Archives For Resources

The United States is rapidly becoming multiethnic. Within ten years we will probably no longer have a majority race. Every facet of our American culture is transitioning to multiethnic . . . except the church. The church remains the most segregated institution in America. It will take multiethnic churches to reach a multiethnic America.

So how can your church transform into a gospel-centered, mission-shaped, multiethnic local church?

In The High-Definition Leader author, Derwin Gray, issues an invitation for church leaders to help their congregations embrace Christ’s call to the early church—a call that crosses ethnic and socioeconomic barriers to create heavenly colonies of love, reconciliation, and unity.


  • understand that planting and transforming churches into multiethnic groups is a biblical calling church leaders must encourage
  • identify and implement the best practices to help leaders build multiethnic churches
  • recognize that reconciliation between ethnic groups in the church is not just a social issue but a theological issue church leaders cannot ignore

The apostle Paul built multiethnic, socioeconomic diverse local churches of Jews and Gentiles. We must follow his godly wisdom and leadership if we want to be the church for which…

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Gaining by LosingPeople are leaving the church J.D. Greear pastors. Big givers. Key volunteers. Some of his best leaders and friends. And that’s exactly how he wants it to be.

When Jesus gave his disciples the Great Commission, he revealed that the key for reaching the world with the gospel is found in sending, not gathering. Though many churches focus time and energy on attracting people and counting numbers, the real mission of the church isn’t how many people you can gather. It’s about training up disciples and then sending them out. The true measure of success for a church should be its sending capacity, not its seating capacity.

But there is a cost to this. To see ministry multiply, we must release the seeds God has placed in our hands. And to do that, we must ask ourselves whether we are concerned more with building our kingdom or God’s.

In Gaining By Losing, J.D. Greear unpacks ten plumb lines that you can use to reorient your church’s priorities around God’s mission to reach a lost world. The good news is that you don’t need to choose between gathering or sending. Effective churches…

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Igniting a MovementWhat can American church planters learn from our international counterparts?

As director of training and leadership development for India Gospel League (IGL), Benjamin Chellapandian (“Pastor Benny”) oversees 7,000 church-planting pastors in rural India and Sri Lanka who over the past 25 years have planted roughly 70,000 churches. Recently, Chellapandian spoke to a U.S. church about God’s plan and purpose for growth, focusing on his observations from the Book of Acts. Below is an excerpt from his message:

In past years, the church has discovered that to fulfill God’s plan and purpose, we need to grow numerically. Much of that teaching comes from the Book of Acts’s account of the birth and growth of the early church. If we want to learn about planting churches that grow and accomplish Jesus’s mission, we don’t have to look any further than to the examples of the churches in Acts. I have learned (and continue to learn) so much from the early churches about planting churches. In Acts 1 after Christ’s resurrection, Jesus is teaching His disciples about the Kingdom of God and tells them to “wait in Jerusalem.” Then just before He ascends into…

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Through a Mans EyesTwenty years ago, people in the church didn’t talk about porn, or visual temptations in general.  Today, churches across America have Celebrate Recovery groups, men’s small groups that study Every Man’s Battle, and experienced counselors with specialized training.  You as pastors talk to men during Sunday morning worship services about the importance of discipline and purity in their thought lives, and every man intimately understands the challenge being laid before him.

The problem is: most of the women don’t.  And that is one reason why all our effort in the church – as great as it is — hasn’t yet made a systemic difference to eradicating the problem of porn in the church.  A difference to individuals, yes; A sea change for the Body of Christ as a whole, no.

We need to enlist the understanding of women, if we are going to support men.

In extensive research over the last thirteen years, I’ve seen that there is literally no other single topic that so deeply affects many millions of men, that so many millions of women are completely blind to.  Yes, we women know that “men are visual”… but we…

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Leaders love quotes.  A good quote puts into language what we feel intuitively in our heart and soul.  It clarifies our thinking and cuts through the clutter to get to the heart of the issues we are facing.
A good quote is repeatable.  It strengthens our leadership and message when used properly.  A good quote causes our great ideas to spread.  It is portable.When a pastor or leader says something memorable, something repeatable, it allows their message to be discussed days, sometimes weeks, later.  As a result, quotes make us better leaders.

Welcome to my latest eBook 969 Leadership Quotes: Timeless Truths From 2015’s Top Christian Conferences.  This is a FREE resource with a subscription to this site.

The pages of this resource contain the best thoughts from some of today’s top Christian, business and athletic leaders from the following conferences held during the first half of the year:

  • Passion 2015 – The annual gathering of students in Atlanta and Houston lifted up the name of Jesus and relieved suffering around the globe.
  • Capital Campaign University – This two-day conference was put on my INJOY Stewardship Solutions. The attendees…

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Igniting Movements: Multiplying Churches in Dark Places

By Ajai Lall and Josh Howard

Nearly 65 percent of the world’s unreached people groups live in India (1.2 billion people) and the 11 countries surrounding it—comprising nearly 50 percent of the world’s population. This is where Central India Christian Mission (CICM) makes its impact.

Founded by Ajai Lall and his wife Indu more than 30 years ago, CICM is igniting movements throughout this populous region. In this FREE eBook, Igniting Movements, Lall and CICM leader Josh Howard chronicle the journey toward church multiplication through riveting stories of facing religious persecution, practical leadership insights and multiplication principles that continue to reproduce churches in some of the world’s darkest places. The authors conclude the book by sharing five “big things” we must not forget if we truly want to ignite church multiplication movements where we are. Igniting Movements—the ninth eBook in Exponential’s church multiplication series—offers encouragement, wisdom and inspiration to planters regardless of your context or culture. Download your copy of Igniting Movements.

Key takeaways

  • The three elements needed to start and stoke spiritual fires
  • How we can reach the world’s population with the gospel in less than 20…

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What are the questions that have changed your life? For Jeff Leake, president of the Reach Northeast church planting network, the question that changed his life—and the lives of thousands–came in November of 1996. In this FREE resource, Leake shares the story of why and how he has led Allison Park Church to become a multiplication center that to date has been involved with the planting of 38 churches throughout the Northeast.

Leake also takes readers on a transparent journey as he identifies the primary tensions he and Allison Park wrestled with as they planted one church after another. He admits, “As soon as we decided to step out and plant our first church, I felt the pull of fear on my soul”:

  • What if everyone leaves our church and goes with the church planter?
  • What if our larger givers leave and I’m left with nothing but bills?
  • What will happen if my attendance drops?
  • What will my peers think of me if I pastor a smaller church than I did before?

As he faced those fears head-on and Allison Park obeyed and stayed its course of multiplication, God’s provision continued to come. The Question That Changed My…

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When Darrin and Amie Patrick planted The Journey in the basement of their house in St. Louis, Missouri, they began the church to reach and engage “people like us.” The new eBook, The Journey: Toward a Healthy Multiplying Church, traces the story of The Journey from a small core-group meeting to a movement of the gospel across six Journey churches and eight church plants around the United States. In the book, Patrick shares five lessons he and The Journey have learned over the past decade about becoming a movement where every member sees themselves as a missionary for their city. Below, he fleshes out the first lesoon:

Not that I’ve done it, but I would guess that one of the hardest things to do is build a plane while you’re flying it. That’s really what we’ve done at The Journey, and in many ways are still doing. Every multiplying church has to face it at one time or another. Still more difficult is to not just be building while in motion, but inspecting it in mid-flight. But, by God’s grace we have learned some things since planting The Journey more than a decade ago.


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Pete BookFor years I believed that if I could simply identify the right planning and decision-making process, we would then make good decisions at the church I pastor. That, it turned out, was both naïve and misguided. Over a twenty-year period, however, the dramatic difference between our standard process and emotionally healthy planning and decision making became crystal clear.

The first is the foundation from which all the others follow—defining success as radically doing God’s will.

We Define Success as Radically Doing God’s Will

From the time I became a Christian, I believed intellectually that listening for God’s will was vitally important. But it wasn’t until a four-month contemplative sabbatical in 2003-2004 that my approach to planning and decision making was utterly transformed. As a result, my definition of success so broadened and deepened that my leadership and my approach to discerning God’s will experienced an extreme makeover.

What happened? I slowed down my life so I could spend much more time being with God. Listening for and surrendering to God’s will became the focus of my life—both personally and in leadership. I realized that New Life had one objective: to become what God had…

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In this FREE resource, Exponential Director Todd Wilson presses into Exponential’s 2015 theme, “SPARK: Igniting a Culture of Multiplication,” to give church leaders a vision for reproducing churches and the tools needed to see that vision come to fruition. The eBook sets the framework for Exponential’s 2015 eBooks series focusing on multiplication and champions Exponential’s focus on moving the multiplication needle in the U.S. Church.

Wilson highlights the cultures leaders most naturally create and he challenges you to honestly assess which culture you’re creating. He points out that every church–regardless of your context or phase (pre-launch, launch or post-launch)–is creating a culture and takes readers through a thorough explanation of how culture is created and what is needed to create a multiplication culture.

He offers an exploration of what Scripture says about God’s command to multiply and out of that scriptural study comes fresh insight as he contends that the U.S. church needs both addition (what he calls the micro strategy of adding disciples one on one, and life on life) and multiplication (the macro strategy of reproducing churches). He writes: “We must purpose to continually ask ourselves, ‘How do we help everyone…

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When a first-time guest completes a guest registration card at your church, what happens next? The most common answer to that question: absolutely nothing. No, it’s not an intentional oversight, but without an ongoing, immediate follow-up plan, your church may miss the opportunity to reach guests for Christ and include them in your church family.

Need fresh ideas? Tweak some of these to fit your unique church:

  • First-Time-Guest Online Survey. People love to give an opinion! Create a brief survey on your church website. (See a sample survey at Carefully study survey responses.
  • Same Day Contact. A specially trained volunteer can make a brief phone call to each guest on the Sunday afternoon they visit your church.
  • Email + Snail Mail. Assign volunteers to send a swift, personal email or handwritten card to each first-time guest.
  • Small Group Personal Invitation. Provide contact info to an appropriate small group or Sunday School class for each family member. A member of that small group may offer to meet the guest at a specific door to escort them to class.
  • A Personal Touch. Examples: An Indiana church…

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TeamsThatThriveHealthy conflict is the catalyst of extraordinary performance. If your church leadership team never has conflict, then something is wrong. Effective teams welcome healthy conflict – and they manage it in such a way that it actually aids the team.

Numerous studies overwhelmingly suggest that task conflict is good, whereas affective, or relationship, conflict is bad. In other words, team members should challenge each other’s ideas, interrogate one another’s beliefs and values, and willingly offer different perspectives while refraining from attacking others in the process, or making snide, sarcastic comments in the process.

Based on our recent study of nearly 150 church leadership teams, we encourage you to cultivate the kind of conflict that fuels great team performances. We found that thriving teams engaged in challenging dialogue. They also cultivated (rather than squashed) healthy conflict significantly more than under-performing teams.

To spur healthy “task conflict” on your team, we suggest that you and your teammates:

  1. Vigorously solicit critiques of plans, decisions and assumptions guiding decision making.
  2. Model respectful, assertive, thoughtful and honest critiques of ministry ideas and plans, and invite others to do the same of your own ideas and plans.
  3. Celebrate group members who say the…

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