The Institute for Spiritual Leadership Training is a ministry committed to equipping leaders in ministry to be influential in the lives of those they touch and the communities in which they live.


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Handbook for Spiritual Leaders

Focusing Growth
  Accountability, Disclosure &
   Correcting Ministry Performance
   Alignment: Centering Ministry
Empowering Leaders
   Change, Risk, Decisions
   Serving Power


Level 3 Grow


Sooner, hopefully than later, every spiritual leader, every Christian who has some kind of influence with another person, comes to the realization of what a privilege and what a great responsibility rests on their shoulders.  The list of leader roles is long--mother, father, mentor, supervisor, pastor, ministry leader and life coach.  Also in the ranks are those humble people who may not realize the many who are watching how they conduct their lives.

With great burdens come great responsibilities and a responsibility of a leader is to be a good learner.

The following articles address the fundamental anchor points of effective leadership.  Each article has a training module attached so that once the leader has learned, the leader becomes the teacher.

Focusing Growth

Accountability, Disclosure & Feedback

We do want excellence in our lives, our families, the ministries we serve and the organizations where we work. One of the best ways to ensure that excellence is evident in our lives is by seeking wise and spiritually grounded people to speak into our lives. With them, in a relationship of accountability, we can establish a reference point for growth and change. By being humble, yet confident of who we are in Christ, we can let people know the “real me” through the process of disclosure. We can build trust through authentic relationship. And by maintaining an avenue and receptivity for giving and receiving feedback, we create a healthy dynamic for communicating personal and ministry excellence.

To read the complete article, be sure and log in then go to My Training Record and click on the article, Accountability, Disclosure and Feedback.

Correcting Ministry Performance 

One of the more uncomfortable responsibilities of leadership is to correct a team member for behavior clearly contrary to ministry standards. The aim, of course, is always to build up. Helping a ministry team member to correct attitudes and actions of ministry is at the heart of discipleship. Challenges to authority and how the correction is received are issues in both employee and volunteer situations. Finding consistency in applying discipline and knowing when to terminate a ministry responsibility are important functions of leadership. Gentleness, with an eye on how the correcting will affect ministry and the team member, not you, helps keep focus.

To read the complete article, be sure and log in then go to My Training Record and click on the article, Correcting Ministry Performance

Alignment:  Assuring a Spiritually Centered Ministry

 Whether you are sighting in for target shooting, calibrating an analytical instrument, aligning the wheels of a car or organization, or spiritually centering a ministry or personal life, one fact holds true—if you don’t have influence over the forces controlling accuracy, you have no mechanism to assure you will hit anywhere close to your intended target or goal. Optimal functioning requires alignment. 

To read the complete article, be sure and log in then go to My Training Record and click on the article, Alignment: Centering Ministry

Empowering Leaders

Preparing for Change, Assessing Risk & Making Decisions  

Strategically responding to Change is a calling specific to leaders. Managers must respond differently to change. As simple as it sounds, it’s true: leaders lead change, managers manage change.

  • Leaders capitalize on the opportunities presented by a change event.

  • Managers, because of their responsibility to perpetuate the status quo (established policies and plans), tend to resist change.

  • Leaders are at their best in times of change because vision and influence are about change.

  • Managers, by the nature of their job requirements, must limit the impact of change on an established system.

The role of a leader is to embrace change as the life-blood of the enterprise and to see the status quo almost as an enemy. Of course, change simply for change’s sake is reckless. But stimulating, challenging and seeking change as a part of a strategic vision is an essential role of leader stewardship.

Risk is the consequence of change. To embrace change is by necessity a decision to take risks.

Leaders are in the business of taking risks. They frequently ask the leadership question, What If. What if we do this? What if ‘X’ is added to the solution—what are the possible outcomes? What if we weren’t here as a ministry—what would be the consequence? What if we reorganize the way we do ministry—what would be the result? Effective leaders know how to leverage risk to get the best outcome without tipping the ministry over.

Decision Making is the response to risk analysis. If “What if?” is the question of a leader, and “How?” is the question of a manager, then “What should we do?” because it is visionary, again presents a leadership question. Good decisions must have the visionary questions answered; it is leaders who take the risk of asking them.

Effective leaders are on a continuous journey, taking the leadership team and the enterprise through the process of making decisions affecting new issues and opportunities.

To read the complete article, be sure and log in then go to My Training Record and click on the article, Change, Risk & Making Decisions

Serving Power

Power is like gravity or love or trust. You can’t see it but its presence permeates everything on earth. Power can make things good for people and can further the Kingdom of God on earth, or it can be an instrument of horrible evil.

As natural man, we want more power to feed the self-corruptions of control, preservation and gratification. For the spiritual leader, when natural power yields to supernatural power, the whole purpose of spiritual leadership is accomplished—that of getting people onto God’s agenda.

To read the complete article, be sure and log in then go to My Training Record and click on the article, Serving Power.

Embracing Conflict

If you think it’s hard being a leader when all is going well, try leading in the midst of conflict. In times of tension and dissension, when the core qualities of leadership are plumbed, when disagreements surface and interpersonal friction threatens division, the characteristic that distinguishes a truly effective leader from a good leader emerges: relationship with God. It’s the spiritual leader—the leader in secure relationship with God—who can not only tolerate tension but can actually embrace it. It’s the spiritual leader who is able to take people of common purposes and achieve uncommon results.

To read the complete article, be sure and log in then go to My Training Record and click on the article, Embracing Conflict.


©2014 The Institute for Spiritual Leadership Training