#GLS14 Session 1 Notes – Bill Hybels : “Hard-Fought Leadership Lessons”

“Pretty much everything that matters in this world, rises and falls on leadership.”

With those words Bill Hybels opened up the Global Leadership Summit this year and immediately I was hooked. I love listening to Bill as a teacher because you know he speaks from authority, passion and experience. Add into that a great deal of vulnerability and rawness to the stories he shares and you have a great recipe for an opening session. The summit would be built on the idea that humility will be the key to learning between business and church leaders over the next couple of days.

Bill’s prayer – “Speak to us and we will listen and obey.”

Question: Is all leadership intensely spiritual? (True or False)

  • Leadership falls in feelings and spirit. (How it makes you feel and how it moves you to action)
  • All decisions and objectives are hinged on how it makes you feel.

Question: Leaders are visionaries by definition? (True or False)

  • Adrenaline comes with progress made towards a vision or objective.
  • However, vision can soon consume us and change the mood and feelings of the team we are leading.
  • This can cause struggles in how the team feels towards you and the vision as a whole.
  • High visionaries have a hard time understanding the feelings of their team.

Often leaders with the highest level of vision and passion have the lowest level of awareness and passion for the spirit of the team they’re leading.

*Questions that I had personally is how do visionaries handle issues of their heart? Where is the split between personal feelings and the feelings that are sole intended towards their vision? How easy is it for them to differentiate the two?

Do we ask our workers to work more while we care  less?


  • Don’t make people pay because of your fire for a vision. People come first!


5 Key Commitments To Make

  1. Use an outside firm to question the engagement level of your staff
  2. The entire executive team has to own the “turn-around.
    1. The culture of the organization will only be as healthy as your Sr. Leader desires it to be.
  3. Get real serious about training everyone on staff who manage people.
    1. People join organizations, they leave managers.
  4. Raise the level of candor in the twice-a-year performance reviews.
    1. Three words to use in reviewing staff
      Stop (doing some negative desired behavior)
      Start (doing something different)
      Continue (praise)
    2. Every staff member wants to know how they are doing and if what they do matters
  5. A ruthless commitment to resolving relational conflict regardless of how scary it feels.
    1. In the average Christian organization 54% are engaged in their work and excited about their work. 30% in the corporate world.

“Great leadership is by definition relentlessly developmental.”

Five key ways to develop a new leader.

  1. Put them in high-challenge roles
  2. Assign them to a short-term task force
  3. Give real-time feedback
  4. Provide them with coaches mentors
  5. Offer them classroom courses and seminars

Short Term Task Force to see how well emerging leaders can handle themselves in real work environments.

  1. Success and failure both need to be an option
  2. They need to be given full charge
  3. Wide variety of people on the team and that they have the opportunity to work with.
  4. Real pressure of a looming deadline.
  5. The end of the project needs to be reviewed by a Sr. Leader of the staff

Resourcefulness is a key trait for any leader.

  • Figure it out… And don’t call me. (this would become the inside joke of the summit)
  • How do we put new leaders into situations where they don’t know what to do?
  • When was the last time that you gave an emerging leader an opportunity with a short term task force?

John 10 – Two types of shepherds

11 I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12 He who is a hired hand and not a shepherd, who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees, and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. 13 He flees because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep. 14 I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, 15 just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep. 16 And I have other sheep that are not of this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. So there will be one flock, one shepherd. 17 For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life that I may take it up again.18 No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This charge I have received from my Father.”

  1. A) Hirelings – They don’t care about the flock. Look out for themselves first
  2. B) Owner – They care about the longevity of the team and vision of the organizations.


We need to start mastering the art of discerning these two types of team players as leaders.

This will allow us the opportunity to start training up LEGACY LEADERS

  • Legacy leaders want to give their one and only life to a cause bigger than themselves.
  • Legacy leaders work for the grander vision.
  • Legacy leaders are the only ones wiling to pay the price to fix a broken culture.

These leaders will be the ones that care about the grander vision?

*What do we want theses legacy leaders to work towards? What vision are we pointing them towards and saying “Figure it out”

The danger with the hirelings is that they would have learned to put their own goals and objectives first from someone,

  • Is it you?
  • We have raised up a generation of leaders who are “me centric.”

No leader will ever drift into being a legacy leader. They need to be trained and raised up by mentors so that they can truly see the grander vision instead of a vision that they interpret as being grand.


Question: Have you given any thought to your legacy plan? Are you training any legacy leaders to take over your visions?


James 1:12 – Legacy and endurance

12 Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.

The grander the vision the bigger the price tag.

  • Have you built an endurance plan into your vision?
  • How are you going top keep your heart and soul solid as you peruse the grander vision?
  • How are you going to preserve the hearts and souls of your team in the pursuit of the vision?
  • Have you thought about…
    • Burn-Out
    • Family time and care
    • Spiritual – Do you still have time for Sabbath and scripture.

Do we make time to not be a leader and seek out being a follower of Christ?

Do we make time for solitude breaks? What is your solitude plan?


Do you feel “Exhausted, discouraged and at the door of hopelessness?”

As a leader we need to be humble enough to call for help.

Psalm 34:18

18 The Lord is near to the brokenhearted
    and saves the crushed in spirit.


#VBSatTPC – A Look Back : Mentoring the next generation of student leaders in #KidMin

One of the best thrills as a leader is seeing the next generation take hold of responsibility and flourishing with it and that was one of the highlights of this summer’s VBS program.  In a summer where over 100 children and well over 70 families were impacted through VBS it is easy to say that it was a success based on numbers alone, but I think a successful summer needs to be summed up by more than just numbers.

            The biblical teaching was filmed in the months leading up to VBS, which allowed for a tight theme to run through each day’s lesson. Each day we focused on a different individual from the Bible and a characteristic that made each person unique in their personality as well as their relationship with God. The theme for VBS was “Bible Broadcast” and our byline was “I can be like ____________.” As we looked at the various individuals in the Bible we discovered what it means to pray, trust, listen and how to be courageous in your faith. As the children learned about key biblical concepts they were able to tie them all back to Jesus and His wonderful gift of grace.            

Strong Bible teaching was a huge focus for us this year because we wanted the children to continue to grow spiritually and to set our summer program apart from the multitude of city camps.

            A highlight for the leaders this summer was creating a mentorship model of leadership that ran from the youngest child to the oldest volunteer. Older children were given opportunities to lead games for the younger ones to show them that they had the gifts and talents to be a leader too. Our goal was that every child and volunteer would have a three people teaching him or her leadership principles and they would teach one person themselves.  This was important for us to develop a mentorship model this summer so that our church family continues to establish themselves as leaders, and to have opportunities to serve in years to come. This also helps us to create a natural progression through our summer programs that starts when you are four-years-old and ends after high school.  We used 2 Timothy 2:2 as our model.

and what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.”

            Thank you for all the families that sent their children to VBS and thank you to all our volunteers that made each day possible.  

Book Review – Parenting Beyond Your Capacity by Reggie Joiner and Carey Nieuwhof

Parenting Beyond Your Capacity

by Reggie Joiner and Carey Nieuwhof

Oftentimes, parenting can be a struggle full of love. Rather than being another “how-to be a better parent” book, Parenting Beyond Your Capacity focuses on how parents can fortify their parenting capacity by engaging their family in God’s story to the world. Parenting Beyond Your Capacity also has a wealth of helpful insights for those who are hoping to be parents one day, those who are preparing to soon be parents, for grand-parents, those who work with parents, have friends that are parents, or for those that are influencers in children’s lives.

The core of the book is divided into five key family values.

1)      Widen the circle

2)      Imagine the end

3)      Fight for the heart

4)      Create a rhythm

5)      Make it personal

Biblically based from Deuteronomy 6, the values and verses work hand-in-hand. Moses discusses in Deuteronomy 6 that God intended for family and faith-community alike that it takes a village mentality to raise spiritually-healthy children. Through this partnership of family and community mentors, God’s bigger story begins to unfold:

“Your children one day will seek affirmation and approval from adults other than you. Either you can become intentional about enlisting other trusted adults to influence your kids, or you can depend only on your limited capacity. You can leave them alone to discover random influences who will shape their character and faith, or you can help them protectively pursue strategic relationships for their lives.”

If our kids engage Christ with genuine and excited hearts, there is an even better chance that the family relationship can be used to witness to other friends and family – to a world that yearns to be restored. Honorable mention: There is no guilt trip regarding your parenting skills. The authors’ hope is to share the concept that the goal of parenting is not to impress others with your amazing parenting skills, but it is to instill within your children the love and nature of God.

Steve Stroope on Leadership and Kingdom Impact in Youth Ministry

Here is a great podcast from Lead 222. This is the latest Leader Talk featuring Steve Stroope. Steve Stroope is the L

Here is a great podcast from Lead 222. This is the latest Leader Talk featuring Steve Stroope.

Steve Stroope is the Lead Pastor at Lake Pointe Church, Rockwall, Texas.

Called to pastor Lake Pointe shortly after its’ founding in 1979, Steve Stroope leads a congregation that has grown from 53 at its inception to more than 11,000 members or regular attendees each week at several area campuses. In addition to preaching, Steve provides coaching to partnership churches and pioneer missionaries in Africa, Australia, New Zealand, China, Cuba, Russia, Mexico, France, South Africa, and North America. Pastor Steve’s spiritual gifts are evangelism, leadership, teaching, and talking to strangers on airplanes. He has a passion for seeing that the Gospel is presented to unchurched people in a culturally relevant style without compromising its truth. He also believes that one of the keys to an effective church is keeping a balance between evangelism and discipleship. Because of this belief, he is a strong supporter of the small-group ministry at Lake Pointe.

Although he is a sought-after speaker and church consultant both nationally and throughout the world, his heart is for the local church, and he looks forward to many more years at Lake Pointe.

Pastor Steve graduated from Hardin Simmons University in Abilene, Texas, with a B.A. in Psychology and received the Master of Divinity from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. He and his wife Marsha have two grown daughters, three grandsons and one granddaughter.

I really enjoyed the conversation that Bo and Andy had with Steve as they talked through Kingdom Impact in youth ministry. I though that the discussion about self leadership was quite helpful. Many times we focus on leading both vertically and laterally, but often times growing your own leadership qualities takes a backseat. We stop reading and listening to those that challenge us and we stop growing as a leader. I have seen this happen and I think that Steve is right as he talks about self leadership and that being the area that needs the most focus, so that we can be the best leader possible.

I also think that Steve does a remarkable job as he works through how both young and older youth workers can become better at communicating to the senior pastors in our lives what it is exactly that we are doing in student ministry. He also is very clear that sometimes their is a communication breakdown between senior and youth pastors because there has never been that coaching discussion between the two parties as to how each one expects to be led and, or reported to.

How do you report back to the leadership team in your church, or organization what it is that you are doing weekly, monthly, and yearly?

Are you expected to report back and do you have a clear expectations on how you are to do that?

Here is what Steve Stoope asks from his leaders when they meet once a month.

1) Tell me what you have been doing in the last 30 days.

2) Tell me what you plan to spend your time, energy and focus on in the next thirty days?

3) How can I help you as your supervisor in making those plans come to fruition?

The thing that stuck out for me in this was those three easy steps towards creating clear communication between pastor and youth ministry,

Do you have a clear idea what your senior pastor wants from the youth ministry?

Do your volunteers have a clear idea of what you expect from them?

I would strongly recommend listening to the whole podcast as Steve gives some great insight into how he leads and what he expects from those that he is leading. He asks some heavy questions about spiritual growth and health that I think every leader needs to ask as they strive to be a better leader today than they were yesterday.


Mentorship and Jr. High Ministry

Last November I had the privilege to host a ‘Burning Issues’ seminar with Mark Janzen from Willingdon Church at the Canadian Youth Workers Convention. Our seminar and facilitated discussion was on Taking Early Adolescents Seriously.

Our vision is that Junior High students and leaders will recognize the potential they have TODAY to shape the world of TOMORROW by understanding God’s calling for them NOW. We need to become more creative, intentional, and passionate about the students we care for. The students are not simply a younger version of high school, but are unique in their thought processes, activity levels, and their concept of God and Christianity. We as a community need to rethink and restart that which is currently Jr. High ministry. And, we need your help. We need to be directly connecting the Jr. High students and how they conceptualize the world around them. More importantly, we (the youth workers and volunteers), need to evaluate how we are currently underestimating the Jr. High student and how we can best prepare them for high school while allowing them to be themselves.

It was a great afternoon of equipping, empowering and resourcing Jr. High Leaders of various roles and job descriptions as discussion flowed around the room. In the next few posts I am going to post the questions that we brought forth in regards to some of the burning issues that make Jr. High Ministry unique.

The first burning issue that we brought forward was in regards to mentorship. The main question we asked was are we as leaders intentionally fostering relationships between our students and adults who care for them.

We then asked what does this look like in your context. What does mentorship look like in your ministry. That is where we would like to hear your feedback, so that we can continue to grow and communicate as leaders what has worked and not worked so well within our ministry contexts.

Here are the issues we placed up in the seminar.

Issue: Do we KNOW our jr. high students?

Issue: Do we intentionally allow for mentoring relationships within our ministry?

Issue: Does mentorship work in your context?

Issue: Are we connecting our students with caring adults?

We identified the first issue as, do we know our students because when we truly know where they are, what they are passionate about and where they are mentally we can connect them with the right adult mentors that can build and maintain a positive adult relationship in their life. The common feeling among youth workers is that each youth can benefit from having five adult who speak into their life that is outside of their immediate family.

It is not only our students that can benefit from a mentor relationship, but we will grow as leaders when we actively pursue mentors in our own lives. Who teaches you? Who challenges you spiritually, professionally and who challenges you to become a better person everyday.

Our solution was to create four mentorship possibilities in the lives our students and in our lives as leaders as well.

First, the student.

There needs to be a connection with an adult that is connected to our Jr. High ministry that can walk with the student spiritually and can be available to teach them what it means to live life with a biblical worldview.

Secondly, they need friends both in the church and outside of the church that challenge them.

Lastly, as leaders we need to work with our Children’s ministries to connect our jr. high students with the younger students under them. The jr. high student can help by volunteering in whatever ways that are required. This starts the student on their own leadership walk as they become role models for the younger kids in our churches. We did this at camp this summer by having our jr. high students read to the four and five-year-olds. It was great to see them interact and allow for the jr. highers to teach reading and listening skills to the younger kids at camp.

Mentorship is a huge issue in Jr. High ministry. The potential for building lasting and caring relationships is huge for our students, but it has to be evident in our lives as well.

The same issues apply to us as leaders as they do with our students. We need someone that is older, or has been in ministry longer than we have speaking into our lives. That will stretch our leadership potential and grow us as leaders. We also need to be that type of mentor for someone that is younger, or has less ministry experience than we do. I have had the privilege to become a coach with Lead 222. Through this coaching and mentoring team they hope to change the culture of youth ministry through mentoring relationships. I have learned and have been challenged by many of the coaches, which has strengthened my leadership skills. We also need to make sure as leaders that we continue to grow relationships with people that are in the same season of life that we are in. These people need to be both inside the church and outside in our communities.

Mentorship, are we intentionally connecting our students and ourselves with individuals that will make us better than we are today.