Ministry Matters: Mentor Groups and Other Articles Church Leaders Should Read

Here’s a collection of interesting, thought-provoking articles from around the web from recent weeks. For more links, check out our Flipboard magazines: Leadership Network Today, Leadership Network Deep Trends, and  Ideas to Implementation to Impact, where we curate the best in innovative ideas for church leaders.

1. Ministry Matters: Mentor Groups (TheGospelCoalition) Ever ask yourself “what am I supposed to do as a mentor”, or “how do I find someone to mentor”? Follow these practical principles for mentoring in the church.

2. Why Warmth Is the Underappreciated Skill Leaders Need  (KelloggInsight) When it comes to success in leadership, there has never been just one playbook. Some leaders are extroverts, natural mentors, and charismatic speakers; others prefer to lead by example and take a more hands-off approach.

3. Figuring Out the Millennial Christian Giver (ChristianityToday) Here’s what an ECFA survey of 16,500 donors to 17 evangelical ministries learned about generosity.

4.Don’t Play with Dead Snakes — Kill Projects Before They Kill You (FirstRound) This advice for working on the right projects (and jettisoning the wrong ones) comes from Richard Daly, CEO of global genomic data processing company DNAnexus, which has seen its revenue grow 300% in the last 24 months — largely because of this strategy.

5. The Type of Leaders a Small Town Church Needs  (ChristianityToday) Donnie Griggs is the pastor of One Harbor Church, a church he planted in Morehead City, North Carolina, which has now grown to a multisite church that has planted churches in neighboring rural communities. Donnie has a passion to see churches in small towns and rural areas equipped and empowered to radically engage culture and make disciples. He is the author of Small Town Jesus and travels frequently to help strengthen and encourage other church leaders and planters in small, rural communities.

6. Why Aren’t American Teenagers Working Anymore (Bloomberg) This summer American teenagers should find it a little easier to get a job—if they want one. The U.S. unemployment rate fell to 4.3 percent in May, the lowest in 16 years, so teens started looking for summer jobs in the best labor market since the tech boom of the early 2000s.

7. How We Got Here: Spiritual and Political Profiles of America  (Barna) A recent national survey by Barna reveals how America’s five dominant faith segments think—and, importantly, how they differ in meaningful ways when it comes to their views on some of the most contentious political and spiritual issues of the day.

8. Let’s Keep Reaching Consumers A.K.A. Lost Sheep (Pastors) The modern Church has a perceived problem of consumerism. And it’s very popular to speak and write on the topic, preaching to the choir and an angry chorus of amens. The insinuation is that churches too often go out of their way to please seekers and make the Gospel palatable to nonbelievers, watering down the message and skirting hard truth in the process. Does this happen? Sure it does. Some leaders, choosing the approval of people over the fear of God, invite people to an easy version of Christianity that never makes the invitation Jesus made to “come and die” with him. But let’s be honest for a moment. For every “six flags over Jesus” fun house version of church, there are dozens of churches that really couldn’t care less about what the average consumer thinks. And that may be the bigger issue.

9. Multicultural Churches Are Addressing Racial Divides In Trump’s America (ThinkProgress) “Racism is ultimately a spiritual problem. You can’t educate  that out of people. You can’t legislate that out of people.”

10. What You Don’t Know About Rural America: 3 Common Misconceptions (ChristianityToday)  The physical presence of a church and its spiritual impact are not the same thing. any of us are busy. So much so that we rush from one thing to the next having failed to stop and assess whether or not our thoughts and beliefs match the current reality.