Transformed Episode #252: The Discipline of Talking to God!

Date May 24, 2015

spiritual disciplines - The path to transformation

 

The most practical and powerful way to get believers headed in the direction of spiritual maturity is to help them establish habits that promote spiritual growth.

As we open this episode of the Transformed Podcast, we are here today to help you develop the spiritual growth habits you need to develop yourself into all Jesus longs for you to become!

Being a disciple certainly requires discipline. At Eagles In Leadership, we believe these habits are to be enjoyed rather than endured. We don’t want you to be afraid of the spiritual exercises that will strengthen and develop them.

Of course, there are dozens of good habits we need to develop as we grow to maturity. In this series, we are going to talk about the foundational habits that must be learned first in order to grow.

We cannot talk about character without talking about habits. As Dr. Smith teaches his students at Bible Believers Christian College and Seminary in Hawthorne, California, he wants to remind you that character is the way we habitually act.

 

Would you like to help spread the word by sharing this message? Perhaps you would you consider sharing this message with a friend? God longs to release the captives of our culture into the freedom of faith. Thank you for your consideration!

Have you heard about Dr. Smith’s newest book? If you want to make an impact in your community, county, country or continent, Dr. Smith has written a new book to help you accomplish your dreams!

Gathering Missional Leaders is a guided study that explores the elements necessary to build the habitat that will attract a strong and vibrant coalition of men and women who want to reach their world in their generation!

Gathering Missional Leaders was born as a field manual, a how-to guide to see local churches become training centers where people can learn to “go and make disciples of all nations,” and build a climate in their church where the next generation of mission-minded Christians can come together and thrive.

You can order your copy Gathering Missional Leaders at the Eagles In Leadership website by clicking the appropriate link on the right hand side panel of the Eagles In Leadership website.

 

Today’s episode was recorded live in Bell Gardens, California and edited by Ryan Longsworth in Los Angeles, California.

And now, until next time, we are praying you would be filled with the love of God so that you can demonstrate His love to the lost and dying in your city! God bless!

Do You Have the Courage to Lead?

Date May 21, 2015


Young businessman acting like a super hero and tearing his shirt

Editor’s Note: Leadership is incredibly difficult. Courage is essential for great leadership. Scott Musselman’s article is a great help in reminding us of the need for true, Biblical leaders. Remember: Haven’t I commanded you: be strong and courageous? Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”” (Joshua 1:9, HCSB)

by 

As a pastor, I wasn’t taught or mentored in how to be a leader.  So I have had to dig deep inside to prayerfully find and develop an inner leader or suffer the consequences.

Perhaps you have been on that same journey.  You would understandably assume that being a pastor is about being pastoral.  But that is not the need of the church in our time.

Today, pastors have to discover what it is to lead people into a culture that isn’t looking for Christianity or the Church.

I remember when many pastors defined their ministries by the distractions – that that was the most important aspect of leading a church.  So you sat in your office and waited for a member to stop by who needed a kind and Godly word.

That is ministry, for sure.  But any Christian can and should do that.  So what is unique about the calling of a pastor?  What does it mean to be the leader of a congregation?

I’m a simple kind of guy.  To me, a leader has followers.  Look behind you.  Is there anyone there?  Make no mistake.  This is hard stuff.  Frankly, I don’t want to do it from a human perspective.  I just came back from a trip to a Mexican beach.  Perfect weather and the worries of the world seemed non-existent.  Is that what God calls me to do?  Eat, drink, and be merry?

So here is how I have tried to become the leader God wants.  Perhaps you can relate and add some ideas of your own.  I start with the types of things which many of us do that we must do, but that I ultimately found insufficient:

  • I read about leaders and leadership.
  • I went to conferences and workshops about how to be a leader.

I think many of us want to believe that doing these two things above should be adequate.  After doing them, however, I knew how to be a leader but still wasn’t being a very good one.  Here is where I found more assistance and effectiveness:

  • I got a coach who keeps me focused.  If you don’t have one, you need one.
  • My church did a consultation which codified what I should and should not be doing.
  • I met with people I considered to be leaders who confronted me where I needed it.
  • I hang out with and pray with colleagues I honor as being leaders.

For me, this has not always been a pleasant journey.  It is hard and often discouraging.  I see this as taking up my cross for the sake of Jesus.  It is what God is calling me to do.  Can you relate?  I can’t accept the temptation to find a paradise (like a church office?) to hide away.  I have to discover the person inside that God has called me to be, to take off the outer garments of life and find where the Spirit of God dwells.

Can we walk together in mutual encouragement, finding the courage to be the leaders God desires and the Church needs?  It means leaving behind what has been of the old wine and wine skins and risking our pensions and pleasures for the sake of the Kingdom of God.  Honestly, this is exactly where I find meaning and hope in life.  How about you?

Read the original article here.

Studying James 4:4!

Date May 19, 2015

James web slider

 

Welcome to the Transformed Podcast!

Dr. Matthew Smith, director of Eagles In Leadership, continues to teach verse by verse through the book of James, one verse per podcast. These studies were recorded live in his class at Bible Believers Christian College and Seminary in Hawthorne, California.

The book of James has been called, “the faith explained” and that is the purpose of these teachings. These short studies are designed to help you grow your faith.

Now, let’s open our Bibles to the book of James as Dr. Smith discusses our faith from the words of the step-brother of Jesus, the head of the Jerusalem Church …

 

This podcast was recorded in Hawthorne, California and edited by Ryne Longsworth.

Transformed Episode #251: The Process of Transformation

Date May 17, 2015

spiritual disciplines - The path to transformation

 

The most practical and powerful way to get believers headed in the direction of spiritual maturity is to help them establish habits that promote spiritual growth.

As we open this episode of the Transformed Podcast, we are here today to help you develop the spiritual growth habits you need to develop yourself into all Jesus longs for you to become!

Being a disciple certainly requires discipline. At Eagles In Leadership, we believe these habits are to be enjoyed rather than endured. We don’t want you to be afraid of the spiritual exercises that will strengthen and develop them.

Of course, there are dozens of good habits we need to develop as we grow to maturity. In this series, we are going to talk about the foundational habits that must be learned first in order to grow.

We cannot talk about character without talking about habits. As Dr. Smith teaches his students at Bible Believers Christian College and Seminary in Hawthorne, California, he wants to remind you that character is the way we habitually act.

 

 

Would you like to help spread the word by sharing this message? Perhaps you would you consider sharing this message with a friend? God longs to release the captives of our culture into the freedom of faith. Thank you for your consideration!

Have you heard about Dr. Smith’s newest book? If you want to make an impact in your community, county, country or continent, Dr. Smith has written a new book to help you accomplish your dreams!

Gathering Missional Leaders is a guided study that explores the elements necessary to build the habitat that will attract a strong and vibrant coalition of men and women who want to reach their world in their generation!

Gathering Missional Leaders was born as a field manual, a how-to guide to see local churches become training centers where people can learn to “go and make disciples of all nations,” and build a climate in their church where the next generation of mission-minded Christians can come together and thrive.

You can order your copy Gathering Missional Leaders at the Eagles In Leadership website by clicking the appropriate link on the right hand side panel of the Eagles In Leadership website.

 

Today’s episode was recorded live in Bell Gardens, California and edited by Ryan Longsworth in Los Angeles, California.

And now, until next time, we are praying you would be filled with the love of God so that you can demonstrate His love to the lost and dying in your city! God bless!

10 Reasons Ministry Isn’t for Wimps

Date May 14, 2015

Wimp - No Zone

Editor’s Note: After more than three decades as a youth, mission, solo and senior pastor, Dr. Smith wanted to make sure those who are in discipleship today understand the challenges of stepping up to the accept the position and work of pastoral ministry. He finds this article accurate and sobering. 

By Jared Moore

The blessings of ministry far outweigh the realities below; however, ministry is definitely not easy. Don’t waste your time and money going to seminary or college for pastoral training if you are not prepared for the negative aspects of ministry mentioned below. Furthermore, always remember that God has called you to love His church, not merely His mature church, but His immature church, as well. Moreover, a call to ministry is a call to bleed.

If you enter pastoral ministry …

10. Not everyone will like you.

9. You will make people angry regardless of how godly you handle yourself; it comes with the position.

8. You will feel like a failure often, and when you do appear to succeed, the fruit that is produced cannot be accredited to you. God alone gives the increase (1 Cor. 3:7). Thus, there is little “sense of accomplishment in ministry” that you may be accustomed to in other vocations.

7. You will fight legalism and liberalism, along with laziness, ignorance, tradition and opposition. Yet, your greatest enemy will be your own heart (Jer. 17:9).

6. Not everyone will respond positively to your preaching, teaching or leadership. You will bring people to tears with the same sermon: one in joy, another in anger (I have done this).

5. You will be criticized, rarely to your face and frequently behind your back. This criticism will come from those that love you, those that obviously do not like you, and pastors and Christians that barely know you.

4. You will think about quitting yearly or monthly, if not weekly or even daily.

3. You will be persecuted for preaching the truth, mostly from your brothers and sisters in the pews. You shouldn’t be surprised by the sight of your own blood. You’re a Christian, after all (Matt. 16:24).

2. You will feel very lonely on a consistent basis, feeling like no one truly knows you or cares how you feel, because you do not want to burden your family, and trustworthy peers are few and far between. Because of the ”super-Christian” myth accredited to pastors, literally, you will find it extremely difficult to disclose your deep thoughts and feelings to others. Thus, you will struggle with loneliness.

1. You will probably pastor a church that is barely growing (if at all), is opposed to change, doesn’t pay well, has seen pastors come and go, doesn’t respect the position as biblically as they should, doesn’t understand what the Bible says a pastor’s or a church’s jobs are, and will only follow you when they agree with you (thus, they’ll really only follow themselves).

After understanding these realities, do you still want to be a pastor? If so, then God has probably called you to the ministry!

Jared has served in pastoral ministry since 2000. He is the pastor of New Salem Baptist Church in Hustonville, KY. He is the author of 10 Sacred Cows in Christianity That Need to Be Tipped. Jared is married to Amber and they have four children. He is a teaching assistant for Bruce Ware at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (SBTS) and a PhD Student in Systematic Theology at SBTS.  More from Jared Moore or visit Jared at http://jaredmoore.exaltchrist.com

Studying James 4:3!

Date May 12, 2015

James web slider

 

Welcome to the Transformed Podcast!

Dr. Matthew Smith, director of Eagles In Leadership, continues to teach verse by verse through the book of James, one verse per podcast. These studies were recorded live in his class at Bible Believers Christian College and Seminary in Hawthorne, California.

The book of James has been called, “the faith explained” and that is the purpose of these teachings. These short studies are designed to help you grow your faith.

Now, let’s open our Bibles to the book of James as Dr. Smith discusses our faith from the words of the step-brother of Jesus, the head of the Jerusalem Church …

 

This podcast was recorded in Hawthorne, California and edited by Ryne Longsworth.

Transformed Episode #250: The Path to Transformation – Part 1

Date May 10, 2015

spiritual disciplines - The path to transformation

 

The most practical and powerful way to get believers headed in the direction of spiritual maturity is to help them establish habits that promote spiritual growth.

As we open this episode of the Transformed Podcast, we are here today to help you develop the spiritual growth habits you need to develop yourself into all Jesus longs for you to become!

Being a disciple certainly requires discipline. At Eagles In Leadership, we believe these habits are to be enjoyed rather than endured. We don’t want you to be afraid of the spiritual exercises that will strengthen and develop them.

Of course, there are dozens of good habits we need to develop as we grow to maturity. In this series, we are going to talk about the foundational habits that must be learned first in order to grow.

We cannot talk about character without talking about habits. As Dr. Smith teaches his students at Bible Believers Christian College and Seminary in Hawthorne, California, he wants to remind you that character is the way we habitually act.

 

 

Would you like to help spread the word by sharing this message? Perhaps you would you consider sharing this message with a friend? God longs to release the captives of our culture into the freedom of faith. Thank you for your consideration!

Have you heard about Dr. Smith’s newest book? If you want to make an impact in your community, county, country or continent, Dr. Smith has written a new book to help you accomplish your dreams!

Gathering Missional Leaders is a guided study that explores the elements necessary to build the habitat that will attract a strong and vibrant coalition of men and women who want to reach their world in their generation!

Gathering Missional Leaders was born as a field manual, a how-to guide to see local churches become training centers where people can learn to “go and make disciples of all nations,” and build a climate in their church where the next generation of mission-minded Christians can come together and thrive.

You can order your copy Gathering Missional Leaders at the Eagles In Leadership website by clicking the appropriate link on the right hand side panel of the Eagles In Leadership website.

 

Today’s episode was recorded live in Bell Gardens, California and edited by Ryan Longsworth in Los Angeles, California.

And now, until next time, we are praying you would be filled with the love of God so that you can demonstrate His love to the lost and dying in your city! God bless!

9 Traits of Church Bullies

Date May 7, 2015

bullying

Editor’s Note: This is such an excellent article and such a pervasive problem we are republishing it here in its entirety. If you would like to refer to the original article, you can find it here

By Thom S. Rainer

Church bullies are common in many churches. They wreak havoc and create dissension. They typically must have an “enemy” in the church, because they aren’t happy unless they are fighting a battle. They tend to maneuver to get an official leadership position in the church, such as chairman of the elders or deacons or treasurer. But they may have bully power without any official position.

Church bullies have always been around. But they seem to be doing their work more furiously today than in recent history. Perhaps this look at nine traits of church bullies can help us recognize them before they do too much damage.

1. They do not recognize themselves as bullies. To the contrary, they see themselves as necessary heroes sent to save the church from her own self.

2. They have personal and self-serving agendas. They have determined what “their” church should look like. Any person or ministry or program that is contrary to their perceived ideal church must be eliminated.

3. They seek to form power alliances with weak members in the church. They will pester and convince groups, committees and persons to be their allies in their cause. Weaker church staff members and church members will succumb to their forceful personalities.

4. They tend to have intense and emotional personalities. These bullies use the intensity of their personalities to get their way.

5. They are famous for saying “people are saying.” They love to gather tidbits of information and shape it to their own agendas. See my previous post on this one item.

6. They find their greatest opportunities in low-expectation churches. Many of the church members have an entitlement view of church membership. They seek to get their own needs and preferences fulfilled. They, therefore, won’t trouble themselves to confront and deal with church bullies. That leads to the next issue, which is a consequence of this point

7. They are allowed to bully because church members will not stand up to them. I have spoken with pastors and church staff who have been attacked by church bullies. While the bully brings them great pain, they have even greater hurt because most of the church members stood silent and let it happen.

8. They create chaos and wreak havoc. A church bully always has his next mission. While he or she may take a brief break from one bullying mission to the next, they are not content unless they are exerting the full force of their manipulative behavior.

9. They often move to other churches after they have done their damage. Whether they are forced out or simply get bored, they will move to other churches with the same bullying mission. Some bullies have wreaked havoc in three or more churches.

Church bullying is epidemic in many of our congregations. They must be stopped. In my article on Wednesday, I deal with the topic of preventing church bullying. In the meantime, let me hear from you.

Thom S. Rainer is the president and CEO of LifeWay Christian Resources (LifeWay.com). Among his greatest joys are his family: his wife Nellie Jo; three sons, Sam, Art, and Jess; and six grandchildren. He was founding dean of the Billy Graham School of Missions, Evangelism, and Church Growth at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. His many books include Surprising Insights from the Unchurched, The Unexpected Journey, and Breakout Churches.More from Thom Rainer or visit Thom at http://www.thomrainer.com

Studying James 4:2!

Date May 5, 2015

James web slider

 

Welcome to the Transformed Podcast!

Dr. Matthew Smith, director of Eagles In Leadership, continues to teach verse by verse through the book of James, one verse per podcast. These studies were recorded live in his class at Bible Believers Christian College and Seminary in Hawthorne, California.

The book of James has been called, “the faith explained” and that is the purpose of these teachings. These short studies are designed to help you grow your faith.

Now, let’s open our Bibles to the book of James as Dr. Smith discusses our faith from the words of the step-brother of Jesus, the head of the Jerusalem Church …

 

This podcast was recorded in Hawthorne, California and edited by Ryne Longsworth.

Transformed Episode #249: Receiving God’s Comfort!

Date May 3, 2015

comfort - God Comforts His People

 

So many people are in pain today! Whether through sickness, selfishness, or sin many bleed within more than from without. Others have been savaged, slandered and seduced to the point where life no longer seems to hold meaning and faith bends to the breaking point.

Welcome to the Transformed Podcast.

In this very special message, Dr. Matthew Lee Smith, Director of Eagles In Leadership, refocuses the battered and bruised on the hope of the God who comfort in this message.

Encouraging us to consider the condition of our hearts, Pastor Matt asks us to turn to the God of all comfort by crying out to Jesus for help in our anguish.

As you turn your Bible to Matthew 5, let’s listen in as Dr. Smith teaches us, and the people of Touchpoint Church in Bell Gardens, California, how to receive the comfort of God for our lives …

 

Would you like to help spread the word by sharing this message? Perhaps you would you consider sharing this message with a friend? God longs to release the captives of our culture into the freedom of faith. Thank you for your consideration!

Have you heard about Dr. Smith’s newest book? If you want to make an impact in your community, county, country or continent, Dr. Smith has written a new book to help you accomplish your dreams!

Gathering Missional Leaders is a guided study that explores the elements necessary to build the habitat that will attract a strong and vibrant coalition of men and women who want to reach their world in their generation!

Gathering Missional Leaders was born as a field manual, a how-to guide to see local churches become training centers where people can learn to “go and make disciples of all nations,” and build a climate in their church where the next generation of mission-minded Christians can come together and thrive.

You can order your copy Gathering Missional Leaders at the Eagles In Leadership website by clicking the appropriate link on the right hand side panel of the Eagles In Leadership website.

 

Today’s episode was recorded live in Bell Gardens, California and edited by Ryan Longsworth in Los Angeles, California.

And now, until next time, we are praying you would be filled with the love of God so that you can demonstrate His love to the lost and dying in your city! God bless!

 

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