EI: A Self-Assessment

EI: A Self-Assessment

For years pastoral leaders were encouraged to develop competencies similar to the skills required in the business world. While there may be some over lap, the reality is that churches are not business. Our churches are built upon and found relationships. As such, one of the pastoral skills we should continue to develop are the ones that help us relate to and understand the people we serve.

At Momentum, Dr. Jared Roth introduced us to the skill of Emotional Intelligence (EI). Emotional intelligence, the ability to understand and manage one’s own emotions as well as influence the emotions of others, is a means to let the grace of God flow through our ministry. In a practical way, developing greater emotional intelligence can help a leader manage stress, be proactive, bounce back from adversity, and increase relational intimacy that is necessary for our own health and well-being.

If you’re like me, sometimes the first step to understanding a topic is to take a look at myself. While the following self assessment tools wont help us become an expert on the topic of Emotional Intelligence, it may be a first step down a road that leads us into greater personal health and enhance our capacity to serve more effectively.

MindTools: If you are just scratching the surface on your emotional intelligence improvement journey, this quick, 15-question assessment provides a lot of helpful context around your results. The questions are designed to assess the five characteristics of EQ as identified by psychologist Daniel Goleman: self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy, and social skills.


HBR: This emotional intelligence test was made for leaders. After answering 25 questions, you’ll see how your individual scores for adaptability, empathy, and other EQ competencies stack up against HBR’s averages. It also provides concrete next steps based on your results and advice targeted to the specific areas of EQ that you want to improve.


Desert Trauma

“But then I will win her back once again. I will lead her out into the desert and speak tenderly to her there.” Hosea 2:14, NLT

When I moved to Boulder City, Nevada, I arrived in the promised land: sunshine, desert warmth, and working in ministry with my best friend. After living here a short time, I sought a counselor (for maintenance, or so I thought), and after hearing my story, she suggested a PTSD workbook [Overcoming Trauma and PTSD by Sheela Raja, PhD]. I was a domestic violence and sexual assault victim advocate prior to joining the staff—I could recognize trauma and PTSD in others, but during the next year as I dealt with my horrific memories, I was a cactus. At the same time, I was facilitating Emotionally Healthy Discipleship (EHD) by Pete and Geri Scazzero in our church. Of all the things in the program, the one that struck me was the encouragement to “turn to wonder:” What do my reactions tell me about ME? How is my past impacting my present? Where, as David Benner writes, may I have settled for holiness instead of wholeness?

When I integrated God’s healing of my own trauma, victim advocacy, and EHD, I stopped wondering what was so wrong with people and remembered that it is what happened to them that usually produces the behaviors I find troubling. I read Jesus’ encounter with the woman at the well differently. I noticed how he held space for her to come to terms with her own story. He didn’t interrupt or lecture. Most importantly, how could I take what I know about trauma/PTSD and have it inform my ministry?

  • Those with trauma/PTSD are often hyper-vigilant when it comes to their environment, what in our Sunday morning services may be startling?

  • When I cover potentially triggering topics (e.g., abuse, assault), I offer follow-up resources: hotlines, books, or local service agency contact info.

  • Knowing trauma produces feelings of personal powerlessness, I try to offer as many choices as possible—especially with touch. For example, I ask before I hug.

  • The person in front of me is not a problem to be fixed but someone with a story; so, how I can I help them to feel safe enough to share it?

My story is the Biblical pattern: God led me into the desert in order to transform me. There, I discovered the promised land is not a place but a person. Jesus. He wants me healed and speaking tenderly to the ones given me to lead and love.

For further reading:

Toughest People to Love: How to Understand, Lead, and Love the Difficult People in Your Life—Including Yourself. Chuck DeGroat

Trauma and Grace: Theology in a Ruptured World, Serene Jones

Why my calendar is marked for District Conference every year.

Why my calendar is marked for District Conference every year.

The greatest investment you can make into your church is toward your health and improvement as a leader. A leader can be characterized as one who causes people to receive the best God has for them.

But commission Joshua, and encourage and strengthen him, for he will lead this people across and will cause them to inherit the land that you will see. Deuteronomy 3:28 NIV

My output requires intake. Which is why I make it a point to attend District Conference every year so I can take in the encouragement and strengthening I need. Here are 3 things I’m looking forward to taking in at this year’s conference:

  1. Escape. Sometimes in order for me to be more dialed into my role as a leader, I need to make time to pull myself out. A break in my normal pattern of life is always refreshing.

  2. Relationships. Seeing familiar faces and reconnecting with them is encouraging. Talking with my peers about shared ministry experiences and listening to their stories of how they’ve overcome circumstances inspires my faith to believe God for more.

  3. Sharpening. I always come away with something practical that I can implement in my leadership. I’m reminded that I play a part in something that’s so much bigger than myself and my church. I find that being lead is just as important as leading.

The theme for this year’s conference is Momentum. If you’re feeling stagnant in your calling, then this alone is a great reason to attend. I look forward to seeing you there!

Making The Most of Summer

What are your plans this summer? I just don’t mean your vacation plans (although I hope you have them!) or the event on the church calendar. Summertime presents an opportunity for intentional personal development. Have you considered making a plan for this summer to improve or grow in your personal and professional life?

This month, three leaders from our district were asked to respond to two questions about their improvement plans for this summer. Our participants are:

Kathleen Bratun   Executive Pastor  The Connection Church Lake Forest CA

Kathleen Bratun
Executive Pastor
The Connection Church
Lake Forest CA

Dennis Evangelisto   Senior Pastor  New Life Church Redlands CA

Dennis Evangelisto
Senior Pastor
New Life Church
Redlands CA

Ken Gibson   Lead Pastor  Point Of Grace Church Alta Loma, California

Ken Gibson
Lead Pastor
Point Of Grace Church
Alta Loma, California

The questions they were asked are:

  1. “What area of your professional life (as a leader) would you like to improve in the next 6 months, and what resource(s) are you going to use to help you?”; and

  2. “What area of your personal life would you like to improve in the next 6 months? What resource(s) are you going to use to help you in it?”

We hope you find some encouragement and motivation from these three leaders giving us a look into their growth plans.

Q: “What area of my professional life (as a leader) would I like to improve in the next 6 months, and what resources am I going to use to help me?


In the next few months I would like to prepare to better assist the community in times of crisis since it is often during these times that people need a pastor to pray with them and support them the most.

I plan to read the book "Loving your City," by Timothy Keller to continue to grow in fresh perspectives of how to reach my community with the Gospel (ed. note: for an overview of the concepts in this book, watch Dr. Keller’s presentation “How Does The Church Love The City?” here - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3cMnPnQoml8 ). Additionally, to prepare for moments of crisis I will participate in the next Community Emergency Preparedness Academy held by our city. This 6 week course provides multi agency training from the City, OC Sheriff and OC Fire Authority, giving hands on experience of how to respond in an emergency. This course will teach how to use an AED, search and rescue tactics, and how to respond to terrorism.  Should a crisis arise during a church service I believe this preparation will help protect and assist our church in an emergency. If an incident should happen while I'm out in the community or at home, I'll be prepared to assist my community and neighbors. 


Raising up the next generation of preachers has become a passion for me. Over the last few years I have begun working with two young adults (both 20 years old). As well as working with our congregation to receive them. They have preached; one five and the other eight times. Both have preached in my absence. You might say, “Victory,” right? The problem is I can get distracted from giving them the attention and the mentoring that could help them progress. I “feel” like I’m not investing in them properly or that I’m giving them just enough to continue, but not excel. This is not acceptable.

It is my goal to help each young adult that is called to ministry to blossom into a mighty man or woman of God who will preach God’s word with strong conviction, with passion, in truth and with clarity. At the moment, I connect with a group of pastors on a monthly basis. I have not shared this situation with them. I want to be open and honest with them about my feelings and my need for their wisdom on this matter. Over the next six months I would like to openly share with these pastors, hear their wisdom, and allow this area of leadership to be strengthened in my life. My accountability partner is also a great source of wisdom. The book, “Beholding & Proclaiming,” by Kristian Hernandez is a great help as well.


As one who has earned three degrees, I have always been open to the idea of personal and professional improvement. However, as I mature in life I am learning to be a bit more strategic as to where my focus should be. As a vocational Pastor I’m always looking for tools, resources and mentoring opportunities to make me better as a shepherd. However, more recently I sense a leading toward being a better leader in our church, our community and our movement. As society moves further away for Christian values and influence I believe God is stirring up the Apostle’s Gift of our day to not only influence but to lead cultural change. As a result, I have been working on becoming much more productive as a visionary leader in this revived move of God. A couple of the resources that I am currently working through are “Getting Things Done” by David Allen and the “High Performance Planner” by Brendon Burchard. I am also completing necessary preparation to enter the January 2020 cohort for the MASL Program at Life Pacific University.  

2) What area of your personal life would you like to improve in the next 6 months and what resource(s) are you going to use to help you in it?


While it appears that most Pastors that I encounter at a similar stage in life are looking to do less, I have this crazy urge to do more. This mindset has become problematic for me personally because after 20 years of pastoral ministry the lines between my professional and personal life have become blurred and at times nonexistent.  Simple things such as date night, recreation, vacation or just relaxing can easily be interrupted for the “necessity” of ministry. Even after a moving and eye opening 3 days at a Pastor Sabbatical Retreat (PSR), the struggle of Sabbath and the reality of Sabbatical continue to be a challenge for me, but I “Press On” (Ed. note: To learn more about the Pastoral Sabbatical Retreat being offered by the PSWD, click here - https://www.pswchurches.com/health-updates/2018/6/5/odxsxz9mzoxarkov5pung5hkrxgoi3). Being raised without the affirmation and validation of a father, I still fall into the enemy’s trap of proving my worth and finding acceptance through performance. The Pure Love and Basic Core teachings by Beth Barone have been super helpful in understanding and navigating a much needed change of mindset. Also, this summer I plan to go through Emotionally Healthy Spirituality by Peter Scazzero. The High Performance Planner has proven to be a good tool for me to bring intentionality and balance between my professional and personal life. And being married to a loving, supportive and amazing wife on this journey to purpose doesn’t hurt!


One area of my personal life I would like to grow in is intentionally in my free time. I am an organized person, but the busyness of raising three kids, pastoring and running a business means that sometimes I go from one task to another. The daily activities of my children and work meetings run my schedule. I am going to choose to be intentional about what I do, beginning by evaluating what I say "yes" to. While some items are fixtures that must be done each week, I know that other things can wait. I'm going to use my calendar as a tool to create blocks of family/free time. Being intentional with my time will help me to be more present in each task and leave less of a feeling of being hurried. I asked my two older children to make a list of things they want to do this summer, and like planning a vacation we are going to schedule in some fun during the upcoming ten weeks. I don't want another summer to fly by and then in August feel like we were so busy that we missed it. I think this approach will allow me to


Our son is 20 and our daughter is 22 (and married). I have had to navigate my relationship and parenting skills toward them during each new phase of life. This “adult” phase is unique and is more “hands off” than I’m used to. I am learning to trust the Lord with the relationship I have built with my children and trust them to make life decisions independent of my input (unless asked). So, as a dad of young adults, I would like to improve my parenting skills by being supportive of their dreams, respectful of their decisions, and available for input.

To improve this area of my personal life I will be more intentional to “hear” my son and daughter and not just give advice. I will be honest with my accountability partner (his three children are twenty years older than mine), and receive the wisdom that he has learned. I will also receive the wisdom God has given my wife as we go through this together.


What is Your Greatest Blind Spot?

What is Your Greatest Blind Spot?

There is one common blind spot that most leaders share. It not the lack of a particular skill, method, or process. It’s actually internal to the leader themselves; it is understanding who they are. Self-awareness has been cited as the most important capability for a leader to develop (1). There are a number of resources available that can serve as a mirror to understand the unique way that God has designed you. Listed below are a number of various “tests” that can be an introduction to a better understanding of one’s self. The inclusion of a particular assessment in this article is not an endorsement of the approach of theory behind each kind of evaluation. Each link is to a sample test which in no way is fully comprehensive, but serves as a introduction to the methodology. What I will say is that I have personally found each of these resources helpful and insightful in some way, and increasing my understanding of how God has made me. 

Personality Tests

For decades, people have found these various tests helpful to understand the way their personality type influences their life perspective.

16 Personalities (Myers-Briggs Type Indicator)


9 Types (Riso-Hudson Enneagram Type Indicator)


Strengths Test

The theory behind the strengths approach is that one should focus on maximizing the use of one’s natural skill set rather than primarily focusing on improvement one's areas of deficit.


Emotional Intelligence Tests

Emotional Intelligence describe a person’s ability to manage one’s own emotions, identify the emotions of others, and harness one’s own emotions to complete tasks. This relational intelligence is key to understanding and empathizing with others.


Core Values

For those looking to go a little deeper into understanding their design, our PSWD district partner Beth Barone at K2 (Kingdom Katalyst) offers “Core Values.” This series will unlock a simple, but profound relationship framework that every human being operates in—both in healthy and unhealthy ways. As you discover your Values, you will learn how to discern the Values of those you live and work with, and receive practical tools to win in relationships. It is the third installment of a discipleship journey that is built on  “Pure Love” and “Path To Freedom.”


(1) https://sloanreview.mit.edu/article/self-awareness-a-key-to-better-leadership/ 

Paying attention to your "gauges"

I recently met with a friend who shared with me how shocked he was that “all of a sudden,” his marriage fell apart. I can’t tell you how many suicide funerals I’ve done where the family and friends stood in wonder of “what they should’ve done to help” and how many young people I’ve visited in the hospital who has suffered some kind of health ailment due to poor eating and zero exercise. I’ve seen people go through a nervous breakdown and have anxiety attacks because of stress and other factors. I see people who are lost spiritually. 

I’m sure you have similar stories. We all know someone in these categories or even worse, it could be us. 

We all know that marriages don’t “all of a sudden” fall apart, it happens over time…little by little. The hurt, the brokenness, and the pain, go unnoticed and the result over time, is the fall. Suicide is an epidemic and being healthy is one of the greatest struggles in our nation. We live in an emotional unhealthy world, and many people are so far from God, they can’t even see any hope ahead. Even as Christians, we have issues we don’t like bringing up or visiting. The sad thing is that we are okay with burying it so that we can move on and “live.” That’s not living, that’s surviving. 

I thought, there must be some way for us to prevent these things from happening, or at least, do better than what we’ve been doing. So, I thought about it this way.  

In order for me to drive my car, I will need to have fuel in the tank, oil in the engine, and other necessities needed for my car to go. I will not know if I have these necessities unless I have a way to monitor them. Well, the good news is that we monitor these necessities by the gauges on our dashboard. To see how fast I’m going, I check my speedometer, to see how I’m doing on fuel, I check my gas gauge. If my oil light comes on, I need to change the oil, not cover the oil light with a piece of tape or pull out the bulb! The gauges and lights of our dashboard is not the issue, something under the surface of the hood is the issue. But I won’t know what is happening under the hood unless I pay attention to the gauges. 

There are four essential areas in our lives that need to be monitored: our spirit, our physical body, our emotions, and our mind. Yet, when it comes to these four areas in our life, how do we measure them? How do we know what’s happening beneath the surface? This is where inGauged comes in; Spiritual, Physical, Emotional, and Mental Gauge. It’s a way for us to monitor how we’re doing in these areas, so that we can do something about it, rather than cover it up, or change the exterior. I look at these 4 Gauges as the dashboard to my life. Our spiritual, physical, emotional, and mental gauges help us to live a more balanced life so that we can reach our fullest potential. Jesus said, in Mark 12:30, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.”

Heart (Emotions), Soul (Spirit), Mind (Mental), Strength (Physical)

Here’s something a team of us have been working on to help us get healthy. It is an app called inGauged (Download from the App Store. Android coming soon). Can we partner together to see how we can make this app better so that we help each other become healthier spiritually, physically, emotionally, and mentally? I would appreciate your input and suggestions for improvements (email me: sheldon@newhopehilo.org). I believe we will only become healthier and reach our fullest potential when we do this together!

Download the inGauged app herehttps://itunes.apple.com/us/app/4gauges/id1455904886?mt=8

A Different Kind of Preparation For Easter

Many of us are in full swing in preparing for Easter. For most churches it is still one of the ‘big” Sundays with all kinds of special plans being made to welcome the community into our church homes. Yet all this extra preparation often takes a personal toll on leaders and teams, and this creates a tension. The tension is how can one enter the Easter season personally prepared and/or how can the impact of Easter can be extended in one's life. Consider these two approaches from church tradition: Lent and Eastertide.

Lent is a season for 40 days that leads up to Easter. It’s practice (traced back to at least the second century) originally prepared converts for baptism through a period of fasting and contemplation on the cross. The practice eventually included all believers as a season of fasting, self-sacrifice, service, generosity, and prayer that prepares us for the celebration of the Resurrection. The time period of 40 days has its basis in Jesus’ time in the wilderness. This may lead one to incorporate a time of solitude and contemplation during the lenten season. This is a radical departure to the busy-ness of the Easter seasons activities, but one that may allow us to know Him more deeply, as Paul writes in Philippians 3:10, “in the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings…”

Eastertide is a much less known season in the church. It is the period of 50 days that occurs between Easter and Pentecost. This spiritual discipline invites one to live in the miracle of the resurrection. Its focus is on forgiveness, servanthood, kindness, and justice. The thought is that in the intentional practice of these things we acknowledge "the power of God at work when He raised Christ form the dead…” (Ephesians 1:20) and that He “has made us alive….and raised us up with him…” as a show of the richness of His grace in kindness towards us (Ephesians 2:5-7). In this way, we intentionally prepare ourselves for a fresh release of the Holy Spirit in our lives.

As we prepare for Easter, let’s not only prepare our facilities and programs. As servants, let us prepare ourselves for the celebration that come with and as a result of the resurrection.

 Information about Lent:

History of Lent: https://groundwork.reframemedia.com/blog/a-short-version-of-the-long-history-of-lent

Bog Post: “Three Reasons Why Evangelicals Observe Lent” by Christopher Hunt - https://today.reframemedia.com/blog/three-good-reasons-why-more-evangelicals-observe-lent

Recommended Reading: The Good of Giving-Up, by Aaron Damiani - 

Lent has been described as a “springtime for the soul,” a season of clearing to make room for growth. The Good of Giving Up will show you why, encouraging you to participate in what many know as a rich spiritual journey.

Information on Eastertide (and Pentecost tradition)

Recommended Reading (article): "Celebrating Easter for Fifty Days” by Mark D. Roberts - https://www.baylor.edu/content/services/document.php/217611.pdf 

Blog Post: “How You Can Prep for Pentecost” by Jack Levison - https://www.huffingtonpost.com/jack-levison/how-to-prepare-for-pentec_b_9913294.html 



Resources for Worship

One of the beautiful things about our district is the diversity of our churches and servant-leaders. This is also expressed through the various contexts for worship in our local churches. This month, I’ve asked four worship leaders from different sizes of churches for their favorite resource for new songs, essential piece of gear, and the one thing they try to keep in mind for leading worship in their context. Each of them welcome continuing the conversation with you, so feel free to contact them with any questions or comments! 


Michael Bratun| Worship Pastor – The Connection, Lake Forest CA

Best resource for new worship music?

My favorite resources for new worship music is SongSelect (http://songselect.com) and Multitracks (see below in Tiffa Garza’s contribution). Both provide videos and resources to equip you and your worship teams.  From free downloads via song of the month or chord charts and current top 100 songs, both that are already out or are coming out.  The videos range from tutorials to special performances, as well as "behind the song" so that you really get a sense of where the writer and the song are coming from! Both of these keep up with various resources and the most current songs and tracks being released! 

Favorite piece of gear/resource to facilitate worship?

Ableton is one of my most valuable pieces of gear/resources.  It is by far the best program for running all your tracks live (including metronome and guide tracks) while simultaneously having dozens of instruments plug ins that can be used in a live setting.  it is the most versatile and easy to use program to running backing tracks and guide/click tracks in a live situation. I use Ableton every Sunday to run our tracks and extra pads that help fill up the sound of our musical worship. (For an introduction to how to use Ableton in your church worship context, visit - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uGPzqGH3PzU)

The one practical thing you think about when leading worship in your context?

I think its important to being constantly aware of where the focus is supposed to be. We need to have a balance of "God" focused songs to "I" focused songs. Who is the REAL focus of our favorite worship songs? Are the songs we choose ascribing worth to ourselves? Or are the songs ascribing worth to God? So many of the songs we use focus on how great my life is because of God.  While these true and important to sing, if our ENTIRE set revolves around ourselves (me, I) then  we are missing the most crucial aspect of our services...ascribing worth to/worshipping God!


Tiffa (Tiffany) Garza| Worship Pastor – C4 (Christ Centered Community Church), Hololulu HI

Best resource for new worship music?

When it comes to finding “New” worship music my go-to is www.multitracks.com.  The founder, Phillip Edwards says, “We're always creating and innovating towards a simple goal: to build an ecosystem of products for worship leaders that helps them lead their teams well.”And they truly do just that! I can see when new songs are added and can listen to the latest, most newly released, current worship music. I also follow various worship leaders on social media. Bands like CROWDER, BETHEL, ELEVATION and HILLSONG UNITED usually give a heads up on any upcoming release. I pre-order the album and then when it’s ready and downloaded I listen to every, single song and see if there are any songs that could resonate with our church family. Currently, we’re loving HILLSONG Y&F’s song, HEART OF GOD. Our Church has connected to that song in 2019. 

Favorite piece of gear/resource to facilitate worship?

My favorite piece of gear is the wired, Neumann KMS 105 microphone. It’s like taking the quality of a studio mic to the stage. I LOVE IT. Dynamic range, from a whisper to a roar, shows clarity and vocal definition through the sound system. ANY vocalist will hear a big difference with this mic. 

The one practical thing you think about when leading worship in your context?

Over the years I have learned how to simultaneously lead worship and engage in intercessory prayer during a worship set. This is something we are teaching our worship team. There’s a spiritual warfare element to leading worship and I think that we’re aware of that as worship leaders but we must never forget the battle before us. It’s as simple as, during the instrumental intro of a song – (usually under my breath or in my head)I praythat the burdens of the people walking in would be lifted. I pray that any distractions, fears and the weight of whatever has happened this week would dissipate and that people would connect to the living God. I pray that they would experience healing and breakthrough through the power of Jesus… It’s this constant intercessory prayer that happens even when I am leading a song. And this is not just for the vocalists… I encourage our band to intercede through every note played, every chord strummed and every single hit that is beat on the drum… 


Paul Sahyoun| Worship Pastor – Cornerstone Church, Anaheim CA


Best resource for new worship music?

This may sound funny, but one of my best resources for new music is the circle of people around me.  Oftentimes, I'm introduced to new songs by my wife (who is ALWAYS listening to new worship much) or those with whom I serve.  We have taken a team approach to finding new music for our congregation.

Favorite piece of gear/resource to facilitate worship? 

There are so many great resources out there to help facilitate worship.  One of my favorites is Worship Online (https://worshiponline.com/).  This website makes it so easy and convenient to learn new songs and to really refine every team member's ability to learn and play specific parts within a song's arrangement.  Any vocalist or band member will benefit from creating an account here and making this part of their regular practice and preparation for leading worship.

The one practical thing you think about when leading worship in your context?

I always have a goal in mind when leading worship, which is that we want to take people somewhere as we lead them in worship.  We don't just want to aimlessly or flippantly spend time singing songs, but rather we want to be intentional in leading people into the presence of God and having a transformative encounter with Him.  I personally have used the term "Destination Worship" to signify that intent of leading people into a specific place in our corporate times of praise and worship.



Grady Williams| Co-Pastor – Harbor Light, Costa Mesa, CA


Best resource for new worship music?

Renewing Worship is an all-in-one site, offering resources and events, as well as aggregating the 20 most used songs from each week in church worship. (https://www.renewingworshipnc.org/top20/) Plus, my daughter, Carina Greer, is my ‘go to’ resource for what’s singing well in congregational worship.

Favorite piece of gear/resource to facilitate worship? 

Favorite piece of gear/resource to facilitate worship: ONSONG App(https://onsongapp.com/) and AirTurn Bluetooth Pedal, which advances songs and turns pages (https://www.airturn.com/products/categories/Bluetooth+Pedals). Since using the ONSONG App on our iPads, our worship team has completely gone away from all printed music. This versatile app holds our complete Library of songs and you create individual sets for each occasion, which can then be saved, synced and shared with each team member. (Songs are easily downloaded into the app from various sources.) There’s simply too much the ONSONG App will do to list here, but in my opinion it's a MUST for worship leaders and worship team members. Also, as a guitar player, my AirTurn Bluetooth Pedal has become indispensable to me. It is synced to the iPad and ONSONG and advances or reverses the music via of a foot pedal. I never have to take my hands off the guitar to advance a song or turn a page. 

The one practical thing you think about when leading worship in your context?

I think it is important to consider the “flow” of worship - how songs fit together by the elements of key, dynamics, and theme. My greatest desire is to bring people into God’s presence, not just sing a set of individual songs. I seek to do this by connecting and transitioning the songs from the beginning to the end of the set, applying all the elements listed above. 


Tidying Up

Do you “KonMari?” Welcome to 2019’s newest viral obsession. The best selling book “the life changing magic of tidying up: the japanese art of decluttering and organizing” by Marie Kondo had been turned into a reality tv series on Netflix called “Tidying Up.” In the show, Marie Kondo helps people organize their homes and as a result declutter the interior of thier lives as well. Her method is based on touching each item and deciding whether to keep it or let it go by asking this question, “Does it spark joy?”

Like many of the people on the show, most of us can be overwhelmed with the idea of even starting such a project. Aside from our perusal lives, we also are responsible for a spiritual household. It too often needs reorganizing and decluttering. There are projects and missional assignments that await and yet we don’t know where to begin. Maybe we can begin by looking at the things before us and asking the question, Does this (objective, assignment, obligation, etc) “spark joy?”

Psalm 16:11 reminds us of the source of joy: "You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” Joy is directly connected to our awareness of His presence in our lives. I think is is why Moses said to the Lord "“If your presence is not going with us, don’t make us leave this place” (Exodus 33:15 GW). Nehemiah understood this as well. He encouraged the people as they were mid-way through their rebuilding project with the reminder, “the joy of the Lord is your strength” (Nehemiah 8:10 NIV).

Improving in this new year may require for you to look at the projects and plans before you and asking the Lord if the is joy in it. If so, you’ll have the strength to complete it and the promise of His presence through it.

Netflix series "Tidying Up” - https://konmari.com/pages/netflix 

Stocking Stuffers for Your Church Year End

There’s nothing better than the celebrating the Christmas season with our church family! There’s also something about the new year that also is inspiring as we envision the great things that God has for our congregations in the new year. As wonderful as this time of year is, it also requires some important administrative tasks to keep us on track. Do you (like me) fall behind on our Hub reports? Maybe catching up on them will also inspire you as you review what God has done through the church in last few months? Are your giving records up to date? Making sure you’ve maintained good records will encourage you as you see how generous people are and how faithful God has been.

For many of us, its important that we not only make time to pray about where God is leading us but also about how we can best facilitate and “ad-minister” that vision.  These resources will help prepare us for the new year.

Church Council Resources:

Did you know that Foursquare has training videos and forms you can use to equip your church council? Check them out here:


Free Operational Training Resources:

Life Church (based in Edmond OK) is passionate about equipping churches. They not only are the developers of YouVersion Bible app, but many other apps and resources that are free to use (you will need to create an account). I especially like some of the resources they have to optimize church operations. Check them out here: 


Planning Tips (Calendar and Budgeting):

Once again, I’ve found some really helpful thought on these matter from my friend Karl Vaters (formerly the senior pastor at Cornerstone Church (AoG) in Westminster CA) on his blog, “Pivot” hosted at Christianity Today.  Here are two of my favorites because they are so practical for my setting:

Planning and Calendaring: https://www.christianitytoday.com/karl-vaters/2016/january/3-2-1-system-for-better-annual-small-church-planning.html 

Budgeting: https://www.christianitytoday.com/karl-vaters/2018/may/how-to-give-money-less-power-over-your-church.html?paging=off 

(BTW, I’ve found that in our context, a budget review every quarter is really helpful. Our January council meeting will set the budget for Q2 - April-June. This allows us to be responsive to the income trends and have some planning/prep time as well).

Praying with you for a grace covered, favor-filled year!


We know that the holiday season is a prime opportunity to connect with our community.  Often our outreach energy is directed towards events that ask them (the community) to come to us (the church). What are some things that we can participate in that allow us to go meet those in the community who can also use our help? Here’s a couple of things to get the ideas flowing…And if you have a good idea to share about what your church does, please leave it in the comments!

Angel Tree Outreach by Prison Fellowship https://www.prisonfellowship.org/about/angel-tree

Angel Tree is a program of Prison Fellowship that connects parents in prison with their children through the delivery of Christmas gifts. In most cases, local church volunteers purchase and deliver gifts and the Gospel to children in the name of their prisoner-parent. Many churches make an annual commitment to this highly rewarding program, and recognize it as a way to care for some of the most overlooked members of our communities, continuing to connect with these families through the year.

Comfort In a Boxhttp://www.comfortinabox.com/ (also on Facebook)

Founded by Foursquare pastor Michelle Hoefflin, Comfort In A Box is an organization that provides a little “Comfort” for each mom during her stay at one of the Southern California Ronald McDonald Houses. Each box of comfort contains a blanket, a pair of slippers and a bottle of all natural lavender lotion. The Ronald McDonald Houses provide a safe, welcoming and warm home-away-from-home for families with seriously ill children receiving treatment at a nearby medical facility. Churches can host a “Box Party” supplying and assembling the items and readying them for delivery. Churches can also participate in the delivery of the boxes to the appreciative caregivers.

Family Assistance Ministries Thanksgiving Dinnerhttps://www.family-assistance.org/events/about-fam-events#thanksgiving

FAM is one of many organizations that provides a Thanksgiving meal (along with one to go) to those who would go without in South Orange County, CA. This outreach not only serves those who are hungry, but also those who have no one to share the day with.

These are just a couple of examples. I hope you’ll post some ideas that might inspire others of us to take and extra step to connect with our community. It can be as simple as asking, “what is the need in our community?" Are there elderly folks who find themselves isolated and lonely in the holidays? Are there families who have a member chronically ill or facing a consuming challenge such as chemotherapy for cancer or dialysis? Maybe there are foster care kids in your areas that need to experience an expression of God’s love? Jesus came to us. Let’s live that way this holiday season by going out to our communities, and not simply settle for asking them to come to us.


"We believe that divine healing is the power of the Lord Jesus Christ to heal the sick and the afflicted in answer to believing prayer…” 

This is the opening statement for Article 14 in the Declaration of Faith for the Foursquare Church. Even more significant is that healing is one of four cornerstones our foundational ministry convictions. Yet, in the ever changing challenges we face doing ministry in our culture we are rediscovering a need for healing for the whole person: the soul, as well as the spirit and the body. 

Christy Wimber, leader in the Vineyard movement, said in a recent interview on The 700 Club (1), “We’ve been talking about physical healing for so many years, and have seen God do remarkable things, but theres 1 in 4 who are struggling with mental health in our culture (2). Which means that in our healing prayer meetings or our church services, if we’re not acknowledging that we’re basically missing the people sitting in the seats.”

Effective churches have always been quick to adapt to the needs of the culture around them. Studies show that when people are struggling with mental illness, the first place they call is the church. Let’s be ready to provide the kind of care to our communities that the church has always responded to.

Video: Pastor Training Video: Anxiety Disorders

In this simple, 10 minute video, licensed mental health counselor Kristen Kansiewicz provides an oversight of the different kinds of anxiety disorder that we may encounter and offers suggestions on how we can respond.


Article: Five Tips For Making Your Church Emotionally Safe

Kristen Kansiewicz, LMHC, offers some simple suggestions for making sure our church is a place for people to find hope and healing.


Resource: Hope For Mental Health - Ministry Starter Kit from Saddleback Church

The Hope for Mental Health Ministry (http://hope4mentalhealth.com/) extends the radical friendship of Jesus by providing transforming love, support, and hope through the local church, as we journey alongside people living with mental illness and their families in a holistic way.  - https://store.pastors.com/resources/church-health/mental-health/hope-for-mental-health-starter-kit.html

(1) Interview with Christy Wimber’s interview on The 700 Club regarding the impact of mental health in our community and churches: https://youtu.be/zyPWQMGQahQ?t=6m13s 

(2) Actual statistics are 19% of adults, 44.7 million people in the US. The percentage is highest among young adults 18-25.From National Institute for Mental Health, online at https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/statistics/mental-illness.shtml


This week we learned of a 30-something lead pastor who took his own life as a result of a battle with depression (1). He leaves behind a heartbroken wife, 3 young boys, and a large congregation that is reeling in the wake of this tragedy. His wife posted her thoughts about her husband in a blog post (2), saying, "I am so sorry you were so scared, I am so sorry you felt so alone, I am so sorry you felt misunderstood,I am so sorry you felt betrayed and deeply hurt by the words and actions of others,I am so sorry you were fighting a dark spiritual war virtually alone, I am so sorry you were unable to fully get the help and support you needed.

I would imagine that at one time or another we’ve all experienced the feelings identified by this grieving wife. Paul Kuzma, Director of Foursquare’s Center For Spiritual Renewal East in Christiansburg VA (3) works with leaders who are living in the shadow caused by depression. Paul himself has been diagnosed with anxiety and depression, and identifies with the personal pain leaders experience. Paul suggests the following books as a point of information and self-identification:

Book: Coping with Depression in the Ministry and Other Helping Professions by Archibald Hart

Dr Hart offers a good overview of the stages of depression, along with identifying some of the hazards of ministry that easily cause depression.

Book: A Pastor’s Guide for the Shadow of Depression by Gary Lovejoy

Dr Lovejoy helps pastors identify the markers of depression as well as assertive ways to address the critical issues that may be it’s cause. 

More important that the information is the willingness of a leader to be vulnerable and reach out for help. YOU ARE NOT ALONE! Feel free to email me - jhamilton@foursquare.org - or Paul Kuzma - (Request appointment online) and we’ll get you in contact with someone who will journey with you through the “valley of the shadow.” Don’t allow a heart broken loved-one to have to say about any of us that we were “unable to fully get the help and support (we) needed.”

Jeff Hamilton

(1) https://www.charismanews.com/us/72866-popular-pastor-commits-suicide-shocking-his-congregation

(2) http://godsgotthis.org/post/177492799313/to-my-andrew-its-only-been-3-days-nothing-can

(3) http://crosspointeconferencecenter.com/campus-ministries/center-for-spiritual-renewal/


NEXT MONTH IN IMPROVEMENT: Resources to help you church develop a mental health ministry

How to become an MVP

For many pastors, preaching is a passion. The discipleship provided from the pulpit on Sunday mornings is the most visible aspect of the church’s ministry. It would make sense that the preaching offered in our churches should always be improving and getting better. 

It begins with the basics. NBA MVP Steph Curry has a 20 minute routine that he performs before each game. It focuses on dribbling and shooting. Many of the drills he does are drill taught to children who are just learning how to play (see it here - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5mQGA1_7yTk). Mike Trout, generally regarded as the the best player in baseball for the last 5 years, hasn’t been taking pre-game batting practice on the field at all this year, opting instead for hitting balls off a tee and soft toss in the underground batting cages (https://youtu.be/mGqsNkq_fpE?t=5m1s). Both of their routines focus on bringing things back to the basics, keeping things simple, and a belief that repetition creates success.

What are the basics for preaching? It begins with prayer, our daily meeting with Jesus. It’s also being in the Word, so that we can receive a word to encourage and equip the people of God. Yet, beyond that daily spiritual work, what the basics of being a good communicator? These resources may help you improve your skill to an MVP (most valuable preacher) level.

Book: Communicating For a Change by Andy Stanley and Lane Jones 

In Communicating for a Change, Andy Stanley and Lane Jones offer a unique strategy for communicators seeking to deliver captivating and practical messages. In this highly creative presentation, the authors unpack seven concepts that will empower you to engage and impact your audiences in a way that leaves them wanting more.

Book: The Big Idea: Focus the Message, Multiply the Impact by Dave Ferguson

Leaders don’t often see the concepts from Sunday’s message applied in people’s lives to help the accomplish Jesus’ mission. Why? Because people’s heads are swimming with too many little ideas, far more than they can ever apply.The Big Idea can help you creatively present one laser-focused theme each week to be discussed in families and small groups.

Video: "TED's secret to great public speaking" by Chris Anderson

Chris Anderson is the Curator of TED, a nonprofit devoted to sharing valuable ideas, primarily through the medium of 'TED Talks' -- short talks that are offered free online to a global audience. In this video, Chris shares the four most important key to making a presentation that is not only memorable, but actionable.

Video“How to create an awesome slide presentation” by Pat Flynn

Creating great slides doesn't have to be difficult, and with a few simple rules and some guidelines to follow, the impact of your message will be multiplied and more memorable.


Counseling resources to save you time!

I promise to save you time!

Can I give you a gift of 12 more hours today to use any way you want? Asked another way: Could I lessen your “counseling load” by 50% or more?  If you are a pastor that has to counsel others, be they leaders, pre-marrieds, marrieds or general church member, this Improvement Article is for you!  

I have two resources that have saved me 50% and more in my time of counseling.  

SYMBIS Assessment

What used to take me 10 sessions in a pre-marital meetings with a couple, now takes me  4 sessions with this tool.  Log on to https://www.symbis.com/  and choose to become a SYMBIS facilitator for a one time fee of $200.  You will get 3 hours of on line training to read and interpret assessments.  Once trained this is how it works:  A couple gives you their names, gender and email for both bride and groom.  You log on to your personal account with SYMBIS (Saving Your Marriage Before It Starts.) and send the couple an invite.  They pay $30 (total per couple) to take individual assessments and can be finished in a matter of minutes.  A detailed 15 page assessment is then immediately sent to you. You walk the couple through the findings. https://www.symbis.com/

TOWNSEND AND CLOUDʻS One Week Intensive (OWI) 

The One Week Intensive for Counselors is a one week training workshop for psychologists, therapists, counselors, pastoral caregivers, and those in helping roles.  https://growthskills.org/workshops/one-week-intensive/ For over 20 years, Christian clinical psychologists Drs. Cloud and Townsend have used their biblical nature of the growth model to help millions to resolve depressions, anxiety disorders, addictions, character disorders, trauma issues, relational struggles, family dysfunctions and career problems.

There is no other training I know like this.  In a short time, I learned to diagnose and identify particular issues using the growth model, and experienced true healing for myself through relationships and structure. I now use this in EVERY one of my counseling sessions and feel confident to walk many to health and long-term restoration.  In this training, diagnosis and ability to treat from a biblical view has been fruitful and time saving (50% or more).  Check out the testimonies.     


Next workshop March 25-29, 2019. 

Want more info? Call or write me:  Kiha Pimental, 808 561-5967, Kpimental@foursquare.org.  

Improving ministry through rest

We’ve all been educated on the significance of Sabbath, but the practice of self-care is a difficult spiritual discipline to implement. To quote Pete Scazzaro (The Emotionally Healthy Leader) - "The overall health of any church or ministry depends primarily on the emotional and spiritual health of its leadership. In fact, the key to successful spiritual leadership has much more to do with the leader's internal life than with the leaders expertise, gifts, or experience.” Creating space for solitude and silence, along with reflection and refreshment, is crucial to the leaders’ personal well-being. This month’s “improvement” section provides information about personal pastoral retreats.


PASTORS’ SABBATICAL RETREAT | Pacific Southwest District

Pastor Sabbatical Retreats (PSRs) create intentional space to relax and listen to God, alone and together, with a few other pastor couples. PSRs gather at a relaxing, executive level retreat spot that is inspiring and conducive to tuning into God’s voice through gently-guided sessions of silence and solitude, along with some marital and group work. There are times of worship and always plenty of laughter and fun. They are 4 days / 3 nights, begin at lunch on the first day (after morning travel) and end after lunch on the fourth day.  The costs of the retreat vary based on locations, but are supplimented by the district. The next date is TBA. 

For more information - https://www.pswchurches.com/pastors-sabbatical-retreats/.

SILENT RETREAT | Unhurried Living (unhurriedliving.com)

The author of An Unhurried Life and An Unhurried Leader, Alan Fadling and his wife Gem guide leaders through a 3 day / 2 night experience of solitude, silence, and prayer.It is designed to help leaders step out of the life in the fast lane and learn the rhythms of Jesus. This experience helps to recalibrate leaders to lead others form a deep, abiding connection with the Lord. The next retreat will be June 20-22 at Prince of Peace Abbey in Oceanside CA. Cost is $349.

For more information - https://unhurriedliving.com/event/silent-retreat-june20/


A simple internet search for “pastoral retreats” produces numerous results. There are some locations that allow for pastoral leaders to getaway for counseling and care, personal sabbaths and study. The Christian Hospitality Network (http://thechn.org/) is a resource that provides links to accommodations and pastoral care retreats in the US and around the world. Some are free and others at a significant discounted rate. Some facilitate a specific program while others are self-directed (lodging only). A few that are located within our district boundaries are listed below. The facilities listed below are examples of what is available, not endorsements by the District. 


SHEPHERDS’ CANYON RETREAT | (https://www.shepherdscanyonretreat.org/)

Shepherd’s Canyon Retreat offers seven carefully designed days of individual, couple, and group Christian counseling. The emphasis is upon Christian professional church workers including, but not limited to Pastors, Missionaries, church staff, etc, and their spouses.


PEPEEKEP POINT RESORT (Big Island) | https://www.pepeekeopointresort.com/

Pepeekeo Point Resort is a place of rest for those serving ther Lord; a place to receive new strength, hope, and direction, and a place to help others continue with the Lord's work.  The Pepeekeo Point Resort, located only 10 miles north of Downtown Hilo on the Hamakua Coast. The resort grounds are comprised of roughly three acres with direct ocean frontage. Rates and reservations are made via phone only - (808) 964-8508.

Improvement through reading

Its said that “leaders are readers.” I often like to ask peers what they are reading, and why they are reading what they are reading. In this month’s IMPROVEMENT section, we get to meet three leaders, serving in different roles in different places. Find out what books (other than the Scripture) have had the most influence in these three leader’s lives, and why they recommend them.

(Click the images for more information)


Jessica Schultz

Campus Pastor - Grace North, Anthem AZ | gracenorth.com


"Pilgrims Progress” by John Bunyan

As a child who grew up in church, I can't identify the moment I gave my heart to Jesus. I do know that when I was in third grade my dad offered me a reward system for reading challenging works. The first assignment was a full version of The Pilgrims Progress. For the first time, I had deep understanding of my need for Jesus and the struggle I faced as a lost person without Him.  I found myself confronting my own inner “Christian” and committing to a journey of following Christ. This book confirmed by commitment as a disciple of Jesus Christ. 


"The Spirit of the Disciplines” by Dallas Willard

This book consistently calls me back to the basics. When I have overcomplicated my routines before the Lord or slipped into a dry, performance driven rut, this reminds me of value of spiritual disciplines. As a person who resists practices that feel “religious”, it is easy to devalue the practice spiritual disciplines. This book broke that cycle in my life. 


"Reaching Out: The Three Movements of the Spiritual Life” by Henri J. Nouwen

Even as a “people person" I find myself lonely and isolated. This book reminds me reaching in to maintain personal health, Reaching out to others to grow in relational health and reaching up to the God as my source of health and strength.



Brandon Ahu

Assistant Pastor - Metro Church, Honolulu HI | metrochristianchurch.com


"Strengthening the Soul of Your Leadership: Seeking God in the Crucible of Ministry" by Ruth Haley Barton

Hardship and difficulties in ministry are plenty.  But the spiritual disciplines that help us to pursue God and persevere are invaluable to continue serving him.  

Hardship and difficulties in ministry are plenty.  But the spiritual disciplines that help us to pursue God and persevere are invaluable to continue serving him.  



"The Emotionally Healthy Church" by Pete Scazerro

Knowing the bible is great, but if we are not living balanced lives than we are still immature.  This book challenged me to look at other aspects of my life and leadership, especially in the area of emotional maturity.  



"The Ascent of a Leader" by Bill Thrall, Bruce McNicol, and Ken McElrath

If it is true that we lead out of who we are, then character counts for much more than we realize.  This book presents two very different ladders of success and challenged me to examine which I am climbing.  Relationships of grace are paramount to developing character as a leader.  



Joe Hogan

Associate Pastor - Cornerstone Church, Anaheim CA | www.ccanaheim.com


“Carpe Diem” by Tony Campolo

First book that comes to my mind that helped me to take risk and embrace everyday with passion and purpose.  I had a few bible studies with Tony Campolo in the early years of my ministry and have a few stories of my own that looking back now were started listening to Tony’s stories. 



“The Divine Mentor” by Wayne Cordeiro

Working in young adult ministries over these past 20 years, Wayne’s book has been a must read for all my interns.  No greater mentors and relationship to cultivate than the men and women of the scripture’s.  A common ingredient for success of great leaders is the ability for them to seek after mentors.  Wayne helps those looking for mentors to find it in the scriptures themselves.  I have passed around my copy so often I’d like to get it back.   


“Crazy Love” by Francis Chan

Francis has raised the bar of what it means to put love into action.  People are to follow us as we follow Christ.  Crazy Love has helped me to focus on one thing.  Not just study the teachings of Jesus Christ but to follow through with them.  You will not read the bible the same, since it’s not a book just to be studied but lived out.

Equipped to Serve


I love church resources that are developed by people in the church who have a passion to use their gift to further equip the church. Here are some websites (with additional resources) that are developed by non-pastoral local church leaders to help equip others who serve in roles similar to their own. I subscribe to each of these site’s emails. They also offer cost effective training resources:

James Wassam is a 20 year professional in the sound mixing and systems installer. He also believes that the technical ministry volunteers are important to the ministry of the congregation and wants to equip them with quality tools to help them grow in their craft, skill, and spirit. The newsletter produced by Great Church Sound is very practical and easy to understand. The site also offers training videos ($) and features the book authored by James. The monthly blog is great too. Sign up for the newsletter here: https://www.greatchurchsound.com/worshipdistractions.html

These guys offer all kinds of products and tutorials. I personally use their Pads products. But the best thing in my opinion is their “Vlogs” (video blogs); one is about the practical side of leading worship (gear, staying “relevant”, production) and the other is about leadership (conducting auditions, team preparation and rehearsals, etc). They also provide tutorials on playing curretn, popular worship songs. Good stuff here. 

ECFA certifies churches and ministries for financial integrity and is a leading provider of free, practical resources for churches on financial management, governance, and stewardship.They have partnered with Life Church to provide practical policy and practices guidelines (https://open.life.church/partners/ecfa). Their “ChurchPulse” newsletter is also a great source for resources. Sign up here: http://ecfa.us2.list-manage.com/subscribe?u=1e36026eade3dfd2f66499153&id=f7cc6673b9 

Information and Inspiration

Two things are key to improving: information and inspiration -  we have to know what to do, and be motivated to do it. This month’s IMPROVEMENT tools will do both.

Attend: HIM Conference 2018 (Hawaiian Island Ministries)
Listen: Church Leaders Podcast
Watch: 2018 Leadership Summit w/ Wayne Cordeiro


Attend: HIM Conference 2018 (Hawaiian Island Ministries)

HIM is the largest annual gathering of Christians in Hawaii, celebrating 35 years of ministry in 2018. Join us as we worship, pray, learn, love, grow together across denominations, cultures, generations and differences as the beloved Body of Christ. General sessions speakers include Francis Chan, Margaret Feinberg, John Ortberg, Mike Pilavachi. PSW Assistant District Supervisor Kiha Pimental, Brandon Ahu from Metro Christian Church,  and Anchor Church Lead Pastor Carl Moore and Youth Pastor Anuhea Akamine are among the workshop presenters. March 15-17 in Honolulu HI.  For more information and to register, visit https://himonline.org/him-2018

Listen: Church Leaders Podcast

A podcast is essentially a radio show that you can get on the internet, so you can listen any time you want. ChurchLeaders (churchleaders.com), is an essential resource for the pastoral leader featuring articles, news, videos and more. CL’s podcast presents ground-breaking conversations with today's top ministry leaders designed to help you lead better. Listen on your computer, on on your iPod/iPhone. https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/the-churchleaders-podcast/id988990685?mt=2

Watch: 2018 Leadership Summit w/ Wayne Cordeiro

New Hope Las Vegas recently hosted their 2018 Leadership Summit with guest speaker Wayne Cordeiro. Pastor Wayne is the founding pastor of New Hope Oahu Christian Fellowship and has authored 12 books, including Doing Church as a Team and The Dream Releasers. Pastor Kent Miyoshi has graciously made the video of the Summit available to our PSW pastors. View the conference videos online at our district website - https://www.pswchurches.com/teachings/

Tools for Improving

We all want to improve. Sometimes to get better, we need education and information. At other times, a new tool is what is required to take the next step. Whatever it is that you need to improve, we hope to provide you with some resources that will at least spark an idea and at best be a solution that you’ve been looking for. This month we feature three resources:

Data: “Are Young People Really Leaving Christianity?” by J Warner Wallace. 
Blog: "Pivot: Innovative Leadership from a Small Church Perspective" by Karl Vaters
Tool: Aplos Accounting Software



Data: “Are Young People Really Leaving Christianity?” by J Warner Wallace.

J Warner Wallace, former detective for the Torrance (CA) Police Department and author of “Cold Case Christianity,” summarizes the results multiple studies and research projects on the subjects related to the spiritual views of teens and young adults. A very helpful tool to get an overview of the subject and to find additional resources that dig deeper into the the topic.



Blog: "Pivot: Innovative Leadership from a Small Church Perspective" by Karl Vaters

Pivot is a Christianity Today blog by pastor and author Karl Vaters. He writes about church health and innovative leadership from the perspective of small church. Karl has served as the senior pastor of Cornerstone (Assembly of God) in Fountain Valley for over 25 years. His experience of leading a small, healthy church led him to write “The Grasshopper Myth.” This weekly blog encourages, challenges, and resources leaders of small congregations.



Tool: Aplos Accounting Software

Aplos Accounting is a simple, online accounting software that allows a church to confidently manage their books. Simple to learn and user friendly, Aplos is a cloud based application that is specifically designed for churches and non-profits. It features true fund accounting, integrated budgeting tools, customized reporting, and more. Foursquare is working with Aplos to become a preferred service provider and offers discounts to Foursquare churches.