for your time. If you feel there is something I missed that is worth sharing, let me know in the comments. God bless.


A Thought about Life and the Weekly Scoop

Life can get extremely crazy. Just when you think it might settle down a little bit and allow you to get your head above water, another wave hits you and leaves you struggling even more. Life many times seems like a never ending struggle against life. As you get older, life does not easier. We wish it did but unfortunately it does not. However, even in times like this, God manages to make known to us He is in control and when we do come to Him and strive to rest in Him as He calls us to do, life can begin to make sense. We have a hope that this life is not all there is. We have hope that in the end, when see Jesus, all this life hit us with will pale in comparison to that moment. May we be guilty of one thing while on this earth: Longing for the day when Christ returns. I am not speaking of being so heavenly minded we are of no earthly good. I am writing about the longing that motivates us to be at work, that pushes us away from laziness. While Jesus was on this planet, He was always about His father’s business. He challenged His followers to do the same. As we come to this longing, it pushes us, it prods us, it motivates us to be about our heavenly Father’s business because we realize there is no greater business for us to be about. Even in the busyness of life, God provides ways for us to be about His business in a way that glorifies Him. May God open our eyes to these ways to the end that we cry “Not to us oh Lord, not to us but to YOUR NAME be the glory.”

I pray this in some way encourages or challenges you. I did not plan on writing that but as I sat down to post my weekly scoop, it just came to me. Feel free to share any thoughts you might have.

Now, here are the links for my weekly scoop.

This post is from a guy only truly known to the world as “The Unappreciated Pastor.” He has almost 23k followers on Twitter and only he knows who he is. Here is a blog he wrote for the Huffington Post. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/the-unappreciated-pastor/hello-my-name-is-church_b_4124322.html?utm_hp_ref=tw

Ever since my wife heard about Ann Voskamp and read her book, Ann’s blog has never disappointed my wife. Almost daily my wife shares with me something Ann shared on her blog that spoke to her and encouraged her. If you have not yet checked it out, you should do so. I will make it easy for you to do so: http://www.aholyexperience.com/

In this post on Thom Rainer’s blog, Chuck Lawless shares about his dad and leadership: http://thomrainer.com/2013/10/22/being-a-memorable-leader/

This week on Trevin Wax’s blog with the Gospel Coalition, Matt Rogers, teaching pastor at The Church at Cherrydale in Greenville, SC shares a way of reading the Bible they developed to help their people read and understand the Bible. It is worth checking out: http://thegospelcoalition.org/blogs/trevinwax/2013/10/22/7-arrows-for-bible-reading/

This post might open a can of worms but if you haven’t been exposed to the idea of women serving in all levels of church leadership, here is a post from Eugene Cho, a pastor at Quest Church in Seattle, WA on the topic. I feel Eugene covers this topic with grace and tact. Check it out: http://eugenecho.com/2011/03/08/supporting-women-in-ministry/

A post from Desiring God about helping retrieve your mind from the gutter after pornography has taken it captive. This would be worth men and women checking out: http://www.desiringgod.org/blog/posts/hijacking-back-your-brain-from-porn

And finally, remember the story about the women who sued McDonald’s after spilling a cup of coffee on herself? Well, there is more to the story: http://www.upworthy.com/ever-hear-about-the-lady-that-spilled-coffee-on-herself-at-mcdonalds-then-sued-for-millions?g=2&c=ufb1

 

Thanks for taking the time to check out TheToddLynn and if there is any post you feel I should have included, leave it in the comments and maybe I will include it next week.


Family Shepherds by Voddie Baucham Jr.


I chose to review this book for a couple reasons. First, I heard a message by Voddie Baucham speaking at Passion One Day from the 90’s that was inspiring and so when I saw he had written a book, I knew I wanted to read it. Second, a couple of my friends, Matt and Carolina Price, mentioned another book of his which caused me to look for other books by him. Thus, when I came across Family Shepherds, I knew I wanted to read it. I am extremely satisfied and happy that I did in fact get this book. It was both challenging and inspiring as I strive to be the leader, husband and father that God has called me to be.

The back has this to say about the book:

“It’s hard to overestimate the importance of the family and that of father’s in particular. We’ve heard it said, ‘As the family goes, so goes the nation.’ But it can also be said that ‘as the father goes, so goes the family.’”

As a youth pastor, I could not agree more with this statement. As I view families in public, it is extremely easy to notice families that have disconnected fathers and those who have non-existent fathers as well. We question why the country is going the way that it is but all we need to do is look at how men are beginning to act. You see it from celebrity fathers all the way down to “regular” fathers. Men are not taking responsibility to raise their own children; and then they wonder why their kids eventually take a turn for the worse at some point in their lives.

God has given men the position of leadership and it is in our nature to lead in one way or another. The sad thing is that most men are leading in a negative manner. Multiple studies have been done by both Christian and secular groups and they are finding overwhelming evidence of the impact that fathers have on their children. Voddie does not just present the evidence but goes in depth with ways that will challenge men to lead well and become a true man of God.

Family Shepherds is divided into 5 parts: 1. The need to equip family shepherds, 2. Family discipleship and evangelism, 3. Marriage enrichment, 4. The training and discipline of children, 5. Lifestyle evaluation.

Each section is filled with Scripture to back up his points and written extremely well to inspire any professing Christian man to step up because the church and the world need us to. However, one of the most challenging parts of this book was how Voddie constantly challenged men with knowing what they believe. No man can truly lead his family in a God honoring manner without being a student of the Word; it is not possible. For us to be Godly men and leaders, we have to be men of God’s Word, who study, read, and love it. Apart from God’s Word, it is impossible to be a Godly leader. Yes some men might become good fathers and husbands and men, but only God can lead men to become great fathers, husbands and men. We need to be able to pick out false teachings on raising children and being men. The world is constantly coming out with self-help books and “instruction manuals” that have some pretty good advice, and even when put next to God’s Word, it is hard to pick out the lies from the truth. That is why we need to be men of the Word if we are to lead our families to become disciples of Christ, so we can pick out the stuff that misses the mark of the inerrant Word of God.

This book greatly challenged me in how I am going about leading my family? How am I leading my wife and daughter into a closer walk with the Lord? Or am I going about my life just hoping they grow closer to the Lord? As men we are to lead. If we are not leading as we should, there is not much of a hopeful future. I sincerely challenge any man, whether you are a husband and father yet does not matter, to get this book. You will come away challenged and inspired to be, first off, a devoted follower of Christ and second, the leader God intended us men to be.

 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Crossway in exchange for this review.