1. Helping Teens Hear God’s Call

    April 18, 2015 by Paul Chappell

    youth-conference-2015

    Every year, as we host West Coast Baptist Youth Conference, we have several top prayer requests. One of these is to see young people called by God into full time Christian service.

    I know that God has a plan for every life and that His plan is not for every young man to become a preacher. But it is for some. Thus, we encourage surrender to whatever God’s call may be and ask the Lord to use the preaching of His Word to speak to individual hearts according to His will.

    And He does. During the 2015 WCBC Youth Conference this week, scores of young people made a decision to surrender to answer God’s call in whatever capacity it may be. And throughout the conference, I was blessed by seeing tweets of WCBC alumni who are now in the ministry, posting about the conference and sharing that they were called to preach at youth conference in previous years. Praise God!

    Youth Conference aside, every pastor longs to see young men and women of the next generation serving the Lord in the ministry. What are the elements involved in that taking place? Why do some churches regularly see God calling teenagers and then those teens being trained and serving in ministry as young adults, but other churches never (or rarely) do? (more…)


  2. 5 Consequences of a Critical Spirit

    March 26, 2015 by Paul Chappell

    Anyone who attempts anything for God will be criticized. Although untrue criticism is hurtful and discouraging, it goes with the territory of leadership.

    Worse than being criticized, however, is developing a critical spirit. We’re called to be discerning (Philippians 1:10) and to prove all things (1 Thessalonians 5:21), and that requires a measure of critical thinking skills. And yet, even that is different than a critical spirit.

    A few weeks ago, my wife, Terrie, and I had lunch together after her weekly ladies Bible study. As she shared with me the lesson she had taught on that morning regarding a critical spirit, I asked her to write it as a guest blog post. (She posted it to her blog too, which I recommend you follow if you don’t already.)

    So here it is—a guest post by my very favorite person about one of the most needful aspects of the Christian life and Christian leadership—avoiding a critical spirit.

    parched-ground

    I enjoy cooking, finding recipes, and sharing new meals with my family and guests who visit our home. Because of my love for cooking, I get especially excited when I have the opportunity to visit a restaurant that I have read about or seen advertised. And, if I happen to have the chance to eat at one of these restaurants, I always look to see what the critics have said about the food, décor, and overall dining experience.

    (more…)


  3. 4 Ways Spiritual Leaders Build God’s People

    March 13, 2015 by Paul Chappell

    rual-church

    You’ve heard it said: “Use the church to build people, not people to build the church.”

    Of course, building people and building a church are not mutually exclusive. Both require partnering with Christ, the Master Builder, as He builds His church and His people.

    In fact, it is as we build people that they develop the spiritual maturity to also serve as co-laborers with Christ, building His church. Developing this maturity is the job of spiritual leaders in the local church:

    And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:—Ephesians 4:11–12

    But how? How specifically can we intentionally invest in people? In what ways do we need to build? (more…)


  4. Growth Points 63: Nine Characteristics to Look for in Emerging Leaders

    March 9, 2015 by Paul Chappell

    Today’s young people will be tomorrow’s leaders. So how do we develop them for local church ministry, and what qualities do we watch for? Furthermore, what traits do we look for in adults who will be serving in a leadership role in the local church?

    In this Growth Points video, I suggest nine characteristics that should be developing in those whom God is developing for local church leadership. These nine characteristics are traits to both watch for and to mentor toward:


    (If you cannot see this video in your RSS reader or email, you can watch it here.)

    Make sure you get all future Growth Points videos by subscribing to the Spiritual Leadership Podcast.


  5. 7 Practical Ways to Strengthen Your Hands for the Work

    February 17, 2015 by Paul Chappell

    building-brick-wall

    What spiritual leader hasn’t drawn encouragement from Nehemiah 2:18?

    Then I told them of the hand of my God which was good upon me; as also the king’s words that he had spoken unto me. And they said, Let us rise up and build. So they strengthened their hands for this good work.—Nehemiah 2:18

    But for that encouragement to be more than an emotional boost, we need specific ways to put it into practice.

    Just how does a person strengthen their hands?

    There are many possibilities, but here are seven starters: (more…)