Essentials Part 9: Positive Traditions

Rick Mattson Leadership, Uncategorized Leave a Comment

Every time I sit down to write about Essentials for ministry growth, which I’ve done the past eight weeks, a shiver of fear goes right through me.


Yeah. Fear that I’m wasting your time. Fear that my blogs aren’t worth reading.

Fear that these “Essentials for growth” are so obvious and so lacking in profundity that I should take up knitting instead of publishing my weekly trivialities.

Except for one thing: Why isn’t everyone doing them?

That list again:
1. Healthy at the core.
2. High quality, low complexity.
3. Prayed up.
4. Outreach (evangelism) is indispensable.
5. Leadership is a privilege.

6. This week’s Essential: Positive Traditions.

In my travels to forty college campuses the past three years — and many other churches and ministries — I do in fact see plenty of traditions.

But positive ones?

By positive I mean healthy, growth-producing, momentum-inducing practices that build and expand the mission.


I just spent a week with a robust, thriving campus ministry at a major university a few states over from my home in Minnesota.

I asked to see their yearly calendar.

It’s filled with positive traditions such as excellent retreats, strategic training, thoughtful outreaches, missional prayer, crispy meetings and systematic leadership development.

They’re doing 90% of the fine things they did last year — except they’re doing them a little better this year.

I suggested a few tweaks but that was about it. They’re already practicing most of the Essentials, and I could feel from them the cool emanation of God-God-God, God vibrations.

OK, lame joke. But remember, I’m in major scramble mode to spice up these boring posts.

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