Video: What is a Successful Church? by Pastor Chuck Smith of Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa

Our definitions of success are not always the same as God’s.  How does your church rate? What is a Successful Church?

Although given at the 2012 Calvary Chapel East Coast Pastors’ Conference, this message is ideal for the whole church.  It’s a dose of reality as we realize that our definitions of success are not always the same as God’s and if taken to heart by a congregation, could help a church move forward in unity, seeking the right goals.

When we don’t know how to measure success, we can become discouraged when we should be encouraged, and vice-versa.  We can become dissatisfied and angry, finding fault when there is none.  We can also become complacent and comfortable when the church is spiritually lacking.  This message is a must for everyone in ministry, and will help you understand the measurement of success in God’s eyes.

Source: http://streaming.ccphilly.org/video.aspx?id=ECPC1205

Book: A Pocket Guide to the Bible (How do we know it can be trusted?) by Answers in Genesis

Book: A Pocket Guide to the Bible (How do we know it can be trusted?) by Answers in GenesisThe Bible claims to be the Word of God and to be sufficient for understanding the world in which we live. But how do we know it can be trusted? Why 66 books? Is the Bible enough? Are there contradictions? Where is the proof of creation?

This Pocket Guide to The Bible by Answers in Genesis will give you answers to these questions and more. The Bible contains the very words of God and is the key to understanding the world in which we live. It is the history book of the universe, and the instruction manual for mankind. The Bible was written by the Creator, so we can put our trust in it!

How to get this resource:

“But you must continue in the things which you have learned and been assured of, knowing from whom you have learned them, and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:14-17)

Book: The Reproducers (New Life for Thousands) by Chuck Smith

thereproducersImagine 1,500 people arriving an hour early for church, or watching 500 people be baptized in a few short hours in the pacific ocean, and Bible studies more popular than anything else. These are just a few of the amazing things that transpired during the Jesus movement of the 1970’s and they are captured within the pages of ‘The Reproducers’.

Yes, the stories contained within this book are from forty years ago, but the truths that transformed these lives are as real and true today as they were in 1972 when this book was originally published. It is my prayer that you would be blessed, encouraged, and challenged as you read the testimony of what God did and what He desires to do today through people just like us.

How to get this resource:

Joe Focht, Pastor at Calvary Chapel of Philadelphia says:

“I believe The Reproducers captures the heartbeat of the Jesus Movement. As I read and re-read the book, I am overwhelmed with the beauty, power, and simplicity of Jesus, His Spirit and His Word. ‘Lord uncomplicate us, cause us to be flexible and grace us with a fresh and continued Jesus Movement.'”

Book: Zeal Without Burnout by Christopher Ash

zealwithoutburnoutThere are too many Christians who stop serving in their local church or in a ministry. Why? Burnout. I don’t believe they have lost their love for Christ, or their desire to serve him, but for one reason or another, they are exhausted and simply cannot carry on. This is why we must recognize our own limits to help reduce the risk of what we call “burnout”.

In “Zeal Without Burnout” author Christopher Ash says, “it is a healthy thing, a realistic truth, to grasp that I am dust. I am made from dust. In this mortal life I will never be more than a few particles of dust into which God has temporarily breathed the breath of life. I am frail and fragile, and I do well never to forget it.” People serving in ministry must understand this truth, and know their limitations to reduce the risk of burning out.

This book provides several keys which author Christopher Ash has found to help us not grow weary while doing good. These principles are: 1) We need sleep. 2) We need Sabbath Rests. 3) We need friends. 4) We need nourishment. 5) A warning: beware celebrity. 6) An encouragement: it’s worth it. And 7) A delight: rejoice in grace not gifts.

After you read this book, you will no doubt understand what it means to be burned out and you might discover whether you are yourself burned out. I think that it would be especially encouraging to all who serve in Christian ministry.

How to get this resource:

Devo: Pastors Are People Too (7 Days): What They Won’t Tell You but You Need to Know

In light of October being Pastor Appreciation Month (started by Focus on the Family in 1994), here is a recommended 7-Day Devotion for you to enjoy.

devoimage720x405A healthy church requires a healthy pastor. Discover proven ways to make a positive impact in your pastor’s world and the life of your church. This practical devotion offers tangible ways to better understand and care for the pastor who cares so deeply about you. Pastors and their families live under incredible pressures. Their lives are played out in a fishbowl, with the entire congregation and community watching their every move. They are expected to have ideal families, to be perfect people, to always be available, to never be down and to have all the answers we need to keep our own lives stable and moving forward. Those are unrealistic expectations to place on anyone, yet most of us are disappointed when a pastor becomes overwhelmed, seems depressed, lets us down or completely burns out. Learn how you can help and better appreciate your pastor and his family through this free 7-day devotion.