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Create a road map that aligns assets and actions with God’s intentions.

Tangled fishing lines

My parents had a cottage in northern Minnesota where we spent a fair amount of time fishing as a family.  My dad’s role was to bait the hook and remove the fish we caught. He also spent a good amount of time untangling the fishing lines. When I think of how congregations organize themselves and

Before you develop a strategic plan

Before you develop a strategic plan

Over the years, I’ve seen way too many congregations spend countless hours developing detailed strategic plans only to have them end up in the archives section of the church library.  I believe this is due to not fully understanding the purpose of having a plan as well as how the plan will be used upon

Making BIG changes through small steps

Making BIG changes through small steps

At VFM, we often encourage people to take “shuffle steps towards transformation” – small, consistent steps toward desired outcomes.  This typically shows up when the people we coach set and achieve daily, weekly, and monthly goals.  The coaching approach to spiritual vitality becomes transformative when other paid and volunteer staff also begin setting goals (usually

Do you know your next step?

Do you know your next step?

Thriving congregations need clarity about four things: Their PURPOSE (mission statement), their DIRECTION (vision and values statements), their PATH (roadmap for living into God’s preferred future), and the INDIVIDUAL CONTRIBUTIONS  team members are willing to take. Congregations I  coach often create a “Soul Script” that lists their purpose, direction and pathways, resulting in a newfound

Navigating Change

Navigating Change

Navigating change begins with identifying a congregation’s most pressing issues. Time is then spent visualizing God’s preferred future which is summed up in a brief narrative. Then 30-day, 90-day and 180-day and 360-day goals are created that will lead to the fulfillment of the vision. The list of goals include who’s responsible for each action

From Tattoos to DNA

From Tattoos to DNA

My oldest son asked me yesterday if I had ever considered getting a tattoo. I told him, “No, I don’t subject myself to pain if I can avoid it.” It’s the first time I’ve talked about tattoos with my family but it’s a common topic of conversation at Vibrant Faith Ministries. We talk about how

Turning Ideas Into Action

Turning Ideas Into Action

This week I’ve been attending an ELCA Lifelong Learning Partners event and I’ve taken several pages of notes on my iPad filled with great insights and ideas from the presentations and network gatherings.  In earlier years, I realized that I had no organized way to transfer these ideas into tangible programs, practices and methodologies and