The Preferred Future | Productive Pastor 79

The Preferred Future | Productive Pastor 79

Have you ever thought about the future you would love to have for you or your ministry? Many times we can wander about individually or organizationally. This episode, I want to talk about the idea of a preferred future. This is an amazing tool that can help you strategically plan at every level.

Front Matter

The Productivity Project with Chris Bell | Pat Flynn Smart Passive Income

Stress is the Enemy of Creativity | by Christian Miller 

Chaos Killers Episode 77 

Avoiding and Attacking Procrastination Episode 52

The War of Art | Steven Pressfield 

The Surprising Habits of Original Thinkers | Adam Grant

The Preferred Future

Why do we have many of the problems in personal leadership AND in the direction of our churches/ministries?

We don’t know what the future holds, how we are playing a part in it, and have lost this idea of promise.

The greatest purpose comes hand in hand with the greatest preparation and process.

This immediately makes us think pretty seriously about call. What is the mission we’ve been given, how does it interplay with our giftedness and ability, and what if we are being asked to do something specific? It is a theological exercise, immediately drawing folks out of themselves.

The Preferred Future is an exercise and tactic to work through towards what you believe is your mission. In scripture, the entire journey from Abraham to Joshua is about preferred future. The sweet spot lies when leaders and churches can prayerfully work through the hard vision process to understand their God-given preferred future. In any strategic planning, understanding and discovering the preferred future is a must. It gives you a baseline to work back from.

The second, and potentially toughest, part of the preferred future is understanding your current reality. Many folks never get past this point. When we don’t have any accurate picture of where we are now and how we got there, we can never move forwards towards the future. Many churches stay stuck in the past because they don’t even see their current place. Often times, a clear picture of our current reality allows us to discover our squeeze points. It helps us to find the lids we need to lift in our selves and organizations to get to the preferred future. It’s the hard work and sweat equity we put in our own improvements.

Back Matter

In the last few months, I have experimented with a few new forms of new media and content delivery.

I’ve loved spending time learning what it takes to create content for youtube. While I don’t think it will be a regular thing, I enjoy getting back into the rhythm of video content.


This last week I’ve been spending time in It is a fantastic new podcasting service that works completely on your phone and reminds me of an audio version of Instagram stories. I’m getting addicted to it.


Have you checked out the Productive Pastor Community? It’s an awesome place for ministry leaders to have productivity and time management resources. It’s absolutely free and connects you on Facebook to other folks in the community.

Make sure to subscribe to the Productive Pastor Insider.

Remember to Review and Rate in iTunes. You can do it right here.

Experimenting with Anchor.FM

Experimenting with Anchor.FM

I’m always wanting to explore how people are using new media. Earlier this summer, I started (very mildly) vlogging with Youtube. I’ve enjoyed it, but it takes a TREMENDOUS amount of time. I still enjoy it, but it takes too much time up to really get into the platform. This week, I’m experimenting with

As much as I love video, I still think we are moving into an economy of audio. Most of our cars have bluetooth and/or aux jacks. With smartphones, we can play audio pretty much wherever we are. It’s no secret how much I believe in podcasting. Between Productive Pastor, The Threshing Floor, FOUNDRYcast and other experiments, I think podcasting is a fantastic way for ministry leaders to reach and influence folks. is a new audio delivery service with some fantastic ideas. You can create content right on your phone, stream music and many other things. I love the call in feature as well. So I’m experimenting in and with Anchor. I’m thinking of shorter bits of content with some music thrown in. Really light and super real life focused.

Check it out here:


Never Stop Learning | Productive Pastor 78

Never Stop Learning | Productive Pastor 78

Are you still learning? That’s a big question because most of our immediate answer would be a resounding YES!

But are we really?

I want to share with you the why of deliberate learning and hopefully jump off your battery towards more strategic learning.

Front Matter:

I want to thank Craig Finnestad for his book From the Waters Edge. You can pick up a copy here.


Never Stop Learning

Let’s get into the nitty gritty.

What happens when we quit exercising something?

I learned this month. I started lifting weights with a coach using the starting strength method. The first day was absolutely terrifying. My legs were shaking, I couldn’t do the final lift because of mobility issues, and my coach was scared for me to go home on my motorcycle.

At best, I hadn’t used those muscles in a specific way in 20 years. Most likely, I had never actually used them before. But since then, I have become significantly stronger, more mobile and agile and now look forward to my 3 weekly sessions.

When we quit learning, we quit growing. When we quit growing, we will atrophy and our ability to do anything remotely strenuous will die.

One of the most dangerous things you can do in ministry is to stop learning. It will stop your personal growth, your leadership potential, and your church. Much of reading is simply brain massaging, making it work to its top capacity.

I want to share with you 5 places we can use to enhance our learning, but taking it in a totally different way.

  • Reading
  • Podcasts
  • Magazines
  • Youtube
  • Medium

Back Matter

Have you checked out the Productive Pastor Community? It’s an awesome place for ministry leaders to have productivity and time management resources. It’s absolutely free and connects you on Facebook to other folks in the community.

Make sure to subscribe to the Productive Pastor Insider.

Remember to Review and Rate in iTunes. You can do it right here.

Mapping Innovation: a Playbook for Mapping a Disruptive Age

Carl Pullein: Youtube channel 

DIY whiteboard shopping list

DIY whiteboard shopping list

I’m a tad bit obsessed with my whiteboard. I probably use it and fill it up around 10x a week. And that’s just my main one. I have 4 at the house. People ask me about my whiteboard problem all the time, mainly because it shows up on my instagram channel a good bit. I get asked about supplies often, so here is a DIY Whiteboard shopping list.

DIY Whiteboard Shopping List

  1. You need a surface. I use this from Home Depot, but any big box store should have something. You want to look for a smooth surface, with absolutely no texture. Some folks choose to use a car wax on the surface, but the last few I have built haven’t really needed it.
  2. I’ve tried TONS of whiteboard markers. The best, absolutely hands down, is the Amazon basics brand. They are thick, leave great lines and keep a good tip.
  3. Since this is a DIY solution, you will need to get some marker fluid. Trust me. The best I have found is the Evererase  Everclean fluid.
  4. I’ve done the dance with shop towels, microfiber cloths and anything else I can find. Now, I just buy a whiteboard eraser. Any will do, these are what I typically go for.

I’m going to do a build video for my next whiteboard, but until then, I hope this shopping list helps. Leave a picture of your complete setup in the comments!