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How do you think?

June 06, 2015


While we were preparing for a speaking engagement in the West Virginia Conference our friend and teammate Rev. Whit Kirkland made a profound statement that really got us thinking. He said, “I have been working with you for some time now and I know what you do, but I still don’t understand why you do it.” Then he asked this question: “What do you think makes what you do work?” In other words, “How do you think?”

Wow! What a great question. We looked at each other and realized we had no clue how to answer that question. Then Whit said, “Seems like if you don’t know the answer to that question you are only one change away from messing it all up.” It made good sense to us, so we spent some significant time thinking and talking to our leaders about why we do what we do, how we make decisions, and why it seems to work.

The way you think determines why you do what you do, and the way you do it determines the outcome. So call them principles or thoughts that govern our thinking and shape our actions, but here is an outline of the logic that forms how we think:

  1. Be intentional.
  2. Ministry is always relational.
  3. Have life looking for structure, never structure looking for life.
  4. Act immediately but think long range.
  5. Make it fun!
  6. Take risks and embrace change.
  7. Evaluate everything – always ask why.
  8. Don’t be easily offended – your idea is not your identity.
  9. Pay the price of leadership – be committed and work hard.
  10. Build teams and reproduce leaders!
  11. Say thank you … a lot!
  12. Be the leader and the church God created you to be!
    1. Remember your call
    2. Know your purpose
    3. Follow your vision

So, how do you think? What is the filter by which you make decisions in your church? What are the guiding principles that determine the way you structure your ministries and programs? We’d love to hear your thoughts! Send us an email and share how you think.

Looking for more leadership materials for your church? Click on the Resources tab at and click on Program Resources, or email or

Jay Hanson, Lead Pastor, and Anne Bosarge, Director of Discipleship, serve at The Chapel in Brunswick. They love sharing about the ways God is moving in their church. Contact them at and for more information. 

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