January 16, 2015
Welcome to a new year with new hopes and expectations. Personally, 2014 was a year of many firsts and many successes and there is nothing to say that 2015 will be anything less. I think one of the vital disciplines for any leader is to continually grow and learn.
There are many great and competent leaders who are lending their voices and experiences in practical ways through their blogs and writings and I wanted to give you a sampling of some of the ones I personally interact with on an ongoing basis.
These are not in any particular order and some of these may be well known to you while others not so much. I've also included a few Canadian ones, because our context is unique in many ways from our counterparts south of us.
As I've stated before, I believe we have a huge vacuum in Canada when it comes to leadership development but that's a topic for another time. I hope you find this list helpful. Each of these writers will challenge you and help you grow as a leader.
Michael Hyatt michaelhyatt.com
This one may seem a bit obvious but this former Chairman and CEO of Thomas Nelson Publishers is one of the best all around resources on the net. Whether you are wanting to up your game, find dynamic resources, or just be refreshed, few deliver like Michael.
Joshua Reich joshuareich.org
Josh is the Lead Pastor of Revolution Church in Tucson, Arizona. Beyond living in an enviable climate, his site is a welcome respite in many ways. He writes on every topic imaginable as it relates to life and following Jesus. You'll find insightful commentary on everything from theology to weight-loss. Whenever I'm on his site I feel a kindred spirit, something that comes across in the way he shares his life.
Scott Stein preparedtoanswer.org
Scott is a good friend and brilliant thinker who operates the apologetics ministry, Prepared to Answer. Besides being a Canadian, he is a great resource whenever you need solid biblical answers to cultural and philosophical challenges. If you are a parent, you will especially appreciate his articles on answering the questions children pose that have most parents scrambling. If you are looking for a dynamic speaker for your church or group, don't hesitate to give Scott a call.
Carrie Nieuwhof careynieuwhof.com
Carrie is another Canadian and Lead Pastor of Connexus Community Church in Barrie, Ontario. His passion is to share his insights and inspire other leaders. His writings are clear, infectious and challenging. He recently added podcasting to his many resources and just keeps adding value to his site in ways few others in Canada are able to match. When our church was in the throes of re-inventing itself we leaned on Carrie and the good people of Connexus to help us navigate a vision for the future.
Derwin Gray derwinlgray.com
What can you say about a former NFL football player who becomes the Lead Pastor of Transformation Church in South Carolina? His heart for evangelism and reaching people with the Gospel is evident in every aspect of his writing. I don't know if its his football background but he has a refreshing way of presenting theological truths that hit home on so many levels. You are bound to enjoy his insights and heart.
Carolyn Weber pressingsave.com
Carolyn is a good friend and one of Canada's brightest literary lights. She is the recipient of the 2014 Grace Irwin literary Award and author of Surprised by Oxford and Holy is the Day. Few writers can bring spiritual insight to the everyday quite like Carolyn. As a leader and pastor, she reminds me of the ongoing grace that is evident all around us. Look for more amazing offerings to come from her and husband Kent in 2015 that will further inspire all of us to follow Christ with intent and joy.
Brian Dodd briandoddonleadership.com
Brian is a prolific blogger and writes at a pace that makes me dizzy. Nevertheless, he has many gems and pools from other leaders and sources which gives him a wide appeal and effectiveness. We've interacted a couple of times and this man has a real heart for leaders, especially pastors. He even has a post recapping the top ten posts that he read from the week. He is bound to have something to say about whatever you are looking for.
Caroline Leaf drleaf.com
Dr Caroline Leaf is a cognitive neuroscientist with a PhD in Communication Pathology specializing in Neuropsychology. Now that's a mouth full. She is also a breath of fresh air. A committed scientist who has worked since the early 80's developing techniques and tools to help people change their thinking and behaviour. Also a committed Christian, she blends biblical faith with her research and the results of her work are nothing short of inspiring.
Brené Brown brenebrown.com
Brené Brown is a research professor at the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work. She has spent the past decade studying vulnerability, courage, worthiness, and shame. Now, those are heady subjects. Her insights are liberating and as a pastor she confirms and gives traction to many biblical teachings on these topics. These are not easily opened closets for many, but somehow she makes it a journey worth experiencing.
Catalyst is one of the best one-stop shops for ministry leaders on the planet. From conferences, podcasts, to resources of every shape and size, if its not here, it likely doesn't exist. Well, you know what I mean? I've been privileged to attend a number of their conferences and have benefitted tremendously from them. Check it out! Those are my recommendations. Would love to hear your favourites, because great resources are never a waste. Happy reading!
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