Yesterday I attended the Creative Leadership Conference at Church Unleashed. The conference speaker is renowned writer and pastor, Ed Young. It has been said that he specializes in communicating complex concepts is a simple way (plus his humor is contagious). It’s safe to say the shared time was a blessing.
With this blog, I’d like to just detail some highlights from the conference that prayerfully may challenge or edify you (and your leadership).
As I walked in I noticed there was a set up of The Lord’s Table on the stage. Just then, Pastor Young began to explain that “The Lord’s Table is at the center of all that we do”. He went on to create an analogy of using the church as a restaurant and The Lord’s Table details our menu and work. He used the 3 chairs to symbolize 3 different types of people in the Church – Chair One: Those who don’t know Christ and newcomers/ Chair Two: Those with a invigorating fresh faith, zealous to serve/ Chair Three: those in the church who have moved on to maturity (Hebrews 6:1). I rather enjoyed this analogy and explanation, as it challenged us to consider the elements at the Table and how we are offering the Table to each chair (in essence, discipleship). He also noted, “Every great restaurant has a team of people”. Together Everyone Adds More (TEAM). Surely that was exhilarating to hear as we have just become to form and develop certain “committees” at The Blue Point Bible Church. Glory to God!
Pastor Young went on to speak about work in ministry as “brutiful” (brutal and beautiful). He explained the glories and the stresses of serving as a pastor. A couple of insights he shared about the pastorate were: “An hour of study behind every minute I am in the pulpit” and “Always pastor your church as if it is double or triple its size”. Also, he said all meetings should develop “What if, What is…” (For example, What if we did it this way, then consider what is the way we currently do it. He spoke about creating a culture of critique (not criticism). He went on to speak about the importance of canceling superfluous activity (if it’s not bringing in Chair One people, why…?). Simply put, say no to time wasters!
Ed went on the detail the importance of having a vision and sharing a vision. He remarked, “Talk about the vision. You cannot talk about it enough. Vision, vision, vision”. For churches that may not have the resources to bring certain aspect of the vision to fruition, Pastor Young said, “Never allow resources to hem in creativity”.
All in all, the conference was a great time of fellowship and encouragement alongside other pastors on Long Island, including quite a few laughs. The text that was mentioned and that continued to come to my mind as I listened was Hebrews 6:1; “Let us therefore move beyond the elementary teachings about Christ and be taken forward to maturity…”. Ed Young challenged us that, “You’re either serving or swerving”. And lastly, the following website will serve as a tool to further creative leadership, www.creativepastors.com
May God be glorified through creative, healthy, and mature churches!
In Service to Him,
Pastor Michael Miano