Five things I learned while fishing with Rick Warren. (yes - that Rick Warren)

This week I am speaking at a Camp and it just so happens that Rick Warren is here. 

The camp has an incredible lake stocked with bass. I know that Rick is an avid fishermen, so one morning I took a chance and asked Rick if he'd like to join me. While I stood on the bank fishing, I asked Rick questions and listened to his unbelievable answers. 

Here are a few bullet points of part of his conversation with me. 

When God wants to change a church. He always takes the leader and people through five stages of renewal. 


Stage One: Personal Renewal 

Renewal starts with me. It starts inside of my life when my character lines up with the teachings of Jesus. Taking up my cross and following him daily. 

Stage Two: Relational Renewal

First get right with God, then get right with each other. When relationships are renewed in the Church, conflict will go down, and joy will go up. People will sing better. Families will stick around after service. Open their homes for fellowship. The church will become one body of believers rather than a building full of individual Christ followers. 

Stage Three: Missional Renewal 

When a church discovers that it is here for a particular purpose. When a church realizes that it does not exist to simply exist, but rather to bring people to Jesus and help them live like Him. Everything changes. 

When a church gets the foundation of the first three renewals set, it cannot help but begin to grow. Everything that is healthy will grow. When individuals are inline with God and others, coming together to accomplish one purpose ...growth happens. 

Stage Four: Structural Renewal 

Far too often, this is where most churches stop on the path to renewal. However, in order to become what God has called us to become, as we grow we have to change our organizational structure.  The way things are accomplished with you are a church of 100 will not work when you are 300, 500, or 1000. At each level of growth there must be structural renewal. 

Stage Five: Cultural Renewal

Once personal, relational, misional, and structural renewal continues to take place, the church is set to change the culture. God has placed the big C church in the world today for the globalization of His glory, to spread the gospel to all the world before the end comes. 

I learned so much while standing on the bank, listening to Rick drop nuggets of pure leadership gold. 

Now to be completely honest. Rick is not here at the camp in person. I am sure that Rick Warren has other things to do with his time than fish with me while I'm speaking at a teen camp in Rushville, Illinois. However, Rick is here and yes he did talk to me. In fact he has talked to me everyday this week.

Every morning when I get up to go fishing, I take my iPhone. I listen to Ricks podcast and old youtube videos of seminars that he has put on through the years. Everyday this week Rick Warren has been at this camp. He has poured into me. Trained me and coached me. My heart has been so inspired. My mind has been racing and I cannot wait to get back home, meet with my team and apply what I've learned while fishing with my long distance (only shook hands once) mentor, Rick Warren. 

Thanks for all you do Rick! 

Who do you want to learn from? Rick Warren? Perry Noble? Steven Furtick? T.D. Jakes? John Maxwell? Don't wait to meet them in person to pick their brain. Buy their books. Download their podcast. Watch them on youtube and spend some quality one one one time, today!