Saturday, April 30, 2011

Opportunity to Help Northeast Alabama Tornado Victims

Synergy Ministries has had boots on the ground in DeKalb County Alabama since Wednesday giving out bottled water, ice, batteries, and baby diapers. We will be here working for the duration because this is where we live.

We will shift into counseling mode Monday, providing free counseling at the Relationship Clinic to tornado victims.

If you would like to help, CLICK HERE and donate.

Thank you so very much.

Help Northeast Alabama Tornado Victims

Help us raise $5000.00 for Northeast Alabama Tornado Relief - click

Friday, April 29, 2011

Want to Help Tornado Victims in Alabama?

We have relief efforts ongoing in North Alabama. We have been on the ground for the past two days with bottled water, batteries, ice, and baby diapers.

If you would like to help, click the "Donate" button in the right column of this page.

Thank you for giving to others.

Please Help Us Help Others

Synergy is all about working together. Please help us help tornado victims in DeKalb County Alabama. We have boots on the ground giving bottled water, ice, baby diapers, batteries, and generators.

The devastation is profound.

To help, please click and give what you can. Thank you.

Or, click the "Donate" button in the right column of this page.

Please Help Us Help Others

Synergy is all about working together. Please help us help tornado victims in DeKalb County Alabama. We have boots on the ground giving bottled water, ice, baby diapers, batteries, and generators.

The devastation is profound.

To help, please click and give what you can. Thank you.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Traits of an Effective Leader

  • Leads with integrity – “I conduct business ethically and treat people with fairness, and expect the same in return.”
  • Is a role model – “If long hours is what it takes, I’m the first one there with my sleeves rolled up.”
  • Gives guidance – “How can people improve and grow if they are not guided by mentors who have their best interest in mind?”
  • Learns how to listen – “It’s not easy, but I have to watch for nonverbal signals, as well as what is actually being said, by focusing only on the person in front of me.”
  • Is honest – “There can be no leadership without trust. That trust is earned – every day – by my behavior.”
  • Is a teacher – “Much the same as a mentor, I need to articulate a vision and inspire confidence in my ‘students.’”
  • Keeps an open mind – “I don’t know all the answers and I’m willing to admit it. Wisdom doesn't just come with age or years of experience; it comes from inspiration and applying lessons learned.  I am open to my team’s insight and ideas.”
  • Is willing to learn – “Leaders get stale if they don’t keep up with what’s going on around them.”
  • Is consistent – “People know they can count on me to give praise or discipline equally to each person.”
  • Always follows through – “I don’t just show up, give instructions, and leave it to everyone else to figure it out from there. I do what I say I will do. No excuses.”
  • Plans ahead – “There should be no surprises. We have to focus on the challenges at hand, but we can never lose sight of what’s to come.”
  • Has realistic expectations – “There has to be a healthy balance between aggressive ‘wishes’ and what can be reasonably done given time and talent constraints. I apply this to my team as well as to others.”

Traits of a Dictator

An absolutist or autocratic leader is also known as a dictator. They may have started out to be a good leader, but after a few years in the same position of authority, they begin to think more highly of themselves than one should think. They become a ruler. In time, they assume sole and absolute power, sometimes through eliminating anyone who opposes them. 

In church circles, they get confused about God, or come to believe that they are the only interpretation of God. If you disagree with them, you are disagreeing with God.  Like a tyrant, or an autocrat, dictators become oppressive, even abusive to the people they supposedly serve.

There is no other term for a leader who holds and/or abuses an extraordinary amount of personal power, especially the power to make rules without effective restraint by a legislative assembly like a committee, conference, or convention, but dictatorship.

You will hear them say things like, "We must get a handle on this situation," "Better get control of that," or "We don't need to let this get out of control."  Control becomes more important than service.  Committee meetings, conferences and business meetings become less important, insignificant, or non-existent.

This leadership style is often characterized by some of the following traits:

  • suspension of election or selection process by those they serve
  • suspension of most liberties
  • control of media or press
  • personal gain monetarily
  • proclamation of “I am in charge”
  • rule by decree
  • repression of all opponents
  • uses the rules when beneficial, breaks the rules at will
  • cult of personality
In the 21st Century, this leadership style does not work well. It eventually ends in an overthrow. It is happening around the world. People eventually rise up.

If your leader has the following traits, they are in trouble:

  • Secretive – “I know what will work, but if I keep it to myself and my subordinates mess up, I’ll be able to jump in and save the day.”
  • Micro manager – “I can’t trust the programmers to stay on task. That’s why I make them check in twice a day and to let me know their progress.”
  • Egotistical – “I have a Harvard degree and 30 years of experience. These hot-shot newcomers think I should listen to them. How could they know anything?”
  • Biased – “Why should I listen to women [or minorities or young people or industry experts]?
  • Close-minded – “I don’t care what anyone says. I know what’s best.”
  • Unwilling to listen – “I already know what people think. They think they know more than I do! Why should I waste my time?
  • Dishonest – “No one has to know that last month’s report was a bit skewed. If I turned in the right figures, Smith’s state would look better than mine.”
  • Inconsistent – “I know Jane expects a raise because I hinted at that when I gave her extra responsibilities this year – and she knows that Kevin got his raise – but there’s just something about Jane that I don’t like.”
  • Lacks focus – “There are so many facets to this work. Some are confusing and I don’t have time for all of them. Someone else will have to figure them out.”
  • Has unrealistic expectations – “I promised I would do that.  But they haven't satisfied me so somebody’s going to have to pay!”
  • Provides – “I’m not paid to be a counselor or a hand-holder. They’ll just have to do it the best, with no guidance, if they can.”
  • Does not plan – “The project is due next week, but I’ve been working on something else real important. I guess they will just have to wait.”

Friday, April 8, 2011

Tanya Voznyuk Passed Away

Please pray for the Vitaliy Voznyuk family in the Ukraine. Bishop Vitaliy's wife, Tanya, has passed away.

Tanya was also Larrissa's sister, Gena's wife.

Bishop Vitaliy is the National Overseer of the Ukraine for the COGOP and a very dear friend.

Bishop Henadzi Kernazhytski (Gena) is the National Overseer of Belarus.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Former Church of God Leader Ray H. Hughes Sr. Dies

Dr. Ray H. Hughes Sr., former general overseer of the Church of God (Cleveland, Tenn.) and past president of Lee University and the National Association of Evangelicals, died late Monday night. He was 87. Hughes was the top leader of the denomination on three separate occasions, the most recent in 1996. He is the only person in the 125-year history of the Church of God to serve as the denominational leader three times.

A widely respected evangelical leader, Hughes rose to top leadership posts in several other organizations, including president of Pentecostal Fellowship of North America and the Pentecostal World Conference. During his chairmanship of the PWC, he led worldwide conferences in Oslo (1992), Jerusalem (1995) and Seoul (1998).

Hughes was first elevated to the post of general overseer of the Church of God after the death of R. Leonard Carroll in January 1972. He was elected later that year to serve out the two-year term and was re-elected general overseer in 1978. He served until 1982 when tenure limitations came into effect. In addition to general overseer, Hughes was elected to first, second and third assistant general overseer on several occasions, serving a total of 22 years on the Executive Committee, the denomination’s highest-ranking body of leaders.

A Video Biography of Dr. Ray H Hughes

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Heritage and Innovation: Finding the Balance

In times of change there is the tendency to either stick doggedly to what has always worked in the past or to throw it all out and start new. Neither extreme is the answer.

Heritage and innovation is a tension that needs to be managed—thoughtfully. Our default thinking is to view the world in terms of what has worked before so we often fail to address the changes going on around us. As a result we tend to lose our influence. At the same time, to overhaul everything without regard to our roots—our traditions, our heritage—can take us away from why we began doing what we are doing in the first place.

Howard Schultz recognized as he began to deal with Starbuck’s identity crisis in 2008 that they had to strike a delicate balance between heritage and innovation. In Onward he writes: “I understood that we had to return to our roots, but if that heritage was not linked to a willingness to reinvent and innovate, then we would fail.”

Our heritage is the repository of our values and unshakable truths. Applying them to a changing world makes them relevant. But how to go about this is not always self-evident. As we naturally view what we do through the lens of what has worked before, it is hard to envision a different world. If we don’t learn to apply them to what is happening today, they begin to look worn and outdated to the present world.

We have to begin by asking, “What is Truth (for us) and what is habit?” Truths are maintained. Habits can be adapted.

We need to learn to translate our heritage into a meaningful direction aligned to the present situation. Heritage either stands the test of time or it is a fad. Change for change sake, is faddish. Sustainable influence and growth is achieved when heritage and innovation overlap. Innovation should be informed by heritage which is in turn, made relevant by it.

Change is essential to growth. More than anything else, fear keeps us from making necessary changes. Fear of the unknown. “What will happen?”

Innovation rocks the boat. It creates instability, yes, but the kind of instability needed for growth. If we don’t make heritage relevant by innovation we can stunt growth and diminish our influence. We actually aid people’s ability to cope and thrive in a changing world when we find ways to change what we do without changing who we are. Heritage and innovation is an ongoing tension that needs to be managed.

[from Leading Blog: A Leadership Blog @ LeadershipNow 

The Gospel

A Word For Young People

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Dr. Harold Hunter Delivers Historic Presentation

At the recent Centennial Celebration of the International Pentecostal Holiness Church 1911 Merger, held on the campus of Southwestern Christian University, Bethany, Oklahoma, the denominational archivist addressed the gathering.  In an engaging and informative presentation, he shared the history of the two merging groups - Fire Baptized Holiness and the Pentecostal Holiness - into a single unit named The Pentecostal Holiness Church.  He presented a targeted portion illustrating the unique role of the western segment of the United States in the founding, growth, and development of the southern based IPHC.