LILR 089 | Dan Reiland on Leadership Transitions and Measuring Success in Succession

“To go too long, to go too far…big mistake.” Meet Dan Reiland, former Executive Pastor at 12Stone® Church in Lawrenceville, Georgia. Dan’s example of transitioning as an outgoing pastor is one every pastor should take note of. With practical metrics on what successful transition looks like afterward, spiritual insights for staying in tune with God’s voice, and a heart for serving the next generation, today’s episode is a helpful one for what it looks like to transition healthily in the church.

Ben Pilgreen on The Nuances of Urban Church Plants

“If you don’t value team, and if you can’t build a team, it’s going to be lonely, and it’s going to be limiting.” Meet Ben Pilgreen, founder and lead pastor of Epic Church in San Francisco, CA. Today, we get to hear a unique perspective from Ben on his experience planting a church in the urban setting of San Francisco. Discover with us the core church planting elements that stay the same along with the nuances that come with a large, urban context.

LILR 088 | Jared Herd on Resiliency During Challenging Transitions, Co-Pastoring & More

“I have a radical ownership of everything I’m doing…By God’s grace, I’m waking up every day making a choice to lead God’s church.” Meet Jared Herd, Senior Pastor at The Church at Rancho Bernardo. Jared gives us a helpful look at his experience with a tough transition from a Co-Pastoring model. Listen in for practical wisdom on healthy Boards and the grit of leadership.

LILR 087 | Julian Lowe, LP at Oasis LA on Battling Pride and the Racial Divide

“If you do nothing, the devil braids the church’s success and the health of your soul together, and he makes you think it’s the same thing.” Meet Julian Lowe, Lead Pastor at Oasis LA. In today’s episode, we hear a vulnerable and insightful look at what succession in leadership looked like for Julian. With honesty and transparency, we hear about the challenges of humility, how gratitude can accompany obedience, and distinguishing your personal relationship with Jesus from the church you lead.

The “Who” - The Top Characteristics I Should Look For In A Staff Team

“Whenever God does a ‘what,’ He first finds a ‘who.’” Today we are tackling what could be considered one of the most important aspects of church planting–the “who” of your staff team! Mike and Andy remind us there are few “lone rangers” in the Bible. But cultivating a team can be a daunting task when you want to launch a sustainable church plant.

LILR 086 | Former Fuller Seminary President Mark Labberton on Power Dynamics and Big vs. Small Church

“If I have power, especially in ministry, it’s because it is a gift. And I’m accountable not in my audience, I’m accountable to the God of the universe who has laid down His life for the sake of the world.” Meet Mark Labberton, former Fuller Seminary President, author, and host of Fuller Studio’s Conversing podcast. Join us for an engaging conversation on what it means to lay down power. Mark gives insight on the concept of co-leadership and healthy power dynamics as he challenges us to pursue deeper discipleship above all else as the vision for church growth.

LILR 085 | Mark Clark on the Spirit of the Law in Pastoral Roles

“There is a sacrifice to ministry that scars you…that is part of the job.” Meet Mark Clark, one of the Senior Pastors at Bayside Church in Sacramento, California. In today’s episode, Mark shares his personal experience of entering a role as Senior Pastor after founding Village Church, a multi-site church with locations in multiple cities across Canada. You’ll get a glimpse into his perspective on the evolution of pastoral roles, the secret sauce to keeping good leaders, and the importance of humility and zeal as a pastor.

Brent Storms on the "Where" of Church Planting

“Perseverance is an underrated characteristic of people who succeed.” Meet Brent Storms, President of Orchard Group, an organization that helps leaders plant churches. In today’s episode, we’re getting practical with the “where” of church planting. A few crucial shifts in the way you approach a planting location can infuse your church with longevity and set it up for success.

LILR 084 | Leadership Transitions with Ben Snyder of Cedar Creek Church

“Get clear on your calling.” Meet Ben Snyder, Lead Pastor at Cedar Creek Church in Ohio. Ben talks with us about his personal experience in a quick transition season. He gives helpful advice, now in hindsight, glimpses into the challenges he faced, and key reminders for leaders entering a season of new leadership styles.

LILR 083 | Steve & Dana Clifford on Combatting Authority and Ego in Succession

“God loves your church more than you do…Invite Him into the discussion.” Meet Steve and Dana Clifford, former pastors at Westgate Church in San Jose, California. Without underestimating the hard work and the time it takes to healthily transition from one pastor to another, Steve and Dana give insight into how their successful transition has contributed to healthy new seasons in their lives and their church.

The Where - 5 Questions Before Choosing A Place To Plant

“So much of our journey is discovering what God has in mind.” Questions are powerful. Asking the right question with the right heart posture can be used by God to take your church plant far. Oftentimes, as church planters, we come with ready and willing hearts, but we lack the understanding of where God is leading us practically to plant a church.

LILR 082 | Thom and Sam Rainer on Leading Church Transitions and Renewing Evangelism

“Pastors tend to overestimate the value of vision and underestimate the value of strategy.” Meet Thom S. Rainer, and his son, Sam Rainer. With much experience in church consulting and transition, Thom and Sam are CEO and President (respectively) of Church Answers, an organization providing resources for pastors experiencing the ups and downs of ministry. Today’s podcast gives us a glimpse into practical roles an interim pastor should be filling as well as encouragement for all churches to revive their passion for evangelism and reach the lost. It’s as simple as Sam explains it, “Evangelism will never die in your church if you do it.”

LILR 081 | Sean Morgan on Overstaying Past your Prime - Biggest Succession Mistakes Elders and Outgoing Lead Pastors Make

“Do what is required to finish well.” Sean Morgan is sharing with us today the keys to a successful transition in ministry leadership. If we’re being honest, transition in ministry is not often the beautiful baton hand-off we desire it to be. There are challenges and intricacies that can prevent churches from experiencing the ideal "smooth transition." Today’s episode offers insight behind the “why” of common challenges as well as guardrails for a better path forward.

Derwin Gray on the Pastor’s Role in Planting Churches of Holiness and Unity

“Planting a church doesn’t start with the people you want to reach. It starts with the God who reached you.” Meet Derwin Gray, speaker, author, and Lead Pastor at Transformation Church. In today’s episode, Derwin gives encouragement to church planters by informing the key characteristics of a New Testament Church, reminding us of the right posture for a church planter’s heart, and challenging us in the areas the church falls short.

LILR 080 | Jud and Lori Wilhite on Dealing with Negativity, Laying Down the Idol of Effectiveness, & Prioritizing a Strong Marriage in Ministry

“One of the best gifts we can give our churches is a healthy relationship with God and a healthy marriage.” Meet Jud and Lori Wilhite. As leaders in ministry, this couple gives us a healthy look at what pursuing God looks like in the context of church ministry and marriage. In the midst of negativity, our own idols of effectiveness, and the dangers of comparison, Jud and Lori bring us back to the basics of our faith…the most effective practices we often neglect.

LILR 079: Darren Youngstrom on Setting Priorities in Transitions and Seeing 10X Growth from a Missional Focus

“The church is God’s vehicle to get the answer to people’s longings in their heart to them, and if people have been without a church long enough, then I know their spirit is going to be hungry.” Meet Darren Youngstrom, Lead Pastor at New Vintage Church in Santa Rosa. Today’s conversation brings an authentic glimpse into the transition role of a lead pastor. Darren is honest and vulnerable about his trials and hardships. But he also sheds light on the many ways God is clearly on the move in the midst of it all.

The What - 5 Decisions To Shape My Church Planting Vision

“...the more it’s clear the kind of culture I’m trying to create, I’ll attract people that also have similar values…so it’s so good before I go to that building phase to start getting some of this stuff super clear in my heart–one, so I can communicate it, but two, so that I can attract the right kind of people and I’m not having to work so hard to get people convinced about my vision.” On today’s episode, Andy Wood and Mike Hickerson share five key decisions to shape and clarify the vision for a church plant.

LILR 078: Rich Birch on Healthy Lead Pastor & Executive Pastor Relationships

“My advice to an executive pastor is: The output from your voice needs to be more questions than answers.” Meet Rich Birch, lead coach of the Church Growth Incubator, a community of churches actively working to grow through closely learning from the fastest-growing churches and applying those lessons to their churches. Today, we get to benefit from Rich’s stories, experience, and advice to Executive Pastors navigating the reality of their roles in relationship to Lead Pastors.

Church Planting Year One–the Mistakes and the Miracles

“A growing church is always led by a growing leader. And whenever a leader stops growing, the church starts dying.” Meet Ron Sylvia, founding pastor of Church @ The Springs. In today’s episode, Ron shares the realities of year one in church planting–especially as a pioneer church planter when there were not too many resources and advice at the time. Ron’s encouragement to new church planters is to listen to the voice of God and stay grounded in the vision and calling. As a church planter, you’re on the front lines of what will be your legendary days…

LILR 077 | Clay Scroggins on Life After Full-Time Ministry and Creating a Career Out of Influence

“God uses transition to connect us more deeply to the people around us.” Meet Clay Scroggins, author of the best-selling books How to Lead When You’re Not in Charge, How to Lead in a World of Distraction, and The Aspiring Leader’s Guide to the Future. In today’s episode, Clay gives a deep, personal look at what transitioning from a lead pastor role to an entrepreneurial, self-employed role has looked like for him.