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how to change your marriage

marriage_couch

The easiest and most productive step you can take to change your marriage is to change yourself! After being married for the past 15 years and providing coaching and shepherding to other marriages during that same period of time in full-time ministry; one of the most simple and yet most powerful lessons I’ve learned is the significance of taking personal responsibility. You want to change your marriage? Then quit shifting blame and take ownership for what is happening inside of you and as a result the patterns of behavior that you’ve established in the relationship with your spouse. Check out these 4 steps you can start taking today…

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Posted in Family

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How to say no to ministry

no

One of the more difficult tasks to accomplish in leadership is to relentlessly guard the vision of the organization. As they grow organizations, including churches, naturally drift towards complexity. People have good ideas that require action, development, project management, resource allocation, and organization that at surface level seem to enhance and strengthen the organization. These structures, while well meaning, often times actually slow down, detract from, and often prevent the organization from moving forward. I’m not saying that systems are the enemy, however the worship of systems. Remember systems aren’t the vision, the vision is the vision, and effective systems simply become the pathway for the organization to easily move along towards the vision. The single greatest word you can ever use to relentlessly guard the vision is to learn to say no to what detracts from it.

Below are 5 evaluative questions designed to help you narrow the focus and say no to opportunities that will cause you to subtly drift away from the vision.

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Posted in Leadership

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Leadership Lessons I learned from my dad

superdad

Father’s Day always provides a great opportunity to reflect on the kind of Father you had growing up and of course the kind of Father you would like to be yourself. In thinking about my Dad this weekend there were so many lessons that he taught me that came to mind, and fortunately, many things I still have to learn from my Dad. And while every father and man has their deficiencies to be sure, my dad has been an accelerator in my life and leadership by consistently allowing me to stand on his shoulders. Dad, I love you, and I’m so grateful that you’re in my life! So here are a handful of leadership principles that I learned from my Dad.

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Posted in Family, Leadership

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moving is a lot like leading a church

cliffordtraveling

After spending the last 4 days in a minivan with 3 kids, a dog, and a guinea pig I’ve decided that moving is a lot like leading a Church.

#1 Things never go according to plan

The military says it this way: no plan ever survives contact with the enemy. In our case I planned how much time we would spend on the road each day, what city we would stop and eat in, and I even made hotel reservations ahead of time. But after setting a world record for the amount of potty breaks in a single day…well let’s just say my plans got thwarted. There will be obstacles, detours, closed roads, and things generally won’t go according to plan. Regardless, stay on course. If God has given you a vision and a direction to go in, then keep going in that direction. Great leaders are not only tenaciously committed to the direction the organization is going they’re adaptable.

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Posted in Family, Leadership

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reparando

For the past 17 years I’ve been traveling all over the world on short-term mission trips. I’ve had the privilege of leading literally hundreds of people on trips exposing them to what God is doing, and can do through them, around the globe. Last week was a dream come true for me. I was able to take my wife and two oldest girls (ages 6 & 7) on our first “family mission trip” to Guatemala. Serving with the Radford family, some friends of ours who are missionaries, at an orphanage that they work at was an incredible experience for my family. But surprisingly what captured my attention and has my heart still stirring was a movie that Lee and Angel showed Lisa and I one evening after the girls were in bed.

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Posted in Family, Spiritual Formation