Saturday, March 21, 2015

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Please follow the other blog I will no longer be updating this one

Thursday, February 05, 2015

Live To Serve

For years I've been a huge believer in local/regional events.
One of the best events I’ve ever been a part of is the "Live to Serve" event happening in four locations this February and March. The cool thing it's for volunteers, that's right the folks in the trenches. I am so honored that again I get to be a part of the teaching team of all four of these events.

 Live To Serve is a specialized, one day training for kidmin volunteers. I got to help Kenny Conley a little with starting this event and it’s morphed into something wonderful. The best feedback I ever heard from other churches who attended this event preveously were comments about how volunteers who were sitting on the fence or just not as dependable became the most loyal and committed volunteers after this event.

I believe, with all my heart, that the biggest investment you can possibly make into your volunteer team is to send them to Live to Serve. I know, you may be saying, “I don’t have the budget.” Funny thing is that I remember one church outside of Nashville who didn’t have the budget either, but the leader convinced her team that it was worth their day and she brought over 50 who paid their own way… and they probably even got more out of it than anyone else because they had more skin in the game. Most of the same people came back again the next year.

So, if you live within driving distance of:
Birmingham, AL
Nashville, TN
Norfolk, VA
Cincinnati, OH
It’s a game changer.
Join me and my friends Sue Miller, Adam Duckworth, Amy Fenton, and Matt McKee.

I'd love to meet you personally and get to spend some time with you there

Sunday, November 16, 2014

November Thoughts

You just can’t turn the page on the calendar from October to November without getting in touch with all the many reasons I have to be thankful! I told boys and girls this my whole life if you can be thank-full you can also be thank-empty. My goal in life is to live every day full of thanks and to look for opportunities as I walk out my daily life o give thanks first to God and also all those He has placed around me.  I am so thankful for not only what God has done but also for what He is doing. 

November first marked a year of me being on staff at Northstar Church in Pryor Oklahoma and for him allowing me to serve Pastor Roy Evans (my dear friend) and the team their as Executive Pastor. November also marks a year of me getting to be a part of the Orange family and being an Orange Strategist for the reThink Group. Also October marked a year of me being full time with Jim Wideman Ministries which has been a dream I’ve had since I started JWM in 1983.  All I can say is God is faithful. He has taken such great care of me and has provided just like He said He would in His Word. I look back and am blown away with His goodness.

November also marks the nineteenth birthday of theClub Children’s Ministry Podcast. (This monthly audio resource started out as the Children’s Ministers’ Leadership Club on cassette.)
Back in August I changed the format where I am joined each month by some of the best #Kidmin leaders from around the #KIdmin universe. (For more information about theClub click here also if you are under 30 you can get theClub absolutely free!) Every chapter in every book, every article I’ve written and every lesson I’ve taught to leaders in conference and seminars has been from a club lesson. I like the new lessons better than anything I’ve ever done because of the freshness of the topics my guests have brought to the table.

I just got back from the Twin Cities Area where I got to connect with some old friends and also make some new ones. I’ve been doing events in Minneapolis since the eighties and it was so cool to be back. The first day there Julie and I got to reconnect with our dear friend Carl and Dee Lindelien. Carl has been deathly ill for over ten years and six months ago Jesus healed him. It was just amazing to hear what he had gone through and to see him up walking, eating and just being Carl. Carl was one of the most creative and innovative Children’s Pastors in the eighties and nineties. He was the creator of Charisma’s KIDS Church Curriculum as well as many other #kidmin resources. (I plan to write more about Carl’s story in the days ahead) I also got to hang with two of my Infuse Coaches and do a meet-up for some local #Kidmin. I was so blessed to get to see some more old friends and also make some new ones. What really blessed me the most was there were students from three area colleges who were studying to be Children’s Pastors. I also got to have some coffee with my lifetime friends Mark Harper and Randy Christensen.

After a quick night home I find myself on a plane writing this headed to Tampa for the last stop of the Orange Tour. One of my infusers is picking me up and we’ll have lunch with another #Kidmin I’ve never met before heading to the hotel and the church to get to see more #kidmin folks and also hang with more infusers from the area. (I also plan on writing about my Orange Tour experiences in upcoming post. So much blog material so little time to write)

On Wednesday I’ll go back to the airport but instead of me flying out Jason Martin one of my Infuse Coaches flies in and we will begin preparing for my 29th infuse retreat. Again I am blown away that I get to walk beside some incredible #kidmin leaders for six months of coaching and mentoring twice a year. (The next group will start in March 2015 and now is the time to get your infuse application in.)

Yesterday my family (both daughters, my son-in-law and my grandson) came over to see me and spend some time with me and my sweet wife which is the greatest honor and blessing a dad could have. My grandson looked at me and said come on G let’s go upstairs and me and you will have lots of fun. It just doesn’t get any better that that. 

So now it's the next Sunday, the retreat has come and gone so has Jason Martin and my oldest daughter and her family is coming over to eat lunch with us and I am truly thankful for all God has done for me!

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Best of Both Worlds

This week I am so blessed that I get to speak at a #Kidmin Conference and sleep in my own bed. I am so blessed to get to do what I do. This year has been one of the most fruitful and effective years of ministry that I’ve ever experienced in my 39 years of serving the local church and in training those who work with young people. (For a complete look at my schedule for the rest of 2014 and 2015 check out this page.)
This week #Kidmin folks are invading Nashville to attend Lifeway’s Kids Ministry Conference, October 6- 8. I get to catch I-24 and take the short drive from Murfreesboro to downtown Nashvegas, on Tuesday, October 7 and spend the day teaching 2 workshops and doing a video interview with my good friend Michael Chanley. I’m excited about catching up with some #Kidmin friends who are speaking and attending and also making a few new ones. My first breakout is Organization For Those Who Weren’t Born That Way – @ - 2:45-3:45 – my second one is 7 Questions Every KidMin Leader Needs to Ask Themselves to Grow from 4:00-5:00 both are in Room CL 07. (Crowe Room)
No matter if you are attending #KMC14 or not I’d like to make my notes available and a great deal on any of my resources. During the conference you can order any of my books and resources and get the best price and free shipping here on my store, use the code: KMC14. You can get my notes by clicking here.
If you are at the conference please come by and say hi. Hope to see you there.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Say Yes To Personalized Training

This past weekend I had the priviledge to begin some personalized training with a church that I have been going to help and speak for 24 years. I have always loved going to this church over the years. The pastors have a real heart for sowing into their people! Everytime I’ve gone over the years I’ve learned from this church as well as what I was able to teach them. Everytime I go to speak in a local church I ask several questions to locate what would be the best topic to cover with their Kidmin Team. This kind of personalize training to me is one of the benefits of having me come to your church. This past weekend I was asked to do something I’ve never done before in addition to doing something for the entire Kidmin Team I was asked to spend the day with the Kidmin leadership staff. It was a great experience, it was like a mini infuse for 1 church. We started off with having each person complete a Path Element Profile by Laurie Beth Jones before I arrived then after a get-to-know-you Q & A breakfast at the church we jumped into understand the PEP and how to communicate better as a team and how to serve their leader better. The rest of the day was structured with things this team needed to know and understand to lead better. At lunch we took a break and as we ate together their at the church we did another Q & A as well as ended the day with more Q & A. The next time I come back which the church elected to take advantage of me consulting for a year rather than a 1 time event so I’ll be there 3 more time in a year. I know right where to pick up in this day of leadership training. I think one of the reasons my Infuse program has seen so much success is because each group I’m not married to what I’ve done before but customize what we do and cover based on the individuals that God brings to that particular group. Each have been different! That’s also true about the retreats I’ve done more than 20 retreats and they have all been different because I’ve tried to rely on the Holy Spirit to guide us where we need to go.

The next day I observed what was happening in the Children’s Ministry first hand as well as promoted the Kidmin Team training event for new people to join the team in each service. Then at 1pm we did a leadership train for the entire Kidmin Team. The church provided pizza for everyone and we were done by 2:15. We did a drawing for some of my books and all together the church picked up 35 new workers. We went over what I had observed at lunch and on the way back to the airport and I’m looking forward to helping them formulating a plan to do all the things I saw. I love this partnering with a church. The Church has also decided to send the Children’s Pastor through Infuse this fall. (By the way this church has already sent a Kidmin through Infuse)

This by far was a wonderful weekend. I can away wishing more churches would make this investment in their people. When you considered how many people where touched and the personalization it was very affordable for the church. Add these individualized learning sessions plus infuse to Live To Serve, Orange Tour and the Orange Conference and you have arsenal of tools to help your team say YES to training.

I’d love to talk to you how I could help your church have some individualized training. Either a one time weekend or a year of partnering together. Email me with questions and about availability and let’s talk how I can help you train your team and help you see your ministry goals and dreams come true.