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Craig Groeschel on Wisdom for the Generations

Kent Shaffer —  May 16, 2011

Catalyst Conference Dallas

At Catalyst Dallas, Craig Groeschel of (Edmond, OK) discussed wisdom for the older and younger generations.

I believe God wants us to work together as younger and older generations. I believe the devil wants to add division between generations.

To The Older Generation

  • Don’t resent, fear, or judge the emerging generation. Instead, believe in them.
  • You were different at one time from those who went before you.
  • If you aren’t dead, you aren’t done.
  • Don’t be threatened by younger generations. Realize that they need you.
  • Many of us don’t know how to delegate. We think delegating is giving people something to do. Delegating tasks creates followers. Delegating responsibility creates leaders.
  • Younger generations need your wisdom.
  • Just be yourself. Don’t try to be cool. Authenticity trumps cool every single time.

To The Younger Generation

  • You need those who have gone before you.
  • Studies show that the younger generation is most often described by employers as entitled.
  • Because the emerging generation feels entitled, when it comes to ministry, you feel you need to do it all now.You want to be in leadership, but you can’t speed up maturity.
  • You often overestimate what God wants to do through you in the short run, and you often grossly underestimate what God wants to do through you in the long run.
  • Always show your leaders honor. Honor publicly results in influence privately. Do not treat your leaders as common or ordinary.Dishonor and faith in the leaders before you limit your church.
  • Some people need to repent for dishonoring the God-ordained position above them.
  • Your generation is the most cause-driven generation of modern history.You are a chosen generation.
  • I believe that you can do what I couldn’t do.

I am doing what I am doing right now because of the previous generations that have invested in me.

Further Reading:
2012 Church Conference Calendar

Craig Groeschel on Generational Tension

Kent Shaffer —  October 8, 2010

Craig Groeschel at Catalyst Conference

During Catalyst Conference, Craig Groeschel of (Edmond, OK) discussed generational tension.

We have a spiritual enemy that wants to divide us by denominations, so that we don’t work together. And I also have a hunch he wants to divide us generationally, so that we don’t work together.

When it comes to generations in the church, division is bad, but the tension can be good because we need each other.

I am able to do so much of what I do today because of the wisdom of those who have come before me.


Do not resent, fear, or judge the next generation of ministers but believe in them and invest in them. They are not the church of tomorrow. They are the church of today. They are different just like you were different.

One of the reasons the older generation finds it difficult to invest in the younger generation is because of insecurity. When you lead from insecurity, nothing works well.

Delegate authority not tasks. Tasks create followers. Authority creates leaders.

The younger generation wants authenticity and someone who believes in them.

If you are not dead, you are not done. Your age and experience is not a liability. It is an asset. Embrace the season you are in.

One of the greatest honors I can have at this age to to become as a spiritual dad to the younger generation.

Now that I am old and gray, do not abandon me, O God. Let me proclaim your power to this new generation, your mighty miracles to all who come after me
- Psalm 71:18


You need those who have come before you.

Business leaders describe the younger generation as entitled. You have been protected and encouraged, so you feel very entitled.

You tend to overestimate what God wants to do through you in the short run. This disillusions you and then causes you to underestimate what God will do through you in the long run.

Because the younger generation feels entitled so much, it is a generation that does not show honor well. Andy Stanley says, “Honor publicly leads to influence privately.” If you want to lead up, show honor.

Then Jesus told them, “A prophet is honored everywhere except in his own hometown and among his relatives and his own family.”
- Mark 6:4

One of the reason God is not doing more in churches today is because there is not a culture of honor. Jesus is not your homeboy. He is the King of Kings.

If you want to be over someone, learn to serve under people well. Honor values, respects, and highly esteems. Honor lifts up. Dishonor tears down.

There is a big difference between respect and honor. Respect is earned, but honor is given.

Some of you need to repent because you have dishonored those above you, and that dishonor is hindering you from being able to achieve what you need to do.

Be teachable.

You don’t need to have the same standard of living at age 25 as mom and dad. Don’t be entitled.

You are the most cause driven, mission minded generation in modern history. If you will come under authority and be teachable, you will be the greatest generation of our time.

God believes in you. You didn’t choose Him. He chose you.

Do not underestimate your future.

Give God glory by taking the the best of those who have come before us. Quit messing around in pride and arrogance and do something that glorifies the cause of Christ.

Further Reading:
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Toy Story At the Movies – Tulsa Campus

Kent Shaffer —  July 22, 2010

Every July, (Edmond, OK) hosts a sermon series called “At the Movies” that uses movie clips to illustrate spiritual truths. And every year sets new attendance records.

To add some extra fun to the sermon series, each campus decorates their facility with a movie theme. This year Stillwater’s campus did Field of Dreams and created a baseball diamond in their lobby complete with dirt. However, my favorite theme from this year is the Tulsa campus’ Toy Story theme. Here are some highlights:

Before you even enter the church, you are greeted by a Toy Story “At the Movies” wall mural and Pizza Planet golf carts to shuttle you to the door.

Toy Story Mural

Pizza Planet Golf Carts

As you enter the building, you pass through a tunnel of Legos and pop out from under a giant bed into a lobby child’s room full of larger than life toys.

Toy Story Lego Entrance

Toy Story Bed

The lobby features Buzz Lightyear himself greeting guests in front of an over-sized Etch-A-Sketch (his packaging is off to the side). Toys sit atop a giant furniture. Aliens sit inside a toy rocket. And the church refreshment stand is now a Pizza Planet franchise.

Buzz Lightyear

Buzz Lightyear Packaging

Toy Story Army Man

Toy Story Piggy Bank

Toy Story Aliens in Rocket

Pizza Planet Restaurant

Also, watch out for the giant electrical cord!

Toy Story Electrical Cord

To experience an “At the Movies” sermon, visit one of’s many campuses or attend online at one of 48 weekly service times. Due to movie licensing rights, these sermons will not be available to watch online after the sermon series, so be sure to catch “At the Moves” while it is still going on.

Special thanks to @johnadavis ( Logistcs Director) and @derrickhenslee ( Tulsa Campus Pastor) for taking the photos.

The Porn Event

Kent Shaffer —  May 18, 2010 is partnering with XXXchurch to host The Porn Event online next week (May 23-28, 2010) and discuss the real-life effects of pornography.

There are 40 different Porn Event times, but each session has a specific focus either for guys (Sun, Tues, & Thur) or girls (Mon, Wed, & Friday). For specific times and more information, visit

LeadershipXP –’s New Apprenticeship

Kent Shaffer —  May 4, 2010

LeadershipXP is launching a new 9-month apprenticeship program for young leaders called LeadershipXP. It is designed to cultivate young leaders and dreamers by giving them responsibility in the trenches and immersing them in a special mentorship group.

LeadershipXP is not an internship or a coaching network. It is a unique flavor of experiential learning via mentorship, serving, responsibility, freedom, and collaboration. It is an immersive lifestyle that develops your character, leadership skills, spirituality, and emotional intelligence.

There are requirements:

  • Age: you must be 18-24 years old
  • Time: you must commit to a 9-month experience
  • Money: you must pay the $3,250 investment (housing included)
  • Location: you must agree to work at and live near one of’s many locations

Deadline to apply is May 28.
LeadershipXP begins September 7.

To apply for LeadershipXP, visit:

Creative Church Christmas Promos of 2009

Kent Shaffer —  January 7, 2010

Not everyone attends church, but people are more likely to attend church during Christmas and Easter. For an extra nudge of motivation, many churches plan special Christmas services. Here are two of 2009′s creative church Christmas promos:



For Discussion:
- What are some other creative church Christmas promos from 2009 (links to YouTube clips are welcome)?

Bible Reading Plans via YouVersion

Kent Shaffer —  December 29, 2009’s YouVersion Bible has launched some enhanced Bible reading plans for online users and mobile phone users. There are over 20 free Bible reading plans to choose from. Features include:

  • Progress charts.
  • Synchronized Website and mobile accounts for your plan and progress.
  • Church group reading plans.
  • Customizable plan lengths.
  • Reading accountability emails (coming soon).

I will be reading the M’Cheyne one year reading plan. What Bible reading plan will you be reading?

Why is the Next Big Church Model

Kent Shaffer —  July 22, 2009

Yesterday’s Digerati team officially launched Consequently, the world may never be the same.

Much like the One Prayer initiative, allows churches to hear guest speakers via free sermon video downloads. The idea behind it is that churches can have a free resource to expand their teaching team, give the pastor occasional breaks, share the load with church planters and bi-vocational pastors, and even serve as an interim “pastor” during a leadership transition.

But reality is the scope of how can be used is far deeper and versatile. In fact, a church could use video sermons all the time. Many churches have likely not been planted because the church planter believes he is not eloquent enough, theologically deep enough, or seminary certified to preach. However, when free video sermons from some of the world’s best preachers are available, obviously this excuse is gone.

4 Possible Video Teaching Church Models

  1. Central Organization
    Similar to a multi-site church, this model has central leadership that oversees all locations and determines video teaching content that is the same for all campuses. Locations could either be planted by the central organization like most multi-site church campuses or passionate followers could start a location similar to’s Church Online watch parties.
  2. Central Admin
    Similar to a denomination, this model has central leadership that oversees all locations administratively, but a campus pastor or elders determine the Video Sermon content for each location based on what that congregation’s spiritual needs are. For example, a New England location may struggle with greed while a location in Oklahoma may struggle with gluttony. While all sermon topics are important, this model allows for each campus to focus on what is most important to their spiritual walk.
  3. Central Distributor
    Similar to a standard church, this model has a central distributor of sermon content such as, but each church is independent, self-governing, and determines its own video teaching content.
  4. Extra Church
    Similar to Sunday school and small groups, this model uses video teaching as extra doses of “church” in addition to weekend church services.

Church conferences, authors, and blogs have been rallying for years for the Church to be like the early Church. We talk about organic explosive church growth that produces authentic disciples, but then we do little to change our methods. If we hardly change how we do church, then we can hardly expect to revolutionize the results we get.

So why don’t we change how we do church? I think it is because we are scared. We are scared of failing, and we are scared of doing something theologically wrong. Christians are notorious for boycotting anything new, including church organs and church choirs when they were first introduced. This is not to say that we should all jump on the Video Teaching band wagon like a bunch of lemmings. But I think we should ask questions.

Thinking rationally and theologically, why or why shouldn’t churches pursue the Video Teaching model of church?

I will be addressing some questions about video teaching in the weeks to come, including:

  • What size should a video teaching church be?
  • How can video teaching churches be kept spiritually accountable?
  • How does the video medium affect the message?
  • What about the development of future preachers?
  • What are the advantages of video teaching versus one or a few preachers?
  • What about video teaching children’s ministry?
  • Will video teaching create more celebrity pastors?
  • What does a multi-site video teaching house gigachurch look like?

For Discussion:
- Share your thoughts about video teaching in the comments and join in the unraveling discussion in the weeks to come.