Gary McIntosh

The One Year Rule

By Gary McIntosh Jan. 8, 2015 9:00 a.m. Church Life, Ministry and Leadership

Several years ago Charles Arn and I surveyed pastors and asked them to identify the most frustrating part of their job. Can you guess the most frequent response? “Getting laypeople to help with the work and ministry of the church” ... One of the major reasons people are reluctant to serve in and through a church is the feeling that they’ll be stuck in the position for ever, or at least a very long time ...

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What Person Led You to Faith in Christ?

By Gary McIntosh Oct. 29, 2014 9:00 a.m. Church Life, Evangelism, Ministry and Leadership, Missions, New Testament

It was twenty-five years before church growth researcher Win Arn, building on the initial discoveries of Donald McGavran, conducted one of the largest studies of how people come to faith in Christ and to the church in the United States and Canada. Arn’s Institute for American Church Growth surveyed over 17,000 persons in 1980 asking, “What or who was responsible for your coming to Christ and to your church?” Arn published his findings in The Master’s Plan for Making Disciples, and church leaders were astounded ...

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What Is a Leader?

By Gary McIntosh Jul. 16, 2014 9:00 a.m. Church Life, Ministry and Leadership

People have studied leaders for centuries. To study leaders is to analyze the characteristics of individual people who demonstrate the ability to gather a group of followers. However, the study of leadership is a relatively new discipline dating from about the year 1900. To study leadership is to inspect the interactions a leader has with his or her followers. Both areas of study require one to define a leader. So just what is a leader? ...


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Barriers to Evangelism

By Gary McIntosh May. 20, 2014 9:00 a.m. Church Life, Evangelism, Ministry and Leadership

New churches are usually much more effective at winning new people to faith in Christ than older churches. For many reasons, as a church grows older, it develops barriers that keep it from making new disciples. The list of evangelistic barriers is long and complex, but the following are a few insights as to why churches become less effective at evangelism. Once a church recognizes some of the barriers, it can then take action to eliminate them ...

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Run Through the Finish Line: Doing Ministry Well

By Gary McIntosh May. 5, 2014 1:15 p.m. Ministry and Leadership

How can we finish well? Hebrews 13:7-8 gives us the primary clue. “Remember your leaders,” the writer commands, “those who spoke to you the word of God. Consider the outcome of their way of life, and imitate their faith. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever” (ESV). The key to finishing well is obvious from this passage of scripture: we learn how to finish well by observing others and imitating their faith.

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Are You an Anticipator or an Avoider?

By Gary McIntosh Mar. 20, 2014 9:00 a.m. Church Life, Ministry and Leadership

While watching a recent car race on television, I was impressed by the new technology that racing teams are using to improve performance.  Advanced computer technology now allows crew chiefs to monitor nearly every aspect—fuel usage, engine pressure, wheel alignment, and numerous other aspects—that affect the performance of the car.  In fact it’s possible to know the exact set up of an automobile so precisely that another car can be set up just like it.  With all of the technology, one might think that race cars would be set up so much alike that very little difference would be observed on race day.  But, some cars continue to do better at winning than others.

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Reducing the Intrusion of Email

By Gary McIntosh Feb. 27, 2014 9:00 a.m. Ministry and Leadership

You may have heard it said that email is dead.  But, don’t believe it. According to a report in Harvard Business Review (June 2013), based on a survey of 2,600 workers in the USA, UK, and South Africa, people continue to spend four hours of every working day dealing with e-mail. The reason? They like it, trust it, and find it an effective collaboration tool.

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