Blog readership for September increased by over 25% – mainly thanks to your links and some positive press in the Rick Warren Ministry ToolBox. Here’s the most popular posts for the month (in case you missed them):
Where There’s Slack There’s Lack – Part 8 of 8 (Strategy System)
If you haven’t already done so, be sure to subscribe to the blog feed so you don’t miss a thing! Use the Subscribe Via RSS link or the Subscribe Via Email link on the right – just below the monthly archives listing. Or subscribe using Google Reader – my favorite – or similar tool.
Could I ask a favor? If you like this blog, would you take a moment and tell you pastor friends about it? You can tell them about the blog and about the FREE Healthy Church, Healthy Systems report. They will thank you later- but I will say THANK YOU now! Thank you for sharing this blog and for making it a success!
See you in October…..
Here’s what’s happening with Church Leader Insights and me this week that may be of interest to you:
Monday – I’ll be in the Journey office all morning and then I’m flying to Atlanta. I’ll be doing a recording the Catalyst folks tonight. Are you going to Catalyst next week? If so, I’d like to buy you dessert on Thursday night. Email cristina (at) journeymetro.com for all the details.
Tuesday – I’m co-teaching the One Day Launch Conference with Bob Franquiz today in Atlanta. It’s not too late to sign-up by clicking here. A huge thanks to Ritchie Miller and Avalon Church for hosting this conference! I also have a Q&A call-in time today with my Tele-Coaching Network (its at 1:00pm EDT for those of you in the network).
Wednesday – I’m off today as my weekly Sabbath and will be hanging with Kelley all day. She scheduled a baby sitter and has put together a ‘day of surprises in NYC’ as my birthday present (my official birthday is Friday). I’m hoping cupcakes are part of the surprise somehow!
Thursday – A packed day today but one thing I must get done is the manuscript for Sunday’s Financial Peace kick-off. We are teaching live in all the locations this Sunday and the location pastors are all waiting on my manuscript so they can shred it and make it better! The sermon run thru is scheduled for 4pm today – I hope I survive!
Friday – Today I turn 37! Send cash gifts to….OK, just kidding but your prayers are appreciated! I’ll be in the office all day but maybe there’ll be red velvet cupcakes waiting on me when I get home.
Hope you have a great week! Maybe I’ll see you in Atlanta on Tuesday.
P.S. Watch your CLI email for info on four ‘just announced’ live events this week – one in Tampa, two in NYC and one in Cincinnati. For a sneak peek, check out this link.
Today I’m teaching live in Manhattan and its NOT being used as a video message in Brooklyn or Jersey City so it gives me a chance to break out of the screen box for something a bit more creative.
We call it a Salsa Service because of the way the sermon is split into multiple parts by music, testimony, video, etc. You can read more about a Salsa Worship Order in my post from Thursday by clicking here.
In preparation for this message based on Jeremiah 18 (Jeremiah and the Potter’s House) I was able to visit a local pottery shop, teach part of the message on site and actually handle some clay/pottery. The shop also gave us some pottery to be used as props on Sunday.
It should be a fun service!
After our third morning service, we have Worship Arts orientation from 2:30 – 4:30pm where we will welcome almost 100 new artists to our team (BTW, most of our artists are not professional artists – the professionals are too busy with Broadway shows on Sundays. Instead they are business professionals or teachers or regular folks who have a skill or talent they want to use for God). Jason and his team did a great job with the fall auditions and I’m excited about the future of our worship arts team. Jason told me on Friday that he is planning a tele-seminar in the future to talk about how you can use an audition process to raise up new artists. Keep an eye on www.WorshipLeaderInsights.com for all the details.
I hope you have a great day at your church! I’m off to the first service,
P.S. A big thanks to everyone who prayed for our baptism service last Sunday. We baptized 22 people! That brings our total baptisms to 130+ for the year and we still have our big November Friday Night baptism to go!
This past week we saw the ‘official farewell’ to the ‘House that Ruth’ built here in NYC (the final game at Yankee Stadium for those of you, like me, who are sports-challenged), so I thought I’d share this quote:
“You just can’t beat the person who never gives up”
– Babe Ruth
You asked for it…here’s the latest version of the Communication Card we use at The Journey. We call it a Connection Card (I stole that term from my good friend Jimmy Britt a few years ago) because it seems a little softer.
Two versions for you to download (just right click and choose Save As – includes both front and back of the card):
Here’s some key thoughts for your connection card:
- Are you asking for information you are not using? If so, cut the info from your card.
- Can you fill out the card in your lap?
- Is the most important info at the top of the card?
- Is there enough space for a long email address?
- Are you placing the card in the bulletin (no more tear-offs or back-of-pew cards)?
If you are just starting out, you don’t need to customize the card for the series or even do it in color (I’ve found no increase in the return rate for either).
Hope this helps! I want this blog to be a useful tool for you. If you have feedback, you can use the Ask Nelson button on the right.
“Just an FYI to those thinking of coming to the Launch Conference in Atlanta on September 30th from 9AM-4PM. The price for the conference goes up on Sunday, so register today if you want to get the get the discounted rate. The link is here.
This is going to be a great conference that has already helped 1,000′s of Pastors. A church planter should get every bit of info he can before he launches. If you don’t, you’ll be kicking yourself later.”
I hope to see you in Atlanta!
On Sunday we are doing a Salsa service at The Journey. No, I’m not talking about the style of dance or the refreshment selections, I’m talking about the style of worship order.
If you’ve listed to my Worship Planning Seminar, then you know that we have three different types of worship orders that we use regularly to give variety to the service each week. They are:
Simple Worship Order (most common)
Split Worship Order
Salsa Worship Order (Least used)
In the Salsa Worship Order, the control of the service goes back and forth at non-even points between the teaching pastor and the creative team. In other words, my sermon is split in at least three parts and is surrounded by three or four elements designed to teach the previous point through a different medium.
Here’s the elements for this Sunday:
Sermon Intro and Part 1
2 Worship Songs
Center Stage Screen Image Reflection
Message Part 2 (via video on-location in Pottery class)
Worship Song/Movie Clip
Message Part 3
Conclusion and Lords Supper
Worship thru Giving
All of that in 65 minutes….now that is Salsa!
Because it’s so complicated and requires such detailed preparation, we only use this style of service about 5% of the time (or two or three Sundays a year). We are doing it this Sunday as an ‘experiential’ worship service to wrap up our One Month to Live Series.
I like this style of service….it keeps people on their toes, it allows for a lot of creative elements. It also breaks the monotony of a ‘Simple’ service where the sermon is all together at the end of the service.
Have you fallen into a rut with your worship orders? Maybe it’s time for some salsa!
This is a question we recently received through the Ask Nelson button on the right:
What’s the Best (and Worst) Launch Date for a New Church?
Here are the top 3 best times to launch a new church:
(1) February (usually the 2nd Sunday) – everyone is back from holiday (If you go early January you are going to miss some people), short on cash so they aren’t traveling and since it’s still the beginning of the year they probably are making commitments toward self-improvement.
Another added bonus is that you get to Launch on a BIG day in February (avoid President’s Day and Super Bowl Sunday) and then you have a month or two and then it’s Easter – another opportunity to build up to a 2nd BIG day (sort of a 2nd launch).
(2) A couple of weeks after school starts in the Fall – for us that’s in September. It may be in August for you. But everyone is settling in their kids into school and is back from traveling from the summer. Also – people are starting new things (going back to school). September – November is a good stretch of time to reach people when people don’t travel that much.
(3) Easter – Easter is good because more people go to church on Easter than on any other day of the year. The problem with launching on Easter is that it’s only a short time until summer. So, you might have a big launch – but you don’t have much time to consolidate it or make another push before summer hits. That’s why we like a February launch with Easter as the 2nd big hit.
Launch Dates to avoid at all costs:
#2 Tie: Super Bowl, July 4th, Labor Day or any other national holiday
#1 Any time other than Sunday Morning
I hope these thoughts help. Many blessings as you prepare to launch large!
Got a question? Use the Ask Nelson button on the right. Looking for more resources on church planting? Check out this link (church planting resources)
One of my tele-coaching participants/pastors shared these two time management principles with me in a recent email:
2. The next day principle. Whenever possible, get through your “to do” list, then do something you’d planned on doing the next day. This snowballs over time and greatly increases your capacity to get things done.
(Submitted by Glenn Edward Layne from First Baptist Church in Temple City, CA)
Two great principles! Thanks, Glenn!
So let me ask you:
Are you starting your day with God?
Are you starting your tomorrow before you finish today?
P.S. For my top 34 time management principles, check out my recent bestselling resource entitled Time Management for Busy Pastors. Click here for more.
Here’s what’s happening with Church Leader Insights and me this week that may be of interest to you:
Monday – I’m back in the office after being in Southern California for a few days last week. One of the things I’ll be doing today is the follow-up from yesterday’s baptism. Click here to learn how we follow-up on baptisms. I’ll also be prepping for a video shoot for Sunday’s message. (I plan to teach part of Sunday’s message from a graveyard – sounds eerie, right?)
Tuesday – Response to our new CLI sermon series offering entitled “Tongue Pierced” has been incredible. Watch your email from CLI today for more on this series. (It’s back in stock). Be sure that firstname.lastname@example.org is in your address book so you don’t miss anything from us.
Wednesday – My weekly Sabbath.
Thursday – Have you listened to this month’s podcast yet? I call it The Top 10% Principle. It’s a leadership podcast about how you must keep the Top 10% of your church informed if you want your next strategy, program or vision to succeed. Click here to listen online or download.
Friday – I hate to say it, but this is my monthly day to catch up on paper work. I’ll be reviewing accounting issues, legal documents, attendance reports, trend analysises (or whatever the plural is of analysis), etc. I’m reminded of the leadership axiom from the great new book by Bill Hybels, “facts are our friends.” Although I never look forward to diving into these reports, I love what I learn from them.
Saturday – I’ll be spending the morning in the office and then the entire family is heading to the Cold Spring Harvest Festival in Upstate NY (that’s how us snooty Manhattanites refer to the rest of NY State – even if it’s just a few miles north of the city). Maybe there’ll be farm animals there to delight Alexander. At two years old, he loves farm animals!
Hope you have a great week!
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