Wednesday, October 9, 2019

LESSON 34 – Break Bread, Not Relationships

Welcome to Lessons From the Church Boardroom—The Blog, a 40-week journey through the new book, Lessons From the Church Boardroom: 40 Insights for Exceptional Governance, by Dan Busby and John Pearson. Each Wednesday, we'll feature a guest blogger’s favorite snippet from the week's topic. William Ankerberg is our guest blogger this week for the fourth of six lessons in "Part 9: Building a 24/7 Board Culture.”

LESSON 34 OF 40 – Break Bread, Not Relationships
Building a 24/7 board culture takes time. Don’t skimp on meals or relationships.

THE BIG IDEA FROM THE BOOK: In Lesson 34, the authors note the three-point sermon for healthy boards: Eat with intentionality. Enjoy deeper relationships. Eliminate all distractions.

MY FAVORITE INSIGHTS from Lesson 34, pages 183-187:
• “Food fuels fellowship and fellowship fuels deeper relationships.”
• “A friend is one who walks in when others walk out.”
• “Healthy boards commit to device-free zones.” 

Food is very theological. The first disagreement in the church was over food. Some widows felt they were being ignored in the distribution of food, and so we ended up with deacons. 

When you sit down and eat someone’s food you show acceptance of that person. The first time one of my church members from India invited me over for supper, they honored me by serving goat meat. As I embraced their food, it showed approval of my friend’s culture.

Over the last three decades of my ministry, we always shared a meal at the beginning of every team meeting. This was a time to talk and catch up with each other, to share prayer requests, and just to be together.

My mentor, Lyle Schaller, taught the best way to build cohesion in a group is the out-of-town, overnight, shared experience together. (This is the result of the research that the United States military has done.) To spend this time sharing meals and sharing our lives together is a powerful bonding experience. Away together increases bonding. The common meal is even significant in church as we celebrate “The Lord’s Supper.” Food and bonding develop together in community and teams. 


DR. WILLIAM ANKERBERG has served as a pastor and denominational leader for 47 years.  He is currently working as the Global Development Pastor at Journey of Faith Church in Manhattan Beach, Calif.  He also serves as the Director of Operations for Converge Southwest, an association of 120 churches.

• Make a plan to embrace relationships at your next leadership gathering in a creative way.
• Plan an out-of-town experience for your leadership team. Include staff and board members.
• Visit the ECFA Knowledge Center and read and share the short chapter, Lesson 34, “Break Bread, Not Relationships.”
• Inspire your board members to enrich their governance competencies at the ECFA Excellence in Governance Forums (eight cities, Fall 2019).

NEXT WEDNESDAY: On October 16, 2019, watch for the commentary by Frank Borst on Lesson 35, "Common Misconceptions of Board Members. Understanding board member myths can lead to improved governing effectiveness."


BULK ORDERS: Click here.  For more resources and to download the book's Table of Contents, visit the book's webpage.

1 comment:

  1. I totally get - and agree in theory with - the idea of board retreats. However, the reality is that all of our board members are typical of people in today's society, in that they sacrifice to give us even the time needed to review board reports and attend quarterly meetings. Given that they are unpaid volunteers, asking them to take even more time away from their families is not realistic, or even healthy for them as people. If we had a paid board, that might be a different story. But even then, we must not lose sight of what is best for board members overall as people, which unfortunately just doesn't line up with the ideal of what we might like to have in a perfect world.