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Lead Stories Podcast

Tales of Leadership and Life with Jo Saxton and Steph Williams
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Now displaying: Category: leadership

Stories of leadership and life with Jo Saxton and Steph O'Brien

Apr 3, 2017

The city was full of people and animals coming together to celebrate the Jewish feast of Passover.  Jesus and his disciples are also celebrating but in the midst of the meal and the intensity of what is about to happen Jesus takes an opportunity to  take up the posture of a servant and wash his disciples feet.  

 

Jo and Steph look at John 13:1-17 in this podcast and our willingness as leaders to get into other people’s mess and to allow other people into ours.  Listen in as they discuss practical ways that we can respond to God in the context of community.

 

Discussion questions:

 

Reread John 13:1-17

 

1) What do you find easier: helping other people in their mess or allowing others to come and help you in your mess. Why? How easy is it for you to allow Jesus to come into your mess and help you?

 

2) Is there anything in your leadership that you ask of others which you are not prepared to do yourself?

 

3) What is the difference between pity and compassion? Can you think of some practical examples and responses of each?

 

4) Can you name the people who you allow to wash your feet? Who are your intentional community who you are vulnerable with?

 

Join us at www.leadstoriesmedia.com/community 

 

Follow Lead Stories Podcast to interact with Steph and Jo:

Twitter: @LeadStoriesVox

Instagram: @LeadStoriesPodcast

Facebook: LeadStoriesPodcast

Connect with Jo at: www.josaxton.com @josaxton

Connect with Steph at: www.pastorsteph.com @pastorstephMPLS

Subscribe on iTunes to have the podcast automatically download to your device every week or listen at www.leadstoriespodcast.com

Mar 27, 2017

When Jesus entered Jerusalem on a donkey many were hoping that he would bring political change and uproot the Romans.  But God’s kingdom often looks like the opposite to what we expect - will we join God with what He is doing or will we quickly turn on Jesus when our expectations are not fulfilled?

 

Jo and Steph discuss how recognizing and responding to what God is doing requires us to have an understanding of what God’s kingdom looks like - concentrating on internal changes which impact external ones. 

 

Discussion questions:

 

1) Read Matthew 21: 1-11 and put yourself in the place of the different characters in the story - the religious leaders, the crowd, the disciples. Where can you identify with their response to Jesus?

 

2) Think through some of the parables and things Jesus says about the kingdom in the Bible. How does Jesus challenge our thinking on what God’s kingdom should look like in regards to who is welcomed, the role of finances, what faith looks like etc?

 

3) Take a moment to posture yourself before God and pray this prayer:

God will you open our eyes to see what you are doing around us,

Open our ears to hear what you are saying,

And give us the courage to respond.



Come and join us at www.leadstoriesmedia.com/community 

 

Follow Lead Stories Podcast to interact with Steph and Jo:

Twitter: @LeadStoriesVox

Instagram: @LeadStoriesPodcast

Facebook: LeadStoriesPodcast

Connect with Jo at: www.josaxton.com @josaxton

Connect with Steph at: www.pastorsteph.com @pastorstephMPLS

Subscribe on iTunes to have the podcast automatically download to your device every week or listen at www.leadstoriespodcast.com

Mar 22, 2017

In this Lead Voices podcast Jo and Steph chat with Natasha Sistrunk Robinson, the author of Mentor for Life: Finding Purpose through Intentional Discipleship (Zondervan, 2016).

 

She intentionally serves as a credible witness of Christ’s leadership to engage, equip, and empower people to live and lead on purpose. She is the visionary founder of the 501(c)(3) organization, Leadership LINKS, Inc., a ministry that exists to connect people with purpose.

 

Leadership LINKS exists to educate and equip servant leaders who are committed to using their skills and resources for the greater good of humanity. We fulfill our vision by offering leadership education that facilitates impactful living, character and spiritual development.

 

Natasha serves as a Bible teacher, writer, mentor, anti-human trafficking advocate, and champion for education.

 

Natasha is a graduate of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary Charlotte (cum laude, M.A. Christian Leadership) and the U.S. Naval Academy. A former Marine Corps officer, she has over 15 years of leadership and mentoring experience in the military, government, church, seminary, and nonprofit sectors.

 

She is a sought after leadership consultant, mentoring coach, and speaker. Connect via her official website www.natashaSrobinson.com, blog www.asistasjourney.com, Twitter @asistasjourney, Instagram nlsrobinson, orwww.facebook.com/NatashaSistrunkRobinson.

 

Come join us at: www.leadstoriesmedia.com/community

Follow Lead Stories Podcast to interact with Steph and Jo:

Twitter: @LeadStoriesVox

Instagram: @LeadStoriesPodcast

Facebook: LeadStoriesPodcast

Connect with Jo at: www.josaxton.com @josaxton

Connect with Steph at: www.pastorsteph.com @pastorstephMPLS

Subscribe on iTunes to have the podcast automatically download to your device every week or listen at www.leadstoriespodcast.com

Mar 20, 2017

Once we have overcome barriers to responding to God, how do we actually discern what God is saying? What does that look like practically?

 

This week Jo and Steph share their stories, answering questions such as:

  • What are some of the ways God has got your attention in the past?
  • What role has community played in discerning God’s voice?
  • What does it look like discerning God’s voice with your husband and kids?
  • When were you first aware that you were hearing God?
  • What does hearing God’s voice look like for you as a leader of a faith community?
  • Are women more easily deceived so they need to be more careful in discerning what God’s saying?
  • We say, God is always speaking.  What does it look like to look for God’s voice out in the culture?

 

Discussion questions:

1) Having listened to the podcast are there some fresh ways you can identity that God has spoken to you in the past that you didn’t previously recognize?

2) What does / could it look like for you to develop the spiritual muscle of discerning God’s voice in your life?

3) Do you find it easier to discern God’s voice in stillness or movement? How can you develop the other area more?



Join us at www.leadstoriesmedia.com/community

 

Follow Lead Stories Podcast to interact with Steph and Jo:

Twitter: @LeadStoriesVox

Instagram: @LeadStoriesPodcast

Facebook: LeadStoriesPodcast

Connect with Jo at: www.josaxton.com @josaxton

Connect with Steph at: www.pastorsteph.com @pastorstephMPLS

Subscribe on iTunes to have the podcast automatically download to your device every week or listen at www.leadstoriespodcast.com

Mar 13, 2017

God is already moving and doing things in our lives, neighborhoods and world and He desires for us to meet Him in it.  Can we recognize what He is doing and join Him in it?

 

Jo and Steph embark on a new season during the season of Lent looking at how we can discern what God is saying and respond to Him accordingly.  In this show they discuss everyday things which prevent us from responding to God - 5 Barriers beginning with ‘B’!

  1. Busyness
  2. Battles
  3. Bitterness
  4. Brokenness
  5. Babies!

 

Discussion questions:

  1. How does it change how you feel about mission / responding to the brokenness we encounter knowing that God is already there and our job is to just respond to God’s personal invitation to us in each situation?
  2. Think back to changes in seasons in your life which have made it more difficult to recognize what God was doing.  (Job changes, babies, moving from/to singleness)In what ways did you learn in recognize God in new ways in those transitions?
  3. Who are the people who you have invited into your life to prayer with you and help you recognize what God is doing and to keep you accountable to respond?
  4. Which ‘B’ is your biggest struggle right now? Share and pray!

 

Come join us at www.leadstoriesmedia.com/community

 

Follow Lead Stories Podcast to interact with Steph and Jo:

Twitter: @LeadStoriesVox

Instagram: @LeadStoriesPodcast

Facebook: LeadStoriesPodcast

Connect with Jo at: www.josaxton.com @josaxton

Connect with Steph at: www.pastorsteph.com @pastorstephMPLS

Subscribe on iTunes to have the podcast automatically download to your device every week or listen at www.leadstoriespodcast.com

Mar 2, 2017

In this episode Jo chats with Rachael Leman, the executive director for CARE, a worldwide movement dedicated to ending poverty.  Their focus is on women and girls, recognizing that poverty will only be eradicated when there are equal rights for all.

 

Listen in to hear how CARE is working to impact the lives of many people positively, empowering them out of poverty. 

 

http://www.care.org

http://www.careaction.org

 

Come join us at: www.leadstoriesmedia.com/community 

 

Follow Lead Stories Podcast to interact with Steph and Jo:

Twitter: @LeadStoriesVox

Instagram: @LeadStoriesPodcast

Facebook: LeadStoriesPodcast

Connect with Jo at: www.josaxton.com @josaxton

Connect with Steph at: www.pastorsteph.com @pastorstephMPLS

Subscribe on iTunes to have the podcast automatically download to your device every week or listen at www.leadstoriespodcast.com

Feb 27, 2017

Identity is one of the areas God often puts a finger on during our wilderness seasons. We may suddenly find ourselves stripped of our identities or taking on an identity in an unhealthy way. Often wilderness seasons lead us back to the question: ‘who am I actually?’ and hopefully then onto finding out who God says we are: His masterpieces.

 

Before Jesus starts ministry His identity is declared: This is my son, who I love, with whom I am well pleased.

He is then driven into the desert to face temptation. If He had forgotten who He was, He would not have been able to face those temptations.

 

Discussion questions:

1) Who are you really in God? Take a moment to discuss or write a list of what God says about you as a child of God and the gifts and callings God has spoken over you. Where is the enemy trying to get you to deny your true identity?

 

2) We can be tempted to try and earn God’s love, thinking that we can only be His children if we are perfect.  Where have you been tempted to earn your identity as God’s masterpiece and His love?

 

3) Read Psalm 139: v1-18 & v23-24 out loud . Do you feel you are too much or not enough? Why? What does God say about you? Where do those feelings hold you back?

 

4) Jo mentioned reading Psalm 139 over herself in the mirror during times when her identity was attacked. How can you practically embrace God’s truth about your identity? (Have a verse written in a prominent place, paint or write out your identity, memorize scriptures…)

 

Follow Lead Stories Podcast to interact with Steph and Jo:

Twitter: @LeadStoriesVox

Instagram: @LeadStoriesPodcast

Facebook: LeadStoriesPodcast

Connect with Jo at: www.josaxton.com @josaxton

Connect with Steph at: www.pastorsteph.com @pastorstephMPLS

Subscribe on iTunes to have the podcast automatically download to your device every week or listen at www.leadstoriespodcast.com

Feb 22, 2017

Jo and Steph talk racial recognition, representation and reconciliation in today’s episode.  Listen in to this fascinating and informative discussion on what true historical and biblical justice really looks like and why a diversity of faces in the room is not the same as racial diversity.  Also hear their suggestions for being a bridge in your culture between different diverse people. 

 

Resources:

Be the Bridge

http://www.latashamorrison.com/

https://beabridgebuilder.com/

 

Join us at www.leadstoriesmedia.com/community

 

Follow Lead Stories Podcast to interact with Steph and Jo:

Twitter: @LeadStoriesVox

Instagram: @LeadStoriesPodcast

Facebook: LeadStoriesPodcast

Connect with Jo at: www.josaxton.com @josaxton

Connect with Steph at: www.pastorsteph.com @pastorstephMPLS

Subscribe on iTunes to have the podcast automatically download to your device every week or listen at www.leadstoriespodcast.com

Feb 20, 2017

Jesus has two significant experiences before His ministry begins - first His baptism and then He is driven into the wilderness by the Holy Spirit to be tempted by Satan.  First he receives a declaration of love and approval from His Father before He has done anything, and then He is driven into a harsh physical wilderness. 

 

In this episode Jo and Steph discuss Jesus’ wilderness journey in Matthew 3:13-4:11.  They look at the three temptations Jesus faced from the enemy and discuss where the enemy has similarly tempted them in those areas:

 

1) Appetite

2) Approval

3) Ambition

 

After facing those temptations, Jesus comes out of the wilderness in the power of the Holy Spirit.

 

Steph shares about her wilderness journey into ministry, where God broke down her desire for approval from others, and Jo shares how God made her step out of worship for a season to address unhealthy ambitions. 

 

Take-aways:

1) The promise of the wilderness is God’s power.  God’s Spirit is with you in the wilderness and it is God’s power which will lead you out.

2) Surrender to God in the wilderness.  Not necessarily surrender to it, but surrender to God.  He is still the safest place to be.

3) Let God expose those three A’s in your life.  It is the safest way.

 

Discussion questions:

1) Which of the three A’s are you struggling with right now? How is that affecting your life in a negative way?

2) Where do you need to surrender to God in the current wilderness? Do you believe God is the safest place? Why or why not?

3) Think back to a wilderness you have come through.  Where has God’s power been manifested in your life as a result of that season?

 

Come and join us at www.leadstoriesmedia.com/community 

 

Follow Lead Stories Podcast to interact with Steph and Jo:

Twitter: @LeadStoriesVox

Instagram: @LeadStoriesPodcast

Facebook: LeadStoriesPodcast

Connect with Jo at: www.josaxton.com @josaxton

Connect with Steph at: www.pastorsteph.com @pastorstephMPLS

Subscribe on iTunes to have the podcast automatically download to your device every week or listen at www.leadstoriespodcast.com

Feb 13, 2017

Re-broadcast of Life in the Wilderness.

 

The start of a new series of Life in the Wilderness, Jo and Steph discuss those times we all face but all would prefer not to - those desert times.

 

They discuss what the wilderness may look like and has looked like for them: times where we feel spiritually dry, where our faith has been tested or where God has used difficult circumstances to form our character.  Jo shares about adapting to a new life in the US after a fruitful season in the UK, and Steph shares about her journey with singleness and dating.

 

Looking at the story of the Israelites leaving Egypt, we learn the the distance between slavery and the Promised Land is the wilderness, and how God uses that time to correct the wrong mindsets the Israelites had in terms of their identity, purpose and relationship with God.

 

God sees you, He is with you in it and He wants to walk with you. You are not forgotten.

 

Discussion questions:

  1. Describe a desert time in your life that has now passed and you have now seen breakthrough.  What did it feel like physically, emotionally and spiritually during that desert time? How did God meet you in that desert time and form your character?

 

  1. Where in your life are you still in the wilderness? Where are you seeing the opposite to what you believe God has promised right now? The Israelites were given truth in the wilderness.  What truths do you need to remind yourself of and how can you do that practically? (Have a verse in a prominent place, set a timer weekly to re-read words spoken over you, have a time to meet regularly with someone to pray about the wilderness season).

 

  1. Where are you wrestling against God’s purposes for you in the wilderness? Where do you need to surrender and trust that God sees you and is with you and wants to meet you in the midst of this wilderness?

 

Download the Resource guide to accompany this series at:

www.leadstoriesmedia.com/resources

 

Follow Lead Stories Podcast to interact with Steph and Jo:

Twitter: @LeadStoriesVox

Instagram: @LeadStoriesPodcast

Facebook: LeadStoriesPodcast

Connect with Jo at: www.josaxton.com @josaxton

Connect with Steph at: www.pastorsteph.com @pastorstephMPLS

Subscribe on iTunes to have the podcast automatically download to your device every week or listen at www.leadstoriespodcast.com

Feb 1, 2017

Jo and Steph chat leadership and speaking with Nicole Bullock.

 

Nicole leads a church called ‘Blue Oaks Covenant church’ in the Twin Cities but she is originally from inner-city Chicago. 

 

Listen in to hear what life was like for Nicole growing up in Chicago, how she was influenced by Christians who served in her neighborhood. Find out how she came to lead a Gospel choir without knowing how to sing, how that lead to her going into ministry and how, despite having no desire to do so, she became a church planter and a foster mom!

 

Also listen in to hear her top-tips for women related to public speaking.

 

Discussion questions:

 

1) When you look back at your childhood, which people were influential in your life now that you didn’t realize at the time?

 

2) Nicole says: what you are doing right now, whether big or small, know that you are making a huge impact and God is watching you being faithful.  Where do you need to hear that encouragement in your life right now?

 

3) How do you feel about public speaking? Do you think it is a skill that is gender specific? Is it possible you could have assumed that you are not called to speaking? Are you open to God providing opportunities for you to learn how to speak in the next season?

 

Come and join us at Lead Stories Community at www.leadstoriesmedia.com/community 

Follow Lead Stories Podcast to interact with Steph and Jo:

Twitter: @LeadStoriesVox

Instagram: @LeadStoriesPodcast

Facebook: LeadStoriesPodcast

Connect with Jo at: www.josaxton.com @josaxton

Connect with Steph at: www.pastorsteph.com @pastorstephMPLS

Subscribe on iTunes to have the podcast automatically download to your device every week or listen at www.leadstoriespodcast.com

Jan 30, 2017

This week Jo and Steph interview each other about vision.  

 

Find out how hauling a 250lb television fits in with leadership and getting along and how Jo and Steph answer these questions:

 

- How has vision played a role in your leadership?

- What does discerning vision look like for you?

- When are some times that vision was crucial?  

- What does casting a vision look like as a leader in times of crisis?

- When did your vision not work out?  

- How do you keep vision fresh and alive in your heart?

- How do you lead others with a clear vision whilst holding it lightly to be open to things changing?

- What does it look like to discern the right opportunities with vision?

 

Discussion questions:

1) What are some of the overarching vision words in your life? If you are not sure, read Luke 4:16-20 and see where your life / calling may fit in with Jesus’ vision for the kingdom.

 

2) Can you think of a time when you had vision and it went well and another time when the vision you had didn’t work out?

 

3) How do you practically embrace your vision without losing daily relationship and input from God? Do you ever find yourself ‘using’ God to get vision and not engaging with Him aside from wanting to know the next steps?



What are your questions about vision: let us know at:

Www.leadstoriesmedia.com/community

 

 

Follow Lead Stories Podcast to interact with Steph and Jo:

Twitter: @LeadStoriesVox

Instagram: @LeadStoriesPodcast

Facebook: LeadStoriesPodcast

Connect with Jo at: www.josaxton.com @josaxton

Connect with Steph at: www.pastorsteph.com @pastorstephMPLS

Subscribe on iTunes to have the podcast automatically download to your device every week or listen at www.leadstoriespodcast.com

Jan 25, 2017

Steph is chatting with Efrem Smith about his role as President of ‘World Impact Incorporated’ and how his upbringing has impacted his calling to see reconciliation and unity within churches and communities currently divided along class, political or racial lines.  

 

Listen in to hear how this passion for diversity and reconciliation has impacted Efrem’s ministry decisions.  He also shares steps we can take to encourage greater diversity within the church.

 

Bible verses:

2 Corinthians 5

 

Steps for reconciliation in leadership:

1) Deepen our personal relationship with God. Declutter our lives enough to have intimacy with God. Begin to get a heart for what He cares about.

 

2) Investigate and meditate on the multi-ethnicity of Jesus.

 

3) See people who are different from you as opportunities to extend God’s kingdom and love, not as threats.

 

4) Learn to see ourselves and others as God sees us - our true identities.  Dismiss the lies and false information the world gives us about ourselves and others.

 

5) Refuse to be happily entrenched in your own viewpoints, traditions and comforts.  Listen to others and learn how to hear what others are saying even when we don’t adopt their viewpoint.

 

Resources:

www.worldimpact.org

 

Check out Efrem’s books:

 

New release: Killing us softly

 

The post black and post white church

Jump into a life of further and higher



Discussion questions:

  1. Where are you happily entrenched in your default political / racial mode? Where have you ignored or pushed away opportunities to engage with others who are on different political or racial lines to you? Take some time to repent.

 

  1. Read John 17:20-21. Do you have a heart to see a united, reconciled church? Take some time to pray and ask God to ignite His passion for unity and diversity in your heart and to give you opportunities to help influence others in this area.

 

  1. Read 2 Corinthians 5:16-21 and discuss the following statement: ‘white people have a choice to engage or disengage with racial diversity, whereas black people don’t have that choice’.   How can the church and us as individuals practically engage with differences in the church and have ministries and messages of reconciliation?

 

Come and join us at www.leadstoriesmedia.com/community

 

Follow Lead Stories Podcast to interact with Steph and Jo:

Twitter: @LeadStoriesVox

Instagram: @LeadStoriesPodcast

Facebook: LeadStoriesPodcast

Connect with Jo at: www.josaxton.com @josaxton

Connect with Steph at: www.pastorsteph.com @pastorstephMPLS

Subscribe on iTunes to have the podcast automatically download to your device every week or listen at www.leadstoriespodcast.com

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