20 Questions for Mid-Year Evaluation

Before we get to Christmas—the bad sweater parties, white elephant gifts, egg nog, and of course the end-of-year fundraising push, don’t forget the mid-year evaluation! Take some time during Finals week and make a few course corrections. I highly recommend sitting down with your team (perhaps a mixture of staff, key student leaders, and volunteers) […]

Five Things College Ministry Has Taught Me About Discipleship

After more than a dozen years in college ministry, I’ve had legions of conversations with students about the typical “stuff” of college life: trying to faithfully navigate things like sex and romantic relationships, the party scene, schoolwork, getting a job, calling, and more. Many of these topics are most pronounced during the college years, or […]

Count Your Ministry Casualties

I have a new post up on the Collegiate Collective today, on the importance of Counting Your Casualties. I’m seeking to address a topic–losing people in ministry–that I don’t hear come up very often, but that needs to be discussed. We rarely talk about our casualties, especially outside our immediate circle. It’s certainly not the kind […]

Henry Ford & the Cost of Not Innovating

I’ve been thinking & reading recently on innovation, for ministry and otherwise. I came across this terrific story about the innovative, stubborn, cantankerous, and deeply flawed Henry Ford. Ford changed the world with his Model T, but his “obsession” with it put the company firmly behind. Clearly, even the most gifted innovators can become enamored with their […]

I Went to a Fight and a Prayer Meeting Broke Out

Faith in the workplace. Can we acknowledge that bringing faith into the workplace is sometimes a difficult topic?   Internally, people feel confusion. Externally, it’s a minefield. Maybe it’s awkward coffee break conversations. Or maybe it’s loaded with professional repercussions that impact promotions and even employment.   But sometimes it’s just funny.   Watch this video about former […]

How God Answers Prayer

John Newton (1725-1807) is famous for being the former slave trader-turned-pastor who penned the words to the well-known and beloved hymn “Amazing Grace.” He was also a mentor to the great abolitionist William Wilberforce and to the hymnist William Cowper, and for many years pastored a congregation in Olney, England, where he was noted for […]

7 Ways to Make the Most of a Conference Experience

This weekend, we are thrilled to host our first-ever Faith, Life, and Work Conference. It’s not too late to come, so if you’re reasonably close by, we would love to have you join us! Over the last 15 years or so, I’ve been to more conferences than I can remember. But some have certainly been […]

Five Ways to Demonstrate the Value of College Ministry to People Who Don’t Get It

“We’d like to do more for college students, but we just don’t have the resources.” When I listen for the reasons people give for not investing in college ministry, that’s usually #1. Everyone eventually faces the limits of what they can allocate in terms of staff, time, funding, and space. But when I hear people […]

“I raged with a fierce and troubled conscience”

Martin Luther’s conversion, while reading Paul’s epistle to the Romans, was the spark that set fire to the Reformation. Below is his account of that struggle. Notice how the very phrase that he once hated became the sweetest word he had ever known: I had indeed been captivated with an extraordinary desire for understanding Paul […]