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Winter 2014


The theme for Winter 2014 is “Christian Nonprofit Trends.”

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Humble Leaders

Honoring two who have impacted me most

Everything I’ve learned about leadership I’ve learned from people. Don’t get me wrong. I love reading books, listening to podcasts and going to seminars, but God has hard-wired me to respond to people.

I guess it began with my father. Years before I was born, my father latched onto the good news of Jesus, and I have never known him to let go. He modeled Jesus for me in a way that was very real. ...

Investing in Others

CLA launches The Outcomes Mentoring Network.

“One gives freely, yet grows all the richer; another withholds what he should give, and only suffers want. Whoever brings blessing will be enriched, and the one who waters will himself be watered.” (Prov. 11:24–25, ESV)

As Christian leaders, we must trust God to direct our path and equip us for what he calls us to do. My experience has been that he often sends mentors into our lives, divin...

Ministry Enterprise

Business as catalyst for social change

As I listened to a Rwandan woman talk about how her life had been transformed, I was stopped in my tracks. I’ve been working in the nonprofit world for more than five years and I began to think many of us are doing it wrong. She said, “There are two things my people need to transform their lives: Jesus Christ and business. Business is the catalyst for social change.”
This woman had been part of an ...

Mobilizing Millennials

Four ways to empower the next generation

Every organization has a worldview. In part, such worldviews consist of assumptions that are self-evidently true to those working for the enterprise. They are so much a part of us that we don’t have to think about them; in fact, we don’t think about them, which is why we call them assumptions!
The worldview shared within a church, faith-based nonprofit or parachurch ministry is expressed outwardly in leaders’ dec...

On the Move!

Fulfilling the Great Commission

I became involved full-time in Christian work in 1969. In the next several years I learned what God was doing not just through our ministry but others as well.
It was good then, but it was much less than what God is doing today. Consider some amazing facts:

• The church in China has grown to 100 times the size it was when the Communists took over 60-plus years ago.
• The church in India h...

Succession Planning

Ensuring successful ministry leadership transitions

Some, like Frances Kunreuther in Up Next: Generation Change and the Leadership of Nonprofit Organizations (Annie E. Casey Foundation, 2005), began to study the effect of the generational change from the retiring Baby Boomers to Generations X and Y. The social movements of the 1960s and 1970s catapulted Boomers to the leadership of the surging number of nonprofits, as detailed by Tom Adams in Found...

Succession Planning

Your organization’s long-term health depends on it.

One of the most successful examples of leadership transition was the transition of power from Moses to Joshua. Moses recognized Joshua’s inherent leadership qualities early on. He gave him opportunities to develop his skills, personally mentored him, entrusted him with increasingly sensitive tasks and exposed Joshua to his interactions with God on Mt. Sinai. Over a period of 40 years, Joshua earned ...

The Future of Giving

As Director of Marketing for the National Christian Foundation (NCF), Pearlina Simmons knows a thing or two about the role technology plays in the nonprofit sector. Since it was co-founded in 1982 by Larry Burkett and Terry Parker, NCF has been helping donors give — and give wisely — to multiply their impact and glorify God. As technology has grown and changed, so too has NCF as they help givers and organizations best use technology to further the kingdom of God. Here, Simmons ...

The Future of Giving

The key trends that will impact ministries

As we look to the various trends that will impact Christian nonprofits in the coming months, one that is critical to understand is related to giving. With donations being the lifeblood of Christian nonprofits, it’s important to understand the state of play and what could affect giving as we move forward.
There are three trends that I see bubbling to the surface that are especially important to understand:<...

The Volcano Syndrome

How conflict avoidance can sabotage your ministry

A few minutes late for the staff meeting, Jeff tried to slide into his seat at the conference table unnoticed.
“Glad you could find time in your busy schedule to join us,” Carolyn snapped.
Shocked at Carolyn’s tone, Jeff mumbled an apology and tried to hide behind his laptop the rest of the meeting.
When the meeting ended, Jeff folded his laptop and headed for the door. &...