CNLP 131: Kyle Idleman on Starting a Church at 22, Leading in a Megachurch and on Being a Writer

When he was in his early twenties, Kyle Idleman couldn’t get anyone to hire him as a preacher, so he started his own church, which grew to 1000.

Two years later he left to join one of the largest churches in the US as a teaching pastor.

Kyle and I talk about his journey as a planter, leader and author.

Welcome to Episode 131 of the podcast.

Kyle Idleman on the Carey Nieuwhof Leadership Podcast

Guest Links: Kyle Idleman

Kyles’s website

Kyle on Twitter

Not a Fan: Becoming a Completely Committed Follower of Jesus by Kyle Idleman

Grace Is Greater by Kyle Idleman

Links Mentioned

The Canadian Church Leaders Conference Barrie, ON; June 8th – 10th

ReThink Leadership Atlanta, Georgia; April 26 – 28, 2017  *Rates rise March 16

TrainedUp Leadership

Rusty George on Episode 95

Southeast Christian Church

Podcasts Carey is Listening to:

Making Oprah

FORTUNE Unfiltered with Aaron Task

The Andy Stanley Leadership Podcast

3 Insights from This Episode

1. You don’t need to do it alone.

When Kyle was church-planting, he initially thought that he had to be the courageous hero who went out and accomplished things on his own. However, Kyle quickly learned that actually… you need someone to talk to.

It’s okay to need community. Even Jesus sent his disciples out to pray in pairs.  In fact, Kyle found that his courage increased as his community deepened.

2. Connecting with people might be exactly what you need.

When you’re pastoring a church plant, knowing the names and stories of people in the church is second to breathing. When you’re pastoring a large church, knowing names and stories is something you have to be extremely intentional about.

When Kyle made the switch from church plant to large church, he had to find a way to connect with people. He now spends time before and after services meeting with people, praying with them, and listening to what is happening in their life. He also started meeting with new people in a group setting and praying for them by name.

It isn’t just good for the people he meets with, it’s good for Kyle as a Pastor.

3. You never know what God will do with the seeds you plant.

Kyle has gotten his ideas to write in a variety of different ways, he—like most writers—never knows which piece of writing will take off. But he does know that when God is calling him to write, it’s his job to obey.

During the time that he was writing Not a Fanhe would have been excited to know that 5,000 people would read it. Over a million copies later, Kyle said that he still doesn’t know why the book skyrocketed to popularity. He just knows that God asked him to write and he did. God does incredible things when we obey.

Quotes from This Episode

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Next Episode:

Would you ever send a secret worshipper to your church service? What do you think they’d find?

We’re talking to Greg Atkinson who is a secret worshipper to large churches all around the U.S., and hear some of the things he’s seen and discovered that churches are doing great – and churches could do better.

Subscribe for free now and you won’t miss Episode 132.

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