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Josh Carson on How to Thrive in Ministry and Life

In this episode titled "How to Thrive in Ministry and Life," I sit down with Pastor Josh Carson, a dynamic leader known for his tremendous narrative preaching and his ability to juggle a myriad of responsibilities. From leading a large church and school to being a dedicated family man and sought-after conference speaker, Pastor Carson shares the secrets behind finding a healthy balance in both ministry and personal life. He opens up about his struggles, strategies for effective time management, delegation, and maintaining spiritual health amidst a hectic schedule. Whether you're a ministry leader or just striving for balance in your own life, Pastor Carson's insights offer valuable lessons on thriving, not just surviving. Join us for a conversation that is enlightening and inspiring.

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We have an incredible wealth of narrative that runs through the entirety of text. If we look we we can be guilty, sometimes we pull a a scripture to out. Well, that fits within the greater narrative. And if you can tell that narrative that story, people have the ability to remember it usually a lot greater, and that's the goal of our preaching. Right?

Not moment inspiration, but longevity. Welcome to the Christian leader made simple podcast. I really hope this episode helps you learn and mass. Are the skills you need to grow your leadership effectiveness and enjoyment. Be sure to hit the subscribe button to get notified after soon as I post a new session, so you don't miss a single episode.

I'd also greatly appreciate any reviews, likes and shares that you can give me as It just helps me extend my reach to more people. So leaders, I know just how frustrating it can feel When you're in the weeds of work. Or ministry and life is chaotic. You're struggling to feel effective and you're just not enjoying leadership as much as you could be. And so to help you after many years of leadership and executive coaching, I've developed a framework called the Christian leader blueprint, they'll guide you to find clarity, in your life and leadership.

It'll help you gain a better rhythm of life. It'll help you see yourself more clearly to leverage your strengths and you'll produce more productive relationships. It's a step by step guide to leadership transformation. And I have that in 2 formats now. I have a free short guide that you can find on ryan franklin dot org, and I have a book, the christian later blueprint.

And you can find that in any format, including an audiobook wherever you buy your books. I have a few more things on my website that you may be interested in, so just head on over, can to ryan franklin dot org and check it all out. And now, let's get to our session. This is gonna be an exciting interview today. We have pastor Josh Carson on the podcast, and let me quickly introduce you to him.

Pastor Carson is the senior pastor of Calvary Tab in Indianapolis, Indiana indiana, which includes oversight of 4 additional works. And then in the Indianapolis area is also the president of Indiana Bible College and Calvary Christian school Previously, he worked in youth ministry for nearly 20 years and he served as the president of Upc youth ministries. And Josh is super passionate about leading and training the next generation to reach this world. He holds a masters of arts in Christian ministry with a focus in counseling, and he's an avid learner even to this day. So Pastor Josh welcomed to the christian leader made simple podcast.

In Oh, it's my honor. I'm appreciative of the opportunity, all the work that you do and glad to join me on the podcast today for sure. Yeah. Thank you so much. Well, over the, past year, I've got to know you a little bit better.

And I know enough about you to know that you juggle a ton of responsibilities. And anne in the middle of all of that. You have a pretty good balance in life. And so today, I, I've asked you to come on a podcast to talk about thriving in ministry and life, and I wanna just... We just wanna kinda get in your life a little bit here.

But before we get into that particular topic I wanna ask you about your preaching. Okay. 1 of the things you're 1 of the things you're known for is you're preaching. You travel all over and preach. Conference here in Louisiana preaching a men's conference.

In my opinion, you're a master at Preaching through a narrative. You you cap us all, You did at Men's conference. You captivated us all with the stories that you tell, And if you don't mind, can we... Can you just share with us how that sort of works for you and how you entertain that into your messages? Well, I I would be honest and say, I don't...

I don't know that I'm worthy of the way you just said that, but I am I'm humbled and I... I honor those words, and I'm glad to talk about it from my perspective. You know, we all have context. Right? That's just a reality.

We all have context. We've been shaped by different people, they're preaching styles, the way they preach. And I think we all maybe we can associate with others differently For me, I think 1 of the things that I stand upon is not just those who shaped my life, but the way they shaped me to look at the text. So you will probably never hear me call when I'm reading through a narrative reading through scripture. You won't hear me call them characters.

You'll hear me talk about them as humans, people, individuals, and and for some that might be semantics, but for me, if we make them bible characters, we don't have to deal with the story as reality, Maybe even if it's just subconsciously, they're just a character in the text. Whether or not they were real people. Yeah. So prayer, when I'm preparing the Lord, Typically, when I'm preparing, a message, the lord has spoken a name to me, he's dealt with me during devotion, I've been reading in something, you know how is it jumps out at you. But then as I'm preparing for a message, people remember stories, more than anything.

And yeah. We have an incredible wealth of narrative that runs through the entirety of text. If we look we we can be guilty, sometimes we pull a scripture to out. Well, that fits within the greater narrative, And if you can tell that narrative that story people have the ability to remember it usually a lot greater, and that's the goal of our preaching, Right? Not moment inspiration, but longevity.

And so my preparation, man, I will spend a lot of time just reading and re reread, and and multiple sources about that narrative trying to get the historical understanding. And then this is where I lose some people. So I guess I'm giving the set up. I lose some people. But let's let's take someone for for instance.

I was preaching. So I was just there at at Louisiana, and I'm preaching about J hu. He doesn't always get a lot of airtime. I I had to spend a lot of time looking at the history of the of the kingdoms and the divide and the kingdoms and where he sets in kings ship and in order, So I'm doing all the historical, but part of my devotion when I'm praying and talking to God. If I'm gonna If I'm gonna preach about a person from the scripture.

As weird as it sounds, I try to have coffee with that person. In my in my living room. I'm trying to visualize them in the setting. And and this is odd to some people, but I'm I'm a little bit creative by nature So I'm trying to really picture the amount. I'll read a scenario and I I don't wanna read that he's writing.

The bible says they they notice his driving in the chariot because he drives ferocious. He's he he he's he's coming down and and they're able to recognize him I'm trying to see the dust flying in the air. I'm trying to see the main of the horse that's whipping in the wind. I'm looking for the expressions on those that are watching him that is coming there. III...

He's gonna have this interaction with J, who the Bible says she's got this painted face in my mind. I'm watching her stand in front of the vanity and begin to this put this makeup up, and I... I'm trying to gather her expressions so that when I tell or preach, the narrative. I'm not missing these details like a great author that would cap. Those little personable details that might keep the leader engaging the audience.

You know, post modern majority has put us in this terrible place, where the average audience needs a new emotional hook. Every 2 minutes. That's tragic statistically for us as speakers and leaders. So 1 way I tried to to describe it really clear is just being as well versed not only in what it says but how I can envision it to bring it to life. I I don't know if that answers, but that's that's that's kind of a short and synopsis of what I'm trying to do.

That's pretty neat. So what I'm what I'm hearing you, what I think I'm hearing you say is you're you're getting into the story and trying to understand the story to such great detail that when you deliver it to the audience, they're getting maybe not as much as you've gotten, but they're getting a tremendous amount of detail of well and that just brings the story alive and in in their lives. That's pretty interesting. Did I get that right. By the way.

It it is. It's the it's the right way. And I'm and I'm a nightmare for some people because even if I have notes, 9 out of 10 times when I'm preaching, you and I've laughed about this privately, people It's like a post it with a few points because I am so intrinsically woven into that story. By that point. Really, what I'm doing is I'm just preaching the narrative.

I'm just preaching the narrative? And so someone says, how can you do that well, The memo work, I have the ability to retain in my memory and and You have an unbelievable memory. Yes. I I counted a gift. So...

But I'm also, I've spent a lot of time with that narrative and with those individuals, and so that's kinda... That's a little part of the how. I wanna give well embraced. To God on that though for helping me remember, Oh, when I'm up there. There's no doubt.

It's it's his grace and the gift there. It it is extremely extremely effective. And and I try to look at something like that because I don't have near as good a memory as your as yours. In fact, mine is is pretty low. And so I've gotta figure out how to translate that into and and and and, you know, create a narrative with notes because I use a lot of notes manuscript style preacher teacher.

But, you know, it's... I guess, essentially, it'd be the same thing. It's studying and reading and trying to get the details, and then I would get it on paper as you would and you're... And, you know, as you would work it out in your head Yeah. And I...

And I teach with a lot of notes. You know that I speak a lot. That's part of, with being here and we're gonna talk about rhythm of life and that 1 thing, but Yeah. I speak a lot. So this week, I happen to be speaking 9 different times.

So goodness. How I prepared yeah, you would get on to me. Know if we were a side conversation. How I prepare for those, it looks different based on setting. Or Right?

It's different based on setting. And so, when I'm teaching, especially if I'm I'm teaching, on a meaty topic, I work. Our notes are twofold. I, I turn in. In fact, our creative lead is is here a part of this podcast that's been helping me with this.

And and she knows the way that we've structured this. We do notes too fold, which is maybe somebody will glean from this, that speaks. We do notes that I give a set amount of structure, but then we also have an in house note taker. That as that lesson is being taught, there are additions being made from the the meat of the moment. You know, the...

As the spirit of God moves, and as we're teaching through the text, there are things that might not be in the notes, that need to be in the finalized notes that go on to our app. And so that's a part of the process as will. In the attic in the adding to those notes. So I I know we can't go down this rabbit trail too for too far because we won't get to what our topic is. But you guys...

So you guys put a copy of the notes in in your church app? Yeah. Every Wednesday night. Every Wednesday night lessons, we run series on Wednesday night, and The copy of those notes is available for all our members at all times. Man, that is that is tremendous, especially for people that like to go on and and study and more depth than and review the lesson that's being taught.

That's man. It's the takeaway. Right? Like, last night because I am a passionate guy. I was trying to teach, but I got through about half of the notes.

And I was able to tell them. Man even because I won't go back to that lesson. Yeah. I I won't I won't... I feel like the spirit of God that it's intended purpose on that topic last night And Yeah.

But they can go forward if they wanna study forward in the rest of the hard notes, they can do that. And and just a a side note for for the listeners if they're, you know, don't have anyone that can can be a note taker or something like that. There is a ton of Ai. Absolutely. Applications out there right now that will do that for you.

They will literally transcribe your message within seconds. In fact, Right I I do that on this podcast. I put the I put the notes of the transcription of this podcast on, as a blog on my website every week, and that's done within seconds by a very inexpensive Ai app. And so that's a that's a great idea. I love the thought of that for sure.

Kudos goes to our. I wanna give them good credit. Oh, yeah. Absolutely. Absolutely.

So moving on to thriving and ministry and life, with your extensive responsibilities, with both within your church, within school, your family. By the way, how many kids do you have 32. No. Just 30. 30...

I thought it was 31, but 32. 4 kids, 4 kids. 4 kids. So you're juggling church school, 4 kids, wife, you're sought after conference speaker traveling all over the place, 4 and and probably more that I don't even know about. But regarding healthy life balance, Now, I know that there's some struggles in there.

You're not perfect in this. Not way. Tell tell us about some of your... I wanna hear some of the good juicy struggles that Josh Carson has in in finding balance in life. Yeah.

Well, out... Let me start here and just say 1 of my struggles. Is that I'm just I wake up in flesh every day. Like everyone else. Yeah.

And I think there can be this this perception out there. Well, any leader that you may honor or respect, They're just human and they've got they've got their own issues they have to work through. I like anyone else. You know, 1 of my struggles is just trying to figure out how am I gonna be a hero at home. As much as I'm ever a hero in public because that matters the most.

So I try to live off of this, this understanding that I've got a first really be a true genuine follower of Jesus Christ. Like, that's that's foundational. That's you don't graduate from that. I don't care how many conferences you preach. Omni many camp meetings you get invited to or what size church you pastor.

You you don't graduate. In fact, it's the entry level. Qualification just to be a follower of Christ, that daily disciples ship and and and being a part of that devotion process with God every everyday. And I think some people mix that up, Ryan, They think that, you know I wanna distinguish it this way. Devotion.

And like spiritual warfare, those are not the same. Devotion is just my time with God. And it's necessary. So that's my number way 1 way I keep balance. The juicy struggle of it all.

Is making sure that when life comes at you and everything, there's a thousand people and a thousand things that need your attention right now making sure that you don't ever ever caps your own process, and get more busy working for God than you are working with God and doing his wheels So, for me, it's just it's the balancing act. We've talked through this personally. A lot. We'll get into it here a minute, but it's it's who I empower around me. So the tools, the tips, the techniques, the things that keep me grounded.

Yeah. I'm really honored by what I get to do, but I'm not I'm not... I don't feel some sense of validation. That's different by it. And I thank God for that.

Because if I did, I could have... I could have my own risks for ego. I could have my own risks. As you know for wanting to please people that he's kinda ballot. They actually help each other, but I could I could lean 1 way or the other because I really would like everyone to love me and and like what I'm doing.

I'd like everyone to like every call. And and I would like everyone to think it's a great call. It's a great idea, you know? And so I I have to guard against those guard against those risks. And I tried to do that by having really healthy balance of life and allowing the people around me to speak into, speaking my life and help keep that guarded.

I love that. So your your main... I guess if I could sum up your struggle. Your main struggle is just just the flesh. Side of you.

The internal, some struggles that may be there and just fighting through that with with rhythm of life, and with devotion with the Lord and and things of that nature and leaning on people around you? Yeah. My main struggle... My main struggle is just that III have so much going. Yeah.

Right? There's just so much... That's my main struggle is that if I'm not if I'm not careful, I could just get out of balance with 1 thing or another. Yeah. And and I can't do that.

So I guess the main the main... Struggle for me would be to not utilize the structure that I know actually works. And that's good. Integrity in the entire process. That's good.

That's that is that is gold right there. That is really good. To not use the structure around you. So that that kind of bridges into my next question, I wanna ask you about structure Yeah. You're just literally, the structure of your days and your weeks, it's gonna help you juggle.

Everything effectively obviously. Critical. Any any tips or tools that you would recommend and maybe just tell us a little bit about your... Structure of your days and weeks. I'd love to know what it looks like.

Okay. Well, mine mine, obviously is gonna look different. Than a lot of peoples. And and so let me come out of the gate by telling you this as a listener, do not compare what you're doing, with what other week we're doing. You've got to find what works for you and and point.

Nothing about this podcast asked yeah. Nothing about this podcast can be you saying, well, man, I shouldn't feel so busy. If he's managing that, and it... There's never comparison, amongst each other. I'm blessed with this very credible teams and staff that I'm about to talk about, and I think my team would tell you I I love to develop teams and empower people.

I will tell I can tell you wanna ask me. Go ahead. Well, III just wanna say... I I just wanna point out. That, you know, you you are, your organization is a few steps ahead of of many organizations.

And so I'm looking at this, you know, even in this question as to what some individuals that might be listen to this can can... Strive towards. It sort of gives them a vision to what they can work towards, and you do it effectively. So for for to hear what you do to hear your tips and tools and how you structure your day and week, I think we'll be extremely valuable, no matter where those individuals may be. Awesome, But Great Well, I will I will tell you, for us, I am so I love empowering people.

Okay? Now when when I was younger, we used to call it delegation, now we call it empowering. It's really the same thing. You know, on some level. Yeah.

But people shouldn't feel like they're simply delegated to. They should feel empowered, everything from cleaning a floor to setting up, lights and microphones and and giving also valuable feedback. So the way this works for me within the scope and structure of what we have is allowing our team to actually have a voice and to be a team, common words for me with leaders that are around me are, judge me on this. I learned that. It was what I was taught by walking in rooms with peers that I highly respected and leaders that I really trusted, that said those words.

And when I first heard them in a in a room, and and someone who I highly respected said I need you to judge me on this, at first, I thought I'm not judging you on anything, You know, there's no way until I realized that my critical feedback was protecting their purpose. And so every day for me here looks different. I have as you know, an amazing secretary. I have 3 I have 3 different drinks we were talking about this. Right here before me.

I have 3 different types of drinks that were setting on this table because I I came from a meeting that ran 6 minutes over and I'm walking in to be a part of the podcast and these drinks are sitting here. Now some people is gonna listen to this and be like, well, that's needy. I didn't ask her to do this. I didn't I... It was just something her.

She's trying to help she. She has a gift. She has anything gift to do what she's doing for sure. She does. She she has a gift for it.

And I will say that she would tell you she is empowered to lead with excellence. Mh. She is she is not... I don't treat her as a leader, that I have to put my thumb on that I have to keep creativity down. She has a vital voice at the table and so I think it helps her to enjoy doing the job as well.

It's not that I'm the chiefs and and I need to bring that out a little bit. You Okay. You've you've given even your administrative assistant, a voice. That is that that is so valuable. That is that is when you're del.

To me, that is 1 of the most valuable things about del about working with the team is giving your team a voice. I I love that. Kinda talk kinda dive into that just to just to hair more if you don't mind. Yeah. Absolutely.

I think she probably would see my blind spots. More than others would. And if if he doesn't have license to call me on that, and she... You know, you're probably not putting people around you that are gonna do it in an antagonist fashion, but you also can't be leading in a way that they have to be passive aggressive because you can't handle direct feedback. And so there's a balance there.

But when it comes to the validation of voice, I think my stance on it is honestly biblical, how is it possible that the holy ghost trusts her enough to use her voice for the validation of the infill of the spirit? But we wouldn't trust that voice enough for it to be used in 1 on 1 conversations or team settings, and I know the scenarios are very different in some could say, well, that's a that's that's too far apart, but I I would disagree. The the spirit of God so trusts that individual, say that when he does fill them, the initial evidence of that infill, we believe is is recognized because when they receive the spirit of gone, they're filled with his spirit that he gets hold of their tongue. So I'm Yeah. I put spirit filled people around me, that are helping guard that then that voice can be validated.

So... Yeah. That... That's kind of my philosophy. And I think about what that does for you, it it helps you, it it it brings to the table of different set of eyes that you would normally not have.

But I... Yeah. I also think about that think about what that does to your administrative assistant, how how that makes. Her feel accepted how that makes her feel valued and affirmed in what she's doing. And into me, I mean, we just wanna we we wanna seat at the table.

We wanna feel we wanna feel like we're valuable in whatever organization that we're that we're serving in. And and that is what makes it valuable. They they have a voice. You're willing to listen to them. Acknowledging value, we've preach for the last 2000 years about a little kid who brought some fish and bread, who who everybody else would've have thought didn't have much.

Well, for He's kind of outside of Christ, the star of the show because of the little bit that he brought, it it changed the dynamics big time. And so I think to ever have staff whether volunteer or paid that we treat differently than that. I think would be... I think it's a miss for us as leaders if we don't give, teams that right. And, obviously, if you're listening, you gotta balance that.

Nobody can be a runaway train with their voice. We're gonna all have different personalities, but I think allowing that to stay stay open... I've heard a lot of pastors that say, well, I've got an open door policy. Well, you we we also have to have open ear policy. Say We have to make sure that we're ready to hear and receive and whether it's what we want to hear.

Sometimes it's what we need. To here hear. And I I think most of your listeners would say as a leader they're they're in that place as well. They they want that critical feedback I I trust to fault at times. And so I'm gonna say everyone listening, you want that feedback anyway.

You just have to make sure at the people around you know that you'll receive it without judgment and with Yeah. Good dialogue. Yeah. So any other thoughts that maybe just practical tools or or the way that you structure your days and weeks, Any other thoughts on that. Let me talk to you just a little bit about it.

So every everyday looks different for me. That same that same, administrative set up helps guard the way my days look with the multi simplicity of you know, we continue to see campuses added and educational institutions. We have graduation Tomorrow nights. That's very exciting for us. That 1 is gonna have the summer hiatus, so to speed, we're going on summer break and then another 1 in a month, but the way that my days look are built around that structure, I have to be okay, and every leader listening to this has to be okay with the fact.

You can't give your time to everybody. If you wanna... If if you have to be, I I've taught this for years I believe in it. If you have to a, b in every meeting, or b be everyone's favorite person. You have to always lead small.

Yeah. You just do. If to always lead small, So you've gotta be honest about where you can be, and then you've gotta let anyone that helps you structure your your days, your week. You've gotta let them be honest with you about where you can be and what you can be doing as well. It's not abnormal at all that I have 3 or 4 different places.

Like you, the listener that you need to be at the same place at the same time. So we have to prioritize. For me, my day is built around that structured allowance. I don't, and I don't think any good leader should. If you're very busy and you have an assistant whether it's a volunteer or paid staff, none of that matters, if you're empowering them properly, especially to the other speakers that are on here, you need to be able to let somebody besides just you, veto your schedule.

And not just your what's good. Not just your your spouse, not just your wife or your your husband. If you're a female leader that's listening to this, you if you're married, it can't just be your spouse, because if we live off the principal with our families that over the course of the month, you can't win every day and you can't win even every week, but you should be trying to win months and in doing that, ultimately, your family has to get the best of your time, not just the rest of your time. And so you need somebody that's helping you win close to you that con veto events that can guard you time that can... And it doesn't have to be an administrative assistant, it could be a, a close friend or or absolutely.

You know, somebody within your ministry. You're exactly right. And that's a valuable, you know, we talk you, and I have talked a lot about, like, relational nutrients and what that looks like. For me, it has taught me and helped me with the ability to say, no. People hear me on a weekly basis say your best yes is will be the result of your best nose.

And so learning how to say no. And don't we find out with a lot of leaders? That is the hardest word just saying no. Like you feel some... It it is so hard.

It is so hard. No. But if we're not careful we have unintentionally adopted this messiah complex. Yeah. That that we can do it all, and and we have to be careful that we don't...

But adopt, maybe you're a church leader, you gotta make sure you don't adopt some developed style of leadership that's actually not an an apostolic model model of leadership that's just become the culture or the sub culture of the church over time, So I run everything through shared calendars, the way that my events are put on there, nothing about what I do is Now, this will be a challenge for some. I don't do a lot of stuff. I don't schedule stuff that's secretive. I don't even develop messages that are secretive. You know this about me, I didn't say this earlier on the narrative, I'll reserve it because I wanted to fit here within this.

If people should be able to not just veto your calendar. They should be able to judge it. And that sense for every leader that's listening, A lot of your calendar weekly may be involved in the teaching or speaking aspect, Part of that judgment are the people that help you develop. And talk through what you're teaching, preaching about. I'm a I'm a major believer in team dynamics and even team lesson and message development.

And so That's good. It's probably another topic for another time, but Somebody needs to be able to tell you your message doesn't make sense. Yeah. Saved no now. Like wouldn't not think you're the fact.

That's exactly right. Because it will not only save you the time leading up in the preparation, but it will also save you the time of mental torment after. When you find out because we all know it's tough enough anyway when you've just got done speaking, and then you're wrestling with Lord have mercy did that make sense at all. So part of that is built into my structure, but everyday built different based on where I've gotta be. So, like, for instance, I'm gonna be all day at our church on Tuesday.

I'm gonna be there all day. On Wednesday, my my day is, is divided into 3 separate categories. On Thursday, I'm typically gonna be it at our college all day long... Those are just days the way that they're built in. Now you and I have even worked personally on what I'm supposed to be doing with Fridays.

And I'm getting... I'm trying to get better better and better on what and how I'm winning Fridays. Yeah. To to be good in my rhythm of life. I'm really trying that, but my day is built into segments.

Monday through Sunday or Sunday through Saturday. It's built into segments, here at, our church the way that it works and the way there's different groups, and the different speaking obligations. And then with our institutions, the different teaching obligations, being short of structure doesn't work for me. But here's what I really have felt to emphasize on on this meeting here today. Not silent structure that no 1 knows about?

How can I be held accountable to what only I know? Yeah. This this rhythm of my thing. It only works not only if my secretary knows. My spouse has to be on board if I'm married, which I am 22 years.

I I... My spouse has to be on board, But also this... The 32 or 31 32. Yeah, my my my close friends also that are able to give judgment, They have to know my schedule. But then in my in my life, my team has to know my schedule.

Everyone, you know, from my executive pastor, to our campus pastors, to our creative team all the way down to the people who I have to be able to answer questions at a certain level. So my schedule has got That's a high level of vulnerability to to do that. A tremendous vulnerability, but a high level of vulnerability. It takes a person that is confident in themselves and what they're doing to be able to to just kind of expose their life. Basically to the team around them.

But that is what makes the difference in somebody that is struggling to keep up with all of the responsibilities versus somebody who's thriving in that. Right? I I agree totally, and I would tell you I think I think it actually keeps you from burnout. I think it guard you against burnout because when you're willing to show your calendar, you're not embarrassed to show that you also need time. You need time not to be pulled on.

You need time just to recoup. We we all again. If you wake up tomorrow wearing flesh, There is a biblical principle of sabbath that is not only norma script, but it is necessary. It is critical now how that's structured. You and I have both found that's different for every person.

We all. It'll have context and personalities. But you have to structure it intentionally in some way, and then people have to be able to judge it, It would be easy for me. I could I could go through a list of some people that I'm close to a few in particular that everyone on the call on the podcast that was watching, you you could probably know them. And if I told you that Man, we work through dates and we talk through, What do I say yes to What do I say no to?

You might think, man, how could they struggle with that? Flat. Yeah. Normal. This is a battle that we're all fighting.

And so keeping it to yourself because you're embarrassed you're the only 1 struggling with rhythm of life. That's a condemnation leaning lie from hell. We're we're all that trying to balance this out, and and you should research. You should be, you, you know, as you should be listening to podcast and reading books and Ryan, you got a pretty good 1 that would be worth reading and and implementing on some of this, so a little shameless plug there for you on that. It it really...

Thank you for the. He didn't ask for that, but it's the truth. But in all these things, you can read the books, you can listen to the podcast, you can even have the people around you for But if you don't implement. And if you don't have anyone who can keep you accountable and hold your feet to the fire so to speak. On implementation, then you will spin your wheels.

You will be in a constant state of wishing you were doing. Better. So Yeah. Outside of the Lord and, and your spouse, there has to be some people in your life. And so I've done this.

I've done this in my life and Buddy, I'm telling you I've got some that can talk pretty blunt to me, and it's helpful. It's been very, very helpful for me that they can call me on. What it takes to be the best version of myself. Because honestly, My, what I'm trying to do here is not build a kingdom in Indianapolis, I'm trying to work on behalf of the kingdom that is so much creator. In this small kingdom.

James told me I'm a paper. I'm I'm lasting for such a short time, I'm not gonna be here very long, But I would like my time to be effective. And so I'm I'm a firm believer there's no resource, like the human resource, and so outside of scripture, and my time in prayer, I try to let God put some God people around me, and that's another big part of this that I'm gonna stop with with this so we can move. But you can't be a great leader without great relationships. Yeah.

That's so true. You you can't. You can't. It's not possible. So, Josh, just we've already dabble into this a little bit, but I I just wanna check in here with you and see if there's anything you can add.

To this, there's times where Josh Carson gets flooded with emotion with overwhelm of the responsibilities. If you're like me or like anybody else, you get flooded at times. Right? Yeah. Absolutely.

How do you how do you come out of that overwhelm and that flooded filling. When that happens to you. I know I know the the places that put virtue in me. I almost know down to a time, how long it will take me to reset. Mh.

That's not a very large window for me. We've talked about this. So I don't even wanna say that time because I don't want anyone to judge their own, like, what takes me 3 days or to a week or everyone has to know their time. That's part of the integrity. You have to know your time, but part of the way I do that is a, I take it to God first.

I just do Mh. And take it to God first. Then I evaluate my structure and I I asked myself where am I missing? Does the structure need edited? Or did I allow there to be a breach in the structure so to speak because we are human.

And if I did. Yeah. We believe in structure and oil right, that's the men principle of all this. If I keep the structure. But let's take it back just a just a little bit further, you know, because that's...

That's when you're probably kinda coming down from the emotion. But, I mean, you're flooded. You just got maybe unnecessary rejection. From someone Yeah You know, or okay. Or whatever.

And, you know, and your rhythm of life is out of whack because you had to you had to... Preach Yeah. 9 times and you traveled 3 different places in a week and sure. You know, it's... So you're...

But then you just get that rejection, and you feel flooded. Emotionally. Yeah. Yeah. And and, like, where do you where do you go from there?

How do you come out of that? I mean, you you're you're all of a sudden beating yourself up and, you know, Yep. You're fill you're feeling that distraught filling. How do you come out of that? For me, for me, it really is the first thing I do is I go to prayer.

I just really do. That's my first thing is I get loan. With God. And I evaluate. It's intros fiction.

I I'm 1 of these people that believe even though it stings me our critics are our friends. And so, usually, rejection is is through criticism. That's how it works. I'm gonna tell you how I how I really I know what is gonna help me come out of it or through it in the very beginning is I choose to do nothing with the rejection. That's gonna sound odd to some people, but my initial central Illinois, farm country response would be to retaliate.

If it's especially if the just person. That's exactly right. And and think, well, I can win this verbally, so let's go. Yeah. Art, team out here.

Competitive nature in you. Competitive nature. I'm like, well, if you wanna spa verbally, I guess this is where we're going. I try. By way, you you and Madison do a pretty good job of that on social media sometimes.

Yeah. It's funny. She's been the recipient of this principle that I'm about to say right now, I, couple of times. And she's in the room. I...

If I'm ever... That was just a joke. I... You're right. I...

We've heard from all over the world about the, online the... The banter. The banter. That's right. What what she would call follower gathering.

So Yeah. That's all that's all fun. It's fun. All. Yeah.

Yeah. And she's a great... She's a great team member and so see that value there, you know, back to earlier. Yeah. So for me, if I'm really hurt, or I'm really frustrated.

I won't do anything with it for at least 48 hours. That's really good. I really believe that patience is this spiritual thing that we miss too often. Yeah. I see a lot.

And and let me talk to the specifics lot. It takes a lot of maturity to upload off on on something like that. It's and I not easy to. Yeah. I agree.

It's not it's not easy to, and I don't wanna over a lot but we do have this holy ghost that is supposed to help us in these areas, and a lot of us... We have context where we are ready to go and and we're in a world that is always and some of us, In fact, many that are gonna watch this you have a title that allows you the authority to just respond. Well, for me, I'm I know from the early and the young version of me? That if I respond right now, I might win this moment. But I may lose the next month, or I may lose the next 6 months, with that person or with this situation because I chose to win the next hour.

So I'd rather take the next couple of days, I It tease. My close leaders hear what you're about to hear. If it's really bad, I take at least 3 days. Yeah... I'll take at least 3 days before I respond.

My executive pastor would love... He would love me to share this story So share. I'll give an example early. He had came on staff, early, came on staff and a situation came up where he was, asked, a news a news venue had showed up wanted to do an in your view, it was an on the spot thing. Well, some of my previous work with, marketing and had led me in a place where I've seen people's words really twisted and and if there's no script and there's no document signed on what can they say about the church and some of us have seen nightmare stories about this.

Well, he's he's an amazing leader. You know him well. He's unbelievable amazing leader, but he was zealous at the opportunity and and took the opportunity to to go in no contract. No. No nothing.

Well, I knew it happened, but I... It was like 7 days later. 7 days later, we're going through meeting, and I said I need to talk to you. I need to talk through, something... And this was years ago.

So it's easy now. And we talk through the scenario and the negatives. And the look on his face, and he knew he could tell in that moment. I wasn't mad. I wasn't talking.

I I don't think we ever have the right to talk down to people. I wasn't talking down. I was... But I was shaping, and I was doing a little, giving a little understanding here, but it was able. He was able to see that had bothered me and it irritated me it it.

And what it developed in him, At the end of it, not only did he say that was amazing for me to hear said, what taught me the most. Was the way you were able to take time between the incident and the education. Wow. And I think for us as leaders we forget sometimes that a big part of what we're teaching is how to respond. In fact, I'm I'm I'm pretty convinced in the dynamics of our world right now.

People are less concerned about what happens to us than they are how we respond. To what happens to us. And so true if I've been wounded if I've been hurt back to that question, I take that time, and then You know, Ryan, I start leaning on those relational nutrients. So before we continue on with the podcast, this episode is brought to you by Christian and leader community coaching. Are you a Christian leader experiencing low productivity or chaotic lifestyle, and maybe you're overwhelmed and just in unsure of what it's gonna take to create growth in your life.

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Don't wait any longer, go to ryan franklin dot org and join the christian leader community coaching today, and I look, forward to seeing you inside the community now back to our podcast. Absolutely. I'm and make those cards that's and that's what I know about you, and that's really what I'm I'm glad you went there. I wanted you to go there. Without me prompting you, but you have such a a phenomenal support team around you of people.

Oh, that blame you. And and that is what in my mind, you know, fur prayer first. Absolutely we go to God. But, absolutely, we have to go to people as well, especially in the most, the most serious times of of of where we're really, really struggling. We need those relational nutrients.

Yes. It's not Facebook. It's social media. Yeah. Confidential, people that you're confidant those people you receive, channel, No even text messages.

No. I agree. Minimum. Minimum of phone call. Minimum.

I agree. Absolutely. If you can meet in person, if you can sit down and drink coffee with somebody or or you know, if you can have lunch with somebody and talk through and just... And I use these words every time. I say, I need you to judge me on this.

I'm I I feel... Know, A little hurt. And if you're hurt, you've gotta be mature enough to say you feel a little hurt. I know it's vulnerability. It's transparency, but you've got to be willing to talk through.

You what you're really feeling. If you walk into a... You walk into a doctor's office, you can't sidestep step what you're really feeling if you've gotta give symptoms if you wanna get to the root of the issue, and so you have to have these people in your life. Let's face it. It is unfortunate.

How many leaders are doing everything right. But the friendships. Yeah. It's a burden area for me, so true Josh. There is so many people that are are that are doing fantastic things.

In ministry and life, but they're relational ana. They're starving selves to death, and that is what leads to burn statement. You're right is what leads to burnout. Yeah. They're they're alone and they don't have it and I I've started asking this question, especially when I'm doing, like ministry training and going to some of these conferences, I will intentionally ask, and a lot of times even elders who their close confidant are?

Who are the? Who are your bad day phone calls? Yeah And I was been astounded how many high level leaders are lonely? Absolutely. They're.

And, you know, that's a that's a tragic thing when we believe in an early church communal, value system of the body coming together, spending time together, and I think it's because there is this dynamic and for those of you that are watching or listening and you, you've you've been a maybe a pastor and you've been coach like it's tough to be close with just saints and what that looks like and. I I understand that, but you've got to have friends and friendships, You gotta have other pastors, you know, let's say it this way too. If you take yourself outside, of being in competition with people. And you're not... I'm not in...

Like, we're... You and I are able to talk on this. We... You're you're gonna teach some leadership thing. I'm gonna teach some leadership thing.

All we do is make make people make each other better. I'm not in competition with you. You're not in competition with me and Right Right. And that needs to be multiplied through all of our pastors, all of our leaders what do we gain from 1 another? The relational value is...

And invaluable, I believe. Yeah. Absolutely. So that's a big... That's kind of my process there.

I've gone from prayer to the person, I'm giving it the time, and, honestly, then I'm deciding how I'm gonna respond. You can't chase every skinny rep Process sense. Yeah. No. You can't.

No. You can't. We're gonna we're gonna transition here. We're we're quickly, we're quickly running out of time here. So, I wanna kinda give some some rapid fire, maybe answers, if you can...

Because I wanna hit a couple of these topics. I just wanna know in your world, how you how you develop these things and ensure these things are taken care of. Let's just talk spiritual health. Yeah. Be...

Your bit... You're super busy as we've as we've mentioned, but you know, I know that you know that if if you don't have good spiritual health, you're shot in the foot. Yeah. How do you make sure your cup stays full? Yeah.

I keep... First of all, I start my day with devotion. I am 9 out of 10 times. I'm praying through the Tab. Those who know me no.

I I believe I said it earlier, I'm gonna say it again, structure and oil. The men from within the Tab process, it makes sense to me. If I don't have structure, then it's just it's just a puddle of oil on the floor, And if I have structure, but no oil, then it doesn't matter it's just another part of furniture. So I'm praying through that tab ankle. Plan.

It's a way I stay on even if Lord helped me. I would get interrupted between the between the life responsibilities, not just church, but even between wife and kids, and I try to do it at a time daily to where I'm not interrupted. But in case I am just In case an emergency. Every now and then a pastor gets an emergency, A leader gets an emergency, I know where I left off. In that tab angle, it gives me process.

For later in the day, I will find my way and work through that devotion. Because truly devotion is this ongoing relational state with God anyway. And so that's the way I, I treat it. And then I treat my... My devotion, and my preaching different.

Now a lot of times my preaching becomes the result of devotion, but I'm not doing devotion trying to find messages. Yeah. That's a big part for me. I don't I don't know if that helps or not, but I'm afraid if the Bible just becomes the textbook to draw messages from, then it's not the relational side. So...

And then those people in my life. Right? I got people at all times. That can just call me. A lot of people that are gonna listen to this.

If you know Aaron bounds. You know, he and I are very close. Aaron can call me any day and judge me, challenge me. Luke Can call me any day. It's just possible.

Mike Ins as you know. Could call me and check and vice versa. I could call them him and ask... And and honestly, have to say how's your devotion today. Well And we have to answer honestly, and I've I've got a handful of people like that, from elders to younger.

That way, I'm guarded on all sides in my life from elder to younger. And then while I may be a pastor, I have a pastor that can call me anytime not just to encourage me, but to direct me if necessary. I don't believe in leaders who can't be led. And that helps me keep... It helps keep me spiritually grounded.

That's good. That's very good. So jump into, jump into family, quality time with your family. As you mentioned with your with your team, you've gotta give your team a voice and you gotta listen and hear what they're saying. You gotta do the same thing with your family.

Order to have productive relationships. And and so how do you ensure that you're that you're giving quality in time to listen engage and engage with all 5 of the people that live in your home, Yeah. Well, I'm gonna tell you it starts with. I married a really unbelievable, amazing lady. Who is a teacher, naturally a teacher.

And my wife is very into Rachel is very into birth order and understanding love languages, and she has helped make sure that I am coached on that as well. That's good. And so we try to give our kids, having 4 kids, 1 of the things I try to do not just win collectively with them as a family. But, I try to win individually. So.

My... Each 1 of my kids have different passions. I... My wife would say I even put too much pressure on myself so when this rhythm of life, I can put too much pressure on myself weekly even. On trying to win something individually with each of the kids.

It doesn't always happen. Yeah. 1 of the early wins that I had to be mint mentored on that has helped is to know every kid has a different personality, and I can't try to make them win through my love language. I have to know theirs. For some words, for summit quality time, for some...

You know how this works with gifts. And so for me, that's the way that I try to win it with them. For instance, just last week since you asked this on a voice, and I I think it's such a great question. My second son, a topic had had had came up in the house, and I I saw it 1 way, And my 16 year old son, he saw it a different way. And my natural reaction was, Well, I'm the dad, and I'm I'm I'm I mean, I'm thinking this.

Right? I'm I'm thinking. I'm the dad. I'm not here to be his friend. I'm here to be as leader, and and that's...

That is the truth and it is the balance, and I had to make a definitive call on a situation. But I called him into the room, separate, from his siblings. I think this is something that too many parents miss, you can find 10 minutes to call them separate from their siblings and we had a 1 on 1? Just just asking him, how do you view this? Yeah.

What does this look like in your mind? How would you if if the roles were reversed. And his perspective was amazing. It was challenging. It was enlighten.

Mh. And and so I think that's 1 way that I try to win. I've got a little guy right now. So my 16 year old, he loves golf. I I wanna win.

If I can't win at round of golf, which you know may take 4 hours, I can win 30 minutes at the driving range. Yeah. And and somebody with 4 kids and a lot of responsibility and trying to be a wise Steward as well. I can win with him on the driving range. My little guy likes dis.

And winning on the driving range with him is not just going out and hitting balls. It's having those deeper level conversations while you're hitting balls. Right? Yeah in and his love language is quality time. Yeah.

His love language is quality time and second did by words of affirmation. So I'm able to give him his time and through these words, man I a great shot. I can't believe you're out driving me. Through those words, it not only is giving him the time, but it's giving him the affirmation of and so I'm trying to find those ways to win with my kids individually. I've got 1 1 little girl, and 3 boys, and they're all different.

And I'm also dealing... I'm dealing with a 20 year old who's very in love with a young lady right now. I've got all this range of emotions and and you know You start thinking did I do everything I was supposed to do? Did I teach everything I was supposed to teach and? I can't ever travel back, but I can make sure that I'm trying to make sure the time I give is quality.

It's intentional. That's good. So even if you can't give large swath of your time, You can give intentional time. Yeah. And I love the fact that you're looking for intentional time on a weekly basis.

That that seems like a good structure. You know, you can't do it daily. You may do it multiple times in a week, but you're at least looking for that weekly. You know, deeper level connection with with each 1 of them, and that's a that's an important thing. And that's really what it is.

It's like once a week, maybe. With each of them. I don't want anybody to think. How he really being able to spend time every day with it. It's not possible.

Yeah. I know it's not possible. But they can get a genuine looking on in the eyes, a genuine hug, a genuine sure love you. I'm thankful for you. They can get that anytime that you're in their proximity.

So, Josh, what is what is rest? Look look like for you. How do you how do you unwind recharge? Just you don't have to give anything at a an elaborate answer, but how how do you in short form, how do you rest an unwind recharge? Yeah.

Virtue. I'm I'm an outdoors guy. Mh. By 2 top ways probably of recharging or... I'm...

I I recharge alone. I'm not a person that recharge from people. I recharge alone, and I'm constantly in public giving giving giving. So I recharge alone for me whether it's going to the woods or whether just sitting in my backyard. With a cup of coffee.

I recharging those times alone, soaking it in when possible, doing very little. I may be listening to something. I may be reading something. I'm I may be on the phone call with 1 of my top tier, closest friends, but it's intentional time that I'm not working. Rest for me is is tied to being a healthy version of me, taking that time, disconnected from work disconnected from ministry disconnected from anyone else's needs, just trying to be a wise steward of allowing virtue.

So whether I'm going to the park, whether I'm going to the woods, whether I'm... Now that may be me going to the driving range by myself. Or or going and standing on a a pudding green and just pudding. Yeah. And so...

And again, that has to be if you can find... You gotta find... It's gotta be ballots so, like, think about. I I... I'm trying to think of the different the different books that I've read, maybe leading on empty, Cad is 1 of the great ones on that too, but weekly, monthly, quarterly, annually, how you evaluate.

And then for me it comes back to when it's structured. So I try to win at least a segment of a day a week in how I get rest. Yeah. That's that's tremendous. Tremendous.

Any any final thoughts on thriving and ministry and life. You've given us so much here, but but do you have any final thoughts? I think I think my final my my final thoughts would just be this, and it's gonna sound really basic, but I hope someone will grab it. You've gotta be just the best version of you. Yeah.

Just the best version of what God has designed you. To be, whether that's a leader of a handful or whether that's a leader of thousands it... That's not so not the validation. Yeah. You just got be okay with you.

Be the best leader you're supposed to be for you. It and do not compare yourself with other people compare yourself with the will of god. Weigh yourself against the will of god for your life, and and I think that's where joy comes from. So that's my that's my recommendation, and allow people in your life that can call you on it if you're not. So if you're not doing that and being what you know you're supposed to be.

I love the great thoughts, great thoughts. We're gonna end with a final, with a fun question. What's what's 1 thing on your, bucket list if you have a bucket list that you think might surprise people. 1 thing you just would love to do 1 day. Home, you know what?

Some people won't like this on the audience. I I grew up... I grew up as a hunter as an enforcement, hunting white tail summer are turning the podcast off right now, but I kind of on my bucket list, I would love I would love to go and and get to harvest a giant mule deer. That's kind of on my... That's just out there.

I don't know if I will get to it. I believe someday, but that's on my list as far as something that I think would just be a blast. So if anybody listening and you've fled of the lord yeah. That... No.

That is... That's on my... That's on my bucket list. A a great mule dear. So whoever's whoever's list.

Thing that has the capabilities of taken pastor Josh on this. This is your door in to. It's to a weekend with Pastor. Man. I feel like I should call the audience to prayer for a moment.

That's awesome. It Well, Pastor Josh, this has been a tremendous tremendous conversation that I know people are gonna get a ton out of. Thank you so much for giving us your time. Your your time is so valuable, and I respect it, and you've just given us an hour, and that is huge. So thank you for doing that and allowing us to sort of just get them a...

Get on the inside of your life. And so, if people want to to, you know, follow you or get in touch with you in some way, just see what you're doing on, you know, in ministry or whatever? How can they find you all online? You can always find us just through Calvary, Tab echo, You Google it. We're here, the web site.

You can find us on Instagram. My personal is Josh Carson Bs. You can find me there. Okay. As well.

And there... It's easy. It's easy to find. It's easy to find if you... We have this thing called doctor Google.

You search at all. You'll say us pretty easily. I'm not on a ton of social media. If you see us on Facebook, and it says my name and my wife's were on there together, which just to be honest really means she's on there. Keeps me informed if I need to know anything.

But before we go, let me say thanks to you, on behalf of all the people listening to this. He you're saying I'm busy. You're really busy too, and this isn't just flattery. Leadership is a god passion for you. And so you you utilizing a medium like this to make sure people get to hear some other voices and other perspectives So not just for your friendship, but for your leadership and what you're doing.

So thanks to you. We appreciate it. Thank you so much for that. So this concludes our show today. My name is Ryan Franklin.

Thank you so much for joining us on the Christian leader made simple podcast.

Copyright © 2024 Ryan Franklin. All rights reserved.


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