Links of the Week (12/17/16)

Each Saturday we point you to the best preaching, leadership, and ministry content we have encountered on the internet during the week.

Links of the Week

Links of the Week

Want some free preaching and productivity resources? How does a sermon evaluation worksheet, a weekly productivity template for Evernote, a sermon series planning template for Evernote, and 56 weeks of preaching topics sound to you? Grab them by going here (and never miss fresh content from

Who Exactly Am I Preaching To? – by Daniel Darling

“Um, so, did someone tell you about Dave’s job?” an anxious member told me, as she shook my hand on the way out of the auditorium one Sunday morning. “Because it seemed like you were talking to us.”

Church Eliminates Debt and Now Gives Away 50 Percent of Income – by Warren Bird

WoodsEdge Community Church Senior Pastor Jeff Wells knows there is only one thing that could have moved his church from a massive debt load to being debt free and giving away 50% of its income—all in less than a year.

The Collected Best Christian Books of 2016 – by Tim Challies

For the past couple of weeks my RSS feeder has been humming with list after list of the best books of 2016. It seems that just about every avid reader I follow is eager to share his or her picks for the year that was. I love these lists and decided I’d compile them to look for patterns and repeats. Here, then, are the collected best Christian books of 2016. Each one of these is from a blog or web site I read regularly.

What people want from the pastor and have a right to expect – by Joe McKeever

I hesitate to say one group in the church has a “right” to expect anything of another. Insisting on our rights will almost invariably result in resistance, frustration, anger, and division. And yet in a very real sense believers who support the work of the Lord with their tithes and offerings and time and energy have a right to expect certain things from their shepherd.  That’s what this is about. 

My Top 10 Theology Stories of 2016 – by Collin Hansen

You’ll see in this list a theme of fear and loathing vs. faith and love. As we see our neighbors mediated through our reading, watching, and listening we’re tempted to fear and loathe them, because someone’s paying to keep our attention. And the easiest way to keep that attention is through anger and fear. But I’ve noticed in my church and community I’m more likely to see my neighbors, even when we disagree, as people who can teach me, as people made in the image of God, as people who need the gospel of Jesus Christ. Locally I know all about our serious problems. But I’m stubbornly optimistic about God’s plan. Why do I struggle, then, to see God at work in stories I only know from a distance? Please join me in prayer that bring good from what appears to be evil.

19 Leadership Quotes And Lessons From Rogue One: A Star Wars Story – by Brian Dodd

Leaders are dealers of hope. They point people to a brighter tomorrow. Leaders remind people they are going to make it and there is always a chance to succeed. The is the message of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.

5 Reasons Churches Don’t Break The 400 Barrier – by Brian Jones

If your church has been running in the 290 to 490 attendance range for more than five years, you are stuck at the 400 barrier.

In my experience, more Senior Pastors reach out for help at this size range than any other. That’s because the complexity of issues they get hit with at this size are fundamentally different than what had to be addressed to break the 100 and 200 barriers.

40 Christmas Sermon Ideas – by Brandon Hilgemann

In case you need some ideas for this Christmas. Great list by Brandon.

The Top 10 YouTube Videos of 2016 – by Chris Martin

In case you need some entertainment.

Rookie Preacher Articles

A Strategic Plan for Maximizing Your Small Group Ministry [The Growing Church] – by Jay Phillips

The Process of Preaching is So Important – by Joe Hoagland

Preaching Sticky Sermons Book Trailer – Brandon Kelley & Joe Hoagland

Improve Your Preaching: How to Structure Your Sermon Like a Story – by Brandon Kelley

Written by Brandon Kelley

Brandon Kelley is the co-founder of Rookie Preacher and the author of Preaching Sticky Sermons and Crucified to Life. He serves as the Lead Pastor of First Church of Christ in Bluffton, IN. He also writes at You can follow him @BrandonKelley_. Watch his sermons here.


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Improve Your Preaching: How to Structure Your Sermon Like a Story

The Nuts and Bolts of Preaching Should be Practical not Theoretical