Tag Archives: Christian

Growing as Leaders – Resources for Advancement

Growing as Leaders – Resources for Advancement

“But whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you shall be your slave; just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve and to give His life as a ransom for many.”

— Matthew 20:26-28

As Christians, we have a responsibility to influence and shape the culture of our workplace and community. God’s Word and the Holy Spirit give us a divine blueprint for establishing His presence in our respective spheres. One of the most important ways we do this is to demonstrate fundamental leadership qualities in our relationships and on teams we serve. Leadership skills enable us to serve others and contribute to the general interest around us. As we grow in leadership, our contribution also has potential to grow.

Christian leadership is typified by the core value of service – serving our organization, our community, and other individuals in our lives. Throughout His ministry, Jesus repeatedly gives us the key to true greatness, that is to take the role of a servant. His guidance is simple but requires us to lay our agendas and self interests before God – knowing that He will watch over that which concerns us (Ps 138:8). When partner with God, the prize is huge. His promises become active in our lives (Proverbs 10:16, 10:22, 11:24-25, 1 Peter 5:5-7).

Many in the Body of Christ are pioneering ideas on Christian leadership and the unique role Christians play in the workplace. The following resources are provided as references for our journey of growth together.

Leadercast – Online platform for leadership development, including newsletter, videos, and annual webcasted conference.

Andy Stanley Leadership Podcast – Podcast on leadership by Pastor Andy Stanley of Northpointe Community Church in Atlanta, GA.

Jesus Culture Leadership Podcast – Podcast on leadership aimed at the attitudes and behavior we must exhibit as leaders, by Jesus Culture in Sacramento, CA.

Brian Downs (Brian’s MySite)

Spiritual Growth Podcasts

Do you want to know your Creator better?

Do you want to have a closer relationship with Christ?

Do you struggle in your daily walk with our Lord?

Do you struggle to have time to connect with the Word?

 To assist you with these questions we are providing a few Podcasts (from a vast array of options). You can listen to these and other Podcasts waking up, working out, getting ready to go to work, commuting, ending your day, etc. Podcasts include listening to the Bible; renown local and international leaders/churches; etc.

No matter where you are in your walk with Christ, the Lord will speak to you. Enjoy!

– Samuel Ortiz ( Link to Sam’s MySite )

Spiritual Growth Podcasts:
Daily Audio Bible (the Bible in 1 year)

Rick Warren Daily Hope

Joel Osteen Audio Podcast

Andy Stanley Your-move

Joyce Meyer Radio Podcast

Kerry Shook Ministries

Bethel Church Sermon Week

Timothy Keller Sermons

Joseph Prince Audio Podcast

Focus on the Family Daily Podcast

Hillsong Church Brian Houston

International Inspiration Update: Bloom Where You Are Planted

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Bloom Where You Are Planted

By Graham Caver – Graham’s MySite

Moving to Ulsan, Korea was not our first time overseas. When moving to a new country half way around the world, it is understood that life will be different than “back home”. For us Texans, we knew upfront that TexMex food would be hard to come by and that the Dallas Cowboys’ game wouldn’t be on T.V! But in expat life, you tend to make the best of any situation. So while life is certainly different as an expat, the best of life from “back home” can still be had… it just takes a bit more effort and perhaps a little compromise. Watching American football online at 4 o’clock in the morning isn’t so bad!

But what about church life? Over our previous three overseas assignments, we noticed that church life seems to be an area where expats – myself included – quickly give up because the local offering isn’t the exact same as “back home”. Lots of energy is expended to find inventive and creative ways to replicate most everything else we miss from home (AppleTV + VPN = Netflix), but folks don’t put that same level of effort into linking-in with a group of Christians. Looking back over those assignments, my family had so much fun and made lifelong friends – but there is some regret. My growth as a Christian suffered during that time because I didn’t put in the effort or make the small compromises to meaningfully participate in a church. I resolved to do differently for this assignment.

My wife (Meredith), my two kids, and I arrived in Ulsan in February 2012. Within a few months, we had made friends with two other families who felt similarly and agreed to meet each Sunday morning for a worship service. The beginning was modest – we simply huddled around a laptop and streamed a sermon while the kids watched Veggie Tales in another room. But that modest worship service seemed to scratch an itch, because we soon found more and more families that wanted to participate. Thus was born “Bloom Where You Are Planted”, or “Bloom Church” as we often call it. We now average more than 50 adults and children that meet for worship each Sunday at the HFC Clubhouse representing a range of Christian denominations and nationalities. Three Sunday School classes are held for the children according to age group while the adults meet separately. Throughout the week, there are two Men’s and two Women’s Bible Studies and the C.O.O.L. Club (Children of our Lord) meets on Wednesday directly after school. Bloom also sponsors regular fellowship BBQ’s, camping trips, and nights-out. The whole operation is organized by volunteers. It has been a true blessing to watch God take a little effort and multiply the results.

The motto of “bloom where you are planted” is particularly well-suited for expats. We have all been “planted” here in Ulsan for one reason or another. But will we “bloom”? From a Christian perspective, that requires regular and intentional association with other Christians for worship, strengthening, and accountability. It is hard – if not impossible – to go at it alone. Bloom Church is a great setting for fellowship with other believers and we would love to have you join us. But Bloom Church is nothing fancy and – yes – it will undoubtedly be different from your home church. There is a disco ball in our worship place for goodness sake! The service includes the basics such as praise songs, the Apostle’s Creed, a sermon, and we always close with the Lord’s Prayer. Yet, there is no pastor (sermon is streamed), pulpit, pews, hymnals, choir, stained glass windows or other accoutrements you may normally expect. It all comes back to effort and compromise. Participating in a church here won’t be exactly the same as back home. And you’ll likely have to compromise on some liturgical preferences. But the risk is too high if you sit out of the game and the reward is so great if you join in! Whether it is Bloom or another local church, if you are a Christian – find that place where you can bloom.


Name: Bloom

Location: Ulsan, South Korea

Description: Contemporary worship service organized by expats. Format generally follows the protestant tradition: music, sermon, prayer. Sermon is streamed and projected to large screen

Facebook Link: Bloom Where You Are Planted

Membership Update

Only three weeks since it was launched on October 22, 2014, the Christian Network at ExxonMobil is 200 members strong!

It is an encouragement to see the diversity of members within the network. The wide range of companies and work locations represented in CCEM are illustrated in the charts below, although it is expected that the locations will all coalesce into the Houston Campus as people relocate over the coming months.

Data snapshots were taken on November 12, 2014.

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International Inspiration – Ulsan, Korea

4/14/2015: Please note that an update on Bloom has been published at this link.

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Name:  Bloom

Location: Ulsan, South Korea

Description: Contemporary worship service organized by expats.  Format generally follows the protestant tradition: music, sermon, prayer.  Sermon is streamed and projected to large screen

Facebook Link:  Bloom Where You Are Planted

Bloom is an example of the Christian community making a conscious decision, coming together to worship using whatever means the Lord has provided.  This particular effort was spearheaded by an ExxonMobil employee in 2012 (Graham Caver) but has a wide array of expats from other companies and backgrounds that are active in leadership and fellowship.  The format is “low maintenance” but extremely effective providing a place to worship and fellowship together while on international expatriate assignment.

– Brian Engelman – Brian’s MySite (mobilized Aug 2014)

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Successful Alpha Series held at Greenspoint (Spring 2014)

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A successful Alpha event was held in the Spring of 2014 on Tuesdays over lunch in the Greenspoint complex.  The group of ~10 had some great discussions based around God’s word and grew in fellowship with each other. It was an exciting opportunity to see how God can work anywhere.  Watch for a New Campus Alpha Course starting up in the future!

What is Alpha?

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The Alpha course is a practical introduction to the Christian faith that gives guests an opportunity to explore the meaning of life.  Alpha is fun, relaxed and totally non-pressured (that’s probably why over 19 mil. people around the world have already done it!).  Alpha is a place where no question is off limits.”

A New Fall Series at EMB – Nicky Gumbel’s “A Life Worth Living”

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A new “Life Beyond Alpha” series is about to begin downtown at EMB. This is a series of 9 sessions, where participants view and discuss Nicky Gumbel’s “A Life Worth Living” videos on Philippians.  The group meets at EMB 1088 every Wednesday from 12:00nn to 1:00pm, beginning on September 3, 2014. This is a brownbag series and everyone is welcome to bring and have their lunch while watching the video clip. Come and see!