Directional Leadership – Gospel Leadership


Leading Down challenges your motivation. How do you lead those who follow you. Would those people who are paid to follow you do so if they weren’t paid? What you are building determines how you relate to those you lead.

One of my professors at college used to say that if you are leading but no one is following you are just going for a walk through the woods. If you are a leader it is assumed that you are leading someone. Most people reading this if not everyone reading this is leading someone else. How we lead those who we are leading is significant for them and for us.

How you lead others reveals much more about us than we realize. It reveals what we are building and where we place our trust. The temptation that every leader faces is how will I use the influence that I have been given. Far to many leaders lead in such a way that they are building their own kingdom. I feel the pull toward building my kingdom every day which is why everyday I preach the gospel to myself. I have to continually remind myself that it is what God has done for me in Christ Jesus that empowers me to live and to build. I am continually humbled by the greatness of Jesus and the sinfulness of me.

One of the pet peeves I have is people using the words “gospel” and “grace” who have no idea what they mean. It actually makes me angry and I believe God angry that people abuse grace and the gospel to build monuments to themselves and not lay down their lives for those they are leading. Preaching the gospel of Jesus with your mouth has little effect if you are preaching the gospel of self promotion with your life. If you want to be great be small if you want to lead serve. That’s what Jesus demonstrated to us and what the gospel demands of us.

Leader please stop using people to build a monument to yourself that will one day burn. Invest your life in others preach the gospel and you will have joy true joy. A joy that is found in the person and work of Jesus Christ.

Questions to ask yourself as you Lead others.

1. Am I doing this for Jesus or for me?
2. If I do something great and someone else gets the credit am I ok with that?
3. Do I love the people I lead or do I love leading?
4. Is my life hidden in Christ?
5. Am I on a regular basis doing things that don’t make conventional sense?
6. Am I daily preaching the gospel to myself and then with my life?
7. Do I demand from others what I am not willing to give?
8. ls there anything in my life that if I were to lose that thing I would feel as if my world was over?
9. Am I speaking truth to those I lead because I want to be right or because I love them and want them to grow.
10. Am I a good follower?

Directional Leadership: Leading Up


Directional Leadership: Leading Up

As a support staff member you will no doubt have to learn the art of leading up. You church needs you to lead up. You are a family, youth, worship pastor because you have been gifted and have the grace to lead where you lead. You must lead up.

Leading up will challenge you because you have to question your own motives. You have been given influence in your organization how are you going to leverage and steward that influence. As a leader who leads others and pastors others you need to keep those people in  forefront of your mind as you lead up. The temptation in terms of leading up is using that influence to grow your particular ministry

What is leading up? It is a term that has been around for a while and it speaks of using your influence in the organization to make changes by influencing those above you in the org chart to act based on your advice. You are not making the final decision but are helping to shape the decision that will be made by those you report to.

There have been many books and articles written on the subject. I thought I would add to the conversation by providing some questions to ask yourself that will act a check on your motivation when leading up.

Questions to ask when leading up.

1. Have I prayed about this?
2. Who will directly benefit from what I am proposing to my boss?
3. Am I speaking truth in love or telling my boss what he wants to hear?
4. Is what I am proposing founded in a desire to glorify God or bring glory to myself?
5. If my boss takes credit for my idea am I ok with that? If not than why?
6. Will my idea make the team or organization better?
7. If what I am proposing will help only my department will it also help the church?
8. Is my attitude in the right place? Am I saying something out of concern or frustration?


Directional Leadership.


I believe there are three directions every leader has to lead. Up. Down and Sideways. No matter who you are and where you are on the fabled organizational chart you are influenced by someone, influence others and work alongside others. How you navigate these relationships matters.

Leading Up deals with leading those who lead you. It challenges you to leverage your influence when the final decision is not in your hands. There is a fine line of manipulation and influence you have to walk here.

Leading Down challenges your motivation. How do you lead those who follow you. Would those people who are paid to follow you do so if they weren’t paid? What you are building determines how you relate to those you lead.

Leading sideways – This is perhaps the most difficult and least talked about form of leadership. Leading your peers. This challenges your vision. You can succeed departmentally and fail organizationally. Silo’s are created from a lack of intentional sideways leadership.

For the next couple of days I want to hit each of these directional leadership principles and give some practical suggestions to excel in every direction that your influence flows.

Yancy’s Roots for the Journey.


My friend Yancy has released a new worship album. She sent me a copy of it and it’s fantastic. I love Yancy’s music because her generous spirit and her passion for the local church can be felt in the music she writes and in any conversations you have with her. Yancy is a gifted musician and songwriter with an obvious passion for kids and family that is tangible in everything she does.

In her latest offering you can really sense her authenticity in every song she has recorded on “Roots For The Journey“. I am a sucker for old songs so I love “Eye is on the sparrow” Yancy also adds a few modern songs to the mix to create a well-balanced record that I believe will stand the test of time.  We play “Roots For The Journey” in our house during dinner time which is huge for us as a family. It’s during dinner that we talk about everyone’s day go over catechism question for the week. Yancy’s Roots album is a perfect addition to our dinner conversation.

Another way we plan on using Yancy’s record is to give it away along with the Jesus Storybook Bible to all our families who dedicate their babies at our church. So if you are a church leader or a parent pick up a copy of Yancy’s Roots for the Journey today!

Order the CD today! We are offering a great deal on a pack of 5 CD’s too. Get some to give to others who are needing encouragement or use in classrooms, etc. (Get FREE SHIPPING with code: yancylovesme )
Or you can download from iTunes and other digital outlets.


How to memorize better.


I did a few posts on Catechism and the importance it’s role has in the church and in the family. I thought I would pass on some of the tips Tim Keller includes in his introduction to his New City Catechism.


There are a variety of ways to commit texts to memory and some techniques suit certain learning styles better than others. A few examples include:

  • Read the question and answer out loud, and repeat, repeat, repeat.
  • Read the question and answer out loud, try to repeat them without looking. Repeat.
  • Read aloud through all Part 1 questions and answers (then 2, then 3) while moving about. The combination of movement and speech strengthens a person’s ability to recall text.
  • Record yourself saying all Part 1 questions and answers (then 2, then 3) and listen to them during everyday activities e.g. work-outs, chores, etc.
  • Write the questions and answers on cards and tape them in a conspicuous area. Read them aloud every time you see them.
  • Make flashcards with the question on one side and the answer on the other, and test yourself. Children can color these in and draw pictures on them.
  • Review the question and answer at night and in the morning. For children spend a few minutes at bedtime helping them remember the answer, then repeat at breakfast the next morning.
  • Write out the question and answer. Repeat. The process of writing also helps a person’s ability to recall text.
  • Drill the questions and answers with another person as often as possible.

Super helpful and super practical. Hope they help you make catechism a practice and tradition in your family’s home.