June 18, 2014

Getting Unstuck: Discerning Decisions

Intentional conversation, listening & reflection.

“At 30, 50, or 70, who do you want to be?” Malcolm Boyd asks this question in his recent article of the same title.

I was struck by this, realizing that I hadn’t thought that far out, at least not in a long time. With my vocation as a lay professional, I couldn’t help but also wonder where the Church would be as well.

With change happening at an ever increasingly rapid pace around us, our congregations can no longer afford to strategically plan five, ten, or even more than a year or two ahead. Worse though, many congregations find themselves stuck, paralyzed, or in some manner unable to move.

Yet we can keep up by shifting to thinking strategically, and discernment is an important component of this. In the following articles and resources, we invite you to enter into intentional conversation, listening and reflection to help you move forward, finding the hopeful vision for the future of your congregation.

Malcolm closes his article with a question and challenge I’d like to put to you as well, “Can we allow our life to open up? There's no moment like the present."

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One Step Out of ‘Stuckness’
We’ve all been stuck before. Maybe you’re feeling stuck in old ways of thinking or being, or just looking for a fresh direction. In “One Step Out of “Stuckness,” Jamie Coats offers a creative tool for congregations to use to help bring about the change needed in their lives or in church. 

Decision-making Led by the Spirit
“Groups meeting in the name of Christ look for an additional dimension, seeking to be guided and drawn together by the Spirit of the living God.” In “Decision-making Led by the Spirit,” Suzanne Farnham shares some of the simple ways leaders can begin to make their meetings, and in-turn their decisions, spiritually grounded.

Blog Posts

Wake-up Call: Together we can look deeper at patterns that keep us stuck and begin to take the first steps in letting them go.

Finding Mr./Mrs. (the Rev.) Right: Discernment is like dating, especially when dealing with transitions: Will this work? Is this whom God is calling us to – or is this just what we want?

The Art of Living Simply: Making More of Less: A simpler lifestyle can be an act of faith as well as a matter of personal integrity and commitment. What could work for you?

Tools and Resources

How to Select a Consultant: Sometimes we need an outside source to help guide the way. Here is a checklist of things to consider when selecting a professional resource.

Getting to the 'Why' 2: Discerning mission and vision are key practices used to build both a shared sense of purpose and strengthening leadership capacity.

Leading a Holy Change: Ready to take a step forward? Watch a recording of this webinar on general principles and best practices for leading a change process effectively.

The Spirituality of Authentic Leaders

What does it mean to discern your call as a leader? How can you do it? Acknowledging that it can be a difficult process, Bill George offers a reflection on how to find your ‘true north’ as a leader in “The Spirituality of Authentic Leaders.”

This Month in Year-Round Stewardship
Summer is the perfect time to recruit volunteers, and fewer committee meetings mean more time for the one-on-one visits so important to matching the right person to the job. In this recording of “Planning & Recruiting for Stewardship,” stories and examples will be given to help you identify the passions and talent for a successful stewardship team.