Thursday, October 25, 2007


My wife and I recently returned from a cruise. We were cruise virgins (first timers). It was an incredible time. People on boats tend to wave at others. On our departure from the New Jersey dock most of us lined the railing. Inexplicably, we began to wave at those watching us leave. We didn't know them. They didn't know us. But this did not deter our waving.

Why does being on a boat draw out our waves? I don't wave at people I walk by on the street. Typically, people don't wave to one another as they drive in their cars; at least not with their whole hand.

This "categorized" waving can be applied to church going people. We put on our spiritual faces and "holy" garb to the pleasure of all those we encounter within church walls. Then we get into the everyday stuff and act as if the rules don't apply. We don't make decisions based on biblical guidelines. We may not practice the patience we should. We avoid praying thinking such isn't' really necessary when attempting to do life.

I need to avoid waving only on the "boats of life." Instead, I need to be someone who takes my waving into the nooks and crannies of life. A risk taker!

Monday, October 15, 2007


The God Gap is where our resources stop and God’s must start if we are ever going to succeed. It is in the God Gap a leader and his or her church steps when they commit to being a multiplying congregation. It is both an exhilarating and exasperating place to be.

Peter models life in the God Gap (Matthew 14:22-33). The disciples are in a storm (v24). Looking out across the tumultuous waters they see what appears to be Jesus. He is walking on the water. Peter calls out to Jesus (v28). He asks for confirmation of his identify. Not a verbal one alone, but one of experience. He asks that he, too, might walk on the water. He wanted out of the boat. He wanted into the God Gap.

The very minute Peter swung his leg over the boat’s side he entered the God Gap. His resources would abruptly stop and God’s would have to start. Anything less would be inadequate. His venture demanded faith. He would have to risk it all. He could not “kinda” get out of the boat. He either got out, or he stayed in.

Peter got out. And in the getting out his life was changed. It was scary in the God Gap. He discovered fear full throttle. What must be known is that faith does not overcome fear. Fear is part of the deal. What faith does is get is to step out, move on, and get out of the boat in spite of the fear.

Where is your God Gap? What fear has you in the boat? Where is your faith.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007


In a previous blog I chatted about a “settling in” leader. These leaders rest in what they have done at the expense of running toward what they might do. In contrast a “setting out” leader looks ahead. They have the horizon in their sights. They are content, but not complacent. Contentment allows a leader to enjoy the present while moving toward the future.

The following characteristics tend to be indicative of a “setting out” leader.

They shake things up
New frontiers infuse them with energy
They ask tough questions
Future oriented
They regular ask, “What if,” instead of “how come?’
They repurpose the organization to effectively achieve results
If something isn’t broken, they will break it
Position and status are not the issue, progress and effectiveness are
Mission and vision informs the structure
Takes measured risks

If an organization is going to move ahead those in leadership must determine to be “setting out” leaders. If there is resistance from the existing leadership, then new leaders must be employed.

Are you in a leadership position? Are you a “setting out” leader? If not, are you willing to develop those skills?

Monday, October 8, 2007


It seems to me that there are two types of leaders: Those who “Settle” in or those who “Set” out. I will share eleven characteristics of a “settling” in leader. In a future blog I will highlight the characteristics of a “setting” out leader.

Generally, a “settling” in leader, well, settles in. They are complacent. They have lost their edge. They appear effective. They show up for their duties. They do their job. Their inactivity appears to be activity. There is a tendency to define effectiveness as showing up and being busy.

A “settling” in leader is characterized by:

Desire for the status quo
Maintains the organization
Protects turf
Makes decisions of least resistance
Interest is for present generation, not future generations
Lacks innovation
Believes if something isn’t broken, don’t fix it
Never asks, “What if?”
Structure informs mission and vision
Management is valued more than leadership
Consensus dictates direction

Are you a leader? Are you settling in? What might you do to unsettle yourself?