69 Great Links for Leaders, Readers, and Creatives – February 2, 2015

I was away from the office much of last week at a rather productive meeting in southern California, so I didn’t get to post these links on Saturday, so here they are on a Monday instead.

Oh, my meeting? It was with the leaders and thinkers behind Purpose Driven, Pastors.com, and Saddleback Resources. We talked all day about how to serve the church. We’ll be offering some refined content soon to help new churches, plateaued and declining churches, and churches of all sizes real solutions, along with a new podcast. I’m excited!

Back to the links:

If You Don’t Develop These 2 Traits, You’ll Never Be Successful, by C. E. Stowers

Setbacks are disheartening.  They can leave us feeling disempowered and discouraged. Mostly setbacks can leave us feeling as though we have no real control over our lives.  Yet there are some people who are successful despite the challenges and setb…

How to Grow as a Pastor, by Joshua Reich

A few years ago another pastor told me he was concerned for me because my blog only reviewed leadership books but not a lot of “gospel centered or theology books” as he said.

13 Habits of Exceptionally Likeable People, by Travis Bradberry

Too many people succumb to the mistaken belief that being likeable comes from natural, unteachable traits that belong only to a lucky few—the good looking, the fiercely social, and the incredibly talented. It’s easy to fall prey to this misconception…

A Message from Rick Warren: Igniting a Culture of Multiplication

In this short video, Rick Warren speaks on the Exponential 2015 Conference and the impact of igniting a culture of multiplication. “It’s going to reshape your priorities. It’s going to reshape your decision-making. It’s going to reshape your process…

6 Things You Need to Know about Small Group Ministry, by Mark Howell

Sometimes things seem more complicated than they really are.  Small group ministry is truly one of those things.  It’s just not that complicated.

3 Critical Tips for Aligning Church Staff, from The Malphurs Group

Aligning church staff is a critical factor to having a successful ministry. When you successfully align your staff, the impact you make on the kingdom will increase substantially. The next time you prepare to hire a new staff member consider these t…

Be a Leader, not a Jerk, by Joshua Reich

One of the sad things that has happened in recent years, especially in the reformed camp of church planting is that pastors and bloggers have become known for being jerks.

8 Tricks To Make Yourself Wake Up Earlier, by Sarah Peterson

Stop telling yourself you’re not a morning person. If you want to be your most productive self, it’s time change your habits. It’s frustrating, isn’t it? You want to become an early riser.

10 Ideas to Inspire Your Next Blog Post, by Liz Jostes

Are you looking for blog post ideas? Would you like some direction to inspire your editorial calendar?

9 Ways to Boost Brain Power, by Charles Stone

God gave each of us a two-pound dynamo called the human brain. It’s truly the most amazing physical object in the universe. Yet, many people (and leaders) don’t take care of their brains and later in life they pay the price.

Content – The Best Days and Times to Post Content [Infographic], via MarketingProfs

The most popular days and times that brands post content to various marketing channels aren’t necessarily the most effective, according to a series of reports from TrackMaven.

9 Copywriting Rules To Create Hypnotic Posts Your Readers Will Love, by Hassan Ud-deen

This is a guest contribution from Hassan Ud-deen. Your blog posts have a purpose, right?

4 Ways Churches Can Use A GoPro, by Josh Blankenship

If you are not familiar with the GoPro Cameras, you should be. Initially designed for capturing action video that couldn’t be captured with more tradition video recorders, the GoPro has transformed itself into something we can use in our everyday li…

Presence: Your Key to Stronger And Bolder Leadership, by John Baldoni

Leadership development is a key reason why executives go through coaching. A second key reason is to learn to develop their sense of presence. These findings are from a new study conducted by Coach Source…

How One Small Change Can Energize Any Sermon, by Erik Raymond

Take your sermon from bland to flavor by seasoning it with personal reflections of the infinite value of Christ, his beauty and unsurpassed glory. So often, it’s the little stuff that makes the biggest impact.

Stuck: When You Want to Forgive but You Don’t Know How, by Art Rainer

When hurt takes you to a place of bitterness, you get stuck. Forgiveness frees you. We often focus on why people should forgive, but this book shows you how to forgive. In Stuck, Riggins shows how you can forgive and move forward.

The Advice I’d Give To My 5 Year Old Self, by Joseph Lalonde

Time flies. Before you know it, you’ve reached your 30’s, 40’s, and 50’s. You’ll often wonder where the years went. It seems like just yesterday that I was a 5 year old boy, having the time of his life.

14 Things Every Communications Director Needs to Know, by Phil Cooke

If you work on the communications or media team at a church, ministry, or nonprofit, your job is to share the story of your organizations to the local community and sometimes the world.

8 Skills Every Great Leader Must Master, by Peter Economy

No one said that being a leader is easy. In fact, it can be quite a challenge–even for the smartest and most-accomplished among us. While some make leadership look easy, few people are actually natural leaders. Somewhere along the way, they learned…

How Podcasts Can Fuel Your Personal Growth, by Michael Hyatt

As you may know if you are a regular reader of my blog, I started a weekly podcast on February 14th. It is called, “This Is Your Life.” Since that time, I have become a more regular podcast listener myself. Podcasting is the most under-appreciated, …

We Should Be Weeping, by Jared Mulvihill

A sharp response. A pattern to indulge. A failure to give thanks. A lustful glance. An ill-judgment passed. A tendency to spend. A bent towards impatience. A cowering to speak. Sin is pervasive (James 4:8). And deadly (James 1:15; 5:20).

Give Me Grace to Know More of My Need for Grace, by Trevin Wax

great God, I acknowledge and confess that all good things come from You: life, breath, happiness, advancement, sight, touch, hearing, goodness, truth, and beauty. In the spiritual world also I am dependent entirely upon You.

3 Tips for Accelerated Blog Growth & Online Visibility, by Robert Kramers

This is a guest contribution from Robert Kramers. Discouraged with the amount of traffic your blog attracts? Maybe you’re looking for ways to engage more readers, build more business and build a loyal following?

5 Key Facebook Marketing Trends For 2015, by Heidi Cohen

Love it or hate it, Facebook is the 800 pound gorilla of social media. Facebook is also a global platform. It’s a Top 10 social media entity across the world (Check out the social media behavior complete with charts and details.)

5 Ways To Make The Audience The Star Of Your Presentation, by Michelle Mazur, PhD

Take the focus off yourself for a more dynamic, memorable presentation. We’ve all been victimized by painful presentations: Too long. Too salesy. Too boring. Forcing the audience to remain passive participants listening to a speaker who hopes to per…

10 Keys to Predictable Success, by Tony Morgan

I recently finished the book Predictable Success: Getting Your Organization on the Growth Track-And Keeping It There by Les McKeown. The book is written for marketplace leaders; however, there are a number of principles that certainly apply to any o…

What Women Want: More Opportunities to Serve, by Halee Gray Scott

Many have attributed American churches’ dwindling numbers to an “entitlement mentality,” saying that today’s Christians look to congregations to for a certain kind of fulfillment and leave when those needs aren’t being met.

Seven Types Of Stories Every Leader Should Tell, by Kristi Hedges

Good leaders tell stories. It’s been well established through a plethora of research that stories shape cultures, enhance information retention, build connection, and set direction. As I wrote about previously, there are simple techniques to use to …

6 Ways To Stop Bad News From Hijacking Your Leadership (And Your Joy), by Carey Nierwhof

Tired of hearing bad news all the time? Even in growing and ‘successful’ organizations, leaders receive a disproportionate share of bad news.

10 Tips to Keep Your Ministry from Bottoming Out, by Margaret Feinberg

Get away to a nearby place for 48 hours to recharge your energy, pray, study Scripture and practice the spiritual disciplines most meaningful to your own growth in God.

Five Steps To Overcoming the “Jolts” of Life, by Phil Cooke

When disaster strikes our life, we’re often simply overwhelmed.  As we saw during the 2011 tsunami in Japan, entire towns were wiped off the map, and all these years later, we’re still seeing news reports of problems with the clean up.

Men: Use Facebook Responsibly, by Kenny Luck

With more than 1.11 billion users, Facebook has become a staple in today’s modern culture, a revolutionary social and marketing tool, massive industry with its own vernacular. Let me add a new phrase, the “Facebook Fumble”.

7 Habits Of Highly Resilient People, by Harvey Deutschendorf

Success is seldom a straight road; it almost always involves many detours and dead ends. It takes tenacity and determination to keep going, but those that do will eventually reach their destination.

Fetching Friday – 20 Posts on Marketing and Productivity, by Kristi Hines

Fetching Friday is back for week five of 2015! Each week, I’ll share with you the top posts on online marketing and productivity. Without further ado, here are the top posts this week!

Are Small Groups the Next Bus Ministry?, by Scott Attebery

It was exciting news. My friend’s eyes lit up as he shared the exciting changes in the church he recently began pastoring. One of the neatest transitions the congregation had made was to begin small group meetings.

Rick Warren, Perry Noble and Mudslinging Christians, by Karl Vaters

Why are some Christians so quick to believe the worst about each other? Last week, I wrote a post entitled, Rick Warren’s Surprising Video On Church Size & Attendance. It was well received by most people.

What Kind of Leader Do You Want to Be?, by Rebecca Newton

It’s the question missing from so much of leadership development: “What kind of leader do you want to be?” We facilitate and encourage self-awareness among up-and-coming leaders (what kind of leader you are), get them to map their journeys so far (w…

The Beginner’s Guide to Podcasting, via KISS Metrics

Harness the power of audio, and dive into a large and deep market by starting your very own podcast. Yes, that’s right… A podcast.

3 Strategies that Launch a Wave of New Groups, by Mark Howell

The first very important discovery for small group pastors is that there are no problem-free small group systems or models.

Anxious Leaders Make Better Decisions, by Roger Trapp

Cass R. Sunstein is the law professor who with economist Richard Thaler introduced the world to “nudge”, a concept that they say shows how governments and other organizations can encourage individuals to make better decisions.

4 Reasons Bloggers Who Attack Pastors Are Wrong, by Geoff Surratt

Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ,  from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the bod…

Why We Should Use Emotional Expressions When Communicating, by Lynda Shaw

Have you ever listened to someone who had a blank expression? When their words said one thing, but their expression didn’t correlate with the sentiment? Perhaps they gave you a compliment but their face remained cold?

How to Set Your Own Goals and Reach Great Results, by Joseph Lalonde

Goal-setting is the key to great things. But the goal is the end game and it doesn’t mean that once you’ve set it you’re done. You have to take into account what you have to do to actually reach the goal you’ve set.

3 Relationships That Keep First-Time Guests Attending Your Church, by Tim Parsons

When my wife, Consuela, and I first started attending the church we’re at, we were just another face in the crowd. Seated in the back of the sanctuary with a couple of hundred other people, this interracial couple with a very young baby stopped…

The Surprising Success We Find in Failure, by Michael Hyatt

We often look at successful people, hearing their stories of failure, and think they succeeded in spite of the fact that they failed. But that’s not true. Successful people and organizations don’t succeed despite failure. They succeed because of it.

Top 10 Strategic Technology Trends for 2015 [Infographic], by Verónica Maria Jarski

What does this year hold for technology? Here’s a look the top technology trends for 2015 and predictions of where digital business will be in the next five years. Are you prepared?

Top 500 Preaching Resources, by David Murray

These are the most useful online preaching resources I’ve found on the web over the last 5-6 years, all organized under the following headings:…

5 Lies American Culture Feeds Us Every Day, by Frank Powell

Finding out you’ve been deceived stinks, but the moment the lie is exposed is important. Why? It is the moment the truth is brought to light. And the truth is what we are seeking. No one wants to live under a cloud of lies.

How to Limit Sideways Energy, by Art Rainer

Often, organizations engage in activities that do little to propel the organization forward. People are working. Busyness is occurring. But little movement is experienced. This is what we refer to as “sideways energy.” Exerting sideways energy can…

The Value of Remaining Teachable & 4 Practical Ways to Do So, by Dan Black

One essential question you need to continually ask yourself is: Are you a Teachable Leader? The answer to this question can greatly determine and impact your future. Your level of success and leadership effectiveness has a higher probability of la…

6 Things You Need to Know about Small Group Ministry, by Mark Howell

Sometimes things seem more complicated than they really are.  Small group ministry is truly one of those things.  It’s just not that complicated. What do you think?  Want to argue?  Have something to add?  You can click here to jump into the conve…

10 Suggestions to Handle Conflict in a Healthy Way, by Ron Edmondson

Where life involves people — whether among family, friends or co-workers — there will be potential for conflict. Any disagreement there?

Jesus is More Powerful Than Our Fears, by Ronnie Floyd

Do you remember your wedding vows? Remember promising faithfulness in sickness and health, joy and sorrow? If you’ve never said those vows, you’ve probably heard them. Most who make those promises have no idea what they are getting themselves into.

6 Thoughts for Pastors on Personal Finances, by Eric Geiger

Because a pastor’s finances can be different from another person’s finances, I have often asked older and wiser pastors for counsel on managing personal finances. According to the apostle Paul, managing the home is no small matter for a pastor, an…

The 15 Best Facebook Pages You’ve Ever Seen, via Hubspot

With more than 1.23 billion users, Facebook is a major player in the world of social networking. Businesses looking to market using Facebook have one major tool at their disposal: the Facebook Page. Facebook Pages were specifically engineered for …

8 Tips to Keep You One Step Ahead of Your Work, by Craig Jarrow

Being behind on your work isn’t a fun place to be. Stress from unfinished tasks. Looming deadlines. Unprepared meetings.

How To Build A Courageous Company Culture, by Shawn Parr

Do you run into your company’s culture every day? Does it inspire you or does it smack you in the face and get in your way, slowly wearing you down? Is your culture overpowering or does it inspire you to overcome challenges? It’s important to unde…

Two Questions that change how you see everything, by Sam Luce

This past week I was at CPC a conference for Kids Pastors put on by INCM. One of the speakers was Charles Lee found of theideation.com In the breakout I attended he was talking about clarifying your brand.

Trolls, Unkind Words, and How to Know You’re on the Right Track, by Sonia Simone

At the end of the day, I just find your persona incredibly grating. Funny that I can still remember that comment word-for-word. It’s from an unsubscribe note to my email list dating back at least seven years now.

3 Lies that can Shipwreck a Leader, by Scott Cochrane

Many a ship’s captain has believed that lie, and many of their ships have ended up stranded on a sandbar or dashed against a reef. In the same way, there are lies that leaders are tempted to tell themselves every day. And some of these can shipwre…

10 Things All Bloggers Need to Know to Know About WordPress, by Jeff Bullas

If you are a blogger then you will have heard about WordPress. In fact it is the most popular blogging platform globally and is used by more than 23.3% of the top 10 million websites as of January, 2015. It powers more than 60 million websites!

5 Questions to Determine if You’re Winning on Twitter, by Sherry Gray

The results of social media campaigns can be difficult to measure in the short run, so how can you know if your efforts are successful? It’s all about data, baby! Social media, like all marketing, is data-driven, and you should be using that data …

Facebook And Twitter Changes You Need To Know About, by Jayson DeMers

Did you know that you can now search Facebook posts using simple keywords, and that Twitter is now showing recaps of popular tweets in your feed? These changes (and more) are taking place right now, and as a marketer, you need to know about them.

12 Practices Of Highly Successful Pastors Who Love People, by Brian K. Dodd

Does your pastor truly love people?  If you are a pastor reading this you are probably thinking, “Of course I do.”  But I talk to dozens of people who would say otherwise.

6 Questions for Your Parking Lot Ministry, by Art Rainer

The parking lot provides church guests with their first on-campus experience. It provides ministries a great opportunity to, not only make a good first impression, but also serve your guests well. As you look at your campus’ parking lots, here are…

Resources Regarding the Sanctity of Human Life, via The Village Church’s Blog

When Matt Chandler preached about racial reconciliation a few weeks ago, he followed it up with a list of several great books to increase your “ethnic IQ.” This past weekend, he preached on the sanctity of human life and the subject of abortion.

Rethinking Church Plant Funding, by Ed Stetzer

Since the turn of the century, many denominations have made a strong effort to funnel resources toward church planting. This support helps to secure facilities, execute marketing campaigns, provide equipment for ministry, and even underwrite pasto…

A Holy Responsibility: Passing on Sound Doctrine to the Next Gen, by Dan Kimball

More than 35 percent of our church is college students, so a recent message series felt a little risky. At a time when you often hear that emerging generations don’t want to hear about doctrine and theology, we designed a 14-week classical systema…

How to Get our Church to Embrace the Vision, by Shawn Lovejoy

Vision is one of the driving forces in any organization; but I think vision is even more important in the church.  Let’s face it:  The vision isn’t being accomplished in most churches.