By Bob Weeks
You have had them. Those moments when you recognize something monumental is taking place. It was just such a moment that took place around a table of pastors as they interacted with a question I posed to them. “What are we doing that is stopping our church from growing? If Jesus meant it when he said “I will build my church,” and I think He did, then is it possible we are doing things that are standing in the way of that?”
There was a pause as the brother’s minds began to turn, and then the ideas began to flow. Topics wove from ‘we don’t pray enough’ through ‘we don’t develop leaders very well’ to ‘we do church for the people that are already here’.
Pastors from churches running over 500 to ones under 75 sat in the same room, around the same table and opened up about what they saw in their own ministry. But not only did they share issues they had, they offered ideas to solve what was going on in the other brother’s ministries. It was glorious!
That was my first Leader Lab, and I was hooked.
The principle behind the Leader Lab is very simple – bring church leaders together. Let them earn trust with each other. Prime the gathering with a few questions. Let the leaders share their concerns and their wisdom.
That particular group of pastors has continued to meet. They have invited different people to facilitate and have at times brought in “experts” to share on specific topics driven by the brothers themselves. But just in the last Leader Lab, they asked an incredibly important question after spending time wrestling with how to cast, firm up and promote God’s vision for their ministry. They asked, “Could we, together, create a new vision for our Association of churches that reflects what we, the churches that make up the Association, need today?”
I was not even at this meeting, and I am tickled beyond belief! Leaders thinking outside their own boxes to embrace what is good for the Church. These brothers are becoming Great Leaders.
In 2012, Ken Blanchard and Mark Miller came out with a small book entitled, “Great Leaders Grow.” The premise is almost too simple. The best leader will be the one that continues to expand his or her knowledge base regardless of previous success or number of years in a position.
Leader Labs are that place where leaders grow as they are poured into and pour onto each other. Leader Labs are not bound by Associational lines; they are bound by a couple of pastors who are willing to make it happen – together. For their good. For the good of a brother. For the good of Christ’s Church.
If you would like to begin a Leader Lab journey I can help. We are better together. Let’s make 2020 better than 2019 by engaging in a regular Leader Lab. You can do this, and I can help!