How do you develop a culture of innovation in your church? Rick Warren has some ideas for you:
Here are three quotes taken from an article at Chron.com that feature three very prominent megachurch pastors. See if this kind of flies in the face of what many people think about megachurches: low involvement, low accountability…
Here are the quotes… what do you think?
Craig Groeschel on “Christian Atheists”:
I believe in God but I want to do whatever the heck I want to do. I want enough of God to keep me out of hell and enough of God to get me into heaven but I don’t want so much of God that it makes me change my lifestyle because at its root I believe in God but I do not fear Him.
Rick Warren on Saddleback’s future:
If you passively just want to sit around in the next 10 years and just waste your life on things that won’t last, you probably want to find another church because you’re not going to really feel comfortable here. Because if you’re in this church, I’m coming after you to be mobilized.
Bill Hybels on Willow’s discipleship mistake:
We made a mistake. What we should have done when people crossed the line of faith and become Christians, we should have started telling people and teaching people that they have to take responsibility to become “self feeders.” We should have gotten people, taught people, how to read their bible between services, how to do the spiritual practices much more aggressively on their own.
Rick Warren’s statement about Hobby Lobby:
Every American who loves freedom should shudder at the precedent the government is trying to establish by denying Hobby Lobby the full protection of the First Amendment. This case is nothing less than a landmark battle for Americas FIRST freedom, the freedom of religion and the freedom from government intervention in matters of conscience. Religious liberty is often called our First Freedom because it is the first phrase of the first sentence of the First Amendment of our Bill of Rights. Freedom to practice your religion is listed before the freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom to assemble, and the right to bear arms. The first American settlers, Pilgrims, came to America for this very reason seeking the freedom to PRACTICE their religion, which they were denied in Europe. This is the freedom that made America unique from all other nations.
Today, the government has tried to reinterpret the First Amendment from freedom to PRACTICE your religion, to a more narrow freedom to worship, which would limit your freedom to the hour a week you are at a house of worship. This is not only a subversion of the Constitution, it is nonsense. Any religion that cannot be lived out at home and work, is nothing but a meaningless ritual.
What do YOU think?
Is this Hobby Lobby situation a real red flag, or is it overblown?
I’ve mentioned several times that I am so glad that I am NOT Rick Warren.
I love Rick… and I’ve been a firm defender of him over the years. But I would not want to be Rick.
EVERY SINGLE thing he says is tweeted, re-tweeted and criticized.
When asked by the Huffington Post if he was homophobic, Rick replied “I have many, many gay friends.”
That set off Generations Radio show hosts Pastor Kevin Swanson and Dave Buehner:
Swanson: Dave, you know, he says, ‘I have many, many gay friends.’ ‘Many, many gay friends.’
Buehner: Which is weird, because I have never said that.
Swanson: I have never said that either, I don’t say, ‘I have many, many gay friends.’ It’s almost like saying, ‘I have many, many gay fornicators;’ ‘I have many, many gay liar friends;’ it’s just craziness. I just interviewed this guy who goes into maximum security prisons and he interviews serial killers and I appreciate this guy, he’s actually had an opportunity to talk to a number of then and he says some twenty-five percent of them actually do repent he thinks, and it’s wonderful to see their lives turn around. So I mean, you know, what does this guy say: ‘I have many, many serial killer friends.’ I don’t think he says that, he doesn’t say that. I think he says, ‘it’s a shameful thing to be a serial killer.’ You wouldn’t want to wear that on a t-shirt, you wouldn’t want to say ‘I have many, many friends who kill people.’
Buehner: ‘I have many, many cannibal friends.’ ‘I have many, many molester friends.’ Just pick the abomination.
Swanson: You just don’t want to wear that on a shirt.
Buehner: ‘Many of my friends are wife beaters,’ would I say that?
Just goes to prove… if you’re Rick Warren, whatever you say will offend someone.
Why are we so quick to take people out of context and think the worst most of the time?
A new lawsuit by a woman and her husband claims a pastor of a large church “purposefully introduced her into his life of depraved pornography, adultery, scheming, lies and the abandonment of her marriage and family with the intent that it would lead to the destruction of her marriage and family, which he knew would be going against everything she ever believed in or truly desired.” The couple is seeking $6.6 million for breach of fiduciary duty, intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligent infliction of emotional distress, and other claims.
Folks… this HAS TO STOP.
How? I don’t know.
1. If this pastor did this, we HAVE to find ways to stop it. There is NO WAY that the allegations levied in this article can be true without huge warning signs and red flags SOMEWHERE along the way. Is there?
2. If this is a total fabrication from the couple, how do we defend ourselves from this type of thing? Video surveillance of counseling sessions?
How do you prove things in a he said, she said situation?
If you’re innocent, you could be an hour away from a news story like this breaking about YOU.
If you’re guilty of this kind of conduct, you have no right being a pastor.
Either way, you’re vulnerable.
How do you protect yourself from:
1. Falling into a sin like this; or
2. a False accusation that could ruin your reputation, family, and ministry?
Have you thought about this? What are your thoughts?
Matt Steen and I talk about Rick Warren’s recent tweet about his phone’s ring town being ‘Gangham Style’ and how it has infuriated some bloggers.
This is just one more reason that I’m glad I’m not Rick Warren. Can you imagine people writing blog posts every time you tweet? Oh my.
CBS News even posted this:
Well… here’s our take… Sorry for the ‘not great’ video quality. My internet connection is bad here in rural Ohio. :)
It’s time for this week’s installment of The Filter with Matt Steen and myself.
What are we trying to prove? Nothing, really… it’s just two normal guys talking about ‘churchy’ stuff… the things that interest us in the church and ministry leadership world.
We hope that you will be challenged.
We think you’ll probably disagree with us (at least once each week).
But if love Jesus, and the church, we think you just might like The Filter.
Just sayin’. Here’s this week’s episode for your viewing pleasure:
Rick Warren on gay marriage (19:19)
The Annual Christmas vs Holiday Tree Debate (29:55)
Newsweek just did a story on Rick Warren. Not the most unbiased article I’ve seen, but interesting… at least from the way the reporter views Rick and his work.
Here’s the opening line… I think it shows some bias… and the ‘coterie of aides’ is a little bit of an overstatement, I believe. :)
More from the article:
Without waiting for an answer or even an introduction, Rick Warren, megachurch minister and bestselling author, crosses his Manhattan hotel suite and swallows me up in a teddy-bearish embrace. A coterie of aides and handlers look on in amusement but not surprise. Warren is all about the agape, and he is a fierce and frequent hugger.
This seems only fitting. Since exploding onto the global stage in 2002 with his phenomenally successful book The Purpose Driven Life, Warren has been the warm and friendly face of evangelicalism—a welcoming, avuncular alternative to hellfire-and-brimstone finger waggers such as Pat Robertson and the late Jerry Falwell. With his goatee and dressed-down aesthetic (for our meeting he’s sporting jeans, a bright blue and robin’s-egg plaid oxford, and black slip-ons), 58-year-old “Pastor Rick” cultivates the casual, cool-dad aura of the boomer generation to which he belongs. (He has the Korean rap phenomenon “Gangnam Style” as his ringtone and, in classic SoCal fashion, shuns socks unless visiting wintery climes such as New York in late November). Warren’s ministry, similarly, presents Christianity in a relatable, user-friendly package, much in keeping with his book’s uplifting promise that every one of our lives has meaning.
These days, however, the aggressively upbeat Warren is increasingly disheartened by what he sees as a “malaise” afoot in the land. “I feel America is in the emotional doldrums,” he says sadly. The economy is sluggish, the political system is a disaster, and citizens are at each other’s throats. He observes, “I think America is more divided today—and it’s sad—than at any time since the Civil War.”
Warren voices special concern for younger generations. “There’s a lot of people in their 20s and even early 30s still waiting for their lives to start,” he observes. They can’t find jobs. They’re moving back in with their parents. “They’re like, where’s the American Dream for me?”
Bottom line, says Warren: “This nation is in desperate need of some direction and purpose and meaning. Somebody’s got to speak up now. And I thought, OK. If nobody else volunteers, I’ll step up.”
Which is precisely how the good reverend plans to spend the coming year. This holiday season, a 10th-anniversary edition of The Purpose Driven Life hits stores, updated with two new chapters and scads of links to video and audio extras designed for the age of social media. Next month Warren will launch a nationwide church “campaign” (as he did with the first edition) that enables ministers to order DIY teaching kits to help spread the purpose-driven message within their own congregations. With this reboot, Warren aims to introduce a new generation to the Good News—perhaps even spark a “Great Awakening” among the grassroots, he notes hopefully.
It is a tall order—and one that s ome in the evangelical community doubt Warren still has the juice to pull off. In the past couple of years, Warren’s star has unquestionably dimmed a bit. His profile outside evangelical circles has dropped—most notably in the political realm, where he cast a long shadow in the 2008 campaign but was largely invisible this time around. Even within the evangelical community, Warren is no longer a central focus of the movement’s energy, as fresher, feistier players have risen up in his wake.
Here’s a video interview Rick did with the Daily Beast:
A great article this past week from Charles Arn on ‘Pastoral Longevity and Church Growth’. According to studies, there is an undeniable relationship between pastoral tenure and church growth. Truth is: Many pastors leave way before the amount of time it will take them to be truly effective. Here’s a chart showing a recent studies findings on why pastors are leaving their churches:
Here are some additional excuses Charles thinks are contributing factors:
• More money. Human nature is always dissatisfied, however much we make.
• Conflict. Another characteristic of human nature: conflict is anywhere there are people.
• You’re getting stale. Commit to being a life-time learner. It will keep you and your church in touch with today’s issues.
• Greener pastures. See Philippians 4:12.
• Boredom. To quote Rick Warren, “It’s not about you.”
• Burn-out. Whether you have reached that point or not, take time to retreat and renew.
• An exploratory call. We all like to be liked. But just because a church is calling doesn’t mean God is.
• You’re out of sermons. If that’s your reason for moving, I suggest you shouldn’t be in the ministry.
• Too much pressure. So your next church will be without pressure? If your motivation to move is to avoid pressure, see the response above.
I like Charles’ summary:
There is an undeniable relationship between pastoral tenure and church growth. While most growing churches have long-term pastorates, and some non-growing churches have long-term pastorates, it is almost unheard of to find a growing church with many short-term pastorates. Frequent change of pastors seems to negate all the other complicated ingredients that go into a church’s growth mix.
I’ve heard that it takes a pastor about 6-7 years before real change starts to really happen at a quicker pace.
What has been your experience?
Great quote from Rick Warren as we move on from the election:
“The coarsening of our culture and the loss of civility in our civilization is one of the things that concerns me most about our nation. We don’t know how to disagree without being disagreeable. The fact is, you can — you can walk hand-in-hand without seeing eye-to-eye. And what we need in our country is unity, not uniformity. There are major differences, politically, religiously, economically in our nation. We have many different streams in our nation . . . What is solvable is how we treat each other with our differences . . . In fact, the Bible tells me in I Peter, show respect to everyone, even people I totally disagree with. So I’m coming from that viewpoint in that we must return civility to our civilization in order to get on. But the reason I do that is because of the deeper reason, there’s a spiritual root to my reason for civility.”
HT: Andrian Warnock
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