Top 5 September 2014

Top 5 at Bart’s Barometer September 2014

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Top 5 for September

I had a few lulls in my posting in September due to some family travels, but it was still encouraging to see the interaction and interest for the articles I did get up.  I am enjoying blogging more regularly and I appreciate those who visit, share and are a part of what I do here and in other Social Media outlets.

Thanks for your Interest and Support

So without further ado, these are the top 5 posts from Bart’s Barometer in terms of views over the month of September in reverse order.  You can Click on each Heading to take you to the original post.

#5 The Idolatry of Words and Concepts

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Toxic Church – Changing the Followers

The Key to Change Lies with Followers, not Leaders

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Followers are the Key to Change

In two previous articles, HERE and HERE, I’ve focused on some of the dynamics that are at work in Toxic Churches and Organizations.  Toxic Church, as I define it, is any church where the ultimate goal or result serves the leader(s) more than it serves the followers.  It’s a loose definition in many ways, but for many who have been part of a toxic church, it’s not difficult to grasp.  Apart from just a sterile definition, there’s a qualitative “feel” to it that tells people in the organization sensitive to it that something isn’t quite right.

Often, when some form of crisis comes to pass that reveals the toxic nature of the church, there’s a window of opportunity that opens where hard questions can be asked that previously weren’t allowed, and the focus tends to be on the Toxic leader, and how they can be “reformed.”  This rarely works however.  Apart from the prominence of the leader of the Church, the primary elements that enabled that leader in the past, are not really with that leader.  The primary issues lie with the followers.  Without willing followers, there are no Toxic Churches or organizations.

So How do Followers Change?

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Chess Openings by I.A. Horowitz

Bart's Barometer

Book Review of Chess Openings by I. A. Horowitz, by Bart Breen One of the Best Opening Books Available … [Continue reading]

Thoughts From Eckhart Tolle

Bart's Barometer

Can Eckhart Tolle be reconciled with the Teachings of Christ? Accept -- then act. Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it. Make it your friend and ally, not your enemy. This will … [Continue reading]

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

Review of The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle, by Bart Breen Why Would a Former Evangelical Pastor Like this Book? Often, for a review to be meaningful, it helps to know where the reviewer is coming from in their own point of view. By most … [Continue reading]

The Cure for Toxic Churches and Leaders

Bart's Barometer

Followers Must Change In a recent article, I highlighted some of the work of Jean Lipman-Blumen.   Professor Lipman-Blumen is generally recognized in the field of Organizational Leadership as a leading authority on the issue of Toxic … [Continue reading]

Basic Chess Endings by Reuben Fine

Bart's Barometer

A Review of Basic Chess Endings by Reuben Fine, by Bart Breen Openings are the realm of the beginner understanding basic Chess theory. Middle games are the realm of the intermediate player mastering strategy and tactics. End Games are where … [Continue reading]

The Idolatry of Words and Concepts

Bart's Barometer

Words are Abstract Words are nothing more than means to an end.  They are abstractions.  They're much like signposts that point beyond themselves to the greater reality of what they represent. The word "salt" isn't salt.  We can study salt for … [Continue reading]

Toxic Churches, Leadership, and Organizations

Toxic Churches

What are Toxic Leaders? I've been using the terms "toxic churches, toxic leaders and toxic organizations" for years and when I do I'm usually speaking about something very specific as opposed to just trying to criticize churches or organizations … [Continue reading]

A Twist on the Prodigal Son


What if Parables Can be Felt? The Prodigal Son is probably one of the best known, if not the best known parables of Jesus.  It's also one of the most analyzed. If you need to be reminded you can read it here in Luke 15:11-32. Parallels are drawn … [Continue reading]

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