IgniteUS Newsletter February 1 2019

February 5, 2019 by  
Filed under Newsletter

Under The Elmtree

In This Edition


*  R U A Level Five (5) Leader

*  Book Review – Reformed Systematics

*  The Atmosphere of Ministry

*  An App for IgniteUS

*  IUS Leading Transformation

*  Pastoral Placement – FIT

* Tithe.ly for Ministry Support

Pod Cast  Thrive – Are You Thriving?

This Date in History- Lizzy Wacks Mary

Pastoral unity Paul speaks of in this passage is Organic




Level Five Leadership


What is a Level Five Leader? In the next five (5) News Letters we will endeavor to answer that question. Why does it matter? The short answer is this. There is a direct correlation between ministry effectiveness and the competence level of the primary leadership in a local church. Leadership is crucial in every organization and this is definitely true in the local church. Here is a quote supporting this thesis from John Maxwell’s book The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, Chapter 1, p.1.

I often open my leadership conferences by explaining the Law of The Lid because it helps people understand the value of leadership. If you can get a handle on this law, you will see the incredible impact of leadership on every aspect of life. So here it is: leadership ability is the lid that determines a person’s level of effectiveness. The lower an individual’s ability to lead, the lower the lid on his potential. The higher the leader- ship, the greater the effectiveness. To give you an example, if your  leadership rates an 8, then your effectiveness can never be greater than a 7. If your leadership is only a 4, then you’re effectiveness will be no higher than a 3. Your leadership ability–for better or for worse–always determines your effectiveness and the potential impact of your organization.


The definition of level five leadership is accomplished in five characteristics of such leaders. Here is Number #2 – Courage


This is the second in a series of five. In this article we focus on Courage. Perhaps a quote from the well known exchange in the Wizard of Oz provides insight into this quality. Listen in as Dorthy challenges the Cowardly Lion.


Dorothy: My goodness, what a fuss you’re making! Well, naturally, when you go around picking on things weaker than you are. Why, you’re nothing but a great big coward!
Cowardly Lion: [crying] You’re right, I am a coward! I haven’t any courage at all. I even scare myself. [sobbing] Look at the circles under my eyes. I haven’t slept in weeks!
Tin Man: Why don’t you try counting sheep?
Cowardly Lion: That doesn’t do any good, I’m afraid of ’em.


Elder/Shepherds cannot lead effectively if they fear the sheep. Effective leadership is focused on fulfilling the purpose of the organization. For the church this purpose is making disciples. This requires courage. Decisions are shaped by that reality. In the current culture that is radical. When fear rather than courage is the dominant motivation there is dysfunction and trouble ahead.


Courage, real godly courage, is a rare commodity. But then, we don’t need a multitude – – just a small band of COURAGEOUS and dedicated servant leaders. They understand the task, the difficulty and the challenges. Seeing all of this they say, “What are we waiting for?”


God and a man or a band of men with courage is the most significant majority the world has ever known. Courage is neither reckless nor foolish. It is bold and guided by the Holy Spirit. That guidance almost always puts you in a counter-culture posture. God always delights to identify men who in times of darkness trust the light of special revelation. Trust God and press on.


1 Chron. 28:20 Then David said to his son Solomon, “Be strong and courageous, and act; do not fear nor be dismayed for the LORD God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you nor forsake you until all the work for the service of the house of the LORD is finished.


2 Chron. 15:2,8 – Asa But you, be strong and do not lose courage, for there is reward for your work.” Now when Asa heard these words and the prophecy which Azariah the son of Oded the prophet spoke, he took courage and removed the abominable idols from all the land of Judah and Benjamin and from the cities which he had captured in the hill country of Ephraim. He then restored the altar of the LORD which was in front of the porch of the LORD.


Ezra 10:4 “Arise! For this matter is your responsibility, but we will be with you; be courageous and act.”


Haggai 2:4 But now take courage, Zerubbabel,’ declares the LORD, ‘take courage also, Joshua son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and all you people of the land take courage,’ declares the LORD, ‘and work; for I am with you,’ declares the LORD of hosts.


Acts 23:11 But on the night immediately following, the Lord stood at his side and said, ‘Take courage; for as you have solemnly witnessed to My cause at Jerusalem, so you must witness at Rome also.”


Answer this question -‘Do you lead with courage, or, are you  more like the cowardly lion in the Wizard of Oz?’


Book Review – Reformed Systematics


Book Review – Beeke, Joel. and Smalley, Paul M. Reformed Systematic Theology – Revelation & God. Wheaton IL: Crossway, 2019, 1290 pp. $60.00 ISBN # – 978-1-4335-5983-9. Available March 31, 2019.


Systematic theology is a method of studying the Bible founded on the principle that the Scriptures reveal a single God-ordained, well-ordered, coherent, and unchanging system of doctrine. This title provides a copious collection of Sound Doctrine from a Reformed perspective. That perspective is the inheritance of the Reformation launched by Luther and other courageous and diligent scholars passed down to us for preservation and proclamation. Stand and proclaim!


Should anyone question the necessity or the timely importance of such a title, simply follow this link – (www.thestateoftheology.com). This is research completed by Ligonier Ministries every other year. It is published as a tool to bring correction that leads to sound doctrine. What you will discover there is a bone-chilling expose’ of profound ignorance of what the Bible actually teaches. In short, there is a desperate need for Systematic Theology in the church in the United States of America.


Dr. Beeke provides an overview of this and subsequent volumes in this series.


Like the Reformers and the Puritans, we believe that the experiential application of doctrine is paramount for doing good systematic theology. Systematic theology should minister to the whole person. Therefore, this book and it’s companion volumes aim to bring together rigorous biblical, historical, and theological scholarship with spiritual disciplines and practicality – characterized by a simple, accessible, comprehensive, Reformed and experiential approach. With this paradigm, we will explore eight themes of theology in four volumes:


Volume one: theology/revelation (prolegomena) and God (theology proper)

Volume two: man (anthropology) and Christ (Christology)

Volume three: the Holy Spirit (pneumatology) and salvation (soteriology) and

Volume four: the church (ecclesiology) and the last things (eschatology)


I recommend that my readers secure this tome. Establish a schedule in which you will complete a disciplined reading/study schedule for assimilating the content of this material in fifty-two weeks. This requires the reading/study of twenty-five pages per week. In your reading utilize the IgniteUS Learning Covenant. This tool enables you to capture salient content for application in ministry where you serve. The goal of study is acquiring ministry competence not merely another reading conquest. Contact us @ info@igniteus.net or call 800 472 3764 to receive a copy of this useful ministry tool.


Dr. Beeke’s relentless focus on precise exegesis and the integration of truth facilitates a strategic approach to disciplined learning. This results in more than the mere collection of knowledge. That puffs up (cf. 1Cor. 4:6). It leads to the systematic application of truth in the lives of the people you are serving. God uses this to produce transformation. IgniteUS Ministries refers to this as Applied Theology. The proper goal of disciplined study is not merely acquiring knowledge. It must result in the in-context application of that knowledge in the transformation of God’s people into the fullness of the image of Christ in character and conduct. This title equips my readers to accomplish this noble goal.


I found the material on the Extent, Meaning, and Implications of Inspiration on pp. 327-332 to be timely and beneficial in light of the endless challenges to the Authority of Scripture.


This title is not ‘Cliff Notes on the Scripture’. It is serious scholarship. It equips the man of God to function with Christ-honoring effectiveness in the office of Elder/Pastor. The discipline required to study and apply this material is its own reward.


The Atmosphere of Ministry


The following quote by Trevin Wax is a brief yet very precise and accurate description of the atmosphere of ministry in the American church. If you struggle as a Pastor wondering why there is so little genuine transformation among the people you serve, this quote provides valuable insight. Let me encourage you. Press on. Remember the exhortation of the God we serve – Hebrews 6:10–12 (ESV) 10 For God is not unjust so as to overlook your work and the love that you have shown for his name in serving the saints, as you still do. 11 And we desire each one of you to show the same earnestness to have the full assurance of hope until the end, 12 so that you may not be sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.


“Americans have reached a point where ignorance is seen as an actual virtue. To reject the advice of experts is to assert autonomy, a way for Americans to demonstrate their independence from nefarious elites.”


An App for IgniteUS 

The Radio station that broadcast my radio programs has developed an App for IgniteUS. I am writing this on January 10. The APP will be live 01/11/2019. The Beta Test begins February 15. I will post some guidelines in this section of our News Letter. This will enable you to get to our web site and other beneficial resources with one click. There are numerous other features to make connecting with us simple and efficient. We look forward to  this tool being available to our Transformation Partners and the faithful readers of our News Letter. More info to follow. As I learn more about this resource I will share that information here. Many THANKS to Ron Mosley, Jr. and WKUL 92.1 FM here in Cullman for developing this ministry resource.


.IUS Leading Transformation – IgniteUS is currently serving 

Oakwood Baptist Church – Camp Hill PA (I am serving as Interim Pastor here):


Graceway Baptist Church – Milton ONT. (engaged in Leadership Development)


Indians Springs Baptist – Kingsport TN (recently called their Lead Pastor)


First Baptist Church, Loris SC (strategically making disciples effectively)


Peoples Church, New Brunswick Canada (engaged in Renewal)


Wyoming Community Church, Grand Rapids MI (Grappling With Renewal)


February/March – Will you be next?


Pastoral Placement 

Leadership is crucial. When a church is seeking a Lead Pastor there are multiple critical areas that must be considered. Tragically the traditional approach to this process has produced brief pastoral tenures (3 1/2 years is the current average) and less than robust effectiveness. It takes about five (5) years for a pastor to earn trust and the willingness of people to embrace the changes ministry requires. Research reveals that churches that ‘go it alone’ in the call process experience a 90-95% failure rate – the man they call is not a FIT! Yet, many persist in repeating the same failed process. A positive and wise trend is to seek the services of a proven Consultant and Process. IgniteUS provides such a service. Our goal is to guide the church to a man that fits the church and the church fits the man. We help churches face reality. We provide testimonials from those who have utilized our services. Contact us @ 800 472 3764 or info@igniteus.net.


**WATCH for a 9Marks article that connects you with the FIT Process! FIT-edness was a key theological principle in the ministry of Jonathan Edwards.


Ministry Support $$


We are asking each recipient of this Newsletter to give – $10 a month. These funds enable us to provide  Scholarships to Pastors & Churches.  Our process produces Leaders with Competence that God uses to bring effectiveness to ministry. Join our Support Team! Christ gets the Glory! 

People do not give to a ministry because you have needs. People give because they believe you meet needs and they want to be a significant part of meeting those needs.Leadership Development is crucial and needed.

Financial Support– There are two (2) places on our web site (www.igniteus.net) that make contributing to our ministry simple. Click on the Home Page button labeled DONATE or on the Banner Online Giving. Follow the prompts. The challenge for every 501 c-3 organization always includes fund raising. When the market crashed in 2008 IUS lost $2,000/month in support – a major factor in sustaining ministry. We are seeking an additional $2,000/month in on-going support for fiscal year 2019. You can become a regular donor. THANKS to each one who gives! Appreciated!


Pod Cast – THRIVE


The title of the Pod Cast is THRIVE. That is our desire for every pastor and every local church. We want you to thrive in making disciples, and developing leaders, all of which is to Glorify Jesus Christ. There is a banner on our web site – – www.igniteus.net – – just click on that banner. This Pod Cast has the potential to reach 35,000 listeners. If you listen and find benefit in the content, encourage folks in your sphere of influence to listen as well, then contact us. THANKS. I want to hear from you; info@igniteus.net or 800 472 3764.

The Pod Cast are posted every Tuesday. The ministry of IgniteUS is focused on Leadership Development in the local church. Leadership Network recently completed a survey of hundreds of pastors. They were asked to identify the area in which they most needed assistance. Leadership Development was #1 in all but one category. These posts will inform, encourage, and equip leaders in the local church. Click on the banner on our home page labeled -Thrive.

The current series of posts are focused on Level Five (5) Leadership. Are you a Level Five Leader? Do you know why this matters?







This Date in History 1587 Queen Elizabeth I of England signs death warrant for her cousin, Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots

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