The Ancient Roman military, famed for its organization and tactical brilliance, revolutionized warfare through teamwork. From 161 BCE to 180 CE, these soldiers were unified under the reign of Emperor Marcus Aurelius by a code, “strength and honor.” 

In part 1 of this series, Dr. Tony Garza discusses the significance behind the first word of this code: strength. Strength can take on many forms, both individually and collectively. So, what exactly is ‘strength’ within the modern team setting? And, since you’re most likely not charging into a battlefield with a sword anytime soon, how does the first component of this ancient Roman war code apply to you? Let’s dive in. 

While wisdom and strength certainly are qualities of a good leader, there is something to be said about the importance of humility. Throughout the Bible, we see numerous examples of leaders blessed with all of the natural gifts and qualities of a strong leader but lost everything because of their pride. Their inflated sense of self-importance not just affected their circumstances but the circumstances of everyone around them. In this blog, Dr. Dennis Robinson continues his series on Leadership from the book of Proverbs explaining the importance of humility from a biblical perspective. 

Fear often has a negative connotation, but like any emotion, it can drive us to do remarkable things and make a positive impact. Fear should also play a role in our walks with Christ and our approach to leadership. In this blog, Dr. Dennis Robinson explains what it means to truly fear the Lord from a biblical perspective and through the lens of some of his own life experiences. Referencing the book of Proverbs, he expounds on the notion that fearing the Lord is truly the beginning of all knowledge and the key to effective leadership. 

Pastoral leadership is much more than preparing messages and preaching once or twice a week. Some of the most meaningful moments for pastors are actually spent outside of the pulpit through their daily interactions, acts of servant leadership, and efforts to help their church operate efficiently. So, how can one person manage all of these things? Well, understanding your leadership style can certainly be a helpful first step. In this blog, Dr. Tony Garza shares how the Leadership Grid Theory can help you make sure that those around you feel valued and heard while making the most of the strengths God has given you!

In the fifth and final installment of this series, Dr. Mike Clarensau concludes with a question that may surprise you. As addressed in parts 1-4, church visitors seek more than the experience of just attending a church service and going on with their lives. They are searching for meaning, fulfillment, security, and friendships. Doing life together and being a part of a community is usually driving the decision to attend a new church. And, at the head of this new church is the pastor. As we know, for anything great to succeed, it must be championed by a great leader. This brings us to the last and certainly, not least question of this series. 

Significance is the desperate hope of fragmented people. They’ve lost confidence in the more traditional ways of finding life’s meaning and are searching for some way to make a difference. So when they come into church, they aren’t looking to get busier with a bunch of new programs and events. They are, however, looking for ways to make their life count. In the fourth installment of the series, Dr. Mike Clarensau addresses one of the more profound questions in a church visitor's mind. 

Because of our busy schedules, we’re often a little hesitant to add anything new to our lives. We feel that for us to commit to something new, it must be worth our time. For first-time church visitors and non-believers, attending a new church is no exception. They may not know exactly what they’re getting themselves into or how this new experience will ultimately provide value. As Christ-followers, we know that there is nothing more valuable in this world than Jesus. So, how can we demonstrate this to new church visitors? How can we let them know the value of the gospel and our church community? Dr. Mike Clarensau expounds on this topic in the third installment of this series. 

Can you remember a church sermon that deeply impacted you? What was it about this particular message that it left such an impression on you? Great, memorable sermons are usually a combination of great biblical content and great delivery. For preachers, the importance of sermon preparation almost goes without saying, but, unfortunately, the delivery is often left out of the equation. 

During the Sermonary Sermon Summit, Wade Bearden, Co-Creator of the web platform, Sermonary, discussed the importance of delivery with Dr. Jeff Magruder, Professor of Bible and Church Ministries at Southwestern Assemblies of God University. In this video, Dr. Magruder shares the three biggest mistakes that occur with sermon delivery. 

In our previous blog, we tackled the first question people tend to ask when they visit a church for the first time. In the 2nd installment of this 5-part series, Dr. Mike Clarensau shares the second question addressing the importance of trust and security for visitors. Church can and should be a vulnerable place, and as such, visitors must feel safe to be themselves and be vulnerable. 

The questions people are asking when they walk through church doors have changed over the past decade. Questions like, “How’s the music?” or “Is the preaching good?” or even “What do they have for my kids?” have slid down the list for many. Yes, a quality presentation and excellent children’s ministries still matter, but those are typically the thoughts of churched people who have come to check you out. The real target audience–the unchurched in our communities–don’t listen to Christian music and aren’t shopping for the best preaching in town. They’re looking for something else.

The questions have changed. People who visit your church have something else on their mind as they make their maiden voyage into your Sunday service. In this blog, Dr. Mike Clarensau takes a look at these new questions and offers some insight into how we can answer them most effectively.

So, let's dive in with our first question which is probably the most important of them all.