021 - 4 Ways to Develop Leaders at Your Church - Leaders.Church


021 – 4 Ways to Develop Leaders at Your Church

What’s in this Episode?

God has more he wants to accomplish through your church. There’s more people in your community and surrounding areas that he wants you to reach. But in order to reach them, you need to be prepared. And to be prepared, you need to have the right leaders in place. And so that’s why, in this episode, I want to talk to you about the four ways to develop leaders in your church. And when you do this, it’s going to position you for the growth that God wants to bring.

Read the Transcript

Jonathan Hardy 0:27
So I recently was talking to a pastor and he was just expressing the sense that he feels like the church kind of stuck. And often we hear this from pastors is they felt like the church was stuck and you know, they weren’t really seeing new people coming to the church a whole lot. It felt stagnant, and they had a couple of people on staff and it just felt like man, just nothing was really happening. And so I asked him, I said, “well, are you developing more leaders at your church?” And he said, “well, you know, like, what do you mean,” you know, and so I kind of probed and talked and explained and one thing led to another and we came to the conclusion that the pastor and other people on their team weren’t really strategically investing and other key leaders that are people that are volunteers, they have other jobs. And as a result, they’re not preparing the church for what God would want to do. And I’m a big fan of developing leaders, because we want to constantly prepare the church for what God wants to do. He wants to bring more people to our churches. He wants us to reach more people. His desire is that none would perish, and so as a result, churches have to be prepared for the people that God wants to bring. If we’re not prepared, then is God going to bring them in? Because I mean, we don’t want them to just fall through the cracks and all that so we’ve got to have leaders, and so that’s why today, I want to talk specifically about four ways to develop more leaders at your church. This is huge, so important. So Dick, what’s the first reason?

Tip #1: Pray Intelligently

Dick Hardy 1:53
Well, it really is because these leaders are gonna set you up for things you never could have accomplished previously. And the very first thing you’re going to do is you’re going to pray intelligently. Now, I put those two words together intentionally. Pray intelligently. In other words, use your mind and your spirit together to commune with the Lord about what he has out there. Who in your church could be stepping into roles? And don’t fall prey to this. Don’t fall prey to, “well nobody will do anything.” You’re the leader. You are called of God to identify people in your church who could be leaders. That’s where you have to use your head and your heart together in calling out to God and you’ll be amazed. I’ve had it happen, you’ve had it happen, where the Lord sparks a name in your heart during prayer. You can’t just do it with your brain. Put your brain and your praying together and you’re going to see great things happen. Number one, pray intelligently.

Tip #2: Be On The Lookout For Demonstrated Leadership

Dick Hardy 3:03
The second thing to do is to be on the lookout for demonstrated leadership. You know, if you want somebody who’s going to be able to lead in a certain way, watch for people who are doing that in other ways. You want people who are going to lead when they’re not told to. So, if you say you’re looking for a new leader in your kids ministry, well, there’s a lot involved in leading kids ministry. Recruiting volunteers, working with kids curriculum and on and on and on it goes. We’ve got a whole course coming up here that we’re going to be launching next week. The kidmin track of Church University and you’ve got to keep your eye open for this because it’s just loaded. I mean, I just amazed with it. So I’m pumped about it. But the point being is, if you need a kid’s leader, you want to watch for somebody who leads on their own. Who, you don’t have to tell them to do everything, because if you have to tell them to do everything, they’re not the leader, you’re the leader. Now you are the leader, but you need a leader with you. So you’ve got to watch for people who can demonstrate the ability. I’ve used the term, and this doesn’t sound very spiritual, but you want somebody who’s going to become a somebody in kids ministry for this example, who’s a nobody right now. Nobody knows what they can do, but they’re going to become a somebody, and you want that to happen at your church. And because they’ve demonstrated that they’re going to be able to step up to leading, and they’ve done it before you’ve asked them to do it.

Dick Hardy 4:42
Yeah. So what else Jonathan?

Tip #3: Keep People Free From Restraining Boxes

Jonathan Hardy 4:43
Yeah, that’s good. So the third thing is to keep people free from restraining boxes. Basically, don’t put people in a box. Just because they’re in a certain role now, doesn’t mean that that’s the only thing they can do. I’ve seen countless pastors do this where it’s like, well, this is the kids pastor. Using your illustration, or this is the small groups leader or whatever. And so they just think, well, that’s just what they’re good at, that’s what they do, and so that’s what they’re always going to be. But that is not the case and we know that to be true, because more than likely, if you’re watching or listening to this, you aren’t today what you were, you know, 5-10 years ago, you were in different spot, different place of life. And so, some people may just be serving right now in ministry, but there may be more potential for them to rise up. And you know, I love Zechariah 4:10, great application, even for this context, “do not despise these small beginnings for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin.” And so, you know, hey, everyone starts somewhere. Everyone has to start. There’s always those small beginnings that happen but then we move into greater roles and responsibilities as we grow personally, as leaders and so we want to be able to help other people do that as well. And so we have to believe bigger for people and not put people in a box because that’s what they’ve been does not mean that’s what they will always be. So you have to remember that second.

Tip #4: Set Challenges One Step Beyond What You Think Makes Sense

Jonathan Hardy 6:00
Then the fourth thing, and final thing is to set challenges one step beyond what you think makes sense. So we have to challenge people to bigger commitments. We have to stretch them, we have to work to push them further and further. You know, one of the things, Dick and I both have been runners and back in high school we were 800 runners, we were mile runners, distance runners. And so we love that type of sport and one of the things that is really cool as you think about Roger Bannister, before Roger Bannister crossed the mile in under four minutes, it hadn’t been done. I mean for decades.

Dick Hardy 6:43
Just a note: on the day before I was born was when Roger Bannister…

Jonathan Hardy 6:48
Your special day!

Dick Hardy 6:49
May 6th, 1954 is when Roger Bannister did that, so you note that to send me birthday cards.

Jonathan Hardy 6:54
Yeah, then you always remember when his birthday is if you remember when Roger Bannister did that, but nonetheless, he was the first person to break the four minute mile. People were hustling, hustling and hustling. They were working so hard for decades. No one could break it. He broke it.

Dick Hardy 7:08
And the word was it was impossible. It was impossible to do.

Jonathan Hardy 7:11
Exactly. And then what happened? 30 days later, or less than 30 days later, someone else broke the four minute mile. And then all of a sudden, decades later, actually, to this point, 1497 people have broken the four minute mile. That was impossible. That which was impossible, all of a sudden became a reality for almost 1500 people now to this day. It’s unbelievable. Well, how does that happen? It’s because they stretch themselves. And so we have to work to stretch ourselves and stretch the people that we’re leading to take steps of faith and to push themselves personally. To go to that next level. It is possible. You may look at someone and say, “well, you know, they’re already giving a lot of their time, they’re tapped out, they’re busy, I don’t want to ask for more of them.” Well, I would encourage you: ask for more.

Dick Hardy 8:05
Ask largely!

Jonathan Hardy 8:06
Yep, don’t make excuses for people, let them make the excuse. It’s not our job to say, “oh, well, they’re already busy. I don’t want to bog them down with more.” No that’s their job to make that decision. Your job is to stretch and call people to higher commandment and to develop them. And when you do that, that is what’s going to help you build more leaders in your church and when you have more leaders leading in your church, you’re positioning the church for greater growth and greater influence.


Dick Hardy 8:31
Exactly right. Let’s do just a quick recap of the kinds of things we talked about here today. Number one is to pray intelligently. Number two, be on the lookout for demonstrated leadership traits. Number three, keep people free from restraining boxes. In other words, don’t put them in a box, stretch them out. And number four, set challenges just one step beyond what you think makes sense and let them make that decision. If you’ll do these four things, you’ll be well on your way to seeing the development of more and more leaders for your church.

Jonathan Hardy 9:04
That’s right.

Dick Hardy 9:04
Anything else?

Jonathan Hardy 9:05
Well, I just want to remind you, as Dick mentioned earlier, stay tuned next week for the launch of the kids ministry track. This online course. You’ll find more information of it at churchuniversity.com next week when we release it, you’ll see it there. And then of course, make sure to subscribe if you have not subscribed on YouTube or on the podcast, please subscribe. Please rate and review this podcast as well. We want to hear your feedback. And we want to be able to get the word out so that other people can find out about the church tips that are going to help them go to the next level. So with that being the case.

Dick Hardy 9:34
That’s right!

Jonathan Hardy 9:34
We’ll see you next time.

Dick Hardy 9:35
Take care.

Jonathan Hardy 9:35
Take care.

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