Category: Check it Out

Books that Altered My Path

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I have recently experienced a renewed interest in reading. Now, I am not reading through an inordinate number of books, but I am trying to stretch my mind by reading.

But today I thought I would share one of the books that has had the largest and most enduring impact on my ministry. I remember reading this around 2008, and the concepts are still shaping the way I preach today. So, here it is: Communicating for a Change by Andy Stanley.

This is a book on preaching. Sounds riveting, right? Actually, it turns into a pretty quick read. The book itself is divided into two parts. The first part is a story that seeks to introduce the concept of the second part, which is the nuts and bolts of the approach.

You can search for in depth reviews of the book, but for the purpose of this post, I am going to share two things that have shaped my ministry as a result of reading it.

First, I don’t have to teach every idea in a passage in one message. Andy tells a story in the book about he and his wife visiting a church and on the way home saying “That was a good series in one sermon.” Sometimes, as communicators, we can overwhelm our audience with too much information. It is okay to take our time and unpack concepts over weeks.

The second lasting impact from this book is to develop a simple, portable, and memorable statement. The statement should be emphasized throughout the message, should be relevant, and should be simple. A few statements I have developed over the years are: God loves you and desires a relationship with you; Worship is the way you live your life; Words reveal intent. Actions reveal heart; and You can’t see the end from the middle.

Bottom line: this book is worth your time, especially if you teach/preach/communicate on a regular basis. I keep extra copies in my office anytime I find it on sale. If you haven’t read it before, click below and buy it today!

 

Check it Out: Same Destination, Different Paths

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I cannot tell you the amount of time I’ve spent in my life moving cattle. But, that doesn’t mean we can learn something anyway.

That’s where this post comes in. Here’s a line:

Mapquest can’t map out a cattle drive.

Click over for the rest.

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Check It Out: Teaching on the Go

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Today’s check it out is from the Lessons on the Farm series. In it, I talk about the need to teach as you go. You can click here to go directly to it, but here’s a clip before you head that way:

But more than what I was taught, I remember how I was taught: in the moment, sometimes being shown how, sometimes being told, usually realizing after the fact I had more to learn.

Click here for the rest!

 

Check It Out: Training with a Purpose

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I’ve been blogging now for 8 months. That’s a lot of posts. But the posts I got the most feedback on were from my “Lessons from the Farm” series where I reflected on leadership learnings I’ve gleaned from my time growing up working on my dad’s farm.

Today’s Check It Out is the first post from that series, and one that I needed reminding of this week: Training with a purpose. Click here to check it out.

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