Articles, Leadership Conversations

The Power of Presence

Presence. Perhaps one of the reasons our diverse pastoral cohorts are so generative is because these pastors spend three or four hours a month together for three years. They go away on retreats together. They travel together for a two-week pilgrimage in the Holy Land (nothing quite brings out the real self than extended travel!). In other words, they have occasion to build authentic relationships of trust, sometimes discord and reconciliation, and deep friendship. Continue reading

Articles, Leadership Conversations

The Front Porch, the Living Room, the Dining Room, and the Kitchen

My family has always had a big front porch (nearly a non-negotiable expectation if you’re somewhere around the 12th generation of a family from Georgia). And sure enough my current home has one of the only front porches on our street. As a kid, “porch parties” – as we called them – were a normal part of the weekly rhythm, as my parent’s friends from up the street would come over and have a glass of wine or tea on the porch while the kids run around in the front yard until it was too dark to see, and often times well past. Continue reading

Articles, Leadership Conversations

Lakes vs Rivers

There are some instructive differences between lakes and rivers that are not lost on me. Metaphorically speaking, we all need both lakes and rivers, a place to be still, as well as a place to be on the move. What is problematic for many congregations, however, is that we’re quite addicted to the lake, and afraid of the river. Continue reading