Your Leadership Journey

revd-alistair-bill-saintfield-road-presbyterianAlistair Bill has been minister of Saintfield Road Presbyterian Church in Belfast for almost 24 years. In this week’s podcast – the first part of a two-part interview – Alistair talks about his early years, including how he came to faith through the ministry of Arthur Blessitt (remember him carrying his cross around Northern Ireland in 1972, and the smiley face stickers? – he is now into his 50th year of carrying the cross!) and how he began to sense God’s call into vocational ministry.

In part 2 of the interview (next week) Alistair talks about his years of ministry in Greystones, Monaghan, and his current church – Saintfield Road: he also shares some of the important leadership lessons he has picked up along the way.

Remember that you can subscribe to the podcast via iTunes, where you can also catch up with previous episodes, including interviews with

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The Leadership Journey Podcast 8: David McClay (part 1)

Here’s this week’s episode of the Leadership Journey Podcast, with David McClay.

Your Leadership Journey

sligo-30-650x550Archdeacon David McClay is Rector of Willowfield Parish Church in East Belfast. Along with his wife, Hilary, he leads the work of New Wine Ireland.

In this week’s episode of the podcast, David talks about his early years of coming to faith, beginning vocational ministry in the Church of Ireland, and some of the formative influences in his life . He also talks about the painful experience of losing his first wife when he was still a young minister, and how God worked in his life as a result of that experience.

(Part two of the interview will be next week).

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The Leadership Journey Podcast Episode 6: Derek Tidball (part 1)

This week’s episode of the Leadership Journey Podcast is online and it features the first part of an interview with Dr Derek Tidball.

Your Leadership Journey

The guest on the next two episodes of the podcast is Dr Derek Tidball. Derek’s leadership roles have included ministry in a couple of Baptist churches as well as being Principal of London School of Theology: he is also the author of many books, including his most recent book, Lead Like Joshua.

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The sensitivity of the Spirit

I posted this 5 years ago and I’ve had the same Bible passages today.

Where will ‘The Dove’ settle?

JS Alan Wilson

Doves get a mention in both parts of my Bible reading today. First, in the Genesis reading, was the story of the dove that was sent out by Noah in an attempt to determine how quickly the flood waters were subsiding. Then, in Matthew, was the account of the Holy Spirit descending on Jesus like a dove.

A couple of years ago I heard RT Kendall talk about the sensitivity of the Spirit. He has a book with that title. He tells the story of a couple, Sandy and Bernice, who went to be missionaries in Israel. They noticed that a dove had come to live in the eaves of their house in Jerusalem. They also noticed that the dove was disturbed by noise in the house. If a door was slammed or if voices were raised, the dove would fly off. They didn’t want to lose the dove…

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The Leadership Journey Podcast Episode 3: Crucibles, Calling, and Existential Intensity

Your Leadership Journey

MicrophoneIn this week’s episode there is more on crucibles and we talk about calling and something called ‘existential intensity’ (which really has nothing to do with French novelists from the mid 20th-century).

As we reflect on calling, we discuss ways in which crucibles might be the birthplace of a calling or may be the testing ground for a calling; and we’ll suggest that ‘existential intensity’ is when something a leader believes at some level takes on an extra dimension and becomes part of the leader.

And there will be some questions for you to take away if you find yourself navigating a crucible experience.

It would be great to get your feedback on the podcasts – feel free to get in touch via the comment section.

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“Jesus, it’s Jim” (repost)


I heard this preachers’ story a few years ago in a message on Mary and Martha from Steve Brown.

(There seem to be a few versions of the story around, including one that locates the story in a UK city).

Every day at noon Jim used to call into the sanctuary of his church. After just a few minutes he would leave. The pastor’s study was immediately above the door the the sanctuary and the pastor noticed Jim’s unusual (to the pastor) behaviour.

One day the pastor decided to ask Jim what the point of these short, daily visits was. Jim told him that he would come into the sanctuary and stand in front of the cross. He’d simply say, “Jesus, it’s Jim.” Then he would leave.

The pastor was on holiday when Jim was taken into the hospital. When he got back he called at the hospital. He noticed that things were different. Nurses were nicer and doctors were kinder. So he asked a nurse from his church what had happened. She told him to ask Jim.

The pastor went to the third floor where Jim was. He told him that people were saying it was because of him that things were different in the hospital.

“No, it’s not me,” said Jim. “Every day at noon, Jesus comes into my room and just stands there. He says, ‘Hi Jim, it’s Jesus.”