Rainer On Leadership Podcast

Rainer on Leadership is your online home for leadership lessons for the local church. This twice-weekly podcast provides practical training on important issues for church leaders and pastors. Rainer on Leadership is a production of LifeWay Christian Resources. For more information, visit ThomRainer.com.

6 Reasons Many Church Leaders Stop Leading Outwardly – Rainer on Leadership #492


Inward focus is natural for churches. It takes intentional effort and supernatural power to overcome this inward focus. Today, we discuss six reasons why it is so difficult to overcome.
Dec-11-2018

Five Types of Interventions for Churches Needing Revitalization – Rainer on Leadership #491


Interventions can meet a great need in churches—and many churches need them. Today we discuss five types of interventions, and I tell the story of my strangest church consultation moment.
Dec-07-2018

Primary Factors That Led to a Pastor’s Call to Ministry – Rainer on Leadership #490


A call to ministry is intensely personal, but for many pastors the call shares a few common themes. Today, we discuss six of those themes.
Dec-04-2018

Five Common Ways Pastors Overcome Sermon Blocks – Rainer on Leadership #489


Sunday comes every week for a pastor. And that means a sermon needed nearly every week. Today, we discuss how to combat sermon block if and when that happens.
Nov-30-2018

Trends in the Number of Weekends a Pastor Preaches Each Year – Rainer on Leadership #488


Preaching trends are changing in churches. Today, we look at why many preachers are preaching less every year and why that's a good thing.
Nov-27-2018

Why Is the Music So Loud in My Worship Service? – Rainer on Leadership #487


Mike Harland joins us to answer one of the biggest questions in church worship services today: why is it so loud?
Nov-23-2018

Six Surprising Time Drainers of Church Leaders – Rainer on Leadership #486


Like us all, pastors and church leaders only have a certain amount of time in their week. So it's important to know what can lead to time drain during the week.
Nov-20-2018

Why Pastors’ Honeymoons are Getting Shorter – Rainer on Leadership #485


Honeymoons always end. There are somethings that can be done by a new pastor to extend them, but there are definitely some other things that can be done to cut them short.
Nov-16-2018

Seven Reasons the 10+ Year Pastorate Is Becoming More Common – Rainer on Leadership #484


Data shows pastoral tenure is increasing. Today we examine why more pastorates are reaching double digit tenure. 
Nov-13-2018

Six Social Media Posts Church Leaders Should Avoid – Rainer on Leadership #483


Social media can be great for expressing yourself, getting news, meeting new friends, and living out your faith. The problem comes when we post something not so smart. Today we cover six areas to a...
Nov-09-2018

Should the Pastor Have Visibility to Members’ Giving? – Rainer on Leadership #482


Groups that get donations usually have visibility of who gives what. But what about a church? Should a pastor know who is giving and how much? Today, we discuss. 
Nov-06-2018

Six Ways to Minister after a Miscarriage – Rainer on Leadership #481


Miscarriage is a difficult live event for those going through it. It's often not handled well by ministers, either. Today we discuss how to better handle these events in life and ministry.
Nov-02-2018

Ten Goofy Criticisms of Pastors – Rainer on Leadership #480


We asked our members at Church Answers for the wildest criticisms they had ever received. The answers did not disappoint.
Oct-30-2018

Five Major “What If” We Regrets We Are Hearing from Churches – Rainer on Leadership #479


Regret often comes when it's too late to change things in a church. Today, we discuss five of the most common regrets we hear from churches.
Oct-26-2018

Altar Calls, the Perfect Pastoral Work Week, and Other Listener Questions – Rainer on Leadership #478


We get a lot of questions here at Rainer on Leadership. Today, we take some time to talk about vacations with church members, altar calls, and the perfect pastoral work week.
Oct-23-2018

The Six Characteristics of a Scrappy Church – Rainer on Leadership #477


My latest book, Scrappy Church, was written to offer hope to churches who think they may not have a future. God is not done with your church yet.
Oct-19-2018

Seven Traits of a Healthy Church – Rainer on Leadership #476


We need healthy churches. I've committed my ministry to helping churches grow healthier. But what does a healthy church look like? Today, we discuss seven traits they exhibit.
Oct-16-2018

Should a Church Pursue Legacy Giving? – Rainer on Leadership #475


Legacy giving, or inherited funds, is something that churches often do not pursue. Today we discuss why that's often a mistake and how to do so.
Oct-12-2018

Sacred Cows to Be Aware of in Your Church – Rainer on Leadership #474


We recently ran a Twitter poll to find out the most dealt with sacred cows in churches. The responses were both hilarious and worrisome.
Oct-09-2018

Seven Reasons Why Writing Handwritten Notes Will Revolutionize Your Ministry – Rainer on Leadership #473


Handwritten notes are a lost art for many. Today, we discuss why they are so important and how you can use them to boost encouragement in your church and ministry.
Oct-05-2018

Six Reasons Why Churches Continue to Get Immature Christians in Leadership Positions – Rainer on Leadership #472


Leadership in the church tends to fall to those who are either the loudest or who want it the most instead of who is spiritually mature enough to handle it. Today we explore why this happens and ho...
Oct-02-2018

Why I’m Starting Revitalize Network – Rainer on Leadership #471


I recently announced the launch of Revitalize Network—a 501c3 nonprofit organization focused on helping churches revitalize. Today, we discuss the details of the network and how you can join us.
Sep-28-2018

A Look Back at My Time at LifeWay – Rainer on Leadership #470


With my upcoming retirement from LifeWay, we take time to look back on my 13 years as president. We discuss the challenges, the wins, the fun times, and the walk on the beach that changed the cours...
Sep-25-2018

Five Types of Infrequent Attendees – Rainer on Leadership #469


Declining attendance isn't as much of an issue in churches as declining frequency of attendance. Today we discuss those who miss frequently and how to solve that.
Sep-21-2018

Five Key Reasons Churches Become More Unified – Rainer on Leadership #468


Church unity is an issue in many churches. Fighting, gossip, and bullying can really play havoc on unity. Today, we discuss why and how churches can become more unified.
Sep-18-2018

How to Say No to Church Members – Rainer on Leadership #467


Pastors often fall into the trap of being people pleasers. Today, we discuss why and how you can say no to requests or even demands from church members.
Sep-14-2018

Why Staff Issues Are Among the Most Painful Church Issues – Rainer on Leadership #466


Church staffing can be tricky in today's churches. On this episode we discuss reasons church staffing issues can hurt a church and how to deal with them.
Sep-11-2018

Why Poor Discipleship Is Such a Big Issue in Many Churches – Rainer on Leadership #465


Discipleship is something churches say they do, but also something they don't always really understand. Today we explain why.
Sep-07-2018

Your Church Has Been Offered a Facility…Now What? – Rainer on Leadership #464


Tim Cool joins us to discuss facility management and why a free building could be the most expensive building your church has. 
Sep-04-2018

What to Do If You Desire Excellence in the Church, but You Are Not Seeing It – Rainer on Leadership #463


Many churches aspire to excellence, but unfortunately many of them miss the mark. Today we discuss how to excel in your church.
Aug-31-2018

Eight Ways Church Members Can Help Pastors Avoid Burnout — Rainer on Leadership #462


Burnout is a real issue for many, and pastors are not exempt. Today we discuss how church members can help their pastor avoid it.
Aug-28-2018

Why Some Interim Pastorates Are Successful When Others Are Not – Rainer on Leadership #461


Pastoral transition happens all the time. Today we discuss what makes for a successful interim pastorate and how InterimPastor.University can help.
Aug-24-2018

Five Major Ways to Improve Your Worship Services – Rainer on Leadership #460


There are several things you can do in worship services to improve the experience for guests and members. Today we discuss five such things—four of which cost nothing.
Aug-21-2018

Why People Don’t Invite Others to Church – Rainer on Leadership #459


A recent LifeWay Research study reported on the invite habits of American churchgoers. Today, we examine the results and discuss how to correct the problems.
Aug-17-2018

Problems Churches Face When They Don’t Have a Pastor – Rainer on Leadership #458


William Vanderbloemen joins us to discuss the problems churches often face when they are pastorless.
Aug-14-2018

Why Digital Giving Options Are Vital for the Financial Health of Your Church – Rainer on Leadership #457


If churches want the next generation of members to give to their full potential, digital giving options are a must. Today, we explain why.
Aug-10-2018

Nine Key Statistical Insights from Churches in 2018 – Rainer on Leadership #456


Tony Morgan joins us to discuss statistical trends he's finding in churches today and what those trends can mean for your church in the future.
Aug-07-2018

The Value of Women in the Workplace and the Rise of Working from Home – Rainer on Leadership #455


Shannon Miles joins us today to discuss her new book, The Third Option, and the rise of working from home.
Aug-03-2018

Eight Warning Signs Your Church Is Drifting from God’s Mission – Rainer on Leadership #454


Is your church aligned with God's intended mission for her? A post by Sam Rainer serves as the basis of today's discussion on warning signs that you might be drifting from God's mission.
Jul-31-2018

Seven Reasons People Give More to Their Church – Rainer on Leadership #453


Money is a subject too many pastors avoid—but they shouldn't. It's important to preach and teach on biblical stewardship. Today we explain seven ways that can lead to increased giving.
Jul-27-2018

Top Ten Ways Churches Drive Away First-time Guests – Rainer on Leadership #452


Guest friendliness has been a constant theme on this blog and podcast over the past few years. There's even a book that came out of these discussions. Today, we look at a classic post on the subjec...
Jul-24-2018

Five Consequences of the Pending Retirement of Boomer Pastors – Rainer on Leadership #451


Every single day, 1,000 Boomers are hitting retirement age. This includes Boomer pastors. Today we discuss the consequences of this reality and also highlight why many are choosing Interim Pastor U...
Jul-20-2018

Five Future Developments Coming to the Church – Rainer on Leadership #450


Churches of the future will have many of the same components of churches today, but there are changes that will take place. Today, we cover five of those changes.
Jul-17-2018

Six Considerations for Selecting Mission Partners – Rainer on Leadership #449


Churches are asked often to help fund or partner in missions. Today, we discuss how to make those decisions thanks to a post by Sam Rainer.
Jul-13-2018

Why People Leave a Church – Rainer on Leadership #448


A recent study by LifeWay Research showed that 15% of church members have considered leaving their church in the past six months. Today, we discuss why.
Jul-10-2018

Seven Ways to Adapt to Changes in Church Attendance – Rainer on Leadership #447


Jim Sheppard, CEO of Generis, joins us today to talk about a new, free eBook (The Big Shift) and to discuss how your church can best adapt to the changing patterns in church member attendance.
Jul-06-2018

How to Deal With an Angry Church Member – Rainer on Leadership #446


I get asked this question on nearly a daily basis. Pastors from all over are wanting to know how to deal with angry church members.
Jul-03-2018

Four Steps for Dealing with a #MeToo Moment in Your Church – Rainer on Leadership #445


Josh Bryant, the Church Law Guru, joins us to discuss how your church can prepare for and respond to a #MeToo accusation.
Jun-29-2018

Six Ways the #MeToo Movement Has Affected Local Church Life – Rainer on Leadership #444


Sexual abuse in the Church has become a major issue for pastors and church leaders. Today, we discuss why this is an important moment for the Church to get right in the way things are handled.
Jun-26-2018

Equipping Millennials in the Church – Rainer on Leadership #443


Chris Martin, the Millennial Evangelical, joins us to discuss Ministering to Millennials and how your church can better equip and engage Millennials.
Jun-22-2018