From the Editor: “What’s In It For Me?” Church


One of the real dangers in the life of a church is when its members begin to believe that the church exists to meet their needs. Thom Rainer, President of LifeWay Christian Resources, says, “It’s our nature to be selfish. It’s our nature to want others to serve us rather than be the servants. So how [...]

iLead with my iPad


  I am not one of those guys who camps out all night waiting to buy the latest and greatest tech toy. In fact, 20 years ago I returned some software I had purchased because it required something called a mouse. “Why would I ever want to take my hands off the keyboard??” I did eventually [...]

Connected — Beyond Flash Community


Remember the flash mob trend? Two to three years ago, just as Youtube was becoming the ubiquitous cultural fixture it is today, flash mob videos— in which a group of people gave the “appearance” of spontaneous performance were making their rounds in the most viral sort of way. The trend and its viral nature point [...]

Free Bonus Session: Ministry in the Face of Mental Illness

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Mental health has been in the news recently, due to the suicide of actor Robin Williams last month. How can the church respond to individuals and families dealing with mental illness?   This quarter, the special focus session of Bible Studies for Life is entitled “Ministry in the Face of Mental Illness.” It was written [...]

Training Your Replacement

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This post originally appeared on August 30, 2012 on I remember my first meeting with the Sunday School Director at my new church. He said, “We know we need to start new classes, but we are facing the age-old question: where do you get the leaders?” I responded, “There is a reason it is [...]

From the Editor: The Power of Words in a Relationship


Our words matter. We all grew up with the playground adage, “Sticks and stones can break my bones, but words will never harm me.” But it didn’t take too long before we realized that was a lie. Proverbs 12:18 (NIV) says,  The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise [...]

Leader Tips Tuesday: Mobilizing Your Young Adult Small Group to Meet Real World Problems


Fair trade coffee. The “End It Now” campaign. Racial reconciliation. Protecting the planet. The spoken gospel. Hunger. Disease. Poverty. Sex trafficking. The list could go on and on. One of the most difficult parts of being involved in areas of responsibility is getting past the intimidating nature of the problems of the world. If you [...]

Dealing With Students in Multiple Small Group Schedules


This is part 8 of a series of posts from David Francis’ Missionary Sunday School. Click here for a free download of the book. This excerpt is adapted from the Appendix, pages 56-58. It goes without saying that a church with multiple Sunday School sessions should have an option for Every Person at every hour. Perhaps the biggest pushback [...]

From The Editor: Spectator vs. Ministry: Which Results in Growth?

Tailgate Party Photos

What’s the difference between a football player and a football fan? They can both be passionate. They can both wear a jersey. They can both show up at the stadium on Sundays. The difference is that one plays the game, one watches from the sidelines. Put another way, the difference is that one makes a difference. [...]

Spiritual Maturity: A Tale of Two Vertebrates


Recently, I was leading a large group of adults in a study of 1 Corinthians 3, in which Paul bemoans the lack of spiritual maturity in the church. So I asked the group three questions: What are the marks of spiritual maturity? How long does it take?  Do you consider yourself spiritually mature? I wrote [...]