Every year, my church is one of the satellite locations for the Willow Creek Association Leadership Conference. This conference is broadcasted to locations all over the world, and for many leaders in the Bay Area, Church on The Hill is where they land to participate in the satellite event.

My hubby is the guy (along with his crew) who makes sure that all the buttons are pushed, microphones are on, and giant jumbo-tron screen is in place. He spends the better part of a week prepping for the conference (this in on top of the other hobby he has – working for HP full time,) and by the time the event arrives, I can be found some muttering some not-so-Christian-leader stuff under my breath. It take Roger away – a lot – the week before.

But then I get there, and I start to hear the speakers, and I take notes and see people from churches in the area that I love, but don’t get to see very often, and then I start to think, “We need to do this more often.” (I know, I know, just try living with me.)

So in case you didn’t get to go this year (and I highly recommend that you check out their website so that you can go next year) , I wanted to share some of the best things I heard.

Bill Hybles, the lead pastor of Willow Creek talked about the need to replenish if we are going to lead. Here are some of the best things I heard from Bill: (The words in italics are my thoughts.)

We lead best when we are filled up.

You need to have a planned negligence strategy. He talked about the need to plan on what you are going to neglect – there are going to be a lot of great things that you can’t participate in – and that’s OK- but you need to plan for it.

Who do I need to be around to be replenished? Who do I need to stay away from? There are some people who fill us up, and some who drain us. Make sure you are scheduling time with the ones who feed you, and limiting time with those who don’t.

Doubling exercise. Limiting eating. Pay attention to vacation. Self-explanatory.

Starting the day gently – with God’s word. No leadership material, no communication material. I am working on this, but I am getting better. I have to remember that it is OK not to get something accomplished, but just to linger with God. I am working diligently on lingering.

The best thing you bring to the table everyday is a filled up bucket and a heart that is attuned to God.


More notes tomorrow.


Kathi Lipp is the author of 17 books including Overwhelmed, Clutter Free, The Get Yourself Organized Project, The Husband Project, Happy Habits for Every Couple, and I Need Some Help Here – Hope for When Your Kids Don’t Go According to Plan. She is the host of Clutter Free Academy the Podcast! with Kathi Lipp and speaks at conferences across the US. Kathi is published with Revell Publishers and Harvest House Publishers.

She and her husband Roger are the parents of four young adults in San Jose, CA. When she’s not dating her husband or hanging out with her puggle Jake, Kathi is speaking at retreats, conferences and women’s events across the US.

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