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Learning from Learners

Learning from Learners

I just spent 30 hours with 14 leaders from 4 larger churches, 5 smaller churches, and two parachurch organizations. We were five denominations (as far as I could tell – we did not talk denom much) and, most importantly, all interested in planting. The forum was free form. The facilitators where Ray Johnston ( and John Jackson (, two brilliant pastors who have real world results in post-church environments. Between the more structured conversations and informal fellowship times about a million things were said that challenged and encouraged me. I go to (speak at, help organize) too many conferences. I am conferenced out most of the time. These smaller gathering, including more conversation however are very helpful to me. I think it is because these setting really get you exposed to leaders that are all life long learners.
I like quotes. Maybe it is my diet pepsi soaked brain but something about holding a quote in my brain helps me apply learning. I need to I do not take notes well enough to give you who said what exactly in the following quotes. Some are original with the Ray and John obviously came from others but I did not pick up from exactly who. With that in mind here are some of the quotes that will echo in my head because of these leaders:
  • On conflict: “Where no great vision exists pettiness prevails.”
  • On vision casting: “Talking well about what could be can make up for a lot of problems about what it is not now.”
  • On relating to your team: “One step ahead makes you the leader, ten steps ahead makes you  a target.”
  • On being future focused: “The past does not light fires.”
  • On hype without follow through: “If it always thunders no one notices.”
  • On creativity: “Unless your imagination is bigger than your memory of past successes you are doomed.”
  • On core values: “The only thing worse than abandoning your core values is adding stupid stuff to them.”
  • On growth: “Organizations that grow are passionate about their core values and have a total commitment to expansion.”
  • On sacrifice: “Do you tithe people to other ministries?”
  • On humility: “I am just a nobody trying to tell everyone about someone who can change anyone.”
  • On balance: “There are two accelerators in growth that must be kept in balance: mission and morale. Neglecting one over the other is to invite either stagnation or weariness.”
  • On surviving long term: “You can spend you life trying to meet others expectations or spend your life setting healthy expectations for yourself.”
Got any other good quotes?

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