The Journey to Success

Begins with the Right M.A.P.


I think many leaders today are lost. They have an idea about where they’d like to be, but they’re unsure on how to get there. Instead of taking a chance and venturing into the unknown, many choose to stay where they are. But, what if I told you there’s a secret to discovering places you’ve never been? What if I told you there’s a map?

Now, you won’t find this map at the local visitor’s center, and you won’t find this map on Google. This map exists inside of everyone, yet very few people ever choose to open it. John Maxwell said this, “God’s gift to me is my potential. My gift to God is what I do with that potential.” If you want to reach your full potential as a leader, you’re going to need a map.




First, you’re going to need motivation. Without motivation, you’ll never get started or you’ll give up long before you get to your desired destination.


  • All great leaders understand that their number one responsibility is for their own discipline and personal growth.
  • Growth is only possible when the leader is willing to “pay the price” for it.
  • What you are going to be tomorrow, you are becoming today.

Next, you need the right attitude. Attitude is a leader’s most important asset. No one wants to go anywhere with someone who has a terrible attitude.


  • Great leaders understand that the right attitude will set the right atmosphere, which enables the right responses from others.
  • A leader’s attitude is caught by his or her followers more quickly than his or her actions.
  • God chooses what we go through. We choose how we go through it.

Next, you have to have your priorities in order. Your priorities determine your direction. Many leaders have a desired destination, but their priorities are leading them to a completely different place.


  • The petty and mundane steal much of our time. Leaders need to set their priorities.
  • Good is the enemy of best. Leaders need to spend their time doing the things that have the greatest impact.
  • Leaders need to set deadlines. Parkinson’s Law says if you have only one letter to write, it will take all day to do it. If you have twenty letters to write, you’ll get them done in one day.

Success is a journey. It’s achieving one thing and using that as a stepping-stone to achieve something else. Success requires the right motivation, the right attitude, and the right priorities. Success requires a map.

“When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left, and could say, I used everything you gave me.” –Erma Bombeck

You Need A Sidekick

The Basics - A Friend

Every Monday I post one of The Basics. The Basics are simple steps every church can take to grow. They are the same steps that led my church from 87 people in attendance to over 700. These steps have helped my church see hundreds of people saved and baptized in just a few short years. Most of these steps you can take this week without even having a board meeting. These are The Basics.


Two years after having our first child, my wife brought up the idea of having another baby. At first I was hesitant about it. We had just gotten Layla out of diapers, and she was finally sleeping through the night. We were in a good place, and I wasn’t excited about starting all over. But my wife would keep going back to this one statement, “You don’t want her growing up alone”. Layla needed a sidekick, and so do you.

Ministry is hard. It’s especially hard if we’re doing it alone. Your church may be full of people, but if you feel like no one has your back, you’re essentially on your own. You need to find a sidekick. Someone you can confide in. Someone you can share your burdens and frustrations with. Someone who can encourage you. Someone who can work with you to establish change.

Your wife can’t fill this role. She may be the strongest person you know, but she’s not meant to fill this position. If you try to make her, it’ll kill your marriage.

You need to find one person in your church who you can trust, and bring them along beside you. Share your dreams with them, and perhaps God will work through you to accomplish something great. That’s what happened in 1 Samuel 14.

“Let’s go across to the outpost of those pagans,” Jonathan said to his armor bearer. “Perhaps the Lord will help us, for nothing can hinder the Lord. He can win a battle whether he has many warriors or only a few!” “Do what you think is best,” the armor bearer replied. “I’m with you completely, whatever you decide.” 1 Samuel 14:6-7

Did you notice the armor bearer’s response to Jonathan’s crazy request?

“Do what you think is best,” the armor bearer replied. “I’m with you completely, whatever you decide.”

 That’s the type of person you’re looking for. Someone who will follow you. Someone who will fight for you. Someone who is with you completely. If you find that person, you’ve found your sidekick.

Who’s your sidekick? How have they helped you in ministry?

My Epitaph

How will you be remembered?


I came across my epitaph recently. You know, those words that are inscribed on a tombstone. I wrote mine down a few years ago while reading Craig Groeschel’s book Chazown.

Sometimes the best way to prepare for our future is to pretend we’re already there. At the end of your life, what do you want to be known for? How do you want to be remembered?

Most of us have years of living ahead of us. Most of us die slowly. We will likely have days, weeks, maybe even years to look back upon our lives. Will you lie there with no regrets?

It’s not really fun to think about our death. So, few people do. But what if the decisions we’re making today are actually making the bed we lie in while we wait to die? Would you begin to look at your life differently?

Would you take more chances? Would you pursue your true passion? Would you spend your time differently? How would your life change if you began with the end in mind?

What would you want your epitaph to say?

Craig Groeschel gives a helpful exercise in Chazown. He asks you to finish the following statements. I’d love to read your epitaph in the comments section below.

The things that are most important to me was…

People say I stood for…

I made a difference in my world by…

God was glorified because I…

People knew I loved them because…

The reason I expect God to say “well done” is…