Rise of the Nerds
Leadership Network Blog
by Jason
3M ago
Exponential NEXT Podcast Episode 1 Series: Snapshots of Innovation Welcome to the Exponential NEXT Podcast, where we interview ministry leaders across North America who are shaping what’s next for the future of the church. In this episode, we introduce our Next Ventures process for discovering and resourcing innovative ministries and also interview Bubba Stallcup, CEO and founder of Love Thy Nerd. Bubba is finding new ways to reach the growing nerd culture and provides transferable principles for anyone called to a specific demographic. Host: Jon Wiest, Director of NEXT Ventures Guest: Bubba ..read more
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9 AI Trends for Churches to Be Aware Of in 2024
Leadership Network Blog
by Lexi Lang
3M ago
As artificial intelligence (AI) technology continues to advance, the role of AI in ministry is becoming increasingly vital.  Pastors seeking to integrate AI into their churches need to be aware of the latest trends to effectively utilize this technology. I want to share nine key AI trends I see coming in this year, each with specific examples and expanded insights, to help you envision the future of AI in church work. 9 Trends In AI For Churches 1. Customized Sermon and Teaching Aids AI tools are now crucial in crafting sermons and teachings that resonate deeply with diverse congregations ..read more
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Cultivating Social Momentum
Leadership Network Blog
by Lexi Lang
3M ago
Microchurches are extended spiritual families. They don’t just form overnight. They emerge over the course of time as loving disciplemakers incarnate within networks of relationships, plant the gospel, and make new disciples. Healthy disciplemaking is based on healthy relationships.  Relationships don’t form overnight, either. They are built as we get to know the names of people, have slow conversations, have hard conversations, hear stories, laugh together, and maybe even cry together.  Some people just seem naturally gifted in starting and growing relationships. For the rest of us ..read more
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Exponential NEXT Podcast Coming February 7
Leadership Network Blog
by Jason
3M ago
Mark your calendars for February 7, 2024—an exciting day as we release the inaugural episode of the Exponential NEXT Podcast. Don’t miss out! Subscribe now to get notified the moment it drops. Let’s embark on this incredible journey together! Welcome to the Exponential NEXT Podcast where ministry and church leaders come together to discuss topics that give you a peek into the future of the church. At Exponential NEXT we focus on discovering what is coming NEXT for the future of the church that can lead to accelerating church multiplication. Join a community of kingdom-minded changemakers explo ..read more
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2020’s Unseen Wake-up Calls
Leadership Network Blog
by Lexi Lang
4M ago
In 2020, God offered a lifeline to the church to prevent the loss of the coming generations. However, I believe we learned all the wrong things. In 2019, my wife, Jenn, and I wrestled with a new calling God was placing on our lives: To plant a fully digital church for people who would rather go to Hell than walk through the doors of a traditional church. I have been a gamer and nerd in every form for as long as I can remember. And despite being a Christian for more than 20 years (since the age of eight), there were millions of gamers like me far from God, unlikely to seek truth within church w ..read more
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Empowering Women to Embrace Their Missional Calling 
Leadership Network Blog
by Lexi Lang
4M ago
This cultural moment is ripe for women to step into their full calling within the local church.   Burdened by a Church history that has not always embraced women as full partners in the Jesus mission, we are beginning to see a future where women feel encouraged, welcomed, and free to find their voice and embrace their part in building up the church.   With this in mind, we are so excited that Exponential has named women leaders as one of the lanes where they want Exponential NEXT to focus! We are excited to get Women NEXT launched and to lead as content curators. In this in ..read more
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The Long Game
Leadership Network Blog
by Jason
4M ago
I begin with a question that all of us in leadership must answer: Why does the church have such a difficult time engaging her people in life-transforming discipleship? There are many reasons why we are experiencing this phenomenon. Often, we find that leaders have not themselves been discipled. Therefore, they have no real context for what it looks like to choose to step into the long game with others. We are too often looking for the quick fix, the silver bullet that will require the least amount of sacrifice on the part of the discipler and the disciple. Our world rolls at breakneck speed, a ..read more
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Making Disciples Requires Centering Discipleship
Leadership Network Blog
by Jason
4M ago
As we focus on shifting from reaching to making disciples at Exponential’s One Eighty: The Return to Disciple Making, each of us as part of the body of Christ, fellow priesthood of all believers, and leaders within our communities and churches will need to clarify and agree on a definition for discipleship.  As discipleship has become a grossly over-used term but under-utlized practice in our 21st century church contexts, it has often become a generic label for our “Christian walk”, either pertaining to a severely privatized religion or a vague feel-good corporate Sunday gathering.&n ..read more
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How AI Can Transform Discipleship in Your Church
Leadership Network Blog
by Lexi Lang
4M ago
The technological advancements of artificial intelligence (AI) have the power to revolutionize many aspects of our lives, including the way we approach and practice our faith. In this article, we will explore how AI can transform discipleship and the work you do at your church, offering new opportunities for learning, growth, and engagement with the Bible. AI Saves Time Creating Targeted Resources One of the key benefits of AI in discipleship is its ability to create space for personal relationships and mentoring by saving time by accelerating the creation of curriculum and discipleship resour ..read more
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5 Learnings Regarding Multiplication in a Microchurch Movement
Leadership Network Blog
by Lexi Lang
4M ago
Although “movement” has undoubtedly become a buzzword in our culture, it has some pretty specific implications in the missions world. Chief among them is the core element of multiplication.  Disciple Making Movements (DMM) are taking off all around the world, resulting in the exponential multiplication of new disciples and simple churches. A simple definition of DMM comes from Jerry Trousdale in The Kingdom Unleashed: DMM is “a process of disciples making disciples, and churches planting at least 100 churches, with four or more generations of replication.” Western practitioners (like us i ..read more
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