People Talk

People Talk

Church people talk. They talk about all kinds of things. They talk about the pastor, her sermon, how many people used to be in worship, and what we ought to be doing but haven’t yet. This kind of talk can be threatening to a pastor, but it doesn’t have to be. Having...
The Ministry of Words

The Ministry of Words

I stood in a hospital room crowded with family members of one who, without a single word, had summoned us all together. She was ready, after almost 94 years, to leave this life. So that is what she did. She left a hushed silence unable to muffle the emotion of time...
Courage to Become

Courage to Become

I’ll never forget August 3, 1995. The family and I were in Destin, Florida with good friends. We vacationed here regularly during the child-rearing years. We did the same thing every summer. We had our place to stay, our spot on the beach, and our list of restaurants...
The Practice of Warming

The Practice of Warming

I love this time of year, don’t you? Even though the days are getting shorter, I love the cool, crisp air and the changing colors of fall. It’s nice cutting the AC down at home. Pleasant evenings find Cindy and me sitting in the backyard around a crackling fire...
Pastor, Which Hat Will You Wear?

Pastor, Which Hat Will You Wear?

At the Center for Healthy Churches we often consider the distinctions implied between serving congregations as “consultants” and “coaches.” Implied are the hats we wear when we engage churches and their leadership. Pastors must do the same kind of identity work. Why?...