GLS more than a summit

GLS more than a Summit
                     ~  Darrell Adcock, South City Church

I’ll never forget sitting in the lakeside auditorium with 2,463 others at Willow Creek Community Church outside of Chicago for the very first Leadership Summit.  The presence of the Holy Spirit was heavy on me.  I could tell they had been praying fervently over a long season to “call us up” as leaders.  As Hybels famously said,  “The local church is the hope of the world, and its future rests primarily in the hands of its leaders.”

It seemed only natural to use this conference as a chance to connect with my teenage kids and let them taste of what mature leadership looks like and ways to grow in their service through the local church, learning from leaders in business, politics, thought-leaders, and nonprofits.

“When Dad called me one day to go to this leadership conference, I thought, “I’ll go, spend time with my dad” I never thought that this might change the way I live my life. The first year it opened my eyes to the world of leadership and that I could actually be good at it. What a true blessing it was to sit next to the man I looked up to most in leadership, in life in the church, and most of all as a teacher. The Global Leadership Summit has been the two days a year that I look forward to most. From hearing from the top leaders to the car rides on the way back talking about what stuck out most. The Summit has shaped me to truly love the local church and made me see leadership in a whole new way. Six years down and twenty to go!” – McKenna Adcock

Over the past 25 years of the GLS, I bet I’ve only missed a couple.  God profoundly uses this conference to re-calibrate my leadership, renew my calling, and expand my heart for the local church, the world, and the needs of people.  Plus, I will never surrender the opportunity to connect and grow with my, now adult, kids.

Don’t worry, Kenna, I’ve already got our tickets for next year!

McKenna Adcock uses her leadership for Starbucks and in serving at South City Church in Little Rock. Darrell Adcock serves as Executive Pastor and Music Director at South City Church.  He and Tracy are celebrating 30 years of marriage and their four kids.  Together they help foster and adoptive families through Empowered to Connect Parent Training

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First Principles

First Principles – “Making a Difference in Little Rock”

While at a Bible study in our home with friends and neighbors in our community, Gary was new to the group and sat there quietly taking in the discussion.  I wondered what Gary thought.  He was hearing us describe our previous weeks lesson on the Gospel and this week’s initial discussion on Baptism and the obedience of following Jesus in the walk with Him; a first act of obedience that leads a Christ follower to a life of obedience. This was Gary’s first exposure to First Principles of establishing someone in their faith.

After our meeting was over I asked Gary what he thought and he responded, “Wow, as each person shared, I picked up on several different backgrounds and church denominations, but this study was so focused on the Bible, and kept pulling us back to the Scripture, that is just cut right through all of that.

I’ve watched as the First Principles series takes believers through a process of exploring the Gospel and its implications for our lives, understanding the church as God’s vehicle to accomplish His mission and how that mission calls us to be a ‘family of families’ that lets our good works and openness bring people to Him.  Ultimately it explores our heart motivations so that we are aligned with His heart and mission in all aspects of our lives.  The First Principles is transformational, and the process allows us to identify leaders who can lead others in the same transformation.  This is multiplication at work in our church!                                                                                ~Dave Kella

Those are the kinds of stories I have heard over my journey of the past three years into discipleship with Arkansas Antioch Initiative of the Nehemiah Network; a network of churches who are giving leadership to pastors as well as lay leaders who want to leverage making disciples for thousands of people.

This discipleship curriculum is centered around the Socratic method. The Socratic Method is a way of community based learning in questions. These Socratic discussions focus on a facilitator engaging a group in discussion not lecturing from the front. Socratic discussions over Scripture hundreds of scholarly articles, and writing articles that apply to any cultural setting at any time lead us to evaluate what we believe in light of what is normative in Scripture. The First Principles study engages the group around scripture, conversational learning, and our writing moves beyond simply fill in the blank studies to help us reshape our lives.

I have never been a part of anything like this; Biblical community as it should be, with simple, practical steps that lead to reshaping our lives to follow Jesus.       ~ Evan Kenyon

Because of my successful engagement with the First Principles study, I began to explore the leadership cohorts. These as well utilize the socratic method and confirmed the excellence of the product. We have seen this process work with our Espanol campus and many other contexts. You can see an example in the quote below:

I have seen Jesus Christ transform many lives as I have trained leaders in over five (5) countries using First Principles.  This is a huge success for the Kingdom.            ~Daniel Bran

The process really works.  Spending this much time together around the Scripture and the discussions with multiple church leaders really affects change in our lives. I am excited because I have seen so many instances where people are responding to this strategy.

Another key differentiator in this process is for everyone in the church, all people, from new to the faith all the way to full time ministers of the Gospel.  Yes, the leadership development system of the Antioch Initiative can span that large of an experience group.  It is important for leadership development to be happening at these different levels of influence. Lay people must be involved at a higher level of commitment that we may have originally thought if we want to move the needle and make a real difference in our city.

My approach to discipleship has been very focused on small groups of men.  The biblical approach to spiritual family and community is profound.  I tried to look up references in Scripture to household and family and I couldn’t believe how saturated scripture is with that concept.  Establishing churches within a household paradigm marries church, discipleship, leadership development and missions.  Learning and experiencing this has been refreshing, exciting and encouraging.    ~ Michael Kitchens

Establishing churches within a household paradigm marries church, discipleship, leadership development and missions.  Learning and experiencing this has been refreshing, exciting and encouraging

Kevin Kelly, Senior Pastor of Second Baptist Church Little Rock just finished a pilot of First Principles at his church that was another success story.  Eight-five people signed up and seventy-nine finished the course.  They are now looking at how to integrate First Principles of establishing people in their faith into their church.

I dream of a time that is just beginning here in Little Rock where there is a grass roots movement of discipleship, that is biblical and church-centered. A movement in and around Little Rock that mobilizes the laity across denominations and cultures.  One that encourages people to start new small groups and uses First Principles to establish people in their faith and allow people to see their potential in Gods kingdom.

I hope to see more groups like this that are multi-church where we are learning biblically-based and church-centered approach that strengthens our churches and builds unity of a city-wide movement for Jesus.  May God continue to bless this movement for His Kingdom and grant us wisdom in the days ahead.

Dee Brown is a lay elder at Fellowship Bible Church in Little Rock, AR and participant in the Arkansas Antioch Initiative Leadership Cohort.

 

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Race Under Grace – 2017

Under the guidance of Pastor Harold Nash and his team from Fellowship North Church, the Nehemiah Network announces the continuation of the Race Under Grace initiative for 2017. Race Under Grace is a project designed to pursue racial unity in and between Central Arkansas Churches. Pastor Nash, and others in the congregation, have used this powerful process at Fellowship North for years, and are achieving giant steps in knitting together the hearts of ALL God’s people in fellowship with this ministry.

The flagship of the Race Under Grace project is a series of cross-racial conversations that serve as a launch-point for pastors and church leaders.  This Leadership Series introduces pastors and church leaders to the “Race Under Grace experience” and helps them make plans for pursuing racial unity in their own church settings.

The Leadership Series is then supplemented with continued conversation among pastors and leaders, but more importantly with tools and guidance to help Central Arkansas churches create their own Race Under Grace experience.  We see this happening in three possible phases:

  • The Race Under Grace leadership team can help pastors design and lead cross-racial learning experiences for their church’s leadership team (deacons, elders, staff, key teachers and lay leaders);
  • The Race Under Grace leadership team can help a church’s leadership design a cross-racial learning experience for congregation members and coach the team in leading the experience;
  • The Race Under Grace leadership team can help a church’s leadership team think through, and make plans for, implementing a hand-full of core disciplines should they wish to move toward a healthy multi-racial church environment.
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Global Leadership Summit 2017

Whether at church, school, business or home, you are leading people and projects every day. You’re leading in a culture that is constantly changing and redefining itself. Leadership takes perseverance, dedication and a commitment to stretch your mind, expand your heart and use your God-given gifts to impact your world in real and powerful ways.

August 10-11, 2017 you’re invited to gather with thousands of leaders across North America for The Global Leadership Summit. Commit now to be a part of this annual event designed to stretch and challenge you with world-class speakers, interactive dialogue and practical training. We are pleased to host The Global Leadership Summit 2017.

Just click the “Register” button below to get connected.  On the registration screen, make sure you answer the question for “Church/Organization Information” for your own organization and not for the host church.

If you are a Pastor/Church Leader and a member of the Nehemiah Network, have your Priority Registration Code ready and enter it on the registration screen.

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Central Arkansas Antioch School

The Central Arkansas Antioch Initiative is a platform for local church-based theological education that is fully integrated into community development, church planting and vocational pursuit.  In partnership with the Biblical Institute for Leadership Development (BILD), their North American 30-City Urban Initiative and the internationally accredited Antioch School, the Central Arkansas Antioch Initiative seeks the welfare of our city by:

  • Strengthening church leadership through ordered and intentional Biblical training;
  • Engaging churches and individuals into self-directed collaborative learning networks;
  • Drawing resources into urban communities of need;
  • Organizing world-class and affordable Bachelors, Masters and Doctorate of Ministry degrees;
  • Synchronizing academic development with local, church-based ministry and community development practicums
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