Archives For Communication

ConnectedPRAY is an acrostic to remember when thinking about how to expand the reach and influence of your ministry on Facebook.  Here are the four steps to follow:





Each of these steps taken together can turn even a small ministry into a world changing force.

Last April 1, a ministry of 70 men, HERDSaturday at the Saddleback Church Lake Forest campus,  put the PRAY acrostic into practice with a day of fasting and prayer on Facebook.   In a single day they had reached over 50,000 with prayer requests from around the globe.  At the time, I wrote an article (link here) about what had achieved and now that they are gearing up for this April 1, you can easily learn lessons from their full year of experience.  Here is what PRAY looks like in real life:

Be PERSONAL:  “Fasting is a practical key for men because you can fast off anything.  We have guys fasting off dairy, television, soda, whatever you need to give up so that you can focus on God,” HERDSaturday Pastor Steve Komanapalli said.  “It deepens our commitment to God, to those we pray for, and to each other.”


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LifeWay Christian Resources offers you the opportunity to add questions to one of their up-coming surveys.

Get reliable answers to the questions you are asking. Email LifeWay Research today ( for pricing and information on reserving space on an upcoming survey of 1,000 Protestant pastors, a survey of adult Americans, or your custom needs.

LifeWay will help you find the best wording for your questions, field the survey, and provide a report that shows the percentage of respondents providing each response and any significant differences by demographic groups



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crossJesus didn’t cloud his messages with technical or theological jargon. He spoke in simple terms that normal people could understand. We need to remember that Jesus did not use the classical Greek language of the scholar. He spoke in Aramaic. He used the street language of that day and talked of birds, flowers, lost coins, and other everyday objects that anyone could relate to.

Jesus taught profound truths in simple ways. Today, we do the opposite. We teach simple truths in profound ways.

Sometimes when pastors think they are being “deep,” they are really just being “muddy. They like to show off their knowledge by using Greek words and academic terms. No one cares as much about the Greek as pastors do. Chuck Swindoll once told me that he believes an overuse of word studies in preaching discourages confidence in the English text. I agree.

It is easy to complicate the gospel, and of course, Satan would love for us to do just that. The apostle Paul worried that “your minds would be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ” (2 Cor. 11:3 NASB).

And remember, simple…

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Holy BibleAbout a week ago a reporter published an article in the Orange County Register about Saddleback Church that contained many errors and false assumptions:

It erroneously stated that we have a partnership with a local Muslim mosque.

That is false.

It erroneously reported that we had agreed to not evangelize with Muslims.

That is false.

It erroneously reported that we believe Saddleback and Muslims worship the same God.

That is false.

It erroneously used a picture of our new PEACE Center as the example of a program of cooperation with Muslims.

That is false.

It erroneously reported that our church had agreed to a theological document with Muslims.

That is false.

Usually, we try to ignore the false statements made by media, and especially irresponsible bloggers, because 1) Reacting to every false report would take up most of our time,  2) It is almost impossible to undo an error’s damage once it is on the Internet, 3) God knows the truth and he is the only one we must please, 4) It is Christlike to  remain silent in the face of  false accusations, 5) God blesses us even more every time we trust him with our…

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I was coaching a church planter recently who asked this question:
“How do we grow without selling out?”
This is a great question! The answer will give you greater clarity to your mission.

When I heard his question, I immediately thought of three questions that would help him to discover how to answer this question in his context.

A. P. A. Analysis
(Bob Logan first introduced me to these questions about twenty years ago. Thanks Bob!)

1. What do you want to achieve? Before explaining what it might mean to “sell out,” it’s necessary to clarify the mission. What are you wanting to accomplish? What will it look like to get there? What will you feel when you accomplish this? What will achieving this mean for your church plant?

2. What do you want to preserve? As you pursue goals and the mission of Jesus, it is helpful to identify what you don’t want to lose in the process. What can you not afford to lose? What will you do to ensure you continue doing your priority missional activities? What are you willing to endure to keep the main thing…

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Did Jesus develop leaders to be informational or transformational?

The New Testament leaps up into our faces and says, “Transformational.”

Robots are informational.

Humans are created to be transformational.

At Transformation Church, one of our core values is Leadership Development. Our source of inspiration was 1 Peter 2:9. Every Christian is a “Royal Priest” and thus a leader who influences someone for the Kingdom. It is our desire to unleash world-class leaders in every facet of life in America and the world.

I stumbled across a blog by Mac Lake, the Chief Launch Officer of The Launch Network, a new church-planting network based out of West Ridge Church in the greater Atlanta, Georgia area. As a seasoned leader, he put into words what we are doing at Transformation Church to develop leaders. I’ve made some slight adjustments to his insightful thoughts that fit the TC ethos.

Marinate on Informational vs. Transformational:

  • Informational tells the learner about principles they need to know.
  • Transformational teaches people to behave in new ways, by resourcing and challenging them to integrate the principles into their lives.
  • Informational is about giving people more knowledge.
  • Transformational develops wisdom to enhance their competencies to go…

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Mobile AppsWhy would you consider a mobile App for your church?  Consider that there are 5.2 BILLION mobile phone users in the world right now.

  • What if you could easily connect to the thousands that live near your church?
  • What if there was an App of your church that people could download to their phones so that you could send out key information to them?
  • Wouldn’t that be cool?  Too hard to do?
  • Do you think it would cost you too much?
  • What if you had an App for your church?

Here are some reason you should consider having an App for your church.

Relevancy - Churches should not have as their main goal to be relevant.  Yet there is nothing wrong with being technologically relevant.  Having an app shows your church understands we are in the 21st century.

Effectiveness – The church is to be where people are.  Look around you the next time you are in public at how many people are fiddling with their smart phones.  To be effective with our message we have to take it to where people are.  The following are some ways that Apps can increase your effectiveness and…

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Ever heard a pastor say something that made you cringe?

We pastors say a lot. From the stage, to the phone, in an email, and in passing conversations, we are communicating with people most of our days. And while much of what we share is (hopefully) helpful, there are certain things that should never be said.

1. “If it weren’t for the people, I’d love being a pastor.”

You’ve probably heard this one. In fact, you may have said it yourself. Often said in a moment of frustration or as a passing joke, this is a statement that can be incredibly hurtful to the people that need help the most. It inadvertently creates a wall between the pastor and those who are in need of grace and hope. And it makes people feel like there are problems too big to bring to their pastor.

Truth: Being a pastor is about the people. It’s about serving and giving and loving and pouring yourself out for others.

2. “This week was so busy, I didn’t even get a chance to work on my sermon.”

This is sad, really. There are a handful of things that…

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No eyebrows. Bald head. Fifteen pounds underweight. Ghost-white skin. When I was undergoing six rounds of chemotherapy for stage IV cancer, I couldn’t hide.

It didn’t take people long to realize I was in a life-and-death struggle. When I talked to others, I could tell they were at a loss for words. What can you say to someone who may be dead in a few months?

After my experience, including going in and out of remission, I can tell you there are some things a pastor or church leader can say that can really help anyone who is going through a tough time. Here are some guidelines to help you say just the right thing:

Timing is Important. When you first talk with someone going through a crisis, don’t get into a discussion on theology, such as why God allows evil or the nature of sin. More than likely, the person is scared, frustrated, or even angry. They need a calm, reassuring voice of love, not theology.

Show Love. During my chemotherapy, I had friends from church bring me meals, cut my grass, and help with other chores. I…

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If you’ve ever done any amount of public speaking, you’ve had that moment when you step on stage and have a sinking feeling that says, “What in the world am I doing here?”

Ever had that?

Whether it’s the crowd that’s staring back at you, the venue itself, your lack of preparedness, or the content you’ve been asked to deliver, you realize in the heat of the moment that you’ve been asked to do something that’s out of your comfort zone and destined for a slow death.

I had one of these opportunities just the other day. I was asked to give a presentation on a recent mission trip I led to Costa Rica. The trip was phenomenal. But in the same vein as every other post-mission-trip-story I, and you, have ever heard in my life, the gravity and beauty of the trip doesn’t translate once you’re off the field. Translation isn’t often hampered by a language barrier, though. It’s hampered because the people in the room weren’t there on the trip, they feel a bit guilty because they haven’t gone on a mission trip, they want…

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WineskinsA football player’s head is not in the game and he’s just going through the motion. The narrator says he is phoning it in.

The stage actor has said those lines precisely 568 times before audiences and an untold number in rehearsal and in front of his bathroom mirror. He has to really work at his craft, lest he “phone it in.”

The teacher has gone over those lessons each year for the last two decades. She could do it blind-folded while making a grocery list. If she’s not careful, she’ll “phone it in.”

Our Lord warned of religious people using “vain repetitions” in their prayers. Putting the mind in neutral and the mouth spouting out those words and phrases we’ve all learned, as though the Lord hears and answers based on sheer volume. Phoning it in.

You’re a retired pastor and travel a good bit. You get invited to guest-supply in various pulpits and speak to congregations that have never heard any of your best stuff. By the third year of this, you’ve boiled your preaching down to a solid one dozen messages. You’re having more fun than you’ve had…

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Blogging and PublishingBlogging is such a weird word. We never used it until people started keeping “logs” on the “web” of their life called “weblog” and for some reason, we dropped the “we” and were left with the art of blogging. And in a sense, it has changed everything. How? Because now, everyone is a publisher.

Every business, every church, and every institution is now a publisher, and those who publish with the most gusto win. It’s the age where people with few connections and little resources can grow their voice in the marketplace in inexpensive and creative ways.

I’m writing this post for those who haven’t jumped in yet. I’d love to dialog about the latest developer’s beta version of WordPress or Google’s search algorithm, but my goal is instead to reach out to those who are on the verge of blogging and push you over the edge to take the dive. If you need to read no more, head over to WordPress or Tumblr and get started! If you’re still looking to rationalize your decision, read on…

Why Blog?

Still with me? Let me give you some…

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