THE NEXT WAVE www.icof.net Can You Be a Christian on Your Job and Be Successful
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of her job Carolyn's response was quite remarkable, "I enjoy it." What an amazing response. We were both taken back by her comment.
Can You Be A Christian on Your Job and Be Successful By Ralph Day
Carolyn was recognized by her organization as caregiver of the year. She didn't do her job because she wanted that recognition. Instead, it was the fruit of living out her calling to be a caregiver.
Many of us in the ministry must hold down a secular job as well as minister. But with that said, can we be successful? Do we have to compromise our faith in order to advance in the chosen profession? Here are a few things to consider:
Carolyn is in sharp contrast to others who work at the same facility. It is often difficult to get them to do the basic necessities of care for your loved one. Requests are met with resistance. The attitude in which they do their job is compulsory instead of a motivation to serve.
A Job versus a Calling "Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant? As the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve" - Matthew 20:2628
This attitude can be seen in almost any vocational area. Whether you go into a department store, speak with a customer service agent, or go to get your tires changed, it is easy to recognize those who are living out their calling versus those who are collecting a paycheck.
My wife and I used travel to my home town every few days to visit my mom in at her home. She was in the beginning stages of Alzheimer's. We often comment that it is easy to distinguish those who see their work as a job versus those who see it as a calling when visiting the area.
Which person are you in this story? Pray that you see your work as a calling and an avenue to express the life of Jesus through your work life.
There is one woman there we all love. Her name is Carolyn. We know that if Carolyn is on duty, our mom will be well cared for. Carolyn exemplifies one who is doing her job because she actually loves her work. Carolyn's job involves caring for difficult patients who often have little appreciation for what she does and often requires cleaning up urine and giving baths to invalid patients. When asked about her view
A New Breed of Workplace Believers "Speak to Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, to Joshua son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and to the remnant of the people...." - Haggai 2:2 Zerubbabel was the governor of Judah 60 years after the great temple built by Solomon had been destroyed. The temple 3
lay in ruins, and the Lord spoke to the prophet Haggai, "Is it a time for you yourselves to be living in your paneled houses, while this house remains a ruin?" (Hag. 1:4) God was calling for a remnant of His people to come out of their comfort zones and restore the glory of God's house.
wants to use you in the workplace this year. Then act and "be strong, all you people of the land." Can Your Boss Say This About You? "Can we find anyone like this man, one in whom is the spirit of God?" Genesis 41:38
God is doing this same thing today among Christian workplace believers throughout the world. He is raising up a remnant of workplace believers who are being handpicked to use their resources, skills, and experience to affect nations that have not heard the message of Jesus Christ. The only way they can hear is by commerce being brought into their nation through Christian workplace believers, because these are closed regions to normal missionary efforts. "But now be strong, O Zerubbabel," declares the Lord. "Be strong, O Joshua son of Jehozadak, the high priest. Be strong, all you people of the land," declares the Lord, "and work. For I am with you," declares the Lord Almighty. "This is what I covenanted with you when you came out of Egypt. And My Spirit remains among you. Do not fear" (Haggai 2:4-5).
When I was in secular work (and it seems I always took the underdog church that didnâ€™t pay enough, so I had to hold down a secular job in order to make ends meet) I often got resumes` from people wanting to come to work for us. For those who knew I was a minister, they would think that because that the pressures and the environment would be so much better than the place where they work. That may be true, but there is a danger in this view.
The remnant of workplace believers God is calling today understand that they have to come out of Egypt from their past work life. Egypt signifies the way of the world. It represents sweat and toil. It is the flesh. This new way is exemplified by a pioneer spirit. God knows we need to have courage in order to move in this realm. Also, God assures us that His Spirit is with anyone who seeks to live in the realm of supernatural faith.
The Bible says that God has defined the place and time in which we are to live. "LORD, you have assigned me my portion and my cup; you have made my lot secure. The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance" (Ps 16:5-6).
Are you one of these remnants He has handpicked in these days? Has He called you out of Egypt in order to do extraordinary things in your life for His Kingdom? Ask God to show you how He
God has uniquely gifted you to bring His presence and power in the area of your 4
calling. Once you begin to realize this, God will use you just as He did Joseph with his employer, Pharaoh. Your life should be a testimony of the power, creativity, and servant-hood of Jesus that it impacts your employer to the degree that he says the same thing Pharaoh said about Joseph: "Can we find anyone like this man, one in whom is the Spirit of God?"
Research on credibility has shown that, when a leader attempts to influence people, they engage in a conscious and even subconscious evaluation of the leader. Consequently, they will only follow if they deem him or her credible – i.e. trustworthy. Too often, a leader expects followers to trust him simply because he occupies a position of leadership within the organization. Initially, some followers may grant the leader the benefit of the doubt and follow for a while. Over time, however, it will be necessary for the leader to earn the people’s trust if they are to remain his followers.
When God accomplishes this in your life He gives you authority in your workplace. You will begin to see others drawn to you. You may begin to be ostracized as well. This too is part of your call. Do not fear this. Embrace it.
In his book Being Leaders, 1 leadership expert Aubrey Malphurs lists eight ingredients that contribute in building leadership credibility:
We should not be seeking to remove ourselves from the pressure cooker of life, but use that pressure cooker to reveal the power and grace of God through our lives to others. It is here that we will receive our inheritance as we fulfill our purposes in and through our work life call.
1. Character – The foundation of credibility and trustworthiness. Compromise this and you compromise your leadership and erode the trust of your followers. 2. Competence – Your capability to perform well in a specific context, having the expertise and ability to get things done. If you can successfully get things done, people will trust you. 3. Clarity of direction – Knowing where you are going and where you are taking the people (i.e. organizational mission and vision). 4. Communication – Keeping followers regularly informed about what is taking place. Informed people are trusting people; uninformed people are suspicious people. 5. Conviction – The passion and commitment you demonstrate toward your vision. A leader with conviction of beliefs engenders credibility.
Today, ask God to give you supernatural wisdom and discernment to express the Spirit of God through you to your employer.
Do They Trust Me? There is an old joke that says General Custer looked at his men at Little Bighorn and said, “Trust me – those are friendly Indians.” I doubt if it happened that way, but Custer’s men trusted him enough to follow him to their deaths in a losing battle. Leadership can only take place when people make a conscious decision to follow. And any such decision will ultimately involve some level of trust. Trust is vital to leadership because people will not follow leaders they don’t trust.
Aubrey Malphurs, Being Leaders (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2003), 56-66.
6. Courage – Willingness to stand up for your beliefs in difficult situations; to challenge others; to admit your mistakes; to change your view when wrong; to not quit. 7. Care – A demonstration of concern for the well-being of your followers that flows from your love for them. Remember: People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care! 8. Composure – Your consistent display of appropriate emotional health or maturity that sets a positive ministry mood, especially in difficult or crisis situations.
significant predictor of an individual’s satisfaction within the organization. As leaders create a climate of trust, they take away the controls and allow people to be free to innovate and contribute.3 Ask yourself the following questions to determine where you are as a leader relative to trust: • • • • • •
“Do my followers trust me?” “Do I follow through on promises made? Do I keep my word?” “Do I micromanage (often seen as mistrust)?” “Do I delegate a task, only to take it back later?” “Do I understand that trust is earned and that earning trust takes time?” “Am I intentionally engendering an atmosphere of trust in the organization?”
On a scale of 1-10, with 1 being lowest and 10 being highest, rate yourself on being trustworthy. Write down areas that need improvement and set a goal this week to say and do things that generate trust among your team.
Trust is a two-way street. The follower must trust the leader and feel that the leader trusts him or her, too. Thus, the role of a good leader is to create an environment of trust within the organization. Trust should become part of the overall ethos, or organizational culture. Hastings and Potter note, “When people do not trust one another, it is difficult for the organization to succeed and for the people within the organization to feel completely fulfilled. People who feel trusted and who trust their leaders are more satisfied, and their work environment is less stressful. There exists a feeling of openness and confidence and greater ability for people to believe they can take risks.” 2 Trust, then, is the most
Climbing the Leadership Ladder Within the church world, John Maxwell is arguably the most well-known author and expert on leadership. He has written numerous leadership books that have been read by millions. Some of his best insight into leadership development is found in what he calls “The Five Levels of Leadership.”(1) In this article, I want to explore those five levels.
(Colorado Springs, CO: WaterBrook Press, 2004), 160. 3 James M. Kouzes and Barry Z. Posner, The Leadership
Wayne Hastings and Ron Potter, Trust Me: Developing A Leadership Style People Will Follow
Level One: Position This is the basic entry level of leadership. You are given a leadership position, a title, and (hopefully) a job description. Your followers are told you are now in charge, and they accept this as a fact of life. They will follow you – but only because they have to! There is no or very little trust between you and them, and they are waiting and watching to see how you perform as their leader. The situation is compounded if your predecessor was an experienced, loved and trusted leader. Your ability to influence goes no further than your title, and the truth is few people will follow you based on a title alone.
Level Two: Permission The person at this level learns to lead by interrelationships. The ongoing goal is to build solid, lasting relationships with your followers. It is at this level that John encourages the leader with his popular adage: “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.” A follower will commit to teamwork and develop loyalty towards the leader when he or she senses that the leader cares about them as a person.
Warning: Several temptations go with this level. They include: fighting for territorial rights; driving workers instead of leading them; leading by intimidation; And feeling the need to constantly remind everyone, “I’m the boss.” If you have to remind them that you are in charge, guess what - you’re not!
Consequently, working with people creates an enjoyable camaraderie that allows work to be fun! One word of caution: you cannot afford to stay too long at this level. Highly motivated people on your team desire action and results, and you don’t want them to get restless. You must transition to the next level, but the relationships you build here will provide the glue and staying power for the long-term consistent production at Level Three.
While it is necessary for you to begin your leadership at this level, it is imperative that you quickly and intentionally move to the next level. The longer you stay here, the higher the turnover and the lower the morale. How can you succeed at level one?
Here’s how to do well at Level Two: Possess a genuine love for people. Make those who work with you more successful. See through other people’s eyes. Love people more than procedures. Do “win-win” or don’t do it. Include others in your journey. Deal wisely with difficult people.
Accept responsibility. Do your job with excellence. Do more than expected. Offer creative ideas for change and improvement.
Know your job description thoroughly. Be aware of the history of the organization. Relate the organization’s history to the people of the organization (in other words, be a team player).
Level Three: Production At this level, people follow you because of what you have done for the organization. You are getting things done, and the people are motivated by what you are doing. Your
This material is well-covered in his book, Developing the Leader Within You (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1993), 5-16.
successes make them feel positive about you and your leadership; they believe that you are someone worth following, someone who can be trusted. As a matter of fact, success at Levels Two and Three generally results in earned trust from followers. At this level, you get your followers to come together to accomplish a purpose or set of purposes. Everyone is having fun because they can see measured results from their efforts. Morale is high. Turnover is low. The organization is experiencing growth. Goals are being realized. There is a sense of momentum that is exhilarating. This is where success is sensed by most people – including leaders. They feel they have finally arrived. But as we will see, it is necessary for the leader to move to the next level to have sustained success in leadership.
Level Four: People Development It is at this stage that a leader discovers what it means to be a truly great leader. It is not because of your position or power, but because of your ability to empower others. Loyalty reaches its peak when workers have personally grown through your mentorship. It is what Robert Greenleaf called “servantleadership.” You still have a position, strong relationships and positive results. But your daily goal is to help your followers be better workers and better people. You win people’s hearts by helping them grow personally, and at the end of the day they know that you have added value to their lives. This level of leadership is fleshed out when you spend time with a team member, answer their questions, offer them resources and training, and entrust them with projects that will increase their capability in a particular area. It is also at this level that you systematically meet with and teach those who are influencers within the organization. They in turn pass on to others what you have given them.
So what do you need to focus on to do well at this level? Initiate and accept responsibility for growth. Develop and follow a statement of purpose. Make your job description and energy an integral part of the statement of purpose. Develop accountability for results, beginning with you. Know and do things that give a high return. Communicate the strategy and vision of the organization. Become a change-agent and understand timing. Make the difficult decisions that will make a difference.
In essence, people follow you because of what you have done for them. This is where long-range growth occurs. Your commitment to developing leaders will insure ongoing growth to the organization and to the people. Do whatever you can to achieve and stay at this level. Here are some ways to do that:
Realize that people are your most valuable asset. Place a priority on developing people. Be a model for others to follow. Pour your leadership efforts into the top 20% of your people. Expose key leaders to growth opportunities.
As a closing exercise, review the characteristics of each of the five levels of leadership and pick out three that you are weak in and need to develop. Then, commit to a personal leadership development plan and take steps to grow as a leader. Leaders are learners, and you can learn to become a better leader. Climb the leadership ladder to success!
Be able to attract other winners/producers to the common goal. Surround yourself with an inner core that complements your leadership.
I recently came across an article by Amanda Gore on LinkedIn. Here is what she said: “What’s the best thing that happened to you today? I challenge you to greet everyone in this way – watch their faces light up! Begin your staff meetings with asking everyone to answer the question “what’s the best thing that happened to you since we last met” – it will transform the group dynamics! You will be amazed at how much better the meetings flow and at the improvement in creativity and ideas. Leave it as a message on your voice mail! “Hi – I can’t take your call right now but if you tell me the best thing that’s happened to you all day – I’ll call you back!” Ask your colleagues to do this daily, as well as your clients, customers and family.
Level Five: Personhood John Maxwell says only a lifetime of proven leadership will allow you to sit at this level. People follow you because of who you are and what you represent. This level is reserved for leaders who have spent years growing people and organizations. Few make it. Those who do are bigger than life. Of course, people who come to mind are George Washington, Martin Luther King, Jr., Rick Warren, Bill Hybels, and Chuck Swindoll, to name a few. Yet, you shouldn’t be discouraged. This is an achievable level in any organization. What will it mean for you to get to this level?
Asking this question will make you popular! If you do this consistently, people will look forward to seeing you, because for some reason that they won’t understand, they will like being around you and feel good when they are with you. Remember this is a very sophisticated way to change a persons physiology as they release ‘happy’ drugs when they recall something pleasant!
Your followers are loyal and sacrificial. You have spent years mentoring and molding leaders. You have become a statesman/consultant and are sought out by others. Your greatest joy comes from watching others grow and develop. You transcend the organization.
The field of positive psychology proves that a ratio of 3:1 positive comments or experiences or feelings a day to negative transforms workplaces and people! If you are scoring an average of 3:1 positive: negative in your workday, you will flourish! At home, the science shows us it is 5:1!! Every time you greet a person with “what’s the best thing….” You will be giving them one positive! Every time they greet you with it, YOU will have a positive experience. Remember – three to one – positive to negative – go for it!
living. Other times they had to enslave them, which took time away from their mission. Whenever we fail to complete a job it creates ill-will from those we are serving. It also violates a basic biblical mandate for every believer to do their work with excellence. The Bible says that Daniel and his friends did their work ten times better than anyone else. They were known for their excellence. It is often said of American football that the hardest place to score from is the one yard line. That is because the defenses are greatest where there is the most resistance. Sometimes completing a job is like this.
For Families: Please, please, please make this a family ritual – so that every night it’s a tradition to ask everyone in your family or home ‘What’s the best thing that happened to you today?’ It’s a great way to find out what is happening in your children or spouses lives, and it will transform the atmosphere in your home each night.
Whenever you have a project to do make sure you complete the job fully. Go the extra distance to make sure your boss or your client is totally satisfied with your work. You may complete 95% of your work, but if it is not completed you will be known for what you did not finish, rather than for what you did finish.
Finish the Job "When Israel became strong, they pressed the Canaanites into forced labor but never drove them out completely" Judges 1:28-29 Have you ever hired a contractor to do some work and ended up having to spend time and energy to get him back to finish the job? The small unfinished projects simply irritate you and create ill-will between you and your contractor. If you have been involved in a building project, you have surely had this experience.
Rev. Dr. Ralph E. Day, Jr. has been in the ministry for over 40 years now. He has pastored, taught, mentored and ministered to many in several states. Retired now from pastoring, he still ministers as founder of Building Internet Evangelism (building, hosting and maintaining websites for ministries around the world). He has been appointed as Ambassador to India for the International Circle of Faith (ICOF). He is also the VP of Social Media for the ICOF.
God wanted his people to finish the job. He often told the Israelites to remove your enemies from the Promised Land. However, many times they would not finish the job and the remnant that was left would come back and create difficulties. In most cases, the people of Israel would intermarry which enticed them into their enemy's way of
ICOF members have united over 50,000 ministers representing more than 25 Million constituents, several hundred colleges, universities and other Christian schools, orphanages & feeding programs, humanitarian aid organizations, chaplains and other charities.
Transformation is a lateral exchange between two parties that has an ascension quality to it.
Times of Refreshing (Acts 3:19-21) are designed to transport us to Times for Reformation(Hebrews 9:10). Until you reform, you only revisit. It will take a conscience effort to change the norm or a past that continually takes us off God's path. That takes being biblically correct and spiritually accurate. We need to embrace the word of wisdom. That's apostolic. That's our destiny. Apostolic is not a status, it's a task.
COMMUNITY WITH ED DELPHs
The opportunity of 'Amplification' to the rest of the world. We cause the world to Re-Think Groupthink!
Encouraging Trends and Realistic Challenges for Apostolic Transformation
These trends, in my opinion, are real, tangible, lasting and trending upwards. You may have observed other trends. Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it's faced.
Right now there is a battle raging for control over culture and society in a way that we have never experienced before. There are two forces competing for world governance…the kingdom of God and the kingdom of man; Theism and Humanism; Jesus and Nimrod...The Tale of Two Kings.
Eight Encouraging Trends on the Path to Societal Reformation through Apostolic Transformation. (trends are not true in every instance but many/most instances...Rated by plus, neutral, minus)
The battle ground in today’s world is the ‘media ground.’ Mainline media is controlled by human reasoning and quest for control through governmental legislation and institutional education. In 'Nimrod-ian' groupthink , if you can't control everyone's thinking, you control the language. Control the language and you control the culture. Genesis 11:6.
1. Apostolic Leadership and Ministry is becoming more accepted and integrated into church culture. The process...pioneers, homesteaders, early adopters, midadopters, late adopters, non-adopters. Right now in many movements and places, we are influencing and converting early adopter/mid-adopters. 2. A Shift from Information to Incarnation. God is spiritual, God is natural, but God is especially and strategically 'incarnational.' Heaven wasn't coming to earth so earth came to heaven. Find a need and meet it. That includes engaging culture at all levels of society…the 7 gates are 7 opportunities for societal transformation.
As we consider Apostolic Transformation, let's consider the two questions that God asks every gathering in the universe where two or more are gathered. Will you come together? If so, who will get the glory? Right now we need to hear from God more the ever before. Hear God first and speak second. Apostolic days require apostolic ways. It takes governance to displace governance.
3. A Shift from Church to Kingdom, from Matt 16:18 to Matt. 16:19. How big is your church? My definition of kingdom in a geographical sense is anything that is outside of the church walls. More are embracing the
Embracing the Concept of Transaction and Transformation. The women at the well --information, revelation, incarnation, and transformation. Transaction is a lateral exchange between two parties. 15
kingdom. We are shifting from success to significance. Fit small into big not vice versa.
7. We are Discovering, Uncovering, and Recovering the Portals/Gates. There are only three verses in the whole bible that, when applied, connect the church to the community. We go through these portals:
4. A Shift from Theme/Emphasis/Doctrine Based Churches to Churches that Look Like all of Jesus. These new wineskin churches are more complete. They are upward, inward and outward all at the same time. They represent and present the whole council of God's word. When Jesus is lifted up, He draws the community. This is why God created apostles. Their assignment is filling the earth with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord who is Jesus. Glory is a Who, not a what. Apostles are sent ones with the grace to do what is necessary to conform people, churches and communities to the image of Christ in character, ministry and mission. If a church doesn't look like all of Jesus, it should alarm apostolic leaders. Apostolic alignment is to Christ alone. Apostolic ministry is a task, not a status. Deep and Wide.
*Good works in such a way: "Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven." Matt. 5:16. All kinds of works that make the news. *Presenting and Representing Good Relationships: "By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another." Jn. 13:35. No wonder the devil wants love to grow cold. *Presenting and Representing Synergy...A Corporate Anointing. "That they all may be one; even as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, that they also may be in us...SO THAT THE WORLD MAY BELIEVE THAT YOU SENT ME." Humanism wants diversity with no unity. Theism wants unity with diversity...a celebration of differences. Glory produces unity, unity produces ministry to the community. What would happen if we did all three at one time?
5. The Church is Becoming More Relevant and therefore More Influential. In writing Church@Community, I had to invent a new term...redemptive relevancy. Relevancy whose end is redemption...becoming all things to all men so that some might be saved. It's not compromise. We are connecting the message to the audience better. That's wise in creating favor with man and God. You can't turn people on if they want to turn you off. Relevancy brings credibility. It opens minds, hearts and doors. "The Queens of the South will come from afar to hear the wisdom of Solomon." Attractional.
8. The Austral-Asian-African Spring. Mainline groupthink broadcasts an 'Arab Spring.' The spring is in the 3-A's and it is picking up momentum, moving all of us toward critical mass. We are not alone...more reinforcements are on the way. And especially I say, watch out world, here comes Chinese descent Christianity. Our destiny is to go to heaven. Our responsibility is to bring heaven.
6. Our Thinking is Moving from Single Looped to Double Looped. It takes a new 'mindskin' to create a new wineskin. We are moving from the dualism of either/or, us/them, win/lose to the reality of both/and. Lion and the Lamb. Church and Kingdom. We are moving from knowledge to wisdom...from output to outcome...awareness and focus...small picture to the big picture...from the story to the story behind the story. In other words, we are starting to tap into the mind of Christ. Many today in the church are believing right but thinking wrong.
Ed Delph www.nationstrategy.com January 2014
Ed Delph has been responding to God's call to the community and to the nations since 1979. He has ministered or been in over 100 countries as well as serving as a pastor in the United States. 16
COMING TO YOUR AREA
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Joel Osteen, Carl Lentz, Hezekiah Walker, AR Bernard Make Tag Team
Faith Declarations at 'America's Night of Hope' in NYC
(PHOTO: THE CHRISTIAN POST/NICOLA MENZIE)
America's Night of Hope was held on Saturday, June 7, 2014, at Yankee Stadium in New York City. "You know, we believe it makes a difference to speak words of faith and speak words of victory, so I'll ask some of the great pastors of the New York area to join me tonightâ€Ś" Osteen explained to a cheering audience. "I've asked them to take a moment to just make a declaration by faith over our schools, over our government, over our firefighters, our police force, teachers, nurses, everything about the city, and not only that but about your life as well." Each minister then took the mic for a minute or two and stated their declaration before handing it off to the next pastor. The leaders represent congregations from New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, and Massachusetts, with all but one of them members of Lakewood Church's Champions Network, a national network that helps Christians find churches in their area (read about the network here). Hillsong NYC Pastor Carl Lentz, currently not listed in the Champions Network, was included in the declaration lineup Saturday night, 18 although his name did not appear in the printed program.
KINGDOM AND GRACE
For it was in Him that all things were
THE CORNERSTONE OF CHRISTIAN
created, in heaven and on earth, things
seen and things unseen, whether thrones, dominions, rulers, or authorities; all things
By: Bishop Derrick Day
were created and exist through Him [by His service, intervention] and in and for Him. And He Himself existed before all things,
It seems many religious folks are bent upon
and in Him all things consist (cohere, are
discrediting Christian teachers who teach
held together). He also is the Head of [His]
the Kingdom of God and the Grace of God.
body, the church; seeing He is the
Many blog posts are written to minimize the
Beginning, the Firstborn from among the
revelation emanating from these teaching.
dead, so that He alone” in everything and in
Now, I hate to be a party to an “us-versus-
every respect might occupy the chief place
them” debate but, sadly, this is what it’s
[stand first and be preeminent]. For it has
pleased [the Father] that all the divine fullness (the sum total of the divine
Here is an essential truth expressed as a
perfection, powers, and attributes) should
fact: the central figure in Scripture is Jesus
dwell in Him permanently. (Colossians 1:16-
Christ. He was present in the past, He is
present in the present, and He will be present in the future. In the beginning was the Word, and the
Since Jesus is the centrality of all Scripture,
Word was with God, and the Word was
it behooves us to study and to teach what
God. He was in the beginning with God. All
He taught. The Kingdom of God is what
things were made through him, and without
Jesus taught. Thanks to modern
him was not any thing made that was
technology, it is easy to do a word-count of
made. In him was life, and the life was the
text. Jesus spoke of the Kingdom of God
light of men (John 1:1-4, ESV)
more than anything else. Indeed, the first thing Jesus said upon the commencement of His earthly ministry was “repent, for the
All things were created by Jesus and for
Kingdom of God is at hand” (Mark 1:15).
“Repent,” meaning, “change your mind” 19
and “at hand,” meaning, “here and now.”
teaching of the law as a means of discipling the saints? For some, it is an error of
Simply put, we have to adjust our mindset
omission – that is, they do this because
for the present reality of the Kingdom. It is
they, themselves, were not taught better.
not simply “pie-in-the-sky-in-the-sweet-by-
Sadly, for others, it is an error of
commission – they know better but
The Bible tells us that Jesus was full of
legalistic flagellation is a means of exerting
Grace and Truth - the Law was given by
control over others.
Moses, but Grace and Truth came by Jesus
In both cases, though, it is time for a
Christ, (John 1:14-17). Grace, simply
defined, is God’s unmerited favor. God so loved the world that he gave the
It is important that we study the Old
personification of His Grace, Jesus Christ!
Testament carefully to understand what we have been delivered from. It is also
The Apostle Paul wrote the majority of the
important to study the Old Testament to
canonized New Testament. The Grace of
understand what prophecy has been
God is what Jesus revealed to Paul. He
fulfilled and what is yet to come. Moreover,
wrote that it is by grace (God’s unmerited
it is important to study the Old Testament
favor) through faith (absolute confidence in
to understand God’s mission statement
God and His Word) that we are saved
(Genesis), His wisdom (Proverbs), and the
(Ephesians 2:8). Jesus was the embodiment
paradigm of praise (Psalms). It is not to be
of grace and the fulfillment of the law. Paul
used, as some would say, as a “guide for
laid this out with bold simplicity in his
holy living” because, if it is, it is holiness
epistle to the Galatians – particularly
attained by works – which is as filthy rags
chapters 3 and 4, which drilled the point
before God (Isaiah 64:6).
home with laser-like accuracy.
So what does true Kingdom and Grace
Indeed, Paul laid this bare by telling us that
teaching look like? That God’s government
we are no longer under Law but under
trumps all governments, that right standing
Grace (Romans 6:14).
with Him through Jesus is essential, that
So why, then, does mainstream Christianity
His love abounds toward you, and that His
insist upon returning not only to beggarly
unmerited favor not only saves you and
elements (Galatians 4:9) but to flat-out
keeps you, but empowers you to be His 20
loving child. It is not legalistic, traditional
Bishop Derrick Day is Presides over the
religion with the right buzzwords. True
International Circle of Faith (ICOF) for
Kingdom and Grace teaching liberates all
North America. He and his wife Angela
who hear it, just like it did in Jesus’ day
pastor Agape Dominion Fellowship in
Suprize, AZ (a suburb of Phoenix).
It is this “buzzword crowd” that strives to
discredit those who are teaching the truth.
Because Kingdom and Grace teaching is liberating (2 Corinthians 3:17), and it takes away power from institutions and puts it in the hands of whom God intended – his children. The “buzzword crowd” is not only content to persist in mere religion but is determined to drag as many along with them as they can. Kingdom and Grace teaching is light to a dark world, and additional illumination upon the sphere of religion. The teaching of those operating in the revelation of the Grace of God and the Kingdom of God is maligned by those who insist upon adhering to mere religion. Kingdom and Grace teaching not only has enemies in the world but in the traditional church as well. While it would be easy to fold up the tent against such daunting circumstances, let me give you a word of encouragement: Hang in there, Grace teacher, be strong Kingdom teacher: truth is winning!
Church Swapping or Church Browsing!
the web! Still this comes with the territory for all preachers these days; who are teaching congregations who are more "well-informed" and "knowledgeable" today than the world has ever known before! (Gen 2:9) As teachers this challenge is good for us, we better know our stuff! People will increase in knowledge, as scripture tells us that folk will "run to and fro" for knowledge and yet learn nothing that sustains them (see Eph 4:14). We have to preach in the face of it all... but the Word of God has the power to "penetrate" anything! (Psalms 119:130)
"Godliness with contentment is great gain... let us be content" 1 Tim 6:6-8 (KJV) Dr. Alan Pateman
The trouble with having fingers in every pie, is that it develops people with mixed allegiances and split loyalties. They don't know where to tithe, so they simply "don't!" It fact it is becoming increasingly more difficult for people in general to commit to anything. Oh sure they can commit to a "lost-cause" whatever takes their fancy! They can tie themselves to the nearest tree and fight for the whales if they want to! And without being overly pedantic, let me suggest that our society today has become excessively committed to "anything and everything and nothing at all!"
Following the theme of "Main Stream Christians verses True Disciples" we now can discuss the matter of Church swapping! It's a phenomena! People can download church services from all over the globe, and feel a part of any church they want to (the privilege of living in a highly technological era perhaps!) Then again perhaps not! There are obvious advantages to having access to any church you want to (a lot like window shopping or internet browsing) but the significance being that anyone who "browses" does so from a "safedistance" and if they don't like something then they can "eject" at will, without being noticed or faulting on any "commitments." No love is lost; just move on and try the next two or three! It's uncomplicated and not so messy! Only difference between this and being part of a "family" is that there is little to "no" interaction that aids the development of valuable people skills. While they might get this on the job at work, it is not the same as interacting with spiritual folk at church; learning to love our brothers and sisters in the Lord. "As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith" (Gal 6:10 KJV). On the other hand, there are those who go to church regularly but also jump from church to church on the web. As great a resource as the internet is, this results in folks developing their own "cocktail" of perceived truth and end up confused as a result! They don't develop relationships with leaders they trust but instead, "they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears" (2 Tim 4:3-4 KJV). There now exists many "spiritual know- it-alls" who know nothing! And because everyone wants to be "independent" and "self sufficient" these days, no one can take correction anymore! Instead, without any training, they imagine that they can "correct" their pastor's latest message, based solely upon what they heard others preaching on
As disciples however we have solid "commitments" and this includes financial commitments also, along with respect for authority. Paul the apostle learnt to "abase or abound" (Philippians 4:12) as also we must. We too can learn to "achieve" no matter what state we
are in; whether in times of plenty or of lack. And I am a firm believer that sometimes, "less is defiantly more!" God can sometimes do more with us and through us in those times of lack than at other times. On the other hand, I have noticed with certain individuals during my life time, that the more they have, the worse they get! When they managed better on less, than they did with more and were even nicer individuals!
even in Israel!' ...Then Jesus said to the centurion. 'Go your way; and as you have believed, so let it be done for you.'" (Matt 8: 8-13) With our focus still on disciples, I will say it again, that a disciple is not afraid to commit financially. They are not whim-sickle or confused about where their tithe and offerings should go. Their commitments don't even change with their location! For instance I have people committed to God and to me from different parts of the world. People who aid my ministry faithfully and "financially" and who feel called by God to do so. They are also my spiritual sons and daughters and God uses them to fill His storehouse, which liberates me to fulfil the mandate given me. Now this takes willing recognition on their part. I don't need to manipulate them. God speaks to them first. In fact any commitment towards me or my ministry is first born out of a genuine relationship that they have with God themselves.
My point is this. God desires to "grow" us spiritually; to stretch us and make us holy. He will do whatever it takes! Chiefly to achieve this He engages the involvement of others. He knows who and what we need to grow. Spiritual parents and mentors have their part in this; we need their help to progress. Without "submission" (compliance with genuine authority) we inevitably fall into witchcraft. In 1 Samuel 15:23 Samuel told Saul "...rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king."
God holds people to their commitment so that even when challenges exist they don't run for cover but stay faithful. Disciples like this aren't afraid of making sacrifices when it really counts and even mature spiritually in the process. In fact they only "gain" along the way, as God uses them He blesses them and their families. I see this firsthand all the time.
Returning to my original point I ask this question, "Is it possible to be adequately "parented" over the internet?" Well anything is possible these days! And with the advent of Skype and other technology, visual communication across the seas occurs just like you are in the same room! And this type of communication with our mentors and spiritual parents is not only possible but also "necessary" in many cases, especially where people must work away from home. However, regardless of location, technology or circumstances we do need to recognise our need for spiritual parents; (too many suffer with an orphan spirit). We need genuine authority in our lives, even in today's world where less and less people see the need for authority.
Those who are "confused" about their financial commitments need to ask themselves this question; "Where do I take my wages - home or to the next door neighbour?!" If we can be faithful to fulfil our own needs and to fill our own homes with good things, then we must put the house of God "first" so that He can bless ours! (See 1 Kings 6).
However - (naturally speaking) - if authority was removed on a grand scale only "anarchy" would prevail. The same is true spiritually. Therefore our need for genuine authority is paramount. Disciples want this. Converts dispute it!
Its true that anyone who struggles with "commitment" will defiantly fail to commit financially, even towards God! In fact no matter what they have they will "struggle." Even with lots of money it only goes through their fingers like water, with little to show for it, which is why they are never satisfied and quickly tire of the "latest thing." 1Timothy 6: 6-8 says; "Godliness with contentment is GREAT gain"
Jesus showed "high-regard" for the Centurion He met one day, who understood the true authority He saw in Jesus. "The centurion answered and said, 'Lord I am not worthy that you should come under my roof. But only speak a word, and my servant will be healed. For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me. And I say to this one, 'Go,' and he goes; and to another 'Come,' and he comes; and to my servant, 'Do this,' and he does it.' When Jesus hard it, He marvelled, and said to those who followed, 'Assuredly, I say to you, I have not found such great faith, not
There are those who "appear" to be committed financially and who like others to know it, but are not actually as committed as they like to make out. Their poor "life style" reveals their true status and they always live "above their means." They never have enough. God is no man's debtor. People who give and then murmur are not committed to God but themselves! (The Pharisees did this and received their
reward in full!) In Acts 5:1-5 there is another example of "falsecommitment" which was Ananias and his wife Sapphira who brought "death" upon themselves by "mixing lying with their giving!" Yet how many people do that... and still survive!? Then again do they? I would suggest that they also bring "death upon their finances" and no matter how much they own, it is NEVER enough. They struggle regardless... fighting to make ends meet and the more that comes in - only makes it worse! These same folks inevitably try to blame others; usually their Pastor's teaching or even try to blame God! But the blame can only rest with them! They are blinded by greed. They lie to God. They lie to the Holy Spirit as did Ananias and Sapphira and finally they lie to themselves (all liars become convinced of their own lies after a while. Then there is no helping them). In fact "disingenuous" people are notorious for "blaming" others or thinking everyone else is like them (with hidden agendas and "calculated-secrets!") Finally... none of us can rebuke the devil if we let him in! The devil is a legalist who accuses us before God saying, "See they are not tithing - now let me curse their finances!" The average person is concerned about paying the bills, rent, heating and food bills; while the needs of the church go unnoticed. This should be our "first" concern. If the church in general is blessed then we are all blessed! True disciples are not afraid of their own commitment. They are blessed as a result. They don't deceive themselves, nor the Holy Spirit, and spiritual maturity is theirs for the taking. Amen!
LIFE CHURCH OF KENTUCKY MAKING DISCIPLES
pastor friend of mine said that the Pastor is the only profession who is expected to suffer silently. And because religion has sold this false notion that suffering for Christ somehow equates to piety, suffer they do.
Suffering Silently The Death of a Messenger of Hope By Bishop Derrick Day
Apparently, this young man had no one he felt he could reach out to. He couldn’t see as far as the hills. I make it a point, as part of my personal ministry, to reach out to pastors and leaders. I will pick up the phone and check on them. I will make myself available as a sounding board or a listening ear. Why? I do it because I believe someone needs to! I don’t do this for accolades and I don’t take a dime for it. I do it because I, myself, have friends. Good friends. My friends tell me when they think I’m spot-on about something or if I’ve gotten completely sideways. I thank God for their camaraderie and counsel.
A young man committed suicide on Sunday. This could be any Sunday in any place in America – I mean, this stuff happens, right – but there was a sad twist to the story. The young man was a Pastor. His name was Teddy Parker, Jr.
I don’t care who you are, how anointed you think you are, or how powerful people perceive you to be, you need friends!
As a pastor, myself, my heart goes out to his wife and children, his parents, his friends, and his church family. I am praying fervently for them all.
I’ve also heard pastors say, today – in the aftermath of this tragedy – that pastors suffer unduly from mistreatment by congregants. This is true but it is only one lane of the proverbial two-way street – there is a lot of browbeating emanating from the pulpit, today, as well.
Here’s the thing that hurts so badly here – the preacher of the Gospel is supposed to be a messenger of hope. I ask the question, where was his hope? I mean, we can respond with the Scripture that has become a religious cliché, “I look to the hills from where my hope comes from.”
Here’s the problem: For centuries, religion has taught that God will depart from you – that the Holy Spirit would leave you as David feared. But the truth is, God will never leave nor forsake you. Jesus gave us
According to a Barna survey, 70% of senior pastors say they have no close friends. A 28
the indwelling of the Holy Spirit for this express purpose.
Kingdom of God is in us to connect us that we may be equipped, encouraged, and edified.
There’s an old religious cliché that says “You can trust God even when you cannot trace him.”
Time to send this notion that God will leave or forsake you, and all other similar religious lies, down hell’s toilet – before they cost another precious life.
UTTER RUBBISH If you are born-again, you don’t have to trace or track the Holy Spirit any more than you have to track or trace your own liver. He’s in there and He will never leave nor forsake you.
© 2013 – Derrick Day (www.derrickday.com)
Derrick Day is the founder and Pastor of Agape Dominion Outreach Ministries based in Surprise, AZ. He is married to the lovely Pastor Angela Day and they are the proud parents of a houseful of sons.
When I read the following quote, I realize this young man bought into a horrific religious lie and it cost him his life. “You know a lot of times, we feel like when we are going through stuff and it’s a lot that there’s nobody there with us. And guess what? God intends for you to feel that way. I know y’all been saved a long time. I know you super spiritual and you know you real holy but there are times in your life, not y’all but me. There are times in my life when I’m going through some stuff where I can’t feel God there,” he confessed.
Derrick also serves as Founder and Bishop of Kingdom Covenant International, a ministry governance organization dedicated to planting churches and grooming leaders to make disciples, mature believers, and multiply ministries. He also serves as the North American presider for the International Circle of Faith (ICOF). In addition to his labor in the Kingdom, Derrick is also a software engineer, a former newspaper columnist with the New Journal and Guide and a former radio talk-show host with WNIS-AM in Norfolk, Virginia. He and his wife have coauthored the book, “Satan, Let Me Refresh Your Memory,” (available at amazon.com, smashwords.com, barnesandnoble.com and Apple iBooks). They are currently working on several other faith-based fiction and non-fiction books.
“I try to pray but I don’t feel like God is hearing me. I try to serve but I don’t feel like God is using me. And there are times in your life when God purposely withdraws from you, he doesn’t withdraw for the sake of leaving you but he withdraws so you can grow and mature,” he added, in a show of encouragement. When I read this, I had to fight to keep my breakfast down. If you’re inclined, you can read the article I got this from, here. It is not the will of God for anyone to be alone, much less suffer that way. The 29
that was done was like trying to put out a forest fire with a glass of water. With human trafficking, abortion, divorce, homelessness, poverty, fatherlessness, drug and alcohol abuse, and age, sex, and racial discriminations among the many social ills running rampant all over this nation and the world, one may reasonably ask—Where is God in all of this? Or better yet, where are God’s people, the ones that he has chosen in the world, in all of this?
The Silent Church and Political Correctness By Providence Crowder
The people of God? We are here. Some of us you may not recognize, but if you look closely, you will see us on Sunday mornings climbing into our cars and heading to church. And, if you visit our church, you will see us singing praises to God from wooden pews, and waving our hands in the air, and you may even see tears streaming from our eyes. You will see us at the church picnic, the church concert, the church “revival,” the church car wash, the church bake sale, the church fashion show, Bible study, the pastor’s anniversary service, or any number of other church functions.
I admit I am no fan of the current U.S. President or his administration. Personally I feel that the path that the Democrat Party and modern liberals are taking this nation on is a disastrous one. But, putting my personal political preferences aside, I recognize that as a Christian, our political systems and governments are severely flawed and dominated by sinful people with selfish motives. Christians are waged in spiritual warfare with the powers of darkness—and the sources of our national woes go beyond what any Democrat, Republican, Constitutionalist, or Libertarian can remedy.
Don’t look for us in the streets, don’t look for us in the hospitals, or the prisons, or anywhere people are broken. We are busy tending to our church services. BUT, if you come to our church, you will be blessed! Don’t look for us to help the poor—that’s why some of us pay taxes, so that the government can do it. They will be fair, I trust my politicians.
We live in a world filled with crime and violence wrought by men and women consumed with hate and motivated by selfish pride. With brother wronging brother, neighbor offending neighbor, and nation pitted against nation, it seems, as philosopher Edmund Burke has suggested, that evil has prevailed while good men sat idly by and did nothing—and the little 31
Many of us stand with President Obama, and even praise his homosexual agenda in the public sphere and in our pulpits as being inclusive and just, but don’t look for us to stand up to our government bureaucrats and demand justice for unborn children who are being legally slaughtered by the thousands daily— abortion is a political issue that’s divisive. Most of us—aside from the extremists—are politically correct.
our church pews and we would have no one to pay tithes and offering! Who would pay to keep the lights on in our impressive edifices? Ok, I hope you get my point. “If the righteous are barely saved, what will become of the godless and wicked?” (I Peter 4:18). We as people of God have many shortcomings. We are imperfect beings commissioned to deliver a perfect message to the world—Jesus saves! But we fail in our mission when we are consumed with our own needs, wants, and sinful lusts. We fail when we are unconcerned with the needs of our fellow man.
Sure, we will evangelize to the lost—the drug dealers, thieves, murderers, and prostitutes . . . IF they come to our church and hear our pastors preach. His words will surely prick their hearts. Don’t fret if you are unable to make it to our church service, we will add you to our prayer list and ask God to heal and deliver you.
With all the misery and human suffering, our indifference—our apathy—is literally killing people! The Word of God commands us: “Open your mouth, judge righteously, defend the rights of the poor and needy” (Proverbs 31:9). Yet, we have been silent when we should have been vocal, and have spoken when we should have remained silent. Many of us have believed the hype from the secular world that we should be silent on social and even political issues because faith, the world says, is a personal matter and those in the Church should keep their opinions and beliefs to themselves. The enemies of the gospel would have Christians hide their light under a bushel, but the Bible teaches no such thing. The Bible teaches, “Let your light shine before men, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven,” (Matthew 5:16).
Don’t expect us to openly condemn fornication, adultery, or homosexuality. We may casually mention it in a sermon or two, but the truth of the matter is, we are living in the 21st century and have realized our error in taking the Scriptures literally. We now understand that God accepts us all just as we are and we should not judge such matters—at least that’s what we say in the public sphere. But in reality, many of us know and believe what God says, but we struggle with the same sins secretly. We don’t want to live right—it’s too hard. Nor do we want to condemn such things too loud or too often because everybody is doing it! People don’t like to be judged. They don’t want to be told they are sinners. People may be offended and call us judgmental. If the government finds out, we are sure lose our tax exempt status.
We as Christians do great damage to our witness when we are indifferent concerning human suffering, or silent in the face of evil. German theologian and pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer boldly proclaimed, “Silence in the face of evil is itself evil: God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is
So we can’t, God understands. If we were to condemn the actions of fornicators, adulterers, and homosexuals, people will tune out and stop coming to church. We won’t be able to fill 32
to act.” Even philosophers such as John Stuart Mill recognized the mandate for action in the face of evil. He is quoted as saying, “A person may cause evil to others not only by his actions but by his inaction, and in either case he is justly accountable to them for the injury.”
Just as Dr. King used politics as a tool to rebuke the unjust laws of his time, we can also, as long as we do not err by confining God to a political ideology. We all have personal preferences concerning politics, but we cannot confuse our personal political preferences with godly directives. For example, if our preferences lead us to vote for one political party over another, that is fine and well. As citizens of this nation, we are afforded a voice in governing. But as Christians, our political ideology or inclinations should be aligned with God where God Law and man’s laws are in conflict.
Finally, pastor and civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., during the reigns of racial segregation and legalized discrimination in America, was forced to contend with spirited enemies on one front and an apathetic and sleeping Church on another. He used political pressure as one means to bring an end to unjust laws that denied human dignity to his fellow man.
Where human laws and institutions infringe upon God’s supreme Law, Christians must decide who their allegiance is to—man or God?
Dr. King defined just and unjust laws as follows: “A just law is a man-made code that squares with the moral law or the law of God. An unjust law is a code that is out of harmony with the moral law … Any law that uplifts human personality is just. Any law that degrades human personality is unjust.”
As a Christian, I also understand that worldly governments are godless entities without souls and without consciences. They were established by God to promote good and punish evil (Romans 13:1-7)—but how can sinful men promote good if they do not know what good is? How can our governments be just if the love for God and fellow man is not in the hearts of those who govern? The Bible teaches that “Out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, and foolishness” (Mark 7:21-22). These things are in the heart of every sinful man, rich and poor alike. That is why it is imperative for Christians to be vocal in promoting what is good and shunning what is evil. Dr. King argues that “the Church is not the master or servant of the state, but rather the conscience of the state.”
Dr. King had much to say concerning the Church and its moral failures. In 1965 during a speech, Dr. King is quoted as telling his Georgian audience: “History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the vitriolic words and other violent actions of the bad people but the appalling silence and indifference of the good people. Our generation will have to repent not only the words and acts of the children of darkness but also for the fears and apathy of the children of light.” King was moved to remind us all that, “In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.”
Although laws do not change a man’s heart, laws are necessary to establish order and promote justice. As Dr. King has pointed out, “the law cannot make a man love me, but it can keep him from lynching me, and I think that’s important.” This is why a prudent involvement in public affairs has been essential to Christians past and present. Government sanctioned lynching of innocent men, women, and children was a pretty strong motive for the people of God to stand up in the face of evil and declare to the Pharaohs of recent times to leave the people be and do them no further harm!
People cannot see God in us, nor will they receive our message of hope, healing, and salvation through Jesus Christ, if we are indifferent to their suffering. God is concerned with justice.
Mrs. Providence Crowder loves to serve God through serving people. She is married with two children.. She has earned a bachelor’s degree in Organizational Management from Roberts Wesleyan Wesleyan colleges.
When man’s laws are oppressive or unjust, it essential that men of good conscience do all they can to promote justice here and now—and declare what is good and denounce what is evil. As Dr. King has emphasized, when laws fail in this purpose, “they become the dangerously structured dams that block the flow of social progress.”
Visit her website:
International Circle of Faith Social Media Coordinator Volunteer
Position Overview Social Media Coordinators help engage the target audience via various social media channels
Functions, Duties, & Responsibilities
Bookmarking sites, Flickr, Forums, Wikis, blogs, etc Ability to identify threats and opportunities in user-generated content Basic SEO knowledge Ability to produce quality editorial and technical output
Degree in marketing, journalism, new media, advertising, entertainment or social media experience. Will train in lieu of experience. Digital or communications experience
Computer Skills Proficient in Microsoft Office Suite
Utilizes posts, tweets, podcasts, articles, videos, or screencasts to interact Moderate and promote communications that encourage the exchange of user-generated content Create strategies and tactics to increase participation and ensure the clarity of the message across social media channels Coordinates campaign calendars with online activity Contact:
Knowledge, Skills & Abilities Demonstrated, participatory expertise in various social media channels, including LinkedIn, YouTube, Foursquare, Twitter,
Dr. Ralph Day ICOF VP of Social Media
O.C. Isom II O. C. Isom II is the founder, Bishop, and Senior Pastor of Word up Apostolic Ministries founded in 2003. He also serves as a Bishop of the State of Michigan of the International Circle of Faith. He has a Bachelors Degree in Theology and a Masters Degree in Counseling from Cypress Bible College. He is the author of Wounds Caused By Gossip and has several years of experience dealing with negative attitudes, conflicts, and emotional wounds. For many years, he has sought to find a beautiful groundbreaking solution that will restore glory and bring about restoration resulting in the alignment of the body of Christ. He has written this book which covers the complete spectrum on attitudes among Christians. His focus is on educating leaders and Christians on how to improve communication skills and how to deal with conflicts that exist in church today. He writes practical implications, shines the light to expose gossip, and conflict within the Body of Christ by having a kingdom mindset. He has a lovely wife Marilyn, two daughters, Tiffany and Karissa, and a son Andre.
In Bishop O.C. Isom’s new book, Wounds Caused By Gossip, he explores how the spirit of gossip and conflict have infiltrated the body of Christ. These evil attitudes are the core problems within the church that many Christians face today. These evil attitudes have brought about confusion, discord, emotional wounds, and unforgiving spirits. Bishop Isom believes that it is time for Christians to help restore their families, church, and communities back to God. In his book, Bishop O.C. Isom equips every reader with the tools necessary to transform their thinking and in turn it will cause them to have Christ-like characteristics through His unconditional love.
Communication is a skill. Communication is the glue that holds a society together. e ability to communicate enables people to form and maintain personal relationships, and the quality of such relationships will always depends on the caliber of communication between the parties; rough communication, we make known our needs, our wants, our ideas, our desires, our aspirations, and our feelings. the better we are at communication, the more effective we are at achieving our hopes and dreams. We must establish ourselves as effective communicators.
We must, first, establish credibility. In the business arena, this involves displaying knowledge of the subject, audience and the context in which the message is delivered. You must also know your audience.
Failure to understand who you are communicating to will result in delivering messages that may be misunderstood. As in any relationship, communication is the key to a strong successful relationship. Here are some ways to keep the communication and the relationship flowing:
WE MUST COMMUNICATE
We live in a world made up of diverse people that have different backgrounds, nationalities, lifestyles, and capabilities. While working together and socializing in our personal and professional lives, we need each other for security, comfort, friendship, and love. However, in our working environment, we need each other in order to achieve our goals, aspirations, and objectives. None of these goals can be achieved without communication. Because communication is the foundation of any kind of relationships, this is how our culture is shaped.
• Communication through speech, writing, email, telephone or videoconferencing • Written, oral, and nonverbal communications are affected by the sender’s tone • Messages are conveyed through channels of expression, which can be nonverbal or face-to-face interaction These are some of the different methods of communication that are commonly used within many workplaces today to communicate 38
information. In virtually every workplace, no matter the industry or size. After all, it is the only way for information to effectively spread throughout the business so that everybody can be informed to the degree that they require to properly achieve their goals. Ineffective or poor communication leads to distortion of information, or failure to understand the message, which in turn proves to be frustrating for employees, and thus becomes a source of a conflict. A manager’s inability to clearly express their thoughts, ideas, and demands leads to employees’ inability to perform work well, according to the company’s demands. At is why more than often poor communication can lead to:
company to grow and expand, communication is the foundation that will create effective performance of the staff, and, consequently, increase customer loyalty and profit for growth.
“Communication is the LIFELINE of any relationship. When you stop communicating, you start losing your valuable relationship.” - UNKNOWN
• Misunderstandings • Lack of information • Decrease in employees’ performance • Decrease in company’s turnover, as a result • Disagreements • Behavior and attitudes
Effective communication in the workplace provides employees with a clear understanding of what is demanded from them, with knowledge of what to do and what to expect. When employees have a lack of communication in the workplace, it will wreck your company’s culture.
Be proactive and interactive, and encourage an environment of open, healthy communication so that your employees can achieve their true potential, and your business can be a truly successful one. For any organization desires their
then they or the appointees should be the ones to help with the restoration process. Here are a few guidelines to follow:
Restore Such an One Apostle Bobby Sutton
Love must be the foundation of the process. (The person we are trying to help must know that we love them as Jesus loves the church)
Galatians 6:1 "Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted."
No condemnation. (Jesus has forgiven their sin) No atttitude of superiority. (This could be self righteousness and then you become the fallen one)
In previous articles concerning this scripture, I first discussed the aspect of "ye which are spiritual". It seems like the Apostle Paul is giving a guideline to the church members, those involved in restoring a brother or sister that have fallen into sin. The phrase "ye which are spiritual" lends to the idea that the church should know if they are spiritual or carnal. Carnality is devestating to a fallen brother or sister. The act of restoration has got to be done by people that are governed by the Spirit of the Lord.
No discussing the sin. (Gossip) Availability. (If a brother or sister need someone to talk to, they can get spiritual answers to their issue or situtation) Accountability. (The restoration team is there for the person to be accountable to, if or when they are feeling tempted) Gender specific. (Brothers should restore brothers and sisters should restore sisters. There is too much room for emotional transference and vulnerability if this step is not followed.)
The second article dealt with the restoration process and discussed if there is or should be a restoration team in a church to handle these situations. In most groups the fallen are handled by the pastor. If the Five Fold Ministry is working in a church
These are suggestions to help with the process of restoration.
that several of the ministers had been placed in churches throughout the country. This was refreshing to me. When I first started this exploration into ministerial restoration, most articles that I read were against any preacher returning to the pulpit after moral failure. The position papers, of several organizations, state that a minister that has committed a moral sin can be restored to a church fellowship but never to the pulpit. Many ask the question, "Can trust be restored"? Citing my own experience, as a fallen minister, I would answer "not in the church that was previously pastored." There is also a separation from organizational position and a pastor's personal position. I spoke with men that were in organizations that did not believe in a pulpit restoration, but they personally helped ministers that had affairs put their marriges back together and the incident was not revealed.
I want to open the proverbial can of worms, on the topic of restoration of a minister that has fallen into sin. To be precise, the sin of adultery. This subject is controversial to say the least, and I do not have the time or
space to exhaust this topic. My research was done by reading internet articles and speaking with several church leaders in my immediate area. Most pastors that I contacted did not return my calls. I spoke to their secretaries of churches ranging from small to mega. The pastor of a 3500 member church, Gardendale's First Baptist Church of Gardendale AL, returned my call within about 15 minutes and gave me his views. Dr. Hamm has been instrumental in the restoration of many ministers and helped put their families back together. He said
The fact is that according to statistics 19,000 ministers leave the ministry each year. Many of these are because of moral failure, others leave because of pressure of the ministry, maritial problems and the list goes on. Due to some high-profile situations in recent decades, most denominations have carefully established guidelines 41
for ministers who commit adultery and desire to return to a pastoral position. Each of these denominations, Evangelical Free Church of America, Christian Missionary Alliance, Assemblies of God and The Southern Baptist Convention to name a few have established such guidelines. Randall Bach of Open Bible Churches summed it up: "In short, yes, restoration is possible. As a practical matter, it is not common because such significant submission is necessary, and fractured trust in relationships at all levels is difficult to regenerate". I would like to add to that statement, in most cases the minister and the family are not aware of any help that may be available. In the midst of the chaos they do not seek help. I can say from my experience, as stated in my book "I Slept With Potiphar"s Wife", most of us are in shell shock. The only way for a person in that kind of a situation to know that help is available is for it to be included on church websites and facebook pages. Startling statement isn't it? What would happen if you included on your web page or facebook, "If you are a minister that has committed adultery and you need help you can find it here". Offer contact information. We
talk about it but we don't want to talk about it. Just recently, I spoke with a lady in northern Alabama that has a radio station who was seeking to conduct an interview about my book. The lady was nice and held the position that everyone can be forgiven no matter what they have done. I asked her what church she attended. She responded that she was a member of the Baptist church in her town. I pressed in with this question, "If you had a pastoral vacancy and someone with my background applied would they be considered?". "Would you want me to be your pastor?" It was almost as if you hear her change shoes, the tap dance began. I let her dance for a few minutes before I relieved her of her uncomfortable position. I said "I understand." I have applied for several church positions, some of which did not hold any of my doctrinal beliefs, simply to find out their position on restoration. I send my resume with my degrees and pastoral experience, then if there is any interest I explain my past. In some cases I get a response of, "We respect your inquiry but we will be considering other candidates". In most cases I get no response at all. I understand the situation is a hard one to accept, but I would think if a 42
church group does believe in forgiveness they would ask about character references, what group are you affiliated with, what is your statement of faith, things of that nature. In most cases the door is slammed shut and locked tight. This gives me the impression that denominations may have restoration policies and congregations may help fallen brothers or sisters, but when it comes to a minister they really do not know what to do if it involves pulpit restoration. Most ministers that I know of that are seeking pulpit restoration and have been restored to the pulpit have gone through their previous organization. The only reason I know of the restoration groups is because I have been researching this topic.
minister that has committed moral sin should be restored to pastoring a church. There is nothing that can be done, about fellowships or ministers that hold to the position of no pastoral restoration, unless God changes their hearts. Organizations that do believe in pastoral restoration have to make effort to get the word out, so hurting ministerial families can find a place of refuge and help. If you are reading this article and you are a minister that has fallen, I know what you are going through. The lost feeling, the feeling of being adrift and not able to find shore. Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will help as much as possible with one on one private counseling and coaching. If you know of someone that is in this situation you can give them the e-mail address above or a copy of my book "I Slept with Potiphar's Wife" available through Tate publishing, Amazon.com and other bookstore sites. This book will help them through the stages of restoration and to a restored place to work in the kingdom of the Lord.
The organization I was formally affiliated with has a no pulpit restoration policy and really does not offer any help that I know of, for a minister that has had an affair. I contacted some of my ministerial peers recently by e-mail and spoke of my restoration and I did not get but one response. Ichabod has been written and Ichabod will remain. I thank the ICOF and it's position on restoration. I do feel welcome and accepted in this fellowship. I am sure the debate will go on whether a
This is a list of restoration ministries: High Country Ministries Gardendale Alabama- offers counseling and
coaching for fallen ministers and their families. Woodstock First Baptist Churchoffers City of Refuge for fallen ministers and their families. City of Refuge offers counseling and support while restoration is taking place.
Jeremiah 30:17- For I will restore health unto thee, and I will heal thee of thy wounds, saith the LORD; because they called thee an Outcast.
Winning Edge-offers restoration handbooks for ministers and their wives, counseling and help. Fallenpastor.com-Offers a manual and support group.
I am sure there are other groups out there that I am not familiar with or not come a crossed. If you need help please reach out and do not hibernate in the cave you have found. There is a way back and a place of restoration.
LIFE COLLEGE EDUCATING TOMORROWS LEADERS
WANTED INTERCESSORS Together we are making a real and lasting difference for the Kingdom of Jesus Christ.
IF YOU ARE AN INTERCESSOR WE NEED YOUR HELP! We are putting a team of intercessors together to pray for our new church plant. We know that we can never accomplish the vision that God has given us without intercessors.
LIFE CHURCH of Kentucky is a new church. As part of our launch team we need a plethora of God called intercessors. We would love for you to be part of what God is doing in our area.
If you will commit to praying for LIFE CHURCH of Kentucky we will commit to give you timely updates on the needs.
When adversity comes, many foil God’s plan and purpose by trying to remove the adversity. But don’t do that. Let it reveal to you the weakness that God is trying to show you. God doesn’t send adversity to be against you, but to benefit you. (out of weakness, we are made strong) The cares of this world are the stiffest competition for your attention God has.
The Purpose of Adversity By J. Samuel Willoughby ADVERSITY IS TEMPORARY!! One of my favorite lines of scripture in the Book is, Genesis 40:1 “…and it came to pass…”
Psalms 34:17-22 The righteous cry; and the LORD heareth, and delivereth them out of all their troubles. 18 The LORD is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit.
Matthew 11:29-30 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
19 Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him out of them all. 20 He
You need some rest and peace? Take up His yoke. Murrel and Joan Ewing wrote a song that says… “The storms don’t decide how long they will stay…when the Master says, ‘Enough!’ they just go away…”
keepeth all his bones: not one of them is broken. 21 Evil shall slay the wicked: and they that hate the righteous shall be desolate. 22 The LORD redeemeth the soul of his servants: and none of them that trust in him shall be desolate.
Romans 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
The simple Truth about the Christian walk, is that adversity is no respecter of persons…it comes to every man, regardless of status or experience levels. When Jesus told the story in Matthew 7 of the contrast between the housebuilding sites of the wise versus the foolish man. The ONE constant in the story is, the flood comes to all!
Hebrews 12:6-7 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. 7 If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? Hebrews 12:10-13 For they verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure; 48
but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness.
3 That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth;
11 Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby. 12 Wherefore lift up the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees; 13 And make straight paths for your feet, lest that which is lame be turned out of the way; but let it rather be healed.
In our self-examination we need to ask ourselves, “Have we dishonored our teaching in any way?” Adversity is often God’s way of conquering our pride. Think of Moses…Joseph…David…Apostle Paul. Proverbs 13:10 Only by pride cometh contention: but with the well advised is wisdom. Proverbs 16:18 Pride goeth before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.
Adversity is God’s wake-up call for self-examination—
Proverbs 11:2 When pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the lowly is wisdom.
Time for us to thoroughly examine our actions, our attitudes, our motives, the things that drive us…If not we’re liable to miss the little OBLIQUE turn in life’s road…
Proverbs 29:23 A man’s pride shall bring him low: but honor shall uphold the humble in spirit. Some things are just not honorable! According to James 4:6-7 God “resists” the proud! That word means “to set the battle in array against”. God goes to war with us when we allow pride to govern us!
1 Corinthians 11:28-32 But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. 29 For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body. 30 For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep. 31 For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. 32 But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.
James 4:6-7 But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. 7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
Proverbs 28:13 He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy.
Revelation 4:10-11 The four and twenty elders fall down before him that sat on the throne, and worship him that liveth forever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying, 11 Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.
Ephesians 6:2-3 Honor thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise;
2 Corinthians 12:7-10 And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance
Revelation 3:19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.
of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. 8 For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. 9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christâ€™s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.
Bishop J. Samuel Willoughby brings a lifetime of ministry experience to his role as a Teacher in the Body of Christ. He is a member of the International Circle of Faith Fivefold Roundtable for North America.
International Circle of Faith (ICOF)
Announcement You Can't Ignore This
There's a massive shift happening in the online world. Currently, 1 in every 5 people in the world own a smartphone (according to Business Insider at http://www.businessinsider.com/smartphon e-and-tablet-penetration-2013-10). Information is available to us at the press of a button. As our lives have become more mobile, so has our need for information to be more mobile. And no, the 2014 church website trend I'm talking about is not responsive websites that was 2012-ish. This trend is actually more of a paradigm shift than a new feature. In fact, it's actually much, much 50
bigger than just a trend. This statistic and shift in culture means one very important thing for your church:
It's a fundamental change in the way we learn about Jesus, church, and faith. And we can't ignore it.
Your church's online presence is more important than ever before. What does this mean for Monica?
Before we dive into anything, let's start with the statistical evidence for this fundamental change: As recently as 2009, 99% of people got their faith information from church; in 2013, 40% said they were acquiring it through other media - devices that could be used on-thego, at their desks at work, or in the comfort of their own homes.
Consider this case study of a girl named Monica. (This is merely an illustrative case study based on the statistics, and does not represent a particular person.) As recently as five years ago, Monica learned everything she desired to know about faith at her local church. Today, however, this is not the case. Instead of getting her faith information from church, she now gets the majority of it from the internet.
Instead of immediately discussing what this means for us and our church, it's helpful to set straight what this statistic does not suggest.
One day Monica is waiting for the bus on her way to work. While she waits, she recalls a conversation she had with friends the night before about alcohol and Christianity. She really wants some clarity on the issue, so she opens up her phone and googles a couple of questions looking for answers.
This statistic does not suggest the following: ď‚ˇ
This does not suggest that people are leaving churches in droves. It just shows we're consuming information in different ways. This is not a reflection on the competency of our church services and church communities. Again, this is simply a shift in culture. This does not suggest that we need to be filming our services and putting them online (quoted from prochurchtools.com at http://prochurchtools.com/dontrecord-your-church-services/). In fact, it suggests the opposite.
She reads some blogs, checks out a couple of different views, and because Monica grew up in a world where the internet is viewed as an authoritative source of information, her viewpoint has now been heavily shaped by the online information she just consumed. Instead of texting her pastor or church leader, instead of hearing a sermon in church, Monica has most of her faith views shaped online. Why this is good news for your church
Alright, now that we have those out of the way, we can finally tackle the important question:
We generally like to chalk-up change as a bad thing. But in this case, I think we can view this change in culture as a positive. Instead of just waiting inside our four walls
What does this mean for your church?
for people to come to us and learn about faith, it's our job to go to them.
ask yourself and your team, "How can we get this important information into the hands of as many people as possible?"
Your church's online presence is more important now than ever before.
Assuming your sermon series is all about sex in the 21st century, here's a list of content that you could create:
Churches need to start becoming content creators and curators. There's a world out there looking for information on faith! They want it! Unfortunately, here's how the conversation generally goes: "What does the Bible say about sex in the 21st century?" - Monica "Well, we're starting a new series on sex in a couple of weeks! 9AM and 11AM. Come check it out!!!!!!!" - The Church "...Righhhhht." - Monica (disregards message from church and looks it up online) Here's the model I suggest that you follow Let's get to some practical solutions. Considering the information here and the statistical evidence, this is the model I suggest your church follow to get in step with this 2014 church website trend: 1. Start with your sermon series Most churches conduct sermon series. In a series there's an overarching theme that gets covered for 4-6 consecutive weeks. This is the best place to start. This is where pastors will work through Scripture, get answers to tough questions, and provide a faith roadmap for real life. But don't stop there. As we've seen, if you limit this information to only Sunday mornings, you'll be severely limiting the size of your audience. And that leads to step two. 2. Repackage the series content into many different types of media Imagine that you sit down with your team. You have the sermon series planned for the next 4-6 weeks. You have the message outlines and everything ready to go. Now
Podcasts: Host a roundtable each week with your team and discuss a hot topic. Use a discussion format and just talk about it as if you were at a coffee shop as friends (Example: Is living together before marriage a bad idea?).
Blog Posts: Write a couple of short, punchy blog posts (Example: 5 Things You Didn't Know the Bible Says About Sex).
Tweets and Facebook posts: See an article from another pastor or blogger that falls in line with what you're teaching? Share it on your church's Twitter account or Facebook page (Example: What Should Christian Women Look for in a Man via Jarrid Wilson).
E-books & devotionals: Create an ebook of devotionals to go along with your series: a new devotional everyday that lines up with the trajectory of the series.
3. Publish the content and get it to as many people as possible Now that you have your series and your various forms of content, it's time to 52
publish it and send it out. For this step, I suggest you follow the model. Everything here is centered on email.
The more content your church creates, the greater the audience it will reach. And in this way we can continue to influence and teach our churches about faith, and stop letting the internet do it for us.
A major goal on the site is to use your email address to communicate with you in the most intimate way online - through email.
Don't ignore this 2014 church website trend - it's a big one.
For instance, if your church had a series containing all the content mentioned above, I would suggest that you send out podcasts on Tuesday through email, send out blog posts on Thursday through email, and continue to update the social media feed throughout the week.
By Dr. Ralph Day
The key idea here is to be always publishing new material in different media. Someone like Monica isn't likely to wait for a 30-minute sermon in hopes of getting the answer she's looking for, but if you've sent her out a podcast and a blog post that week, she's much more likely to check your church website and quickly read through that instead of blindly searching the internet. Conclusion As the landscape of online media continues to change the way our world communicates, our churches need to change the way we communicate as well. Standing at our pulpits once a week won't cut it anymore. We need to become content creators and curators in every type of media. Maybe Monica won't hear the sermon on Sunday, and maybe she won't read any blog posts, but maybe one of the roundtable discussion podcasts will pique her interest and she'll decide to give it a listen.
ICOF CAMEROON NATIONAL UNITY CONFERENCE 2014
The Cameroon Conference 2014 that took place on May 3, 2014 ended very successfully! Dr. Wade, Praise the Lord Jesus!
The Conference started as usual with an opening prayer from one of the visiting Bishops from Kumba City, Bishop Ayere.
Cameroon Congress. A deep and powerful time of praise and worship followed suit lead by some "anointed" praise singers, a Youth Choir from the Worldwide Church and the The Apostolic Church from Limbe City respectively! Dr. David Ngwa, Secretary General ICOF Africa declared the 2014 ICOF Cameroon Conference Opened (on the behalf of the African Chair Dr. Daniel Joseph Ubonabasi and the International President Dr. Bernie L. Wade).
With eyes wide opened and with much attention, the Conference Participants listened to a very moving and challenging message on the Theme: "The Challenge of the 21st Century Christian Leader" delivered by Bishop Tembi Alfred Tembi. About ten Souls gave their lives to the Lord Jesus! Bishop Tembi Alfred then welcomed all the Participants on the behalf of the ICOF
One of the major high-lights of the day was the Consecration of the ICOF Bishop of Limbe, Officiated by Bishop Ngwa, Bishop Tembi and Bishop Anyere. At 75 year old, "Papa" Victor Balinga Sr. was consecrated into the Office of ICOF Bishop for Limbe City!
ICOF CSU Affiliate Schools, who have successfully completed their Course programs within two, three or four years.
There was also the need for us to clarify the role of ICOF CSU, the networking organ of the International Circle of Faith, Colleges, Schools and Universities - under the leadership of the Bishop of Cameroon Dr. Tembi Alfred Tembi with three Campuses already existing in Cameroon (and others yet to affiliate) - and not one main ICOFCU Campus as Handbills issued by the Provost of one of the Affiliate School showed.
We then proceeded with the award of two Honourary Doctorate Degrees of Laws to Dr. Prince Achirimbi David Suh and Dr, Orock Pius Enow, two Cameroonian sons who have distinguised themselves greatly towards the development of the moral, social, economic and spiritual wellbeing of their fellow citizens!
Thereafter, Diplomas and Bachelors Degrees were awarded to some deserving students of
We were also elated with the presence of the wife of late Bishop Mbongo, the first ICOF Bishop of Cameroon, Dr. Agnes Mbongo, who was welcomed to the Conference with much acclamation! The Conference rounded-up joyfully with a fellowship meal offered by the Cameroon ICOF Congress to all the Participants. Please, have a blessed day in Christ Jesus, Dr. David Ngwa
Secretary General, ICOF Africa www.icof.net
Leadership Principles Dr. Barney Phillips
Leadership is the privilege to have the responsibility to direct the actions of others in carrying out the purposes of the organization. Leaders must take responsibility and be accountable for both success and failure. No model or system of leadership behaviors can anticipate the circumstances, conditions and situations in which a leader must influence the actions of others. An evaluation of leadership principles is an effective base upon which to build other skills that may be important to success in various fields. I can find no better base of principles then the Bible. It is essential to every organization, church, company and nation, that we have in position leaders at every level who possesses the skills, abilities and attitudes that will enable them to successfully carry out the responsibilities they are faced with. There is no quick way to develop leaders. Leaders must learn throughout their livesâ€” never ceasing as students, never being above gaining new insights or studying innovative procedures or methodsâ€” whatever the source. Our Leaders must learn early in their service certain basic qualities and have opportunities to mature in them. We must teach these qualities to our young men and women if they are to develop into able and effective Leaders. 58
depended upon in all situations to carry out his roles and responsibilities, relieve him of them.
In order to skillfully lead in our world today, we must have Leaders who possess, among others, the following essential qualities, which through experience become mastered skills:
COURAGE—Leaders who lead must have courage. They must be fearless and have the fortitude to carry out assignments given them—the gallantry to accept the risks of leadership. They must not balk at the sight of obstacles, nor must they become bewildered when in the presence of adversity.
LOYALTY—above all things, a Leader must be loyal. Disagreement is not necessarily disloyalty. A Leader, who, in the best interest of the organization, disagrees, should be listened to. On the other hand, a Leader who actively participates in or encourages actions that are counter to the good of the organization is disloyal. This person must be expeditiously removed. Their ability to influence and discourage
DESIRE—few people will sustain themselves as leaders without strong personal desire—an inherent Commitment to influencing people, processes and outcomes. Weak is the leader who does not want to be one. We must be careful to avoid placing people into positions of leadership that they have no desire to fulfill. EMPATHY—leaders must develop empathy—an appreciation for and an understanding of the values of others, a sensitivity for other cultures, beliefs and traditions. However, empathy must not be confused with sympathy, which may result in unwise consolation. DECISIVENESS— leaders must learn to be decisive, knowing when to act and when not to act, taking into account all facts bearing on the situation and then responsibly carrying out their leadership role.
loyal people and other leaders is a contagious disease. In cases where disloyal actions and attitudes cannot be changed, harsh action must be taken to rid ourselves of those among us who see no value in and subvert our vision and purpose.
ANTICIPATION—learning by observation and through instincts sharpened by tested experience, leaders must anticipate thoughts, actions and consequences. Anticipation bears a level of risk to act,
DEPENDABILITY—If a Leader cannot be 59
when others retreat and turn to the comfort of personal security.
CREDIBILITY— leaders must be credible. Their words and actions must be believable to both friends and foe. They must be trusted to have the intelligence and integrity to provide correct information. Leaders lacking in credibility will not gain proper influence and should be removed from positions of responsibility, for they cannot be trusted.
TIMING—essential to all acts of leadership is the timing of recommendations and
TENACITY—the quality of unyielding drive to accomplish assignments is a desirable and essential quality of leadership. The weak persist only when things go their way. The strong persist and pursue through discouragement, deception and even personal abandonment. Tenacity is often the key to achieving difficult assignments or meeting challenging goals.
actions. There is no magic formula for developing a sense of timing. One often gains this leadership skill by applying the lessons learned through failure. Knowing whom you are dealing with, their motives, characters, priorities and ambitions are critical elements even when seeking approval of the simplest recommendation. ACCOUNTABILITY—learning to account for personal actions and those of subordinates is fundamental to leadership. Leaders must never heap praise or lay blame on others for what they themselves achieve or fail to accomplish, no matter how glorious or grave the consequences.
STEWARDSHIP— leaders must have the essential quality of stewardship, a caretaker quality.
RESPONSIBILITY—leaders are only necessary when someone is to be responsible to see that actions are carried out and directions followed. No leader should ever be allowed to continue to serve as a leader who will not accept full responsibility for his actions.
They must serve in a manner that encourages confidence, trust and loyalty. People are not to be abused; they are to be guided, developed and rewarded for their performance. Disciplinary actions should to reserved as a consequence of last resort and applied only when all other attempts 60
have failed to encourage compliance. Without a flock there can be no shepherd. Without an army there can be no battle captains. Without subordinates there can be no leaders. Leaders are, therefore, caretakers of the interests and well-being of those and the purposes they serve.
There is little more unsettling to an organization group church…than being under the leadership of a Leader who shows a lack of commitment in his or her responsibility as a leader. Too often, the leadership of many falls to leaders who lack the ambition, courage and capabilities to be in charge as leaders. Such disinterest and incompetence is manifested in various actions that discourage and bewilders subordinates, thus strengthening the discord, disunity and dysfunction. It is the responsibility of all to choose and follow only those leaders who demonstrate a desire to lead. Such leaders will be of no composite character.
SELF-CONFIDENCE—proper training and experience develops in leaders a personal feeling of assurance with which to meet the inherent challenges of leadership. Those who portray a lack of self-confidence in their abilities to carry out leadership assignments give signs to those they are leading, peers and superiors that these duties are COMPETITIVENESS—an essential quality of leadership is an intrinsic desire to win. It is not necessary to win all the time; however, it is necessary to win the important contests. Leaders must understand that the competition inside and outside our nation is strong and not to be taken lightly. A sense of competitive anger drives those who win on the battlefield, in negotiations and in situations of internal strife. A leader without a sense of competitiveness is weak and easily overcome by the slightest challenge.
They will be as different from one another as one individual is different from another. They will not be laden with all perfection, nor will they possess a flawless character. Committed leaders, those with a zeal for leadership, a willingness to serve, will, however, be distinguishable by their wisdom, sincerity, benevolence, authority and courage. They will have a human quality and a strong commitment to their cause and to that of those they serve. Above all other traits, one who desires to lead must possess a willingness to serve and to accept substantial personal recognition. It’s been said that a person who cannot receive compliments; rarely ever gives compliments.
"YOU'VE GOT TO WANT TO BE IN CHARGE"
You must have resilience to overcome personal misfortunes, discouragement, rejection and disappointment.
You must have the courage, creativity and stamina to focus on accomplishing your responsibilities through the directed, delegated efforts of those you lead. You must be committed to persevere even in the face of opposition and challenge You must not be threatened by capable contemporaries or those under your leadership. Rather, you must be wise in selecting capable captains to achieve those things a leader can attain only through strong subordinates. A leader must not let your desire to lead take the form of over eagerness. This would cause failure for many. You must be willing to temper your zeal to lead with preparation, experience and opportunity. Leaders must remember that success in most areas depend largely upon your sustained willingness to work hard. Sweat rules over inspiration! Leaders must be willing to make unrecognized and thankless personal sacrifice for those you serve and those you lead. Spending extraordinary energies and patience to develop others and tending to the needs of those they are leading at times when your own needs go unfulfilled. You must be willing to bypass a festival in your own camp if a situation in another camp requires your presence and attention.
I leave you with the admonition to never accept an office of leadership for which you are not willing to pay the tribute necessary to successfully fulfill its obligations.
Dr. Barney P. Phillips serves as Chief Development Officer for Life College, as well as the ICOF Ambassador to Nigeria and Teacher on the Dream Team of Life Church. He brings a lifetime of leadership development to his service.
Leaders must be willing to remain humble and not take on an aura of false pride in your countenance. You must be willing to accept the simple fact that you have flaws and will need to work every day to become a better leader than you were yesterday.
September 2014 Next Wave magazine.