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Tag Archives: Leadership Development

Profiles of a Convert, Disciple, Worker & Leader

WHAT DO CONVERTS, DISCIPLES, WORKERS, AND LEADERS LOOK LIKE?

((Adapted from Leroy Eims, The Lost Art of Disciple Making, pp. 184-186)

 Profile of a Convert:

  • Gives evidence of possessing new life (2 Cor. 5:17)
  • Attitude toward Christ is now favorable.
  • Attitude toward sin is unfavorable.

Profile of a Growing Disciple:

  • As a follower of Jesus Christ, places Christ first in the major areas of life and is taking steps to separate from sin (Luke 9:23; Romans 12:1-2).
  • Continues in the Word through such means as Bible study and Scripture memory; is regular in applying the Word to life with the help of the Holy Spirit (John 8:31; James 1:22-25; Psalm 119:59).
  • Maintains a consistent devotional life and is growing in faith and intercessory prayer (Mark 1:35; Hebrews 11:6; Colossians 4:2-4).
  • Attends church regularly and demonstrates Christ’s love by identifying with and serving other believers (Psalm 122:1; Heb. 10:25; John 13:34-35; 1 John 4:20-21; Galatians 5:13).
  • Is openly identified with Jesus Christ where he or she lives and works, manifests a heart for witnessing, gives testimony clearly, and presents the gospel regularly with increasing effectiveness (Matt. 5:16; Col. 4:6; 1 Peter 3:15).
  • A learner who is open and teachable (Acts 17:11).
  • A visible follower and learner of Jesus Christ, and demonstrates consistency and faithfulness in all of the above areas (Luke 16:10).

Profile of a Worker

  • Evidences growth in the virtues and skills outlined above (1 Peter 3:18).
  • Shows a growing compassion for the lost and demonstrates ability to lead others into a personal relationship with Christ (Matt. 9:36-38; Rom. 1:6).
  • Being used of God to establish believers who have become disciples, either personally or in a discipling group context (Col. 1:28-29).
  • Is currently engaged in the task of making disciples (Matt. 28:19).
  • Regular intake of the Word by all means and the quiet time are now regular habits (Philippians 4:9).

Profile of a Leader 

  • Is an equipped worker who evidences growth in the virtues and skills listed above.
  • Has been used of God to help disciples become workers.
  • Is banding and leading workers in evangelizing the lost and establishing believers.
  • Displays faithfulness and integrity in balancing life and ministry.

Time Element: Convert to disciple – 2 years; Disciple to worker – 2 years; Worker to leader – 3 years.

 

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Book Review: Finding Faithful Elders and Deacons by Thabiti M. Anyabwile

A Useful Primer For Biblical Leadership in the Church

 In this book experienced pastor Thabiti Anyabwile writes three sections on how to find deacons, elders, and specify what their roles are in the church. Pastor Anyabwile gives the pertinent biblical requirements for deacons and elders, and gives numerous helps on biblical qualifications, traits to watch for, and questions and observations for examining whether or not those under consideration are wise choices for the respective offices of elder and deacon.

I think the best way to use this book is to use it as Thabiti Anyabwile intended it to be used:

 “First, use it prayerfully. Pray for pastors and elders as they shepherd and serve the sheep. Pray for more men to be raised up in the congregation for this important work. Pray that the Lord would pour out his grace on those serving these tasks. Pray that the members of the church would show genuine appreciation, love, and care for their shepherds. Pray that all the men in the church would grow in the qualities that elders should possess. Pray that men would have a godly desire to give their lives in serving the body of Christ as servant-leaders.

Second, use this book practically. The book does not delve into a lot of detailed argumentation, hoping instead to make application easily and quickly. I want the book to help in actually doing something—identifying and training elders—not just considering something. Put the suggestions into practice, and improve them with the experience and wisdom that come from your particular church setting and other faithful leaders.

Finally, use the book pedagogically. That is, use it to teach and instruct. Perhaps a church needs to select its first elders after a period of planning and study. Pastors may wish to use these brief chapters to ‘flesh out’ for the average church member which qualities the congregation as a whole needs to be looking and praying for in their prospective elders. Examination and pastoral search committees may find similar help.”

Take it from my own experience in over twenty years of pastoring – you want to get all the help you can in the wise selection of, praying for, training of, and role implementation of your elders and deacons – because the church will ultimately rise to great heights or fall to low depths based on the quality, character, and biblical execution of it’s leaders.

I highly recommend this book for church planters, existing leadership teams, solo pastors, deacons, and elders. It serves as a concise handbook that you can use to strengthen your existing leadership, develop future leaders, and most certainly add health and value to Christ’s church as you seek to be a good steward of its most valuable resources.

 

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Book Review: Going Deep by Gordon MacDonald

Go Deeper and Out of the Shallows

 I am a fan of Gordon MacDonald’s books because he has a unique style of writing where he synergistically integrates principles, personal experiences, and biblical insights in such a way that he makes one think and desire to put into practice what he is writing about.

In his newest offering – continuing in the context of what he wrote about in a previous book, “Who Stole My Church” – MacDonald sets out to explore and develop the statement, “The future of the Christian faith will not be determined by the number of people who fill the pews but by the spiritual depth of those people…We seem to know how to get unchurched people to visit our buildings. We even seem to know how to draw them across the line into a declaration of personal faith in Jesus. But what we do not seem to know is how to cultivate spiritually deep people. Tomorrow’s church could be headed for trouble.” This book is a fictional exploration in answering these observations based on the experiences of the fictional pastor – GMAC – and his large congregation set in New England in the modern era. Macdonald sets out to “offer a detailed plan of helping churches cultivate people of depth–spiritually mature Christians that truly desire to make a difference for Christ with their lives, that will help grow the church.”

I personally enjoyed the book because as a pastor myself I can relate to almost every story, person, thought, and implication in the book. Like MacDonald I am a pastor that has had many ups and downs with people in seeking to be a “deep Christian” and what that means in the context of seeking to grow a disciple making church. I think pastors will enjoy this book more than most people – because they will be able to identify more with the story than non-pastors will. I would recommend this book either be read while on vacation, or a chapter a day – for Type A people – you will get frustrated because the story line will move too slow for you. As for the more reflective and melancholy types – you will enjoy the story more because it will appeal to you emotionally and you will be more patient with the developing story.

I am very concerned about the shallowness and lack of depth of most churches today, and I am all for “going deep” and think that MacDonald’s book will be used to help steer many church leaders, and thus churches in a positive direction. I hope that this type of book will spur church leaders toward deeper thinking, and result in developing disciples that are deeper and less shallow than what our previous leaders have done with their churches.

I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255

 

Gordon MacDonald has been a pastor and author for over forty years. For many years he pastored Grace Chapel in Lexington, Massacusetts and continues to serve as Pastor Emertius. He has also provided leadership to influential ministries such as Intervarsity Christian Fellowship, which he served as President for three years, and World Relief, which he currently serves as Chairman. Gordon’s best-selling books include Ordering Your Private WorldMid-Course Correction and, most recently, A Resilient Life. He also writes and serves as Editor-at-Large for Christianity Today’s Leadership Journal. When not writing, leading or speaking at conferences, Gordon and his wife Gail can be found hiking the trails of New England.

 
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Posted by on October 12, 2011 in Book Reviews, Leadership

 

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