Your personalized ministry library can be a powerful tool. Chad Graham provides 8 categories of ministry resources that should be in your pastoral library.

Your Guide for Building a Pastoral Library

Published: March 1st, 2016

When your interests are many, it is easy to get lost in the great sea of “must read” books. Perusing the bookstore can be agonizing for us bibliophiles, as we discover the sheer volume of books demanding our attention. Upon reaching the cashier, I must often shed books collected during my journey through the bookstore.

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Dr. Christi Sanders discusses why every business is in need of a leadership development program to ensure long term growth.

Why Your Organization Needs a Leadership Development Program

Published: April 13th, 2017

What could possibly go wrong?

I always laugh when I hear someone say those words because of course anything can go wrong. Or it can go right. But much of that depends on how well we are prepared. In both my personal and professional life, I believe in planning for contingencies. When my kids were little, I didn’t leave the house without extra clothes and diapers. I knew the likelihood of needing them was high. In the professional world, the failure to plan for contingencies can lead to catastrophic failure.

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Effective communication is extremely important in business. Here are tips to help get your message across clearly with no misunderstanding.

Valuable Tips for Effective Communication in the Workplace

Published: September 27th, 2016

You may ask, why should we care about our ability to communicate? Well, that’s easy. We should care because we want others to understand what we mean. We want to improve our relationships. We want to make sure things get done and in many cases, we want to advance our careers. One of the job skills employers desire most is effective communication. When people communicate effectively, they can build a productive working relationship, solve problems, supervise others, and create trust in the workplace.

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Tyrone Block, D.M.A., explains 1900s Shout Band in America’s Black Pentecostal Church as a turning point in 20th century America.

Turning Points in 20th Century America: Shout Bands

Published: February 23rd, 2017

In Spring 2016, the history department hosted the seminar “Turning Points in 20th Century America.” Topics included legal issues, economics, marketing, history, music, church history, Christian film making and social activism. Tyrone Block, D.M.A., explains Shout Band in America’s Black Pentecostal Church during the 1900s.

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Rob Price, M.A., explains the evolution and history of American cinema.

Turning Points in 20th Century America: Cinema

Published: January 19th, 2017

During the spring of 2016, SAGU’s history department hosted the seminar “Turning Points in 20th Century America.” Topics included legal issues, economics, marketing, history, music, church history, Christian filmmaking and social activism. Rob Price, M.A., explains the evolution and history of American cinema from the roaring twenties all the way into modern cinema.

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This 10 step guide will show leaders the importance of praising others.

The Superpower of Praising Others

Published: November 10th, 2016

How does it feel when someone praises your accomplishments? Do you suddenly feel inspired, sharp and ready to take on new challenges? Science shows that there are many psychological effects of praise. Used correctly, praise can boost self-esteem, increase performance and supercharge productivity. Used incorrectly or not at all, it can tear down and render the most high-powered team impotent.

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Dr. Charity Kurz explains the psychology of venting through explaining reframing and other useful tips.

The Psychology of Venting - Part 2

Published: July 3rd, 2017

As discussed in a previous post, venting is a two-way process that involves the person venting and the person hearing the vent. Healthy, positive venting is focused on how the person hearing the vent shows empathy, creates safety, and participates in active listening (Kurz, 2017; Bryant, 2009; Egan, 2007). Research has concluded that negative venting can lead to higher stress levels and other physical health concerns. Negative venting is not associated with the person venting but rather the active listener and his or her response (Bodie et al., 2015; Goldsmith, 2004).

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Dr. Charity Kurz explains the psychology of venting and gives useful tips to be a better listener.

The Psychology of Venting

Published: March 16th, 2017

Venting. We all have done it. As a matter of fact, we probably have done it within the last 24 hours. Have you ever vented and was angry with yourself for doing so? Do I know those times all too well…? So why do we vent? Is it healthy to vent? What can we do when others want to vent? Let’s unpack these questions.

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Amy George uses poetic imagery to explain the relationship between God, the Good Shepherd and His church.

The Conceit of the Shepherd

Published: March 9th, 2017

The Bible reflects the importance of sheep in biblical society. The relationship between the sheep and the shepherd was one of intimate knowledge - the shepherd’s duty to watch over and care for each sheep was directly tied to the success of the owner.

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This article will bring a current understanding to King Solomon's language used in Proverbs.

Solomon's Twitter Account

Published: December 1st, 2016

Imagine King Solomon gawking at an iPad. We’ve come a long way from papyrus scrolls, cuneiform tablets, scribes, printing presses, telegrams, and even being solely dependent on handwritten letters delivered by the Pony Express. Technological advancements and globalization have definitely changed how our society (and most of the world) engages information. We are constantly inundated with massive amounts of information; we rarely encounter any data solely by itself. TV shows have ads for other TV shows in the bottom corners of screens. News channels will report on one issue, while several other headlines cruise by underneath. No single web page is complete without multiple scrollbars, links, and the bombardment of the occasional pop-up; we automatically know that no matter where we travel on the Web, we will be greeted with an onslaught of images, colors, and words.

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Shelly Zaldivar gives four tips on how to effectively use social media for ministry growth.

Social Media Tips For Your Ministry

Published: March 23rd, 2017

You see them everywhere. People with their heads down looking at their phone, sitting at coffee shops with their laptops, and scrolling through tablets to catch up on the latest news. So how do you become relevant in a noisy world? How do you speak to your community? How can you be heard amidst the many videos, memes, and personality quizzes? The key to promoting your church or ministry through social media is developing a strategy and consistently following the plan.

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Dr. Jeff Magruder talks about how Christians need to consider language and culture when preaching the gospel to non christians.

Presenting the Gospel to Non-Christians

Published: March 2nd, 2017

In this video, Dr. Jeff Magruder explains the importance of having an awareness of language, culture and other variables when presenting the gospel to non-Christians.

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Calvin George discusses the real world languages that inspired J.R.R. Tolkien's middle earth linguistics.

Other Languages in Middle Earth

Published: February 2nd, 2017

Not all of Tolkien’s languages were as fully developed as Sindarin and Quenya. One language’s lack of development is explained through another real-world language attribute – sociolinguistics. The dwarves of Middle-Earth had one language, made for them by the Valar Aulë. This language is Khuzdûl. Tolkien’s dwarves were a rather xenophobic race. As such, they preferred to learn the languages of others rather than teach their language to anyone. Thus, the dwarves spoke Sindarin and Westron whenever they were among the other races and kept their own language secret. This cultural attribute of the dwarves directly affected their language and how much of the language that Tolkien actually had to develop. An example of the dwarves’ multilingualism can be seen in the Sindarin, not Khuzdûl inscription over Moria’s gate.

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6 Sermon Introduction Techniques to Catch People's Attention

How to Win Your Audience's Attention for Your Sermon

Published: June 28th, 2016

The sermon introduction is more important now than historically it has ever been. We can no longer assume that simply because we have a title in front of our name, letters after our name, or an open Bible before us that people feel any obligation to pay attention to what we have to say.

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Dan Langston gives 5 tips for new Christians to understand reading the Bible.

How to Read the Bible: 5 Tips for New Christians

Published: May 11th, 2017

Start with one verse wonders.

Romans 3:23 is often quoted when the decision is being made to come to Christ. While verse 23 is certainly true, Paul finishes his thought in verse 24. It’s truly good news.

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Jeff Magruder gives useful tips and tricks to establishing a successful sermon conclusion.

How to Develop an Effective Sermon Conclusion

Published: January 12th, 2017

Many preachers understand how to take off, but don’t know how to land. They can introduce a sermon, but they struggle with providing an effective conclusion. In this blog, I am describing three characteristics of an effective conclusion and offer some approaches that you can incorporate into your preaching.

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This guide will prepare you to avoid unforeseen crisis in your business through strategic planning and strategy implementation.

How to Create Contingency Plans for an Unforeseen Crisis

Published: October 27th, 2016

There is no shortage of times of crisis when doing business on a global scale. Succeeding or failing in those emergencies depends on successful planning. This type of plan is called strategic planning.

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Lanny Rogers discusses the importance of financial planning, and how to effectively budget your money.

Financial Planning Tips For a Successful Future

Published: December 22nd, 2016

While the Bible provides guidance on the topic of money management, sometimes it can be difficult to translate those lessons into daily practice. Lanny Rogers, MBA in Finance from the University of Dallas, CPA candidate, and Certified Treasury Professional shares his best tips, tricks, secrets and advice for financial planning.

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Dr. Terance Espinoza speaks on the importance of knowing the difference between exegesis and eisegesis and how it relates to understanding the bible.

Exegesis Versus Eisegesis

Published: February 16th, 2017

The terms “exegesis” and “eisegesis” refer to how you read the Bible.

At the most basic level, exegesis relies on the original context of a biblical passage to determine that passage’s meaning, while eisegesis uses things other than the original context of a biblical passage to determine that passage’s meaning.

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This blog will guide you through Middle-Earth and into the mind of J.R.R. Tolkien.

Earth Legends in the Middle-Earth Legendarium

Published: December 15th, 2016

Not only did Tolkien weave real-world words and sounds into his constructed languages, but he also wove real-world legends into his languages and tales. These tales often initially wound their way into the story through the use of a name as seen in his previous quote: “To me a name comes first, and the story follows.” Several names did not originate in the languages and cultures that he invented, but instead came from his reading of old literature as a philologist and academic. One of these names, possibly one of the first to influence his legendarium was Eärendil. Tolkien found this name in the Old English poem Crist. He was fascinated by these two lines:

“éala éarendelenglabeorhtast/ofermiddangeardmonnumsended
(Hail, Eárendil, brightest of angels/over middle-earth sent to men).

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