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Helping the Small Church Do More Than Survive

It’s Sunday, and the crowd is small. You’ve worked hard, prayed harder, and you feel your heart break. Why can’t we grow? Why can’t we reach out? Are we just doomed to extinction? Every leader in a small church experiences the raw emotions of great desire coupled with frustration. That’s where Strengthening Mission Churches helps. […]

A New Chapter

Many preachers have long tenures in churches, but no preacher can say he has been the only preacher a 52 year old church has ever had. That distinction goes to Robert K. Oglesby, the pulpit minister of the Waterview Church of Christ. On September 7th he announced he would be retiring on February 1, 2014 […]

A Simple Word with Big Power

The hour was growing long in the tooth. Eyelids drooped. Tempers tightened. For an hour, the leadership team had discussed, argued, and cajoled about the issue. The only thing that happened was the clock’s hands moved farther. The solution is found in a magic word in the leadership dictionary. It’s a simple word, one we […]

A Statement No Preacher Should Make

Seldom does inspiration hit like lightning sparking a lightning rod. That means sitting in your study chair, staring out the window waiting for the next great idea for a sermon is fruitless. Preaching each Sunday requires more perspiration than inspiration. But Sunday’s coming and you cannot think of anything to preach. What do you do? […]

Getting Others to Do What They Know They Ought to Do

Through a flood of sermons and classes and articles, preachers and elders inform people what they should do. They need to “win their friends to Christ.” Encourage each other by visiting. We need teachers–what about you? It is clear people in the pew know what they should do. So why don’t they do it? That’s […]

A Joyous Reunion

Strengthening Mission Churches began with the vision of a mission-minded man and his wife. Now, both have gone to their eternal home. Almost 30 years ago, health concerns forced Harvey Childress to leave full-time ministry. In his time he planted churches in the upper Midwest and was instrumental in the founding of York College. He […]

The Leader as Conductor

Many leaders can’t carry a tune in a bucket, but they must learn to play the music of leadership. Musicians use diverse tools to get a desired effect. When the score calls for a sustained note, the violinist draws the bow across the strings. However, a rapidly moving piece demands the machine-gun sound of a […]

Company with These–Run from Those

Vaclav Havel was the president of Czechoslovakia when I was there several years ago, as a result, I associate him with political matters. Therefore, I was a little surprised recently to read a quote from him addressing the subject of truth-seeking. Here is what he said: “Keep the company of those who seek the truth […]

The Struggle of Small Churches

Locked doors. Grim faces. Frayed emotions. Sadly, this is the picture of many small churches of Christ. Begun with dreams, they died for lack of resources. They needed to reach out, but didn’t know how. They had people, but they did not know where to go or what to do. It was hard to keep […]