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Aug 20, 2019

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Explore the five conversations you need to have with individuals if you want to celebrate the way God is using them in daily life.

Where to begin?

We encourage every leader to ask the question, "Where have you witnessed God's presence today?" The intentionality of this question forces us to pause, reflect, and celebrate God's presence in daily life. 

Define Celebration

How do we define celebration? No, we don't mean cake, ice cream balloons, and party invitations. While those celebrations are fun, they're not the celebration we're talking about. If you want to celebrate the leaders on your team, celebrate by naming God's presence. As individuals and as a team, the practice of naming where/how God is showing up and showing off in your life is a foundation of faithful leadership.

What about the Hard Times?

As a reminder, in Episode 080 we explore celebrating even when it's difficult. With the above definition in mind, you're encouraged to name God's presence - even when crisis, challenges, and/or divisiveness plagues your community.

Why Does Celebration Seem Hard?

Are you putting off celebrating someone on your team because you're not sure what to celebrate, let alone how to celebrate them? Here are five conversations to create a culture where celebrating God's presence is the norm.

1) Identifying gifts & graces, strengths AND connect their giftedness to the mission, responsibilities, and goals for the year. This is where a leader listens closely and seeks to help others connect their strengths to the mission. This is where you set expectations.

You've just identified the first way you can celebrate a team member, or ask a team member about.

2) Quick, weekly check-in. This conversation might be on the phone, via email, text messages, etc. Note the emphasis on quick. This isn't about a detailed rundown of every task. Ask questions about progress on projects and help needed. 

You've just identified the second way to celebrate how God is using a team member. 

3) Monthly check-in. This conversation explores expectations set in the first conversation. Together, you'll re-align expectations, adjust deadlines, and identify partners. You might also identify barriers that need to be removed.

Begin this meeting by asking everyone present (if it's a team meeting) to name one place they've experienced God's presence since you were last together. Then, give God thanks for the ways your team gets to be a part of what God is doing.

4) Semi-annual or quarterly developmental conversations. Here you can explore the areas for growth, skills that need to be developed, and identify the resources to help the team member take the next step. 

You might also have a conversation about focusing on one specific talent or strength to continue honing and deepening the mastery of a talent. The focus of this conversation is around helping a person grow deeper into who God has created them to be.

You've been taking notes, celebrating all year. Here's a time for one to one conversation about what God is doing in their life and ministry. Stay focused on connecting this conversation to ministry responsibilities, even as you celebrate God's presence. 

5) Annual Review. By the time this conversation comes around, it should be an annual celebration of God's movement in the team member's life. Here's where you can name the success, identify next steps, and realign the priorities for the next year. 

What might happen in an annual review if you challenged yourself to name 7-10 ways God showed up through their ministry in the past year. Connect these God sightings to goals, priorities, and/or areas of strengths.

Teachable Moments

By the time we finished the fourth conversation, I (Sara) realized I was caught up in teaching you about the five conversations. 

So much so, that it didn't occur to me until 27 minutes into the podcast to ask Tim the questions I was encouraging you to have conversations about. You'll hear my "Doh!" moment about 27 minutes into this episode.

Sometimes leadership is admitting we didn't do something well and learning from our mistakes. I'll chalk it up to the fact that we were trying to share these conversations with you and not necessarily model the conversations for you. Why? Because every conversation will be different. 

The KEY Question

The five conversations should lead you to answer one question affirmatively and clearly. Here's the question: Do you know how people want to be celebrated?

Then, focus on the five conversations here to keep God's presence at the center of your life together and at the heart of who you are as a leader.

10 Questions to Consider

1) In the last 7 day, how have you celebrated what God is doing in and through you?

2) In the last 7 days, how have you celebrated what God is doing in and through your team of leaders?

Download the other 8 questions at

Mentioned in this episode: 

Dare to Lead Workshop

Episode 080: The Value of Celebration...Even When It's Difficult

It's the Manager