Sunday, October 13, 2019

Do You See Categories or People?

I hope you're smiling. But you may not be. At least I tried.

But before you leave, there is a point to this post.

Carefully consider this...
Instead of seeing people as categories, what if we first saw people as human beings to be loved?

Think about this with me for a moment.

Instead of seeing people as categories —Democrats or Republicans, Asian or Hispanic, Muslim or Hindu, tattooed or not, etc.,— what if we first saw people like Jesus sees them—as people to be loved?

I know. This sounds crazy—especially in our current culture where we first categorize and then demonize just about anyone who disagrees with us.

But not so with Jesus.

Jesus sees beyond the categories and sees people worth loving. (See here, here, and here.)

If you aspire to follow the Jesus of the Bible, you might want to ask Jesus for some help in seeing beyond your favorite categories.

Will you?

I dare you.

It's the only real hope for breaking the crazy cycle our current culture is stuck in right now.

"You can safely assume you've created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do." —Anne Lamont


You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
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Sunday, October 06, 2019

The top 10 signs you're too old to trick or treat

10. You keep knocking on your own front door.

9. You're the only Power Ranger in the neighborhood with a walker.

8. You get winded from knocking on the door.

7. You have to have another kid chew the candy for you.

6. You ask for high fiber candy only.

5. When someone drops a candy bar in your bag, you lose your balance and fall over.

4. People say, "Great Keith Richards mask!" and you're not wearing a mask.

3. When the door opens you yell, "Trick or..." and can't remember the rest.

2. You have to carefully choose a costume that won't dislodge your hairpiece.

1. You keep having to go home to pee.

* Thanks Mikey's Funnies

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Sunday, September 29, 2019

The Challenge of Being a Disciplemaking Pastor—Part 2

Bill,
I’m walking through The Disciplemaking Genius of Jesus book with key ministry leaders in our church. Here’s how we’re doing it: We read a portion of the book and then gather for dinner at a local Mexican restaurant to wrestle scripture and explore what it looks to be leaders who live a Jesus disciplemaking way of life together—that overflows to others.

Frankly, this hasn’t been easy for us because running actives and programs is way easier than the hard work of being friends who aspire to live and share disciplemaking as a way of life together.

After our first gathering, one of our leaders said, “I was really torn up inside after our meeting, but it was a good thing.” Seeking to live the disciplemaking genius of Jesus together is a challenging—but necessary—shift for our church leadership.

To further help equip and encourage us on this journey, you brought the The Disciplemaking Genius of Jesus Training Experience to our volunteer church leaders [see pics below]. Better yet, you brought Pastor Steve Waggoner and the two of you trained and encouraged us. Thanks for modeling disciplemaking friendships that multiply even in the way you shared the training with us.

Now we’re looking at how our monthly leadership gatherings can become “Disciplemaking Learning Communities” where we continue to encourage and equip each other in Jesus-like disciplemaking friendships that multiply.

So here’s how we’re starting to move forward: I’m investing time living and practicing the disciplemaking genius of Jesus with the primary church leaders—so they can do the same at home, work, and in their respective ministries within our church. The goal for us as a church is to be intentional about spending “time with” one another in study, prayer, life as worship and loving others as we follow Jesus together and make disciples—who then make more disciples.

Just like Jesus did.

All that to say this: Thank you for being a disciplemaking friend to me and our church for all these years.

Pastor Jason Schifo
Community Free Church, Mahomet, IL

We can bring The Disciplemaking Genius of Jesus training experience 
to the volunteers in your church or ministry! Details here.

Better yet: We can equip YOU to take disciplemaking training 
to the volunteers in your church! Like these folks.

In case you missed it...

You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
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Sunday, September 22, 2019

On changing someone's mind...

 Full true story here.

You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
Let me encourage you and make you think ONE time a week (usually Monday morning) with a virtual Cup O' Joe with Bill in your email inbox. Two Simple Steps...
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Sunday, September 15, 2019

Disciplemaking Pastors—Part 2

John Vanne is a youth pastor at Grace Presbyterian Church in Peoria, IL. He's on the right above.

John did something CRAZY recently.

On a Saturday morning, John pulled together some of the volunteers who serve in youth ministry with him... and get this: He didn't just organize them. He encouraged them and trained them. See pic below.
Like I said, John is crazy... crazy like Jesus.

Here's how he started the training...
See what John's doing here? 

The phrases highlighted inside the actual prayer correspond to one (or more) of the passages of Scripture at the top. Where the colors match is where that part of the prayer has it's genesis in the Bible.

It turns out that The Disciplemaker's Prayer is way more than a prayer.  It's a fun, short Bible study for a cadre of disciplemaking friends and a way of life that is experienced together and shared with others.

Dream with me for minute. How might God answer this prayer?

What would that look like?

What could happen if every volunteer ministry leader in John's youth ministry lived out The Disciplemaker's prayer and actually made a disciple—who makes more disciples?

Better yet...
What might God do in your life if you dared to do this training exercise with you family, small group, Sunday School, Bible study, ministry, elders, pastoral staff, etc,?

I dare you to find out.

(This pic from Community Free Church, Mahomet, IL.)

Let me know how God answers your prayer so I can celebrate God with you!

Heavenly Father, please give every church pastors and volunteer ministry leaders who make disciples—who make more disciples, ad infinitum.
In Jesus' name, amen.

More here if you dare...
* Did you miss Disciplemaking Pastors—Part 1? Go here.
* Are you just organizing volunteers?

You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
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Sunday, September 08, 2019

We Are Your Missionaries of Encouragement...

Click any image below to enlarge for viewing and reading.
Is Cadre training coming to a place near you? Find out now.

Where else did we travel as Missionaries of Encouragement? Here.

Did you know we're celebrating 17 years of ministry? Check it out.

Would you be willing to pray for us 2x a month? Email me.

Want to bring Cadre training to your church or ministry? Go here.

Have you heard about Crazy Pastor Steve? He's crazy.

You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
Let me encourage you and make you think ONE time a week (usually Monday morning) with a virtual Cup O' Joe with Bill in your email inbox. Two Simple Steps...
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2. Check your email to confirm.
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Monday, September 02, 2019

I Never Cease to Be Amazed by God...

Early in our marriage, my wife went grocery shopping. Though I was employed in a full-time job, our income at that time was considered poverty level. Yes, we lived on love and a very tight budget. When Stacy came home from the grocery store, she said, "I was able to buy everything we planned except potatoes. I wanted to stick to our budget."

I said, "Thanks for sticking to the budget. We can do without potatoes. We'll be fine."

Those words were barely out of my mouth when someone knocked at our door. It was a dear friend from our church who lived across the back alley. Holding a large bag in her arms she said, "I bought too many potatoes at the store today. Would you like some?" 

Mind. Blown. 

I never cease to be amazed by God provision via His people.

That true story is a microcosm of how God has provided—and continues to provide—for Cadre Missionaries to this day.

September 2019 marks the 17th birthday/anniversary of Cadre Missionaries!

For 17 years, God and YOU have made it possible for us, as Cadre Missionaries, to multiply Jesus-like disciplemaking friendships here and around the world.

And make no mistake: We still need your help.


In honor of our 17th birthday, would you please prayerfully consider donating a special gift of $17 or more?


Those of you who know us know that we don't often ask for financial support like this. However, on our 17th anniversary as a ministry, we need your $ help, so we're asking God's people—like you—to join us in this disciplemaking adventure.

We'd love to see 300 of our friends respond with a special gift of $17. That would bless Cadre with $5,100 much needed dollars for our disciplemaking mission.

Will YOU be one of our 300 friends?

To donate $17 securely and immediately online, go here.
* Mail a check: Cadre Missionaries, PO Box 278, Sycamore, IL 60178

Other giving options...
To give more than $17 securely and immediately online, go here.
To support a Cadre missionary on a monthly basis, go here.
* For questions and more info, please call Rennie at 815.501.3132.

Note: Cadre Missionaries is a recognized 501(c)3 not-for-profit ministry and all gifts are tax deductible.
Please take a moment to read the Scripture on the pic above.

If you've never financially supported Cadre Missionaries before, this would be a great first step. If you're already a $ partner with God and Cadre, then please prayerfully consider an additional $17.

In a ministry like ours, every dollar makes a huge difference. Each gift—no matter the size—is a huge encouragement, much needed, and greatly appreciated.

Because Cadre seeks to make disciplemakers, only Heaven will reveal the full impact of your partnership.

We really are your Cadre Missionaries. You really are God's wind in our Cadre sails. Thank you for celebrating 17 years of Jesus-like disciplemaking with us and to God be the glory!

Bill Allison
Executive Director for the Cadre team
p.s. If anyone reading this is able to help us by giving an initial matching grant for others to match, that would be a huge help! Please call us at 815.501.3132.
From the rest of our Cadre Missionaries, thank you!

Sunday, August 25, 2019

Disciplemaking Pastors—Part 1

Meet Pastor Joe Horn, Chillicothe Bible Church, IL.
"Bill, I love being a part of Peoria Area Leadership Community (PALC) and look forward being a part of the PALC Ongoing gatherings. PALC is the most encouraging thing in my life right now. Thanks for investing your life in pastors and ministry leaders like me."

A few of the people Pastor Joe is training to live as disciplemakers...
“I've read dozens of discipleship books, used lots of programs and manuals, studied with lots of different people as part of my efforts to obey Jesus and make disciples. But few of these paid off in producing disciples who then make disciples. The Disciplemaking Genius of Jesus gives me a simple, reproducible, easily-explainable way to show someone how to do what Jesus did with someone else. I can't recommend it highly enough. It has been transformative in my life and in the life of several members of our church family. If you take the time to read this book, understand it, and put it into practice, you'll succeed in making disciples like Jesus did. And what is better than that?” 
Pastor Joe Horn, Chillicothe Bible Church, IL.

What crazy things might God do if a pastor got intentional about making disciplemakers—starting with the people in church? Here's a another true and encouraging story.

You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
Let me encourage you and make you think ONE time a week (usually Monday morning) with a virtual Cup O' Joe with Bill in your email inbox. Two Simple Steps...
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Sunday, August 18, 2019

Please Pray for Us—and Join Us!

If you're a praying friend, here's how you can be praying for us the next couple of months. Thank you for saying a quick prayer for us RIGHT NOW! And if you're so inclined, join us for one of these below! To explore bringing Cadre training to your church/ministry, go here.

Saturday, August 24, 2019
8:30 AM to 12:30 PM

Sunday, August 25, 2019
I'll be preaching God's Word at Salem Church of Ashland, WI, and getting time with my friend, Pastor Brian Cole

Thursday, September 5, 2019
A day-long gathering with the Peoria Area leadership Community studying, living, and sharing the disciplemaking genius of Jesus.

Sunday, September 8, 2019
Preaching God's Word at The Oaks Church, Dahinda, IL

September 13-15, 2019
Speaking to students and youth leaders in Austin, TX.

September 19, 2019
Session 1 of 3: Finding Volunteers for Ministry 
We'll explore five practical ways to turn pew potatoes into passionate participators.
Plus we'll explore...
* Why volunteers want a mission not just tasks
* How to develop a volunteer "job description" for your ministry
* How NOT to ask volunteers for help
* How to train volunteers to find more volunteers
 
Note: This is session 1 of 3 and will take place from 9 AM to 11:15 AM at The Christian Center, Your ticket into any or all three training sessions is a one-time purchase of this book. Read chapter 1 before you come to the training. Each person must bring their book to each training session—along with your Bible, a notebook, and pen. Immediately after this training, you are invited to lunch with The Peoria Area Youth Workers Network from 11:30 AM to 1 PM. Cost for lunch is $5.

September 22, 2019
I'll be preaching God's Word and doing a 90-minute disciplemaking training experience after the morning service at Taylorville Evangelical Free Church.

September 26-27, 2019
Training Trainers with the EFCA in MN.

September 28-29, 2019

Thursday, October 3, 2019
A day-long gathering with the Peoria Area leadership Community studying, living, and sharing the disciplemaking genius of Jesus.

Sunday, October 6, 2019
Preaching God's Word at Community Bible Church, Knoxville.

Thursday, October 17, 2019
Session 2 of 3: Developing Volunteers for Ministry 
We'll explore twelve motivating factors that make volunteers tick and why they matter.
Plus we'll explore...
* Why working with volunteers requires real leadership
* The differences between a boss and a leader
* How we demotivate volunteers and how to stop it
* The power of feedback to and from volunteers
Note: Session 2 of 3 will take place from 9 AM to 11:15 AM at The Christian Center, Your ticket into any or all three training sessions is a one-time purchase of this bookRead chapter 2 before you come to the training. Each person must bring their book to each training session—along with your Bible, a notebook, and pen. Immediately after this training, you are invited to lunch with The Peoria Area Youth Workers Network from 11:30 AM to 1 PM. Cost for lunch is $5.

October, 25-27, 2019
Equip Disciplemaking Training Experience for junior high/middle school students and their youth leaders is happening at First Alliance Church, Port Charlotte, FL. For more information, contact Cadre Missionary, Laura Slezak.

Saturday, October 26 2019
I'll be giving a keynote message and doing disciplemaking training experiences as a part of Christian and Missionary Alliance's Next Ministry Conference in OH.

Thursday, October 31
A day-long gathering with the Peoria Area leadership Community studying, living, and sharing the disciplemaking genius of Jesus.

Thursday, November 21, 2019
We'll explore seven ways to retain highly effective volunteers. 
Plus we'll explore...
* Why volunteers quit leaders and not ministries
* How to encourage volunteers
* How to train volunteers—not just organize them
* The three minute difference
Note: Session 3 of 3 will take place from 9 AM to 11:15 AM at The Christian Center, Your ticket into any or all three training sessions is a one-time purchase of this bookRead chapter 3 before you come to the training. Each person must bring their book to each training session—along with your Bible, a notebook, and pen. Immediately after this training, you are invited to lunch with The Peoria Area Youth Workers Network from 11:30 AM to 1 PM. Cost for lunch is $5.

January 17-19, 2020
Evangelism Is Relationships Training Experience at Neighborhood Alliance Church, Longwood, FL. For more information, contact Cadre Missionary, Laura Slezak.


Stay tuned to this page for updates!

“Dear friend, you are being faithful to God when you care for the traveling teachers…. Please continue providing for such teachers in a manner that pleases God. For they are traveling for the Lord, and they accept nothing from people who are not believers. So we ourselves should support them so that we can be their partners as they teach the truth.” —3 John 5-8

Sunday, August 11, 2019

If you fail with volunteers...

(Don't believe it? Go here, here, here, here, here, and here.)

Yet, the overwhelming majority of ministry leaders have had very little—if any—training when it comes to finding, developing, and retaining volunteers for ministry.

I have great news for you.

Help is on the way!

You—and anyone else you know who oversees ministry volunteers in any capacity—are invited to these three biblical, interactive, and practical training experiences.

Thursday, September 19, 2019
Session #1 Finding Volunteers
We'll explore five practical ways to turn pew potatoes into passionate participators.
Plus we'll explore...
* Why volunteers want a mission not just tasks
* How to develop a volunteer "job description" for your ministry
* How NOT to ask volunteers for help
* How to train volunteers to find more volunteers
 

Note: Session #1 will take place on Thursday, September 19, 2019 from 9 AM to 11:15 AM at The Christian Center, Your ticket into any or all three training sessions is a one-time purchase of this book. Read chapter 1 before you come to the training. Each person must bring their book to each training session—along with your Bible, a notebook, and pen. Immediately after this training, you are invited to lunch with The Peoria Area Youth Workers Network from 11:30 AM to 1 PM. Cost for lunch is $5.

Thursday, October 17, 2019
Session #2 Developing Volunteers
We'll explore twelve motivating factors that make volunteers tick and why they matter.
Plus we'll explore...
* Why working with volunteers requires real leadership
* The differences between a boss and a leader
* How we demotivate volunteers and how to stop it
* The power of feedback to and from volunteers

Note: Session #2 will take place on Thursday, October 17, 2019 from 9 AM to 11:15 AM at The Christian Center, Your ticket into any or all three training sessions is a one-time purchase of this bookRead chapter 2 before you come to the training. Each person must bring their book to each training session—along with your Bible, a notebook, and pen. Immediately after this training, you are invited to lunch with The Peoria Area Youth Workers Network from 11:30 AM to 1 PM. Cost for lunch is $5.

Thursday, November 21, 2019
Session #3 Retaining Volunteers
We'll explore seven ways to retain highly effective volunteers. 
Plus we'll explore...
* Why volunteers quit leaders and not ministries
* How to encourage volunteers
* How to train volunteers—not just organize them
* The three minute difference

Note: Session #3 will take place on Thursday, November 21, 2019 from 9 AM to 11:15 AM at The Christian Center, Your ticket into any or all three training sessions is a one-time purchase of this bookRead chapter 3 before you come to the training. Each person must bring their book to each training session—along with your Bible, a notebook, and pen. Immediately after this training, you are invited to lunch with The Peoria Area Youth Workers Network from 11:30 AM to 1 PM. Cost for lunch is $5.

Each of these three training sessions are filled with practical tools for personal and team assessments. You'll leave with clear next steps for immediate application.

Who?
This training is for anyone who oversees a ministry—volunteers or paid staff. Please invite another leader from your church, ministry, network or denomination. The learning and application will be so much deeper and transformative. If you can't find anyone else to join you for one or more of these training sessions, please come yourself.

Training Materials?

Each person must purchase the updated, revised, and expanded edition of Recruiting, Motivating, and Retaining Volunteers—a handbook for anyone who works with volunteers in a ministry setting. 



RSVP?
To reserve your seat for any of these training experiences, please contact Bill.


Can't Make It?
Want to bring THIS training to your ministry leaders? Please contact Bill.


You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
Let me encourage you and make you think ONE time a week (usually Monday morning) with a virtual Cup O' Joe with Bill in your email inbox. Two Simple Steps...
1. Go here and submit your email.
2. Check your email to confirm.
You can unsubscribe at any time.

Sunday, August 04, 2019

The Challenge of Being a Disciplemaking Pastor—Part 1

"Hi Bill,
We talked a few months ago after the disciplemaking training experience you and your pastor friends led for the pastors of our denomination. I had been at my present church for a couple of months when that training took place. Here's a picture of the group of men I'm pulling close for disciplemaking. I would say our group is still in its infancy, but these guys are beginning to bond together and I am seeing some spiritual movement and passion kindled.

This took me a lot longer than I expected. I had originally planned to do this with the church elders. I struggled for a few months because they were resistant to meet outside of the normal business meetings due to time constraints—and that was just not enough to take this to a deeper level. So I began searching for the guys God had placed in my life here that would be receptive. I found three who were committed to come and begin the disciplemaking process.

It has been exciting to see what God is already doing in them. One of them, whom I saw from the day I came to candidate, has a deep desire to take it to the next level, no matter what. God is developing leadership in him for the future. All three together are a solid start—even if a slow one.

Thank you for staying in touch. Blessings to you and your crew!"


What can we learn from this true story?

Here's a thought that comes to my mind.



What's your next step?
* A blue-print for disciplemaking pastors
* Training for disciplemaking pastors 

* Training Pastors to Train Disciplemakers 
The true story of a disciplemaking pastor 

You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
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Sunday, July 28, 2019

Cadre and FCA: Disciplemaking Friendships that Multiply...

Meanwhile, at the Fellowship of Christian Athletes' (FCA) summer training camp in Jacksonville, IL, Crazy Pastor Steve (CPS) teaches everyone that The Disciplemaker's Prayer is way more than a prayer. It's a way of life together! 

What might God be able to do in our country and around the world if a small cadre of athletes and coaches embraced Jesus-like disciplemaking friendships that multiply?

Exciting thought, ain't it? That's exactly WHY we love and partner with Cole Espenshied and the Peoria Area Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

I dare you to stop and pray it RIGHT NOW.

No. Seriously. Right now.

You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
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