Archive for April, 2013

Cross Church to Host the IMB’s Missionary Appointment Service & the Arkansas Baptist State Convention Annual Meeting

timthumb.phpThe Lord has so blessed the Cross Church family with wonderful and functional facilities. We are privileged to share our facilities and serve others through hosting their major events. Obviously, our #1 partner in advancing the Gospel of Jesus Christ is our beloved Southern Baptist Convention (SBC). In the coming months, we have two fabulous opportunities to serve the SBC and we need your help and support in every way.

May 15 is the Appointment Service of Global Missionaries

On the evening of May 15, Cross Church will host the appointment service of 58 missionaries that will serve around the world through the Southern Baptist International Mission Board. These are our missionaries! On this evening, you will hear from Dr. Tom Elliff, President of the International Mission Board. We will be appointing 58 missionaries that will serve in countries around the world. At present, the SBC has nearly 4,900 missionaries serving around the world. Again, these are our missionaries as we support them financially through the world missionary enterprise of Southern Baptist churches called the Cooperative Program.

Plan to be present at our Pinnacle Hills campus on May 15 at 6:30 p.m. for this service. This will be one of the greatest worship services to ever happen in our 143-year-old church. You will not want to miss it! You will experience the singing of our Worship Choirs, witness missionaries being appointed and hear their testimonies, and hear great Bible preaching by Dr. Tom Elliff. Please friends, do NOT miss this service and invite believers from all around the region to attend with you.

May 12 is Global Missions Day and Mother’s Day

The trustees of the International Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention will be meeting in Northwest Arkansas during the week of May 12. Therefore, an opportunity afforded us to make May 12 a powerful, exciting day. We will have guest preachers on each campus and I assure you that you will hear some incredibly powerful preaching relating to global missions.

Springdale and Pinnacle Hills: Dr. Tom Elliff, President, International Mission Board

Fayetteville: Dr. Gordon Fort, Senior Vice President, Office of Prayer Mobilization and Training, International Mission Board

College Avenue: Lance Morton, Missionary Appointee

As well, missionaries at all our campuses will be speaking to several small groups and encouraging people. On this same day we will celebrate Mother’s Day and we have planned something very special for moms and their families.

October 28-30 is the Arkansas Baptist State Convention Annual Meeting and Pastors’ Conference

It is also a great privilege for Cross Church to host the Arkansas Baptist State Convention Pastors’ Conference on Monday, October 28, and then the Arkansas Baptist State Convention Annual Meeting on Tuesday and Wednesday, October 29-30. With these events still several months away, I will share more details at a later date, but we are honored and privileged to serve the churches of the Arkansas Baptist State Convention.

Therefore Cross Church Family . . .

I ask you to support these major events. Pray over these events and the people that will participate in them. Plan to serve in these events — we will need greeters, parking lot attendants, and ushers. I know you will want to help us bring Cross Church’s “A Game” for these major days. Mark your calendar and put them in your prayer journal. Let’s make them a great honor to Jesus as we partner with others to advance the Gospel to the entire world. Thank you for your prayerful and financial support of advancing the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Yours For The Great Commission,

Ronnie W. Floyd

My #1 Leadership Lesson: Not Every Hill is Worth Dying On

signalkuppe28The greatest leadership lesson I have ever learned is: Not every hill is worth dying on. If I had believed and practiced this in my previous churches and perhaps during the first few of my 26 years at Cross Church, my influence would be greater and the ministry would be more effective. I have seen ministers let their stubbornness and pride wreck their own lives and ministries. Usually, it is because of violating this great leadership lesson.

In case no one has said this to you, whether you are a rookie pastor or an icon minister, let me tell you right now:  Not every hill is worth dying on!

It took me many years to learn this. Again, if I had learned it earlier in pastoral ministry, each church I served would have prospered more effectively. The fellowship would have been sweeter, the growth would have been greater, and the preservation of that growth would have been more successful.

It Was A Process

How did I learn this lesson? It did not happen at a particular turning point, but through a process. Some things in leadership you can only learn through the growth of the entity you are assigned to lead. The evolving of the organization with growth in structures, personnel, dollars, and expectations requires the leader to operate by the conviction that not every hill is worth dying on.

As I write these words, I think about the times that I could have carried more people with me along the church’s vision path if I had only been more patient and personal along the way. In the name of “urgency” or “reaching,” we can at times hurry matters in a church when hurrying is not an asset, but a liability. I wish someone had spoken these words to me earlier in life. Perhaps they did but my passion distorted my hearing.

It’s Not About Being Right

Most Christians are more interested in being right than they are about being Christ-like. Many times pastors are no exception to this. The Christian life is not about being right — it is about being Christ-like. I heard this said years ago and I have never forgotten it: If Satan cannot get you to do the wrong thing, he will get you to do the right thing in the wrong way. When you think you are always right, you will die on needless hills. When you constantly have to prove you are right and don’t take the time to work toward making the best decision in the right time and in the right way, you lose something with your people.

The Hills Worth Dying On

There are some hills that are worth dying on no matter what anyone in your congregation might think. There are plenty but let me give you just three to consider…

1: Truth – You must be willing to die on the hill of God’s truth found in Scripture. You must stand in your pulpit, in your meetings, and everywhere else you go with the confidence that the Bible is God’s truth for today and always. Sadly, many people in the church will die on the altar of tradition, rather than be willing to die for truth. Pastors, let’s be committed to God’s Truth!

2: Morality – Jesus was very clear that we are to be the salt and light of the world. We must be the moral conscience of our regions, nation, and world. Biblically, we have no alternative. We have to engage our culture. Remember, when we do, there are times that our faith will collide with the culture.

3: The Great Commission – The Great Commission should drive every Christian and church. For a church to advance toward the future in terms of health and growth, the church needs to be emblazoned by the Great Commission. There is not one person in the church who ought to be more fired up and passionate about sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ with every person in the world and making disciples of all the nations than the Pastor.

When You Go To The Hill

Good leadership determines not only which hills to die upon, but it also chooses the timing of when to ascend those hills for battle. Let me give you some strategic experiences you should go through before you ascend the hill.

Leadership has to be clear – One of the biggest mistakes of church leadership is assumption. We cannot assume people understand our vision. We must make it clear.

Processes have to be thorough – Have you gone through the various networks of decision-making bodies on the issue at hand? Have you done your homework? Have you connected with the right players about the matter at hand to answer their questions or address their concerns? These questions are important to answer to ensure the processes have been clear.

God’s timing – Before you ascend the hill, you need to check the timing. The decision to ascend the hill cannot be made because of pressure from a special interest group in the church or because you would like to get the matter behind you. Don’t forfeit your leadership on the altar of poor timing. It has to be God’s timing.

Wisdom is exercised when you have been clear and know it, the process has been thorough, and you have waited on God’s timing to ascend the hill. A wise leader will always do things in God’s timing, in God’s way, by God’s Word. If you have worked through these issues and you stand in confidence, you have no other choice than to ascend the hill. Therefore, ascend with confidence in God’s Word, power from God’s Spirit, and love for all people you want to join you on the hill.

From one minister to another: Not every hill is worth dying on.

Yours For The Great Commission,

Ronnie W. Floyd

To learn more about this subject and additional practical ministry principles, see Dr. Floyd’s book “Ten Things Every Minister Needs to Know.”