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PLI is devoted to empowering leaders for wider influence for the sake of the gospel in their communities and effective leadership in their ministries. Learn more about our vision and process here.

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Life is better connected. Connect with others to experience life-giving community and build authentic relationships. We have several learning communities. Find the best fit for you.

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We provide a number of resources and materials to educate both our participants and the general public on effective leadership principles.

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Interested in how PLI can impact your ministry? We'd love to get to know you and learn how we can empower your ministry.

Blog

The Muddled Mess of Leadership

By: Jock Ficken

I have three simple thoughts today for our COVID-19 world and the muddled mess of leading a congregation! There’s a deep longing to go back to what used to be, to put it all behind us and return to normal. We want to escape the anxiety and ambiguity and go back to what we used … Continue reading

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What are you Called to Become?

By: Jock Ficken

Once we come face to face with the selfless sacrifice of Jesus Christ, it prompts us to respond…to take selfless steps of our own. When we remember that we possess something in the person of Jesus Christ that can change the world, it shatters consumer mentality and we start to say: I’ll do whatever it … Continue reading

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Mike Newman: The 1918 Flu Pandemic, Today’s COVID-19 and the Future of the Church

By: Jock Ficken

A few weeks ago I sat down with Michael Newman. Mike currently serves as president of the LCMS Texas District. He’s the author of the excellent book Gospel DNA: Five Markers of a Flourishing Church. We each served wonderful Chicagoland congregations an hour apart some years ago. Mike, church leaders are trying to gain some … Continue reading

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God will Equip Us – An Interview with Bob Newton

By: Jock Ficken

A few weeks ago I sat down with Dr. Robert Newton. Missionary. Seminary Professor. Pastor. Bible scholar. Denominational executive. We laughed and lamented. Bob shared wisdom and biblical insight as it relates to our current environment.  Bob, let’s start with some perspective. What do you see happening in the world right now? What’s going on … Continue reading

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11 Things Church Leaders are Getting Right in COVID-19

By: Jock Ficken

COVID-19 is no longer an interruption. It’s a disruption of everything. Church. Education. Economy. Government. Disruption. No bump in the road.  Church experts are gone. Those that claim to be are mere pretenders. Crises eliminate experts.  Here are 11 things church leaders like you are doing and getting right. They: Make decisions for today…not forever. … Continue reading

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Review: The Emotionally Healthy Leader

By: Jock Ficken

by Rev. Dr. Michael A.L. Eckelkamp In order to review Peter Scazzero’s The Emotionally Healthy Leader, please allow me to share the illustration of a single-person sailboat. I present two options for getting this tiny boat to move. The first approach seems obvious: the sailor puts the sail into the wind, which then moves the … Continue reading

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It’s All About Discipleship: An Interview with Kenton Birtell

By: Jock Ficken

I recently sat down with Pastor Kenton Birtell in Holdrege, NE, to talk about life, ministry, COVID-19 and reaching people with the Gospel of Jesus. Kenton and his wife Linda and their team recently completed PLI’s D2MC learning community. You’ll be encouraged, comforted and blessed by his humble spirit and gifted wisdom. Kenton, how are … Continue reading

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Don’t Let COVID-19 Control Your Church’s Future

By: Gail & Jock Ficken

It’s difficult not to! Right? To not let COVID-19 control your church’s future? We get it. It’s overwhelming. We get bad news coupled with confusing signals. It creates uncertainty. And trying to understand congregational life? We have mixed messages from members. Mixed metrics. At PLI, just like you, there’s a lot we don’t know but … Continue reading

The 7 Hope Killers of a Leader

By: Jock Ficken

Leadership hope is being tested these days. Leaders and congregations can overcome all manner of obstacles and take on the greatest of challenges when hope burns bright. Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake … Continue reading

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7 Emerging Benefits of the Lighter Backpack

By: Gail & Jock Ficken

Thanks!  We know you’ve been running hard. Dealing with fatigue! Balancing worlds that don’t balance well. Last week Mark Teike pointed us forward on the journey toward understanding and acting upon racial prejudice and racial reconciliation. “In 2020 believers started to act their way into a new way of thinking…a new level of followership…” from … Continue reading

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