Majoring in the Minors

chicken

This is one of my all time favorite images. I first saw it about 12 years ago when I attended a lecture on using powerpoint in ministry. This was a sample image that was presented on how pictures can make a point so much better than words at times. I know the image speaks for itself, but when you consider the type of work that a bullfighter should be about it becomes very hilarious.

Now, I imagine there are some good reasons for the bullfighter to be waving his cape at the chicken, and I’m sure that at the time it made a lot of sense for this bullfighter to engage in this kind of activity. But at the moment this picture was snapped, the bullfighter appears to making poor use of his resources.

Churches do this all the time. Frequently we don’t mean to, it just happens. Like the bullfighter, a stray issue or person comes shooting across our field and we respond. Once we get that chicken taken care of, another one comes running. Then another… and another… and another… and so on. Some churches never accomplish anything because they are so busy fighting chickens rather than bulls.

Bullfighters are equipped to fight bulls. Big, scary, strong animals with sharp horns on their heads. They’re not supposed to be fighting chickens. But how many church leaderships spend all their time fighting chickens when they’re equipped and called to handle the big, scary, strong issues instead?

Some day when I learn to use photoshop better, I’m going to shop a chicken into the middle of a heated elders meeting. That would be a fun graphic to use in the future.

The Burden of Vision

I had one of those epiphany-type experiences the other day, but first I have to give you some background information to help it make sense. I have better vision than my wife does. In this case, when I say vision I mean literal eyesight. I didn’t understand this at first and used to get rather frustratedContinue Reading

I’m Not A Fish

I love TED talks, but as anyone knows there are just too many of them to get through. That is why I was thrilled with this Christianity Today article on the five best TED talks for ministry leaders. The one I’ve posted below by Seth Godin is probably my favorite so far. Excellent discussion onContinue Reading

The Dual Concern Model, Part 3

The graph above demonstrates the proposal made by Blake and Mouton regarding the concern for people vs. the concern for production. In their original publication, they added grid lines for both axes numbering 1 through 9. This was to facilitate the understanding that there were various places on the Managerial Grid that people could fall.Continue Reading

The Dual Concern Model, Part 2

Production and Church Do those two terms sound like the don’t go together well? What is it about the idea of “church” that makes us uncomfortable with terms like “revenue”, “marketing”, or “production”? I’ve felt the twinge that comes from the apparent incompatibility of those concepts, but the truth of the matter is that thoseContinue Reading

The Dual Concern Model, Part 1

Having talked a little about caring and concern, I want to start discussing care and concern as they appear in church priorities and decision making. In their 1964 worked entitled The Managerial Grid, Robert Blake and Jane Srygley Mouton identified two constants in any organization: purpose and people. These two constants form the axes of theContinue Reading

Do You Care?

Making a rather rough transition from my previous post, I want to take a bit to talk about caring. When we say the phrase “I don’t care”, what we are really saying is “I’m not concerned about that.” The word ‘care’ implies having an interest in providing for a person or thing the things thatContinue Reading

NBC – No Body Cares

NBC – No Body Cares

After high school I was looking for a way to earn money for college and support a young family. I found both of these options in the U.S. Army. I served for three years as a Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical Warfare Specialist. The recruiting material made it sound like a laboratory job… but it wasContinue Reading

Information Bubble

I’m a big fan of TED. They do some really cool talks on a wide variety of topics. This one interests me because of the implications both for technology but also for church and ministry. It is common practice in the conservative Christian community to surround ourselves with people who think like us, both spiritually,Continue Reading

How Dads are Awesome

Last night I was helping Child2 with some algebra homework. I got a 33% in algebra in high school. I’ve been very open with my kids about this fact, about the fact that I’m not good at math, and about the fact that they have an aunt who is a mathematician that has offered toContinue Reading