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I’m listening to my favorite singer/songwriter, the one and only Martin Smith from the Delirious? band. I absolutely love him and all the band has done. He’s a friend I’ve had over the years.
Friends. They are what life is made of and what makes life worth living.
Life unfolds in the moment. Don’t let it slip away allowing time to rush past unobserved and un-seized, squandering precious seconds away.
I serve with lifelong friends in the church I lead right now, friends I’ve had for decades. I cherish every second, minute, hour, day, and week with all my relationships.
Laying in a hospital bed, fighting for my life, I took every opportunity to fully engage with my family, friends, and even the hospital staff! When it’s all said and done, it is the relationships in our lives that will matter.
Relationships are not just for our own benefit but also for the enrichment of others. In today’s world of constant interruptions, delays, appointments, and demands, we need to practice the art of remaining in the moment, fully present with friends. No fragmented thoughts, no distractions. Simply focusing on the relationship in front of you. It takes intentionality and it takes practice.
Try this: make a list of your friends and ask yourself this question. “What could I do to enjoy these friends to the full?” Maybe it’s a text, a phone call, or an email that says simply, “I appreciate you as my friend. Is there anything I can do?” Or maybe it’s, “I love doing life with you. Just saying, you are special and I am so blessed to have you as my friend.”
Live in the moment! Then bring others along and help them to pause and enjoy what’s right in front of them.
Today is your day. Override distractions and awake to the present.
Hello! It’s been awhile but I’m now ready to start blogging again. In the next while, I will blog some personal leadership lessons along with practical principles in the leadership arena.
My entire adult life as a minister, I have been a leadership researcher and learner. My passion is to be the best leader I can be in whatever circumstance I find myself. Over the last 40 years, I’ve been a youth leader; student in a secular college, Bible college and seminary, a Bible college professor; support leader as a staff pastor; an elder on an eldership team; church planter; one who helps others plant churches; a lead pastor of a church I did not plant; a Bible college president; chairman of a church pastor fellowship; and a book writer.
All those experiences have left their mark on me. God is always after the shaping of the person more than the function or position one holds.
With that in mind, here are a few things to ponder.
1. Be present with your entire heart wherever you are.
Live in the now not the tomorrow. Leadership is about being there fully, in the now, not allowing a future eye to unsettle you.
2. Be a heart person.
God is after your heart, the deep part of you that makes up your core, your center. Guard your heart, for out of it flows all of life and leadership.
3. Be ready to embrace adversity.
It is a huge part of your development. It’s your “inflection point” in your spiritual journey. Don’t waste any trials or disappointments. They are God’s appointments.
Stay tuned for more thoughts on strategic leadership.
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The past year has been quite the journey. Let me give a huge thank you to everyone for the prayers, cards, words of encouragement, and support while I fought – and beat – cancer. I am excited to get back to writing and sharing more thoughts with you on leadership and life walking with Jesus.
In the next couple of weeks, we will start putting some new resources on this website to help you grow spiritually and in your leadership. If there is a specific topic you want to see addressed or a question you have, please head over to our “Contact” page and let us know: http://www.frankdamazio.com/contact/. Looking forward to the privilege of sharing more thoughts with you.
As many of you may know, Pastor Frank has been on a nine-week journey of unusual discomfort and pain. After extensive medical tests, his medical team determined that Pastor Frank has a form of lymphoma.
Last week was pivotal for Pastor Frank and City Bible Church, the church he pastors, as he met with his medical team to confirm the specific diagnosis, lay out a treatment plan, and then start that plan.
Pastor Frank is doing very well and responding positively to his first round of treatment. The doctors are encouraged with all the tests. We believe this is a direct result of the global prayer taking place. Thank you!
Here are a few items to agree with us in prayer this week:
1. Continued healing and recovery of Pastor Frank’s body
2. No side effects from the chemo treatments
3. Ongoing strength for Pastor Sharon and the family
4. Wisdom for the doctors and nurses
5. Strength, wisdom, and protection for City Bible Church and the leadership team
6. Continued covering and momentum for MFI and the entire network of churches
Pastor Frank said his spirit is strong and he feels the support of all those who have expressed that they are praying for him. Please continue standing with Pastor Frank, his family and our church family in prayer.
You can get regular updates on Pastor Frank at the CBC website: www.citybiblechurch.org/pfupdate. Also stay updated by following him on Twitter @frankdamazio and Facebook: Pastor Frank Damazio. Show him your love on Twitter by using the hashtag #StandingWithPF. Thank you for standing with us all in prayer!
“But earnest prayer was going up to God from the church for his safety all the time he was in prison.” -Acts 12:5, Living Bible
Botanists know exactly what they mean when they talk about fruit. A fruit is the seed bearing organ of a plant or tree. When pastors and leaders speak about fruit, do we know exactly what we mean? How does the local church cultivate an orchard of great spiritual fruit that remains? We are hard at work preparing the soil, planting the seed, weeding, watering, pruning, and believing we will have fruit that remains.
The vision of every pastor should be to plant a spiritual legacy, a fruit tree that forever keeps bearing fruit. Fruit that remains is a matter of planning, wisdom, and forethought. This week, we will examine our fruit-bearing and fruit-remaining skills.
Where does this idea of “bearing fruit” come from? It comes from Jesus, in John 15:16, where Jesus says:
“You have not chosen Me, but I have chosen you and I have appointed you [I have planted you], that you might go and bear fruit and keep on bearing, and that your fruit may be lasting [that it may remain, abide], so that whatever you ask the Father in My Name [as presenting all that I am], He may give it to you.”
In this passage, and in this blog series, “fruit” means that which originates or comes from something. It is an effect, a result. There are false views and rue views about a fruit-bearing church. A false view says that growing fruit is difficult, time consuming, and too demanding of a profession.
A true view about a fruit-bearing church sees that planting a tree is a long-term investment. It knows that growing fruit is a science, that the principle of fruitfulness works all the time and that the tree, when planted properly, will bear fruit for 20-60 years.
Depending on your view about bearing fruit, you will bear lasting fruit, no fruit or some fruit. That brings us to this important principle: A fruit-bearing leader comes before a fruit-bearing vineyard. We produce what we are, after our “kind.” Before your church or ministry can bear fruit, you yourself must have a fruit-bearing spirit within you.
Tomorrow we’ll look at four things a leader needs to do in order to bear much fruit that lasts.
Check out this series called “Fruit-full” on living your life full of fruit: click here.
“Take the miracles out of the book of Acts and there is little left. However much critics may discredit the evidential value of miracles, the fact remains that God made abundant use of miracles in giving Christianity a start in the world.” -Henry Halley
The first church saw miracles happening daily – miracles of provision, healing, community, and transformed lives. The environment they had was one of expectation. They expected to see God do something special in their world, and He did. Jesus is building the same church today that He built in Acts and the New Testament. If we want to build a church the way Jesus did, we need to desire supernatural things.
We must establish the fact that it is right to desire to move into the supernatural. We need to get the right mindset about desiring supernatural things in our world today.
“Desire” in the Greek language means a deep craving or a longing, and it signifies the mental effort of stretching oneself out for a thing, having zeal toward something. It is right to have a deep longing for supernatural things.
Here are six right confessions that will help establish the fact that it is right to desire to move into the supernatural.
- It is right to be a channel of divine power into other people’s lives at their points of need.
- It is right to aspire to use God-given gifts in powerful a useful ministry as promised in Scripture.
- It is right to want to see God’s power made real on earth in a way that has a significant evangelistic effect as seen in the book of Acts.
- It is right to fast and pray, believing God and asking Him for more of His power, grace, authority, and for more miracles in all realms of living.
- It is right for you to pray for the sick and believe they will improve and be healed.
- It is right to pray for any person to be set free from any spiritual bondage.
Once we have established these facts, we can then make a right confession: Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. He still has compassion. He still has power. He still saves. There is nothing too hard for Him. God has not changed!
Believe today that God wants to do something supernatural in you, around you, and through you today!
From the message notes, “Three Leadership Essentials.” Click here to read more!
We’re talking about the leader’s responsibility to create an environment where people encounter supernatural things daily. The first church had this environment and they saw miraculous things among them always. That is how Jesus designed the church and that is how we must build it today.
I believe that our expectations about seeing the power of God transforming people’s lives are not as high as they should be! So what does a “miracle environment” look like? Here are seven markers.
1. Expectation: People – and the leadership – believe that miracles are possible today, and that the gifts of the Spirit are in the church body.
2. Believing: Voltaire wrote, “Faith consists of believing when it is beyond the power of the reason to believe. It is not enough that a thing be possible for it to be believed.” We must believe the supernatural is possible.
3. Confessing God’s greatness: The environment shifts when our spirits are lifted as we speak about the grandeur of God and His ability to what we think is impossible.
4. Experiencing the presence of a living Christ: It is the presence of Jesus that changes lives. A miracle church is constantly aware of Jesus’ pervading and life-changing presence.
5. Boldness without embarrassment: In the gospels and the Book of Acts, we see people yelling at the top of their voice for mercy from Jesus or the disciples. When we call to Jesus, we must do so with boldness and no shame. He responds to our abandonment.
6. Speaking God’s word: Jesus said that the person who does not doubt what he or she says but believes that what was spoken will happen, will see that thing fulfilled. Speak and believe.
7. Prayer and fasting: These two disciplines are proven biblical principles that when combined create a supernatural synergy, aligning you to receive the great things God wants to do for you.
This is the environment of the early church and what we should model today. Expect miracles to happen in you, around you and through you!
From the message notes, “Three Leadership Essentials.” Click here to read more!