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Strength for Today's Pastor

Strength for Today's Pastor

By Bill Holdridge
Practical Encouragement and Help for Senior or Lead Pastors.

Interviews with seasoned and tried pastoral leaders re: subjects that will edify current senior/lead pastors of churches.
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012 Dan Finfrock on Inductive Bible Study Based Preaching [REBROADCAST]

Strength for Today's Pastor

128- A Biblical Way to Make Disciples- with Alan Stoddard
Check this out! Making disciples. It's a primary command of Christ for His church, but is rarely actually done. Most Christians have never been discipled by another believer, and most churches do not have a discipleship focus for new converts.   Alan Stoddard believes that disciple making should be organic, should be reproduceable, and should use the Bible as its sole or primary curriculum. The result of this kind of discipleship is multiplication.  In a six month period of time, if a disciple is active in 80-90% of the sessions, that disciple will be able to do the same for others. Thus, multiplication occurs. This is disciple-making with a purpose. Too often, discipleship is a top-down process. We begin by bringing in the masses, then hope that some will rise to the level of learning and growing. See this graph as an illustration: To get an idea of what Bible driven discipleship might look like, check out these articles:
October 06, 2022
127- The Case for Sermon Based Small Groups- with Alan Stoddard
Pastor Alan Stoddard wrote his doctoral thesis for Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary on the subject of sermon based small groups.  That thesis eventually became a book, entitled Groups that Revitalize: Bringing New Life to Your Church through Sermon-Based Small Groups, co-authored with Kenneth Priest.  Alan is passionate about the amazing discipleship opportunities doing sermon based small groups provides for any church ... especially for churches that are committed to expositional Bible teaching.  This podcast presents the case for sermon based groups, as an effective way to kill several birds with one stone. Biblical fellowship can be a result, along with a much deeper dive into Sunday's teaching. This will enliven the Sunday morning pulpit experience, giving it an even greater sense of purpose in the heart of the pastor-teacher. Alan is also passionate about church revitalization. Sermon based small groups can play a major role in that happening as well.
September 22, 2022
036 Five Things to Say to Pastors Who Are Thinking of Transitioning From Their Church (REBROADCAST)
Pastoral transition is real, and unless Jesus Christ returns for His church before a specific pastor dies, someone else will be the pastor of his church!  In this podcast, Poimen Ministries Director Bill Holdridge provides fodder for thought for the senior/lead pastor who is considering whether or not to  move on to something else.  Is the senior pastor certain that it's his time to leave?  Does he feel called to be an essential part of the selection of his successor?  Will the next pastor come from within the church, or from without?  What are the vital parts of any successful transition?  These subjects are all discussed in this podcast.   Poimen Ministries invites any senior/lead pastor with questions on pastoral transition to reach out to them at
September 19, 2022
126- Staying in Our Lane as Pastors- with Bill Holdridge
Pastoral ministry—especially as it pertains to the office of pastor-teacher—can be extremely multi-faceted. For most pastors, there is far more to do than hours in which to do them. Especially considering the fact that pastors have wives and families. Especially considering that pastors require get proper rest ... in sleep and sabbath. Especially considering the need for exercise and good health habits. But does pastoral ministry have to be as multi-faceted as we've allowed it to become? Do we really need to run in all eight lanes of the race? Or is there one primary lane that we must stay in? What does that look like? Let's explore this important subject.
August 16, 2022
125- The Importance of Meditating Upon and Following Our Calling
The Bible is replete with examples of men and women who were clearly called by the Lord unto something He would work through them to do. Abraham, Moses, Jeremiah, Isaiah, Paul, Timothy, etc. are a few of many such examples.  Calling is one thing. Living out one's calling is another thing altogether. Samson failed because rather than live out his calling, he repeatedly decided to live life on his own fleshly terms.  If we are to hit the bullseye in life, we must not only know our calling, but use it as the baseline and chief decider concerning how we're going to fulfill it. Calling provides direction, courage, authority, and leadership direction.  This is why the pastor-teacher must meditate upon his calling into the office of pastor-teacher, and then follow it. The pastor-teacher probably ought to think on these things every day. And then, calculate what he says "yes" to, and what he says "no" to, accordingly. Podcast 125 is part one of two episodes on this all important subject. We hope it's encouraging to you who shepherd God's people.
July 27, 2022
114- Faith, Risk, Sacrifice, and Reward [REBROADCAST]- with Bob and Jeanne Claycamp
From hippie commune to the business world; from the business world to planting and pastoring a wonderfully fruitful church FOR 30+ years, from senior pastoral ministry to Poimen Ministries, and then on to the mission field with Poimen Ministries, and now back in the U.S. strengthening pastors and their wives … Bob and Jeanne Claycamp have seen and experienced much. In fact, there's not much that they haven't seen or heard or experienced in pastoral ministry. Listen to their story as they tell of the faithfulness and power of God through willing vessels. Being used of God … many lessons contained in this couple’s life together. It's a School of Ministry overview. Bob and Jeannie now live in Colorado and are available for assignments that will strengthen senior pastors and senior pastoral couples.
July 23, 2022
124- The God I Won't Believe In- with Nick Cady
Nick Cady's book The God I Won't Believe In: Facing Nine Common Barriers To Embracing Christianity is an amazing apologetics book like no other.  Written in response to on online poll he initiated, The God I Won't Believe In responds to the top nine responses to the phrase, "I could never believe in a God who ________________________________." After a sermon series in response to these objections to Christianity, pastor Nick turned it into a book. A well written, simple, and thoroughly sound theological work. Topics include "I could never believe in a God who Condones Genocide, Says Some Love Is Wrong, and who Doesn't Answer My Prayers. Join show host Bill Holdridge as Nick unpacks the heart of this book, and highlights key parts of it.  This book is a must read, and has already been super helpful to pastors and leaders in equipping their congregations in solid, basic apologetics totally relevant to the age in which we live.  And for the skeptic or pre-believer, this book will answer questions that have been simmering in their minds for (perhaps) many years. Nick Cady is the lead pastor of White Fields Community Church in Longmont, Colorado. He spent 10 years as a missionary, pastor, and church planter in Hungary, and holds a Master's degree in Integrative Theology from London School of Theology. Website:
June 07, 2022
074 The Case for Expository Preaching and Teaching- John Miller REBROADCAST)
In this podcast episode we will hear from Pastor John Miller, Senior/Lead pastor of Revival Christian Fellowship in Menifee, CA.   John will be sharing with us on the subject of Expositional Bible Teaching and Preaching, and specifically, he’ll be presenting the case for Expositional Bible Teaching/Preaching.  What is Expositional Teaching and Preaching?  Why does it matter whether or not a pastor preaches/teaches expositionally?  What is the place and purpose of exegesis in preparing an expositional teaching? How does it contrast with eisegesis?  What is the difference between the text governing the sermon and the preacher's own thoughts? What are the reasons that pastors today MUST preach and teach expositionally?  Be ready to be challenged and encouraged, pastor. This is for every pastor.
June 02, 2022
123- Pastoral Retirement: Do a Lot with a Little- with Registered Investment Advisor Doug Eagle
In this podcast we’re with Doug Eagle of Eagle Retirement Plans, Inc.  John Wesley once famously stated in a sermon entitled “The Use of Money” that believers should “earn all you can, save all you can, and give all you can.” It’s good to have Doug Eagle with us today to talk about these things, especially geared towards senior pastors. Doug will be bringing hope and encouragement to pastors in the light of a possible retirement from the senior pastorate; hope and encouragement for those who opted out of Social Security years ago and want to know how to move forward with what seems to be a limited income; and hope and encouragement who just want to be better stewards of what God has allowed them to have. From the Eagle Retirement Plans Website: "Doug is the President and Registered Principal of Eagle Retirement Plans, Inc. He is a Registered Investment Advisor through Crown Capital Securities, L.P. He also holds Series 7, Series 24, Series 63, and Series 65 Securities Licenses, along with a California Life and Health Insurance License. "For nearly two decades, Doug has built a following of loyal clients who rely on his proven expertise to lower their taxable incomes and build their financial resources. He specializes in using retirement plans as a foundation for financial success. With an in-depth understanding of the varied retirement options available, he has guided individual investors and large companies in creating robust retirement plans for themselves and their employees. Using a conservative financial strategy designed to deliver value over the long-term, Doug has established a proven record of performance." So stay tuned…
May 10, 2022
122- A Son Interviews His Father... Pastors Nate and Bill Holdridge... Together Again
Nate Holdridge is the Lead Pastor of Calvary Monterey (California), a church started 43 years ago by his father, Poimen Ministries Director Bill Holdridge. In this podcast, Nate interviews his dad on his own podcast, called "Jesus Famous with Nate Holdridge." In a conversational, father-son style of back and forth, dad and son talk about the history of the church, comparisons between the Jesus Movement of the 60s and today's world, Bill's own calling into ministry, and so on. Lots of subjects, encouraging for the pastoral soul. Podcast producer Jeff Jones, at the end of the show, predicts that this will be a podcast listened to over and over again. Lots of lessons from Bill's 27 years with the church, including ventures of faith.
April 26, 2022
121- What's Up with Poimen, Calvary Chapel, and the Church- Interview with Ron Arbaugh
Ron Arbaugh is the senior and founding pastor of Calvary Chapel San Antonio, Texas. Ron is a gracious and wonderful leader, and the Lord has blessed the ministry big-time in San Antonio, and expanded the church's reach amazingly. Ron was kind enough to invite me to join him on his call in daily (M-F) radio program entitled "Word to Stand On for Life" ( As he thought might happen, no one called in that day. Apparently (as Ron told me), people don't call in if the convo Ron is having with his guest is interesting! Anyway, it was an organic, fun conversation about a number of topics which I hope you'll find interesting and edifying. Listening to Ron, I am always encouraged in the areas of vision and faith. I trust the same will be true for you.
March 23, 2022
120- Questions Pastors Ask about Pastoral Transitions- with Jimmy Morales
Jimmy Morales pastors a wonderful church body in Las Vegas, Nevada. The name of the fellowship is Calvary Chapel Lone Mountain.  I (show host Bill Holdridge) had the privilege of being with this congregation early in February of 2022. One of the plans we had for my time there was to record a podcast interview with Jimmy ... only in this podcast he would be the one interviewing me. He wanted to hear about pastoral transitions, so he prepared a list of commonly asked (or unasked) questions on that topic. So, that's what we talked about.  Jimmy is not in the process of transition himself, nor is he planning a transition. He's still young, the church is exploding, and he's got a lot of gas left in his ministry tank. But Jimmy does have a heart for other pastors, and thus, the questions. When is a good time for a pastor to retire from his church pastorate? How does a transition process move forward?  What should pastors do now, even those pastors who have years ahead of them in their present church? Is it better to choose a successor from within the fellowship, or from without? How involved should church leaders be in helping the pastor transition? And so on.  Listen in. Pass it on.  As we've said many times before, unless Jesus Christ returns before a pastor dies, someone else will pastor that church. Why not (at the very least) start pastoring as a pastor who is in transition? Why not have an emergency plan in case something happens to you? Why not invite outside counsel to come in and help with your thinking process?
February 08, 2022
119 Living a Life of Ministry in Peace- with Bob Larson
Bob Larson of Calvary Chapel Caldwell, Idaho, doesn't do things the way others expect him to do. He has a clearly defined set of priorities, and he lives them out in family life and in church life. He also applies (literally) the words of the apostle Paul in Philippians 4:8 ... and in doing so, his thought life has been profoundly affected.  Prepare to hear a different slant on the rhythms of pastoral life and ministry. Is in unbiblical or unspiritual for a pastor to have fun? This podcast contains tools/concepts that every pastor can use, and tailor make for himself. Enjoy.  __________________________ Pastor Bob Larson was born in Boise, Idaho. He grew up in a military family and moved around during his childhood, living in Germany and California as a teenager. He eventually moved back to Idaho and gave his life to the Lord. In 1998, with seven other people, Pastor Bob founded Calvary Chapel in Caldwell, Idaho. He has a passion to teach the truths of scripture in a very real and practical way and therefore provides the congregation with lessons that apply scripture to every day life. Bob’s vision for Calvary Chapel Caldwell is to preach the gospel and make disciples. Pastor Bob resides in Caldwell with his wife, Suzie, and their three children, Steve, Dave and Dan.
January 12, 2022
118- Experiencing the Power of the Gospel in Forgiving Others- with Dr. Bruce Hebel
This has been a long-anticipated episode of Strength for Today's Pastor. We have the blessing of being with Bruce Hebel, author of the incredible, life-changing book entitled Forgiving Forward: Unleashing the Forgiveness Revolution.  In episode 118, Bruce makes the case that God treats us in our relationship with Him as we treat other people, specifically in forgiveness. In fact, this is a major part of the Lord's prayer, and a huge part of the gospel. Forgiveness of others is central to the message of the cross of Christ. The parable of Matthew 18 (the parable of the unforgiving slave) and its intended meaning is huge re: this discussion. Unforgiving people are under torment as long as they refuse to forgive. There is also time spent on the subject of the difference between forgiving someone and becoming reconciled to them. Forgiveness of others is mandatory for the true believer; reconciliation is a matter between two individuals, and may or may not happen. Show host Bill Holdridge has been significantly affected by the teachings of Jesus as taught in Bruce's book. He now considers himself a part of the forgiveness revolution. Forgiveness of others may be the key to revival, if a wholesale revival is to come. Church congregations will become free with the freedom with which Christ has set us free in His crucifixion and resurrection.
November 23, 2021
117- Sifted for the Ministry- with Brian Hill
Brian Hill is on the younger side of pastoral ministry, but is much older in wisdom. Much has been said about the ways the Lord prepares His vessels, men in whom He pours Himself and then flows through them to equip and bless others. That's the journey of Brian Hill. This is a cool story, an encouraging bio of a man used by God. Testimonies are helpful to everyone. Pastoral testimonies are particularly helpful to pastors and leaders. Be encouraged!
October 28, 2021
116- Divine Optimism in Pastoral Ministry- with Roger Ulman
In episode 116 we’re joined by Roger Ulman, senior/lead pastor of Calvary Chapel Kalamazoo Valley, Michigan. Roger planted the church in 2000, after an interesting and God-ordained training process. This testimony is included in this interview. Roger is married to Lisa, his wife of 37 years. They have three children … two boys and a girl. #10 grandchild on the way. Roger Ulman is a pastor who is genuinely joyful, and very optimistic about ministry and life in general.  Pastors always can use optimism and encouragement … these are very challenging times for pastors everywhere.  So, where does such a positive outlook comes from? This could me a major key re: how we pastors serve the Lord Jesus and His people. Tune in to hear the not-so-secret secret of Divine Optimism in Pastoral Ministry.
September 28, 2021
SEPTEMBER 21, 2021- Receiving, Listening to, and Obeying God's Vision- with Danny Lehmann [IMPORTANT RE-BROADCAST]
THIS PODCAST is being re-broadcast due to its relevance for today's senior/lead pastors. Danny Lehmann is a leader in Youth With A Mission (YWAM), an international missions and church planting thrust that has had a tremendous world-wide Kingdom impact. In this podcast, Danny will be talking with us on the subject of vision. Specifically, we’ll be talking about a Biblical pattern for seeing and receiving God’s vision for our lives and ministries.  Danny is keen on the subject of church life as well, having served for many years with Pastor Bill Stonebraker at Calvary Chapel Honolulu.  YWAM has been, from its inception, big on hearing God's voice, obeying His voice, and persevering through the word commanded by that voice. YWAM founder Loren Cunningham has modeled that approach, and YWAMers have sought to emulate his pattern. Danny Lehmann has written four books on evangelism: Go! The Excitement of Personal Evangelism, For the Gospel’s Sake, Bringin’ Em Back Alive, and Beautiful Feet. He has also written on the subject of spiritual discipline: Before You Hit the Wall, as well as STOKED! Firing Up Your Passion for God. His latest book is entitled The Next Big Thing: How Little Choices Can Make a Big Impact. Danny lives in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, with his wife Linda and now serves as part of the leadership team for YWAM Kona. NOTES from Danny's 5 Points about asking for, receiving, and implementing the vision the Lord gives us: 1) The PRAYER FOR THE VISION.  Nehemiah 1:1-10 … his vision was initiated by God and prayed through by Nehemiah.  Also Habakkuk 1:2-4; 12-17 … he cried out to God because of the injustice in the land and the LORD’s seeming indifference to it all. 2) THE POSTURE FOR RECEIVING THE VISION. (we must do the possible) Habakkuk 2:1 I will stand my watch and set myself on the rampart, and watch to see what He will say to me, and what I will answer when I am corrected. 3) THE PROPHETIC WORD THE DETAILS OF THE VISION.  Habakkuk 2:2 “Write the vision and make it plain upon tablets that he that reads it may run.” 4) FOR THE PROLIFERATION OF THE VISION.  The vision must cast so that others may run with it.  Habakkuk 2:2-3 Then the Lord answered me and said: “Write the vision and make it plain on tablets, that he may run who reads it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time; but at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; because it will surely come, It will not tarry. 5) PERSEVERANCE TO OBEY THE VISION.  Often there is a “death of a vision,” so that God’s will and word can be resurrected.
September 21, 2021
115- Biblical Mandates for Unity and Forgiveness- with Daryl Zachman
Mandate: "An authoritative commande; especially : a formal order from a superior court or official to an inferior one." Jesus has given His church a number of mandates. These are all commandments, not suggestions. The only possible responses to a Divine mandate are to obey it or disobey it. Of course, one can obey partially, but that didn't work out too well for king Saul. He was told that his partial obedience was akin to witchcraft. And one can disobey passively, e.g. by pushing the commandment under the rug and ignoring it, pretending that it wasn't issued. But the commandment to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace is a definite mandate. The commandment to forgive everyone of everything is also a definite mandate.  In this podcast, pastor Daryl Zachman (Calvary Chapel Treasure Valley, Meridian, Idaho) and show host Bill Holdridge discuss these two mandates, and spell out how they connect to each other.  In these last of the last days, we need to get these things right. So much is riding upon it. Anything short of complete obedience grieves the Holy Spirit of God.
September 14, 2021
102 Live Not By Lies- Discussion with Lance Ralston of Calvary Chapel, Oxnard CA [REBROADCAST]
Episode 102 of Strength for Today’s Pastor features Pastor Lance Ralston of Calvary Chapel Oxnard, CA.  Our conversation today concerns the ideas contained in a new book by author Rod Dreher … a book that contains a message that could have major impacts upon the ministries of pastors, leaders, and churches. A bit about Lance: he has been married to Lynn Ralston for forty years. They have three children and four grandkids. They began Calvary Chapel Oxnard thirty-eight years ago. The church’s ministry includes a private Christian high school and a 24-hour low-power FM radio station. Lance is the author of the book, Marriage: As It Was Meant To Be. He also authors a popular podcast called “Communio Sanctorum: History of the Christian Church.”  ( Are you ready for a radical stance in response to today's darkness and accompanying evils? Then tune in to hear a well-reasoned, Biblical response which will challenge and strengthen pastors everywhere.
September 07, 2021
024 Reaching Men- with Pastor Cliff Stabler [REBROADCAST]
Cliff Stabler become a mentor of mine when I was a young church planting pastor serving on the Monterey Peninsula in California. Cliff befriended me, and over time became a huge influence in my life. On a personal note, I am part of a four pastor fellowship and mutual strengthening group which includes Cliff. It's amazing, really. Cliff's calling is to reproduce Christ-like close followers of Jesus Christ who are steeped in the New Covenant and who depend upon the Holy Spirit for everything.  Within that calling, Cliff's passion is to disciple men.  Former senior/lead pastor, former missionary, and former church consultant, Cliff has a wealth of wisdom and experience from the Holy Spirit's work in his life over his 81+ years.  Cliff shares in this podcast episode some of the things he has practiced and learned in his ministry to men—transferable concepts for any senior/lead pastor. Cliff (at the urging of two of us in our pastor's group) recently finished a new book. I call it his Magnum Opus. Part auto-biographical, part testimonial, part ministerial, part instructive, part discipleship manual, the book is a treasure trove of wisdom. I wrote a chapter for the book, which you may find interesting.  Here is the link for a free download of the pdf version: The Other Side (by Cliff Stabler).  Hope you enjoy this interview!  
August 31, 2021
012 Dan Finfrock on Inductive Bible Study Based Preaching [REBROADCAST]
This program was originally aired in May of 2019. Since that time, it has become clear to me that there is a generation of pastors who "do not know Joseph," so to speak.  In this case, our Joseph is Dan Finfock of Intensive Care Ministries ( Dan is a world traveling (53 countries and counting) fanatic concerning the IBS method of Observation, Interpretation, and Application. For 45 years Dan has trained pastors and Christian leaders, as well as members of many church congregations in the U.S. and abroad.  IBS is the most Biblical way of studying the Bible ... and should be the Biblical foundation of all Bible teaching and preaching.  This episode will encourage those who are using the inductive method of Bible study already, will inspire those who aren't to learn Dan's simple methodology, and will try to convince today's pastor to reach for the commentaries only after having worked with the  text directly thoroughly. Connections to Intensive Care Ministries for training and materials are in the podcast.
August 24, 2021
038 How to Answer the Evil that Happens to People- with Pastor Jay McCarl (REBROADCAST)
Pastor Jay McCarl is a longtime senior pastor. He also recently retired from a 30 year ministry as a Law Enforcement Chaplain. Jay has seen it all, and shares with us super effective, Jesus-like ways to provide real help to people in great need due to tragedy or loss. The wisdom Jay possesses is God-given, and comes right from God's Word, empowered and applied by God's Spirit. Jay is also the author of an amazing book on the subject: Answering Evil: Crisis, Compassion and Truth in an Age of Uncertainty. At the end of the podcast, Jay shares how to get a copy.  These are tools every pastor can use.
August 03, 2021
027 Maintaining Unity Among Church Leadership- (with Paul LeBoutillier- REBROADCAST)
Divided leadership leads to a compromised and ineffective church. All pastors know this to be true. So how can we surround ourselves with men who aren't "yes men," who can weigh in solidly in the decision making processes of church leadership, and at the same time have men that are loyal and unified with one another. Pastor Paul LeBoutillier believes that we don't need 100% agreement on everything, but that it's essential to be in 100% unity with each other. Paul is the longtime senior pastor of Calvary Chapel in Ontario, Oregon. He brings almost 30 years of experience into this great discussion.
July 20, 2021
107 Ingredients of a Healthy Church- with Bob Kopeny of Calvary Chapel East Anaheim [REBROADCAST]
Welcome to episode 107 of Strength for Today’s Pastor. Today we have as our guest Pastor Bob Kopeny of Calvary Chapel East Anaheim, CA.  We’re going to talking about the ingredients of a healthy local church.  Stay tuned, because I promise you … after listening to this podcast interview, you’re going to feel like you’ve just been to your own personal pastor’s conference. In this podcasts, Bob will be sharing about: ~ What Calvary Chapel East Anaheim is known for ~ A venture of faith ... and how he went from being a police officer to a church planting pastor ~ What happened in their fellowship during the COVID year of 2020 ~ A unique and super effective way of discipling the next generation of leaders, while also learning from them ~ A missions strategy that has worked for them, and which is bearing lots of fruit To learn more about Bob and his fellowship, just head on over to
July 13, 2021
019 The Greatest Challenge in Pastoral Ministry- (with Tim Brown- REBROADCAST)
Tim Brown has been in pastoral ministry since 1973, and a senior pastor since 1985. He is widely regarded as a very wise man, full of sage advice and interesting insights on matters of theology and church life. In episode 019, Tim shares his thoughts on the subject of the pastoral ministry's greatest challenge. His conclusions may surprise you. But they most definitely will challenge and encourage any senior pastor, or anyone in ministry for that matter. Tim argues that the greatest challenge in ministry is not the need to be pure, but rather the need to remain ____________. Tune in and see if you agree.
July 06, 2021
016 What Does the Coaching Process Look Like? (with Terry McNabb- REBROADCAST)
When we (Poimen Ministries) enter into a coaching relationship with a senior/lead pastor, the purpose is to help the pastor discover many of the things he already knows. And then to help him discover how to move forward in his calling and vision. In this podcast, host Bill Holdridge interviews Pastor Terry McNabb. Terry underwent a coaching process during the course of his own pastoral ministry, and it was not only life and ministry changing, but has also become the foundation of his coaching approach to pastors in this current stage of his ministry. Five areas of focus are worked through in a coaching relationship: Calling, Vision, Mission, Organization, and Communication. These five areas of focus will be explained by Pastor Terry in this very helpful episode of Strength for Today's Pastor.
June 30, 2021
015 Could You Use a Pastoral Coach? (with Terry McNabb- REBROADCAST)
Pastoral coaching has been a relatively new development in the past several years. Pastors, hungry to to their best and eager to find their ministry sweet spot, are more open than ever to have a seasoned 'coach' who can help them rediscover their passion, clarify their vision, and regain some of their strength. It's even better when the coach is a seasoned pastor himself. In this podcast, program host Bill Holdridge interviews Pastor Terry McNabb. Terry introduces us to the process of pastoral coaching ... what it is, why it's a healthy thing to do, and what to expect.  Terry is a longtime and seasoned senior pastor who experienced a coaching relationship while in his former church. It was tremendously helpful to him, and set him on a course that greatly enhanced himself and his ministry.
June 29, 2021
113- Amazing And Exciting Ventures Of Faith-With Phil and Susie Evans
This episode has been published and can be heard everywhere your podcast is available. In this episode of SFTP, show host Bill Holdridge speaks with Poimen Ministries servants Phil and Susie Evans, as they tell their story of faith, victories, successes and changes.   This is great encouragement for any pastor, young or old, as Phil and Susie recollect upon 45 years of pastoral ministry. From the early beginnings of church planting to their "golden years", where God  is blessing in beautiful and powerful ways. Their story will captivate, comfort and hopefully embolden you to expect great things from God in your own ministry. 
June 15, 2021
112 A Walk of Faith (with Adventure)- with John and Laura Cowan
The Christian life, when lived by the Holy Spirit, is not boring. This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptance. Neither is the ministry of the pastor—and of his wife—boring, dull, or predictable.  In this episode of SFTP, John and Laura Cowan sit down with show host Bill Holdridge and tell their story. It's an exciting one, to be sure, and it's continuing to be exciting as this godly, much loved couple continue serving, loving, trusting, and walking by faith. The power of testimony is awesome. The power of example is also amazing. Enjoy.
June 08, 2021
111- When Suffering Comes to Others- with Lance Ralston
In Podcast 102 we interviewed Pastor Lance Ralston on the subject of Christians in the U.S., living in an increasingly totalitarian state. In Podcast 108, Lance shared with us about the place of suffering in the life of faith. Lance is talking about these things because he desires to equip the fellowship he pastors (CC Oxnard, CA) in preparation for the increasing likelihoodthat there could be some very tough times ahead for Christians in the U.S. Of course, there are many topics related to an increase in totalitarianism in a given nation … will the shape of the church change? Will believers who decide to disobey the evil directives of the state be ready for the inevitable consequences of that decision? As we talked, Lance mentioned some of the ways he is helping his church get discipled into being ready to suffer for being a Christian in today’s world. To get the full context of that discussion, you’ll be able to find it in podcast 102. So, Lance embarked on a study of the theology of suffering, and is currently preaching through a series on the subject. This podcast deals with the subject, when suffering comes to others. We need this wise counsel, and even more so as evil days increase, and as evil men continue to deceive and be deceived. So we’re going to dive right into it right now … so here we go with Pastor Lance Ralston on the subject of When Suffering Comes to Others.
June 01, 2021
110- From Discouraged and Hopeless to Energized and Optimistic- with Pastor Jeff Birmingham
Every church needs to do some healthy, Holy Spirit directed personal inventory. Pastors and leaders need to ask themselves the questions, “Why are we here in this community?” And, “What should we be, and what should we do to make us essential in our community (and beyond)?” On that subject, today we have with us Pastor Jeff Birmingham of River Rocks Church in Cummins, Georgia. There’s a statement on River Rocks Church’s website which reads, “We believe that our community doesn’t need another church service…” Jeff will tell us what is meant by this statement on the church’s website, and about what the Lord has been doing recently in his life and ministry to make much of that happen. But encouragement and renewed energy in the ministry did not come easy ... there were very painful moments, moments which led Jeff to reach out. The counsel of the Holy Spirit brought freedom and renewed vision in Jeff's life, and it has changed everything. Everything! Discover some of what Jeff learned (the truth sets us free), and the journey that he's on. It will be a blessing and exciting for any pastor or church leader.
May 25, 2021
109 From the U.S. Army to the Ministry- with Chris and Heather Reif
Podcast number 109 of Strength for Today’s Pastor is a conversation with Chris and Heather Reif of Calvary Frontlines in Ft. Smith, Arkansas.  Chris has been the pastor of Calvary Frontlines since October of 2017. Today, we’re going to hear a bit of their story—an unusual story about how they both served in the U.S. Army ... Chris as a Green Beret ... how they met and married, and how they became strong in the Lord, and called into ministry as a couple, with Chris as a senior pastor. In this episode:      ~ how their military background helped prepare them to serve the Lord      ~ the importance of discipleship and training—within the church—in becoming prepared for pastoral ministry      ~ comparisons between Special Forces commitment and the pastorate      ~ the reality of Post Traumatic Stress and how the gospel, the Word, and the Holy Spirit provide healing      ~ the testimony of what God has been doing in Ft. Smith, Arkansas! Blessings to all who listen!
May 18, 2021
108 The Place of Suffering in the Life of Faith- with Lance Ralson
For anyone paying attention, it is obvious that something is going on that is unprecedented in the United States (and also worldwide). "Wokeness," "Cancel Culture," "Critical Race Theory," and of course, the COVID-19 pandemic have been part of massive government overreach and intrusion into all of our lives. In Podcast 102 we interviewed Pastor Lance Ralston on the subject of Christians in the U.S., living in an increasingly totalitarian state. Lance was talking about the book Live Not By Lies by Rod Dreher, and the subject of suffering as a result of totalitarianism. As we talked, Lance mentioned some of the ways he is helping his church get discipled into being ready to suffer for being a Christian in today’s world. To get the full context of that discussion, you’ll be able to find it in podcast 102. In order to prepare for his message series, Lance embarked on a study of the theology of suffering, and his four-part series is the result.  This podcast is Part One of that series.
May 11, 2021
106 Catching Up with Bryan Newberry
It’s always fun (and edifying) to talk with Bryan Newberry. Challenge and inspiration are common each time.  For those who do not know Bryan, he is the founding pastor of Calvary Chapel San Diego, CA (1985) … and stepped aside from that role in 2018, handing the senior pastorate over to Phil Metzger. 32 years as their senior pastor. Bryan is part of the team of Poimen Ministries’ pastors, and also has his own non-profit organization called “Words of Encouragement.’ In addition to serving with Poimen Ministries and Words of Encouragement, Bryan is now the senior pastor of Calvary Chapel Los Alamitos, CA. Bullet Points for Discussion: 1. How has the transition of CC San Diego gone? The new pastor (Phil Metzger) and you are friends, but very different re: ministry styles. What can pastors learn from the situation there? 2. What has been your approach in taking over for John Greenroyd of CC Los Alamitos in July of 2020? How is it going? 3. Before you stepped aside in San Diego, you experienced a major trial that was written about in the Calvary Chapel Magazine. Subtitle: “Two Christian Leaders Share Their Harrowing Experiences with Prescription Addiction.” Bryan, you were one of those leaders. What did you go through, and what did you learn? 4. How would you describe your passion in life/ministry? 5.  I know you love to be available to mentor younger men. Who have been your mentors (major influences) in life/ministry? In what ways did they influence you?
April 27, 2021
105- Not Many Mighty (On Being Used of God)- with Gayle Erwin
Welcome to podcast number 105. Once again, today we have Bible teacher, author, and speaker Gayle Erwin with us, and our topic is Not Many Mighty, a discussion about the ways of God and the choices God makes in calling and using human beings. Gayle Erwin has beautifully addressed what this looks like in his book Not Many Mighty. God's Word says, “For you see your calling, brethren, that not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called” (1 Corinthians 1:26). Obviously, God thinks about things differently, and thinks about people differently than we do, in the natural. It is clear from Scripture that God doesn’t use perfect people. If that was His criterion, no one would ever be used of God. But God uses imperfect people to contain and then release His marvelous life and light to others. It's His plan, and it fulfills His purpose for connection and relationship with human beings. "For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us." (2 Corinthians 4:6,7) Topics discussed: strength out of weakness; Paul's thorn in the flesh; outstanding Biblical examples of weak men mightily used of God; what does it look like for us be be 'anointed,' or to minister 'under the anointing'?; a liberating thought with regard to ministry and our response to God's grace. Gayle Erwin is the author of the bestselling book The Jesus Style, which explores the nature of Jesus. Not Many Mighty was written in that same vein.
April 20, 2021
103 Lessons for Today's Senior Pastor- with David Rosales
Pastor David Rosales has been serving Christ's bride for many years, with almost 50 years of ministry behind him. Yet, because he has remained faithful to the foundations of ministry, and to the Word of God, his ministry is as fresh as ever. Listen in as show host Bill Holdridge asks David about some of those key elements of a Biblical pastoral ministry.  Included as part of the discussion:   ~ What comparisons/contrasts do you draw between the era of the 60s and our current times?     ~ Many have been praying for another revival to come. Can there be another revival in today’s world, as there was 50 years ago? If so, what   conditions must be met for that to happen?   ~ What troubles you about what young people are going through today, and how can they be reached?   ~ What major threats or challenges are there to the church and against believers today?   ~ If you had a group of 100 senior pastors in front of you right now, what would be the top three areas of encouragement you’d like to share with them?   ~ In these unprecedented days in which we’re living, what are your thoughts on the essential, non-negotiables of ministry that must exist for a healthy, Biblically sound church? Enjoy!
April 13, 2021
104 COVID-19 Overreach, Civil Disobedience, and the Constitution- with Pastor Ken Graves
Ken Graves tells it like it is. When one speaks with Ken Graves, he/she enters into the no fear zone, as it relates to the truth. But as is true with Jesus, grace is sweetly mixed with truth, and the result is an encouraged heart. In podcast #104, Ken tells the story of the fellowship he pastors in Bangor, Maine—and their battles with the powers that be in their state.  Points of discussion:  Has their been government overreach in in the handling of COVID-19? If government limits its citizens by depriving them of their constitutional rights, is the government breaking the law? What does Romans 13 mean in our present day? How might pastors respond to this current situation in their states, whether red or blue? Ken is articulate, well-studied, and passionate. You won't want to miss this one.
April 06, 2021
101 Called to Plant, Called to Move On- with Mark Gomez
Mark Gomez has pastored three churches in his years of pastoral ministry, totaling more than 35 years as a senior/lead pastor or church planter. Mark came to Christ as a result of an intellectual conflict with one of his high school teachers... it's an interesting story.  He has lived in Utah for 25+ years, which is where he served in his last pastorate. His pastorate was a very fruitful one, one that was effective in reaching members of the LDS church.  Now Mark is moving into a huge and much needed arena of ministry, as he continues within his calling as a pastor-teacher. Be blessed and strengthened as you listen...
March 23, 2021
010 Identifying Future Leaders- with Bob Claycamp- Part Two [REBROADCAST]
Sometimes it's surprising ... if not always surprising ... to see who God wants to use. Identifying those whom God has called, and brought into our churches, is a very, very large part of the fruit that comes out of any ministry. So why don't pastors spend more time developing leaders? Are there ways to overcome our negligence, or apprehensions, or inexperience? Host Bill Holdridge will talk with Pastor Bob Claycamp on this all important topic in this podcast.  Learned from a seasoned pastor who is known by many as a developer of leaders who lead others.
March 16, 2021
009 Identifying Future Leaders- with Bob Claycamp- Part One [REBROADCAST]
Literally nothing that lasts happens without leadership—good leadership—by men and women who are both biblical and Spirit led. Organizations and churches depend upon it. Yet sadly, there oftentimes seems to be a dearth of willing leaders within our churches ... at least not as many as there should be. Pastor Bob Claycamp is a seasoned pastor (40+ years) who is also a pastor of pastors.  Bob has made it part of his life's mission to develop leaders.  Join host Bill Holdridge and Pastor Bob as they dive into this all important topic. Be encouraged as Bob shares some of the major lessons he's learned over the years, and be refreshed in your calling to develop leaders within your own church.
March 16, 2021
008 Do You Need a Church Assessment? (With Phil Evans- Pt. 2- Rebroadcast)
Again, Bill Holdridge picks the brain of Pastor Phil Evans on the subject of church assessments.  Phil came out of a business background and into the pastorate about 40 years ago, and uses the organizational mind that God has given him, a great sense of humor, and a calm spirit to help many pastors. He's become sort of an assessment guru with Poimen Ministries.  Give a listen to this podcast if you're interested in having a fresh set of eyes, a non-threatening and encouraging set of eyes, a confidential set of eyes—upon you and/or your ministry.  This show highlights some of what was talked about in Part one of this series, and then goes into a bit more detail on what it looks like to have an assessment done at your church. Thanks for listening.
March 09, 2021
007 Do You Need a Church Assessment? (With Phil Evans- Pt. 1- Rebroadcast)
A fresh set of eyes. Face it, we get used to our surroundings—and as pastors, we can become unaware of things we would have noticed X number of years ago.  We can sometimes use a fresh set of eyes. In this podcast, Poimen Ministries Director Bill Holdridge talks with Pastor Phil Evans. Phil is excellent at doing church assessments, and has helped many senior pastors with a better and more clear look at their ministries. In part one, we will discuss what a church assessment is, and what it is not.  Spoiler alert: it's a very encouraging and strengthening process. It's a process to welcome, and not one to fear. Proverbs 1:5 provides a scriptural reason for having an assessment done.     A wise man will hear and increase learning, and a man of understanding will attain wise counsel... We promise you: it will be well worth it.
March 09, 2021
003 Excellence in Ministry: The Pastor's Relationships with the People (With Al James)
This is the third of three podcast interviews with Pastor Al James on the subject of excellence in ministry. If you want to do ministry right, listen to this series. Al is a long time member of the Poimen Ministries team and the founding pastor of Calvary Chapel in Prescott, Arizona (30 years).How can the senior or lead pastor connect with the people in his church? How should he conduct himself, and what are some great ways to reach the people that are attending the church? Of course, this is vital if the Great Commission will be fulfilled. Bill Holdridge, host of Strength for Today's Pastor, interviews Pastor Al James in this very important session on the role of the senior/lead pastor.
March 02, 2021
002 Excellence in Ministry: The Sunday Morning Experience (With Al James) [Re-Broadcast]
This is the second of three podcast interviews with Pastor Al James on the subject of excellence in ministry. Al is a long time member of the Poimen Ministries team and the founding pastor of Calvary Chapel in Prescott, Arizona (30 years).A fresh set of eyes. That's what we often need as we try to evaluate what we pastors do, week in and week out.   What does the visitor to your church see when he or she attends? What areas are typical of areas that can be tweaked to make it even better? How can the church service itself better serve the people to help them become equipped for ministry and better disciples? Host Bill Holdridge once again interviews Pastor Al James, founding pastor of Calvary Chapel Prescott, AZ.  Tune in to begin seeing your church through a fresh set of eyes.
February 23, 2021
001 Excellence in Ministry: Fellowship with God (With Al James) [Re-Broadcast]
This is the first of three podcast interviews with Pastor Al James, a long time member of the Poimen Ministries team and the founding pastor of Calvary Chapel in Prescott, Arizona (30 years).  Foundational to all true pastoral ministry is the pastor's communion and union with God. Jesus pastored this way as the Good Shepherd (Pastor), and so should the senior or lead pastor of the church.  Discover new inspiration for your ministry in this episode. Very practical and timely.
February 16, 2021
100 A Thankful Look Back at the Work of Poimen Ministries
Episode number 100- a real milestone in the ministry of this podcast, but also of over 12 years of ministry as a team of pastors. In this program, the roles are reversed as post production editor Jeff Jones interviews Poimen Ministries director Bill Holdridge.  Listen in as Jeff asks Bill about: the origin of Poimen Ministries some of his personal habits and his life in Christ about the team of pastors about the why and how of choosing podcast interviewees It's an interesting, and hopefully edifying discussion. Hope you can join us!
February 09, 2021
099 Handbook for Servants- Serving the Lord Jesus Style- with Gayle Erwin
Not lord it over others … Leadership by example … Humble … As a child … As the younger … Least … Last … No force … No selfish ambition … No reputation … Human … Obedient … Death on the Cross … Resurrection. These are characteristics of Jesus Christ that all true believers can mimic and live out, by the power of the Holy Spirit. They are also characteristics of the minister of Jesus Christ, if ministry is to be done Jesus-style. Author, preacher, Bible teacher, and long-time pastor Gayle Erwin helps us with some of the nuts and bolts of following in the steps of our Great Pastor (The Jesus Style, The Father Style, The Spirit Style, Not Many Mighty, The Body Style, Handbook for Servants).  Pastoring with an others-centered style of leadership Learning how to understand the place of Humor, Anger, Authority, Freedom, Forgiveness, Worship, Fear, and Feelings in ministry Discover how Jesus dealt with manipulative people, and how to avoid these pitfalls See why it's not really necessary to 'defend' Jesus, at least not in the ways we might think It's a mini school of ministry to have a convo with Gayle Erwin. Hope you can join us for episode 99 of Strength for Today's Pastor.
February 02, 2021
098 The Body Style (Shaping Today’s Church with the Jesus Style)- with Gayle Erwin
For those of you who don’t know Gayle Erwin, Gayle is a long-time pastor, author, conference speaker, and as far as ministry is concerned, he is all about playing the one string he has on his guitar, which is the nature of Jesus. He’s all-in with regard to helping others understand who Jesus is and what that means as His servants. Today we’re going to be focusing on aspects of Gayle’s book The Body Style. How does the nature of Jesus connect with the developing of our churches, and the shape of the church? Questions and discussion include: What influenced or motivated you to write The Body Style? What had you seen that caused you disillusionment concerning the Church? How did Jesus’ words, “I will build My Church” give you hope and freedom? Maybe you could comment briefly on the styles of organization churches use, and then focus mainly on the system Jesus used… very stimulating ideas! Gayle Erwin has a lot to say, through a grid that will resonate with lovers of Jesus, with lovers of the grace of God, and with lovers of the truth. 
January 26, 2021
097- What I’ve Learned About Church Discipline- with Bill Holdridge of Poimen Ministries
Does anybody even practice what we call church discipline anymore? And if a church does practice church discipline, why do they do it? How do they do it? What is its purpose? Show host and Poimen Ministries Director Bill Holdridge draws from the scriptures, coupled with his experience in pastoral ministry, to make suggestions to pastors about the whys and how's of church disciple. For instance, Bill calls us these principles in mind:  Church discipline is closely related to Christian discipleship.  If the church discipline process requires separation from the body, the goal of the excommunication is restoration.  Church discipline is actually an application of Divine chastening. To be a Great Commission church, the church must exercise church discipline with its many forms and applications. To be a holy church, the church must practice church disciple. To develop mature believers, the church must trust Jesus to assist Him as He perfects His people. One tool He uses is church discipline. This podcast is aimed at helping pastors and churches do this better, with grace and truth applied at the same time. BULLET POINT #1- Church discipline is closely related to Christian discipleship.  Discipline and discipleship are part of the same idea. Discipleship could also be called preventative church discipline. When congregants are discipled, they are not candidates for church discipline. A person who is in the Word, in prayer, in fellowship, who exercises his/her spiritual gifts for others’ sake, who is involved in the Great Commission, who is accountable, etc. has made himself immune to the need for corrective church discipline. BULLET POINT #2- Church discipline is actually an application of Divine chastening. (Hebrews 12:6-8) BULLET POINT #3- Matthew 18:15-18 has to do with interpersonal conflicts. Against you is not found in Codex Vaticanus, Codex Sinaiticus do not contain these words, but the Majority text does. ( BULLET POINT #4- The number of people who are made aware of the discipline is determined by the number of people who know the ones being disciplined.  BULLET POINT #5- If the church discipline process requires separation from the body, the goal of the excommunication is restoration. Restoration to God, first. Then to other believers, second. (Galatians 6:1) BULLET POINT #6- Authority to exercise church disciple comes directly from the Lord Jesus Christ. (Matthew 28:18-20) BULLET POINT #7- Conditions must be clear for the disciplined person’s return into full fellowship. BULLET POINT #8- The church governing documents (Bylaws) and board minutes must be consistent with the Bible’s teaching on church discipline, and internally consistent with BOD minutes or elder’s meeting minutes. BULLET POINT #9- Effective church discipline requires a deep team of leaders that are all-in, and who understand how church discipline should be practiced, Biblically.
January 19, 2021
096- The Holy Spirit and Speaking In Tongues- with Gayle Erwin
What is the purpose of the gift of tongues? What is its most common use? How is it exercised in a corporate setting "decently and in order'?  What is the baptism with the Holy Spirit? What is the main evidence of being filled (baptized) with the Holy Spirit? These questions have clear Biblical and practical answers, and Gayle Erwin will help us find out what those answers are. Gayle Erwin is a longtime pastor, Bible teacher, conference speaker, and author. His books included The Jesus Style, The Father Style, The Spirit Style, and The Body Style.  It's always a blessing to hear from Gayle ... his unique story telling ability, his years of experience, his sense of humor, and his love for Jesus and His grace all combine to make each encounter with him a rich experience. 
January 12, 2021
095 The Jesus Style (For Life and Ministry)- with Author and Pastor Gayle D. Erwin
Gayle Erwin is an international treasure, a man who has allowed the Lord to use his life for many years as an author, pastor, lecturer, professor, and conference speaker. Gayle has (as he puts it) "one string on his guitar," and that string is Jesus and His nature. This podcast is on that subject. How does the nature of Jesus effect the way we live as pastors, and how we shepherd the flocks the Lord has committed to our charge? In Gayle's classic book The Jesus Style, Gayle goes into great detail to show that the nature of Jesus is understood from these descriptions embedded in the teachings of Scripture:  1. Jesus came as a Servant (not to be served) 2. Jesus did not Lord It over others...  3. Jesus came as an Example  4. Jesus was Humble  5. Jesus came as a Child  6. Jesus came as the Younger  7. Jesus was Last  8. Jesus was Least  9. Jesus used No Force  10. Jesus possessed No Blind or Selfish Ambition  11. Jesus made Himself of No Reputation  12. Jesus was fully Human  13. Jesus was wholly Obedient  14. Jesus was obedient unto Death Hopefully, this podcast will inspire pastors and leaders to undergo a new and fresh study of Jesus, that we might all make the Main One the main thing.  In Gayle's own words, in the preface to the book, he writes: "This is the Jesus I want to talk about, the Jesus who called himself a servant. For reasons I cannot understand, I have not, in my research, found the qualities of servanthood, which seem so self-evident and basic to who Jesus is, treated in any but a surface and brief way. I only know that the realization of them and even minimal incorporation of them into life has power that I cannot describe; I can only invite you." “You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Mark 10:42–45)
January 04, 2021
056 Moses Style, Jesus Style (Of Church Leadership)- with Pastor David Guzik [Re-Broadast]
Spoiler Alert: this is much more than a dialogue on church polity. It has to do more with the way a pastor leads, the way he works with his fellow leaders.  This stuff is GOLDEN! When Pastor David Guzik was pastoring in Simi Valley, CA, he delivered a message on the subject of church government. In that message, he acknowledged the three major forms of church government and then argued for the validity of a pastor led form of church government. The message was entitled "Church Government: Jesus Style and Moses Style." It's available in audio format here:  In this podcast,  David discusses with show host Bill Holdridge the subject of pastoral leadership some of the challenges and necessities of leading well. 
December 29, 2020
005 David Guzik and Jeff Jones Talk About Warren Wiersbe
Warren Wiersbe served the Lord Jesus well ... and his impact upon the body of Christ, and upon pastor-teachers, is incalculable. Join host Bill Holdridge as he is joined by Pastors David Guzik ( and Jeff Jones as they share about the legacy of this faithful steward of God's Word. This interview took place very shortly after Wiersbe's entrance into heaven (Warren Wiersbe: 5/16/29-5/2/2019). Jeff shares about his personal meeting with WW and a great takeaway that Warren dropped on him in answer to one of Jeff's questions.  David shares about Warren's Biblical and ministry contribution to the kingdom of God.  This podcast will confirm the pastor's calling, and motivate him to pursue the best that God has appointed him for. Though Warren Wiersbe is in heaven, his writings and his life still speak.
December 22, 2020
070 Small Church Ministry Covid-19 and Beyond (with Karl Vaters- author of Small Church Essentials) [Re1Broadcast]
Pastors of churches of less than 200 people? Did you know that the church you pastor is a 'normal' sized church? Did you know that the normal sized  church is called that because it's the normative sized church, world-wide? Are you discouraged because your church hasn't become a medium, large, or mega sized church?  Karl Vaters is a current voice, speaking wisely to pastors of small (aka "normal") churches. Since a very, very large percentage of churches fall into this category, it stands to reason that the pastors of such churches are normal pastors. It's not at all unusual to be a normal pastor of a normal sized church. The challenge is to be the best kind of church that Jesus can make the church to be. And the best kind of pastor. Karl Vaters has helped the cause of the kingdom of God greatly with his three books:  The Grasshopper Myth: Big Churches, Small Churches and the Small Thinking that Divides Us, Small Church Essentials: Field-Tested Principles for Leading a Healthy Congregation of Under 250, and 100 Days to a Healthier Church: A Step-By-Step Guide for Pastors and Leadership Teams. Show host Bill Holdridge interviews Karl, with a helpful focus for pastors re: how to navigate the current Covid-19 crisis and beyond.
December 15, 2020
094 How LDS Are Being Reached- with Phil Daggett
In an Eastern Utah community which is 70% LDS, the Lord has visited Ashley Valley Calvary Chapel with a harvest of souls ... with the effect that a large percentage of their church body is made up of those converted to Christ out of Mormonism.  It's a compelling story, and its lessons are transferable to any church and any pastor anywhere in the world. When show host Bill Holdridge met Phil Daggett in May of 2020, he asked him a question: “What is the common denominator in the conversions of LDS people, if there is one?” He answered immediately with a one sentence response.  Phil's one sentence response is the heart of this podcast interview. Tune in to get edified and strengthened in your serve!
December 08, 2020
093 Contentment in the Ministry- with John Gundacker
John Gundacker  is the senior/lead pastor of Calvary Chapel in Pahrump, NV, and has been for 20 years. Pahrump is a little more than an hour from Las Vegas, obviously a huge city. The church John was trained in was in Las Vegas. So when his family moved to tiny Pahrump to start a church, expectations had to change. In the process, John has learned contentment, which is a huge key in any ministry.  As we'll see in this podcast episode, contentment produces its own kind of fruit ... makes it easier to wait for the Lord, it provides peace and focus upon the right things.  Listen in as John tells part of his and his church's story.  
December 01, 2020
092- Unique Perspectives on Pastoral Ministry- with Steve Sager
Steve Sager is a seasoned and balanced pastor with a long history and varied history with Calvary Chapels — in many places and for different seasons. During much of his pastoral ministry, Steve has been bi-vocational. He was with the first Calvary Chapel ministry in Napa, CA which produced a shocking number of pastors who went out from there to plant other churches (Joseph Prudhomme, Frank Ippolito, Jay McCarl, Lee Shaw, Damian Kyle, Larry Anderson to mention a few).  Steve has served as an assistant pastor, an elder, a worship leader, and as a senior/lead pastor. His passion is the ministry of the Word of God. With all his experiences and history, Steve offers a unique and encouraging perspective on pastoral ministry. Be refreshed. 
November 24, 2020
059 The Senior Pastorate Jesus Style- with Gayle Erwin (Rebroadcast)
Gayle Erwin is well known in many Christian circles, around the world (he's in the 3,000,000 category of frequent flier miles).   As he likes to say, he has only one string on his guitar ... and that string is the nature of Jesus Christ.  Author of The Jesus Style, The Father Style, The Spirit Style, The Body Style, Handbook for Servants, That Reminds Me of a Story, That Reminds Me of Another Story, and Not Many Mighty, Gayle's teachings have inspired many to learn about what God is like, and about what it means to be His servant. In this podcast, Gayle speaks with show host Bill Holdridge on the subject of the senior pastor's ministry, and how it relates to the way Jesus leads and serves His church ... over which He is the Chief Pastor. This is food for much thought for any pastor, anywhere.  
November 17, 2020
091 The Beautiful Kingdom of God- Maintaining Health and Unity In a Tumultuous Year (with Matt Valencia)
Matt Valencia has a huge heart for God’s Kingdom, and a sincere love for the greater Body of Christ.  Recently, Matt was asked to lead a discussion on the topic of this podcast. This interview dives into the meat of that discussion, and why it matters. Matt Valencia is the Lead Pastor of the Regeneration Church of Scotts Valley, CA and is also the founding pastor of Calvary Chapel in Gilroy, CA.
November 10, 2020
090- The Culture of a Healthy Church- with Pastor Daryl Zachman
Daryl Zachman is one of a number of pastoral friends that I gained while living in Idaho. This podcast was recorded in Boise, because Daryl invited Poimen Ministries to come and do a church assessment, as well as share at a ministry conference hosted at their church. Daryl and his wife Cindy were directed by the Holy Spirit to launch out to Boise in 1994. So they started as pioneers, as is true of so many of the pastors in our fellowship of churches. The Holy Spirit has used Daryl and Cindy ... and their leadership ... to develop a culture of openness, hospitality, warmth, and love in their fellowship. Podcast number 90 explores some of those dynamics with Pastor Daryl.
November 03, 2020
089- Our Times Are In His Hands- with Pastor John Milhouse
In this podcast episode, Pastor John Milhouse of Calvary Chapel Moreno Valley, CA talks about his current church transition process. John has been in ministry as a senior pastor for more than 38 years. He speaks with careful wisdom, and with the voice of experience and grace. In addition, John comments on a message he delivered at the recent Calvary Chapel Deep South Pastor's and Leader's Conference in Stone Mountain, GA.  The title of the very timely message John delivered that day is "Our Times Are In His Hands." Taken from Psalm 31:14-15,  it's a quotation from king David: “But as for me, I trust in You, O LORD; I say ‘You are my God.’ My times are in Your hand.” Hear how this passage relates to the need for ministry flexibility, to a pastor's leadership within the context of COVID-19, and to the person and work of the Holy Spirit.  
October 27, 2020
088- Learning More About Pastoral Leadership- with Bryan Newberry
Bryan Newberry is like a leadership guru. Plus, he's a discipleship guy as well. The combination of those two traits has been beneficial to many pastors and future pastors during his very long ministry. Bryan was the founding pastor of Calvary Chapel San Diego, where he served for 32 years with his wife Cheryl. Currently, Bryan serves as the (new) senior pastor of Calvary Chapel in Los Alamitos, as well as with Poimen Ministries. Bryan’s teachings are available at His email address is Feel free to email him with comments or questions.
October 20, 2020
087 In the Trenches (In a New Pastoral Assignment)- with Bryan Newberry
Hall of Fame catcher Yogi Berra once said, "You can observe a lot just by watching." When speaking with Pastor Bryan Newberry, one can learn a lot just by listening. Bryan is a great resource for pastors and church leaders. His thing is discipleship, and that's what he does. He mentors and disciples believers, and in his role with Poimen Ministries, he mentors and disciples pastors.  Join us in this episode in which Bryan discusses his new pastoral assignment, pastoral leadership, the importance of delegation as a leader, and more.
October 13, 2020
086 Civil Disobedience Is Not Rebellion- with Pastor Tim Brown
Pastor Tim Brown of Calvary Chapel in Fremont, CA has written extensively to his congregation and to the greater body of Christ ... particularly during this COVID-19 season.  In one of his recent blogs, Tim made a strong, logical, and Biblical case for civil disobedience, as it has been exercised since apostolic days in the church. In his writing, he makes a very clear distinction between civil disobedience and outright rebellion against governing authorities.  This episode will prove to be of great help to any pastor who is seeking help in knowing how to guide his particular fellowship. 
October 06, 2020
085 This Means War- with Blogger Jeremy
In this podcast episode we’ll be talking with a brother in Christ, who is a blogger and a committed follower of Jesus, on something that is strengthening me, and I think will strengthen many pastors … and also their congregations. It’s a word from the Lord about how we should then live, in the light of our current global and local situations. His pseudonym is "Blogger Jeremy," the anonymity being for security reasons. KEY CONVERSATION POINTS ~ It is clear we are at war and that 2020 will be remembered as the year in which a fierce spiritual attack was unleashed upon us, upon the church of Jesus Christ world-wide.  ~ This declaration of war by the enemy leaves us with no choice but to sound the alarm before our king and to enter the battlefield.  ~ Synopsis of the enemy's objectives:          Victory. Objectives. Enemies. Surprise. Vengeance. Role. Expectations. Identity. ~ Begin the battle from the position of Victory. ~ Rely upon the elements of surprise as we fight the battle.  ~ What is expected of us, as enlisted soldiers in the army of God? --------------------------------------------------------------------- Blog Post from which this interview is derived:
September 29, 2020
084 Race in America- Pastor Sandy Adams of Calvary Chapel Stone Mountain Georgia
In episode 84 of Strength for Today's Pastor we’re going to hear from Pastor Sandy Adams of Calvary Chapel Stone Mountain, Georgia. A couple of weeks ago, show host Bill Holdridge had the privilege of attending the Calvary Chapel Deep South Pastor’s Conference at the church Sandy has pastored for almost 40 years.  Sandy preached a message on Monday night on the subject of “Race in America.” As anyone who is familiar with Sandy’s ministry would expect, the message was factual, historical, Biblical, soundly theological, and profoundly applicational. Therefore, we decided to devote this podcast to playing the message in its entirety. So let’s get into it … and hear from God’s Word and from the Holy Spirit in a message entitled “Race in America” from Micah 6:6-8.
September 22, 2020
083 Living and Ministering in the New Covenant- with Pastor Cliff Stabler
Here is a conversation with Cliff Stabler, a mentor and friend of show host Bill Holdridge for 40 years. Cliff introduced Bill to an amazing men's discipleship experience called "Barnabas," and to book Authentic Christianity by Ray Stedman. But most importantly, Cliff further introduced Bill to the life of the New Covenant.  Cliff is a longtime pastor, a former missionary, and a discipler of men. Cliff was with us for episode 24 ... talking about reaching men, one of his passions in ministry. Part of Cliff's legacy is a list of many men who have gone on to live out their Christian lives in kingdom related ways all over the world. To be discussed in this podcast:    What is the New Covenant, as you describe it?    What did Ray Stedman teach you about the New Covenant?  What led up to your discovery of the New Covenant life?    What does the New Covenant life look like in marriage? In ministry? In relationship with the Holy Spirit?
September 15, 2020
021 REBROADCAST! The Need and "How To" of Making Biblical Elders- with Pastor Paul Berry
Paul Berry assumed the senior pastor role at Calvary Chapel Santa Maria, CA in 1992. When he started, there were 50-60 people in attendance, but there was a e mere skeleton of a leadership team. Therefore in the very first months of his pastorate, Paul dug in and began raising up men who would serve the Lord, His church, and their families in the way Christ called them to. In this podcast, Paul will share with us what they did, how they did it, and why they did it.  Also, resources are available for Paul’s SOM curriculum.  He argues that men need to be given responsibility and authority, and the opportunity to truly lead and minister within the church and community.  This is a must listen for those wanting encouragement and help in the area of developing Biblical leadership in the church.
September 09, 2020
082 Ed Taylor On Biblical Leadership In the Role of Senior or Lead Pastor
Today we’ll be talking with Ed Taylor of Calvary Aurora, Colorado on the subject of leadership … Biblical leadership in the role of senior/lead pastor. I’m sure most, if not all of our listeners know of Ed Taylor … he’s the senior/lead pastor of Calvary Church in Aurora, CO. He was saved at Calvary Chapel Downey, grew in the Word and in ministry there for 8 years, and then in 1999 moved to the Denver area with a desire to plant a church. In December of 1999 Calvary Church held its first service, and has been growing deep and wide ever since. Ed is the author of the book Ordinary Servant, the host of the Lead2Serve Podcast, and the Bible Teacher of the national radio broadcast “Abounding Grace.” In this podcast, Ed will be sharing about:  What is Biblical leadership? What does it mean to lead as a senior/lead pastor? How does leading a church differ from leading in the corporate world, or in a business? What is the biggest leadership lesson you've learned in your years of ministry? What is the number one leadership challenge senior/lead pastors are facing today? What's the number one thing that pastors can do, that maybe they're not doing so well right now? Join us for this excellent discussion!
August 31, 2020
081 House to House Small Group Ministry- with Troy Drake
Do you want to discover or maybe even reignite the small groups ministry of your church? Troy Drake is the founding pastor of Calvary Chapel Meridian, Idaho, having served as its pastor since 2009, and has led their church into this important area of discipleship ministry. Here's a quote from the church website:   "Now all who believed were together, and had all things in common, so continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved." (Acts 2:46-47) "The early disciples understood that togetherness is essential for the growth of each person and the church itself by being in close community with other believers. The Christian life is way better in community! And yet, this is the one area that is often lacking in the lives of Christians. "We must intentionally 'do life' together.  Rather than just hoping that it will happen, we have chosen to set up a purposeful way for the people in our fellowship to engage with each other. We call them House2House Groups. "What can you expect at an H2H Group? Each group has a meal together, they discuss & apply Sunday’s sermon, and support each other in prayer and practical ways as they seek to join in God’s mission." So tune in, and get some fresh ideas that may trigger fresh vision that will help your fellowship do the one anothers of the New Testament.
August 25, 2020
080 A 25 Year Venture in Faith in San Antonio Texas- with Pastor Ron Arbaugh
This conversation between host Bill Holdridge and Ron Arbaugh is all about the venture of faith he’s been on for the last 25+ years of ministry in the Lone Star State. Pastor Ron is the founding pastor of CC San Antonio, the 2nd largest city in Texas. The Lord has used Ron and his fellowship in many marvelous ways. Dramatic testimony. Overcoming an impairment. Trusting the Lord for the huge things He wanted to do. Living scared, but trusting in the provision and guidance of God. Consistent, faithful development of pastoral level leaders. The list goes on. It's the grace of God, and Ron is the first to tell you that. Super encouraging stuff!
August 18, 2020
079 Ministering in a Shifting Population Community- with Pastor Dan Davis
Today we’ll be talking with Dan Davis of Calvary Chapel Mountain Home, Idaho, on the subject of ministering in a community with a shifting population. Many pastors have felt this tension … they build on a foundation of the gospel, the vision of the Great Commission, and the ministry of the Word of God, and PEOPLE. The wise pastor invests in people, people that we assume will be with us for a while, and then, bam, they’re gone. Dan Davis pastors in Mountain Home, Idaho, a community with a shifting population. Mountain Home is about 45 miles east of Boise. During his years of ministry in Mountain Home, the Lord has enabled Dan and his wife Kim to lead such a congregation, and lead it well.  This podcast has much to do with pastoral leadership, and is very encouraging. Be blessed!
August 11, 2020
077 White Pastors and Dealing with Racial Tensions- with John Pillivant
Pastor John Pillivant started Calvary Chapel Bartlett, TN back in 1995. Bartlett is a city that is just minutes away from Memphis, the same place where Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated. As a pastor, John had to quickly discover how to minister in his part of the country, and has learned much by being humble, asking questions, and being committed to the kingdom of God first. You are invited to join this podcast discussion. We pray that it may be of great help to you in your ministry.
July 28, 2020
076- Our Identity as Christians Living During a Worldwide Identity Crisis- Pastor Rod Carver
Our program today is with Pastor Rod Carver, senior pastor of Calvary Chapel Coastlands in Corpus Christi, TX.  We’re going to hear from Rod on the subject of identity. Obviously, today there is a lot of pressure on people to self-identify.  It's become a thing, and rather suddenly. We are pressured to self-identify with regards to sexual orientation, ethnicity, skin color, political affiliation, and on and on. But what does that look like for true Christians? What is the identity of the believer in Christ, and how can we pastors help our fellowships understand who they are, and the confession they should be making? Rod Carver moved to South Texas in 1997 and in just a few months, the group began meeting as Calvary Chapel of the Coastlands. He and his wife Noreen have seen a wonderful work of God's Spirit over the years.  This podcast originated from a blog Pastor Rod did recently. Here's that URL:
July 21, 2020
075 Methods of Expository Preaching and Teaching- with John Miller
John Miller is the Senior/Lead pastor of Revival Christian Fellowship in Menifee, CA.  In this podcast episode, John will be sharing with us on the subject of the method of expositional Bible teaching and preaching, building upon last  week’s episode when he made the case for expositional Bible teaching/preaching (Podcast #74). John is not only a fine Bible expositor, he is also passionate about helping current pastors who share his passion for the Word of God. These are tools. Senior pastors who take seriously the charge to feed the flock and preach the Word will love this two part series. Reference will be made to the Nuts and Bolts Conferences in recent years, conferences aimed at strengthening us pastors in our calling and ministry of the Word of God. 
July 14, 2020
073 Raising Up the Next Generation of Leaders and Pastors- with Jerel Hagerman
Pastor Jerel Hagerman is very wise with regard to training and releasing future pastors and leaders.  A primary ministry goal of Jerel's has always been to raise future leaders up ... only in the Word of God, but also in practical application to actively prepare them for their own ministries. To this end, he started a Bible College on the church campus, which has developed into a very fruitful one-year program as part of the network of the Calvary Bible Institute. For the older pastor who needs a Timothy, CBI could be your resource. For the younger minister who wants proper preparation for ministry, CBI could also be your resource. Listen to Jerel talk about his vision, and the multiple campuses of CBI ... and what the Lord is doing.  Encouraging for any pastor who wants to follow the scriptural pattern of 2 Timothy 2:2.
June 30, 2020
072 Acts 2 Distinctives Series- the Importance and Practice of Water Baptism- with Ed Compean
Longtime missionary church planter Ed Compean (currently senior pastor of Shoreline Calvary Chapel in Morro Bay, CA) has a perspective on water baptism, its meaning and importance that we in the West need to hear.  Listen in as Ed shares with us what water baptism means ... not only Biblically, but in other world cultures.  Per Ed's suggestion, program host Bill Holdridge interviews Ed to provide a contrasting point of view. May the Lord use it to strengthen the cause of Christ and the mission of discipleship in our churches!
June 23, 2020
069 Acts 2 Distinctives Series- Constantly Diligent in Prayer- (with Matt Valencia and Rich Chapman)
God is the lifeline of the individual believer, through believing prayer. That is also true of any congregation of believers ... God works through believing prayer. As someone once said, “You can do more than pray after you have prayed but you cannot do more than pray until you have prayed.”  Join pastors Matt Valencia (The Regeneration Church, Scotts Valley CA) and Rich Chapman (Calvary Chapel Greenmeadow, RI) as they share ideas about what the prayer life of the apostolic church looked like, and why this is such an important distinctive in today’s church. Who could not stand to pray more? And what church could not use more prayer?
June 16, 2020
068 Acts 2 Distinctives Series- Constantly Diligent in the Breaking of Bread (with Jeremy Foster and Tim Brown)
Join pastors Tim Brown (Calvary Chapel Fremont, CA) and Jeremy Foster (Calvary Chapel in the Ozarks, AR) as they share ideas about what the breaking of bread looked like in the early church, and why it’s important today in any church. Was breaking of bread a reference to communion only, or something else? Or was it a reference to the love-feast, a common meal? Or both? This well thought out discussion will be sure to stimulate thinking, and perhaps even breathe new life into the practice of communion, and/or begin the practice of common meals within any given fellowship of believers. 
June 09, 2020
067 Acts 2 Distinctives Series- Constantly Diligent to Practice Biblical Fellowship (with Nate Holdridge and Dan Leitz)
Acts 2:42 states that the early believers were steadfastly committed to four major things. These commitments included their sharing life together, in Biblical fellowship. Fellowship is the life conduit of any church. Learn from pastors Dan Leitz (Calvary Chapel Oceanside, CA) and Nate Holdridge (Calvary Monterey, CA) about how Biblical fellowship has been experienced in their churches.  Spoiler alert: many wise words are contained herein. 
June 02, 2020
066 Acts 2 Distinctives Series- Constantly Diligent in the Ministry of the Apostles' Doctrine (with Sandy Adams and John Miller)
The early church ... the best church ... specifically the apostolic church ... was characterized by their passion. They were intentionally committed to the six focuses of Acts chapter 2. Senior/lead pastors and churches will do well to focus on the same things today. One great priority for the N.T. church was its devotion and adherence to the apostles' doctrine.  What was the apostles' doctrine? Where can we find it? How can we be similarly devoted today? Long-time pastors John Miller (Revival Christian Fellowship, Menifee, CA) and Sandy Adams (Calvary Chapel Stone Mountain, GA), both excellent expositors in their own pastoral ministries, will share from the Word and from their experience the powerful truth that a consistent ministry of the Bible is a necessary component of a spiritually healthy church.   Pastors: be ready to improve your serve in this area of your ministry.
May 26, 2020
065 Acts 2 Distinctives Series: Constantly Diligent in Evangelism (with Alan Stoddard and Paul Berry)
Outreach, that's what we often call it. But outreach by itself, apart from the gospel, is not Great Commission ministry.  Pastors Paul Berry (Calvary Chapel Santa Maria, CA) and Alan Stoddard (Calvary Chapel Ruidoso, NM) join us in today's important discussion on this subject. This is the 2nd of 6 episodes dealing with the distinctives of ministry found in Acts chapter 2. They are: 1. Emphasis and reliance upon the Person and work of the Holy Spirit; 2. Evangelism; 3. Continual commitment to the apostle's teaching; 4. Continual commitment to Biblical fellowship; 5. Continual commitment to the breaking of bread; and 6. Continual commitment to prayers. In this podcast, some of the form of evangelism is talked about ... but even more importantly, the heart of evangelism is discussed. May the Lord bless each of our churches with a heart to sow, and with the blessing of reaping as well.
May 19, 2020
071 COVID-19 Positive- A Hopeful Review of What We See the Lord Doing (by Poimen Ministries Pastors)
So we got together for one of our not-as-regular-as-we-should pastor chats, and we decided to record our collective thoughts on COVID-19 and its effect (amazing) on the kingdom of God. Listen to testimonies and anecdotal evidence of God being on the move! Be encouraged! Let the Holy Spirit broaden your vision, and enlarge your borders!  And, feel free to pass it on...
May 14, 2020
064 Acts 2 Distinctives Series- the Power and Ministry of the Holy Spirit (with Holland Davis and Jim Hesterly)
The first of a six part series from Acts chapter 2, this podcast dives into the subject of the need for and power of the Holy Spirit, and how He works in the church, and why pastors should care about it.  Holland Davis of Calvary Chapel San Clemente, CA ( and Jim Hesterly of Acts One Eight Ministries ( are a great pair of pastors to discuss this hugely important subject.  Join in this insightful interview. 
May 12, 2020
071 Poimen Ministries Pastors on COVID-19 and Its Implications
Smack dab in the middle of this crisis, as the team of Poimen Ministries pastors gathered in a Zoom meeting to fellowship and update with one another, the subject of Covid-19 came up and so we went with it.  About 250 combined years of senior pastoral experience combined to tell the story of what they see the Lord doing through this pandemic. This will be encouraging for pastors. Most certainly, the Lord has not lost His position as King of the universe and Lord of heaven and earth. And of the church. Join show host Bill Holdridge for this interesting discussion. 
May 07, 2020
062 Testimony of a Small Town, Normal Sized Church Pastor- with Craig Hall of Calvary Chapel Fortuna, CA
Pastor Craig Hall may live in a smallish sized town. He may have a normal sized congregation. But he is doing a great work, and is a fine pastor who loves his flock and community dearly. In this episode, Craig tells a bit of his story in ministry, as well as some exciting arenas of outreach in the community of Fortuna. If you've ever lived or pastored in a community that's on the small side, then listen in. Lots of encouragement contained in this program.
May 05, 2020
061 Leadership in Times of Opportunity and Serious Challenge- with Jim Thomas of Telios Church of Arcata, CA
Jim Thomas has the gift of leadership, and is a leader. When a major opportunity presented itself to him, the Lord used him to make the most of it. When he assumed the leadership of Telios Church, it was in a very difficult time for the church and community.  Hear some of that testimony, and how the Lord has been able to work in and through Pastor Jim in his present role. The Lord is being glorified!
April 21, 2020
060 Ideas on How to Lead Exciting and Impactful Prayer Meeings- Tim Brown with Bill Holdridge
Prayer is essential. Prayer is God's idea. Prayer is the primary means by which God involves His children in what He wants to do in His world.  Prayer was a primary focus of the best church ever—the apostolic church, as in Acts 2:42.  Yet our prayer meetings are often boring, poorly attended, and unexciting ... when they ought to be one of the most exciting times of our lives. Guest show host Tim Brown interviews the Bill Holdridge of Poimen Ministries on this intriguing and hopefully helpful subject.  "Lord, teach us to pray!"
April 14, 2020
063 Coronavirus, Possible Implications, and Related Issues- with Bill Walden
Pastor Bill Walden is a seasoned pastor ... founding pastor of Cornerstone Ministries of Napa, CA (27 years), former lead singer for Undercover and The Mirrors, former College and Career Pastor at Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa, and current Missions Pastor at Calvary Chapel Napa. He is a major figure for many in Baja, Mexico, and is currently ministering in Bible Colleges and  Bill tells his story and adds his insights in an interview all the way from the Andes Mountains in Peru. The corona virus caused a border shutdown in Peru and Bill has been unable to return to the States.  Join this conversation as the two Bills verbalize some of their thinking on what this current situation might mean for the church and its leaders. Bill uses the word "recalibrate" to describe what will be needed in the coming days, weeks, months, or even years.
April 07, 2020
057 The Pastor and Politics- How We Might Lead Our Congregations (with Pastor Tim Brown)
Pastor Tim Brown joins show host Bill Holdridge in this huge issue for pastors ... made even more do due to this particular election year. Pastor Tim has a gift of turning complexities into simplicity, which can be very helpful for pastors who want tips on how to navigate these choppy waters and stormy seas.  Tim is the pastor of Calvary Chapel in Fremont, California.
March 24, 2020
058 For Your Tool Belt- Memorize the Bible (with Pastor Mike Hughes)
Mike Hughes of Calvary Chapel in Emmett, Idaho uses a simple, but profoundly effective tool to memorize chunks of the Bible, one bite (section) at a time.  Learn how this easy to learn, four step method can aid you in Bible memorization, even if you think you could never do that. As Mike says, if his high school students can do it, so can you.  Mike discusses with show host Bill Holdridge the effect on the church, and upon the pastor's preaching and teaching style.  
March 17, 2020
055 The Leaving and Cleaving of Pastoral Transition- with Ed Compean and Jack Arnold
Pastoral Transitions have an awful lot to teach us about pastoring the churches we currently pastor. There are lessons on developing leaders, about communication, about godly vision, and many other subjects. In this podcast, Pastor Ed Compean of Shoreline Calvary Chapel in Morro Bay, CA, and Pastor Jack Arnold of Calvary Mt. Si in North Bend, WA share their stories, stories which are intertwined, but also are very different.  With them, show host Bill Holdridge explores subjects like reentry from the mission field, cultural adjustments, leadership equity and how to gain it, and vision for church and community. 
March 03, 2020
054 Myths About Pastoral Transitions- with Terry McNabb, Pat Kenney, and John Cowan
Three of Poimen Ministries' experienced team of pastors explore some of the myths of the process of finding a new pastor, and transitioning from what was to what shall be. Common myths include: (1) Transitions are smooth and easy, it's no big deal; (2) Who would ever want to come and pastor this church?; (3) Most pastors recognize when it's time to transition their church; (4) The current pastor needs to disappear as quickly as possible post-transition. There is much to say on this subject, so say tuned!
February 25, 2020
053 Have a Plan for Your Pastoral Transition! (with Pastor Steve Carr)
It's wise to listen to any pastor who has faithfully and successfully borne fruit for almost 50 years of ministry. In this episode Pastor Steve Carr of Calvary Chapel Arroyo Grande, CA will talk with Bill Holdridge about the recently completed transition of CCAG to a younger pastor. It's a textbook transition, one from which we can all learn.  Spoiler alert: every pastor and church at least must have an emergency plan, then follow that up with a long-term plan, as the Lord leads. Steve is available by email at and via his website at
February 18, 2020
052 The Fresh Vision of a Seasoned Pastor- with Gino Geraci of Calvary Chapel South Denver
Gino Geraci has transitioned the church he planted over 27 years ago, and is now moving ahead with a full menu of ministry options in the next season of his life as a pastor-teacher. Be encouraged at show host Bill Holdridge interviews Gino, and unpacks some of the particulars of his fresh vision — and what it looks like. 
February 11, 2020
051 Senior Pastor, the LORD is with You in Your Ministry- with Nate Holdridge (Introduction by Pastor Chuck)
In the earliest stages of his first senior pastorate, Nate Holdridge comes out of the book of Joshua to explain how he knew the Lord would be with him.  A powerful reminder of the Presence and grace of God which is upon senior pastors, and which is absolutely necessary for their ministry to be successful in God's eyes. Pastor Chuck Smith introduces Nate, with some interesting and helpful homiletical suggestions at the end of the message
February 04, 2020
050 The Honor and Blessing of Ministering in a Small (aka normal) Church- with Pastor Ken Merrihew
Pastor Ken Merrihew is the founding and longtime pastor of Calvary Chapel Oklahoma City. He is a leader, a friend to pastors, and a source of godly wisdom to his peers in ministry. In this podcast, Pastor Ken shares with us his thoughts about the advantages and strengths of a small (or normal) sized church. This is necessary encouragement for the majority of pastors serving in the U.S. today.
January 28, 2020
049 An Incredible Opportunity for Your Fellowship- with Pastor John Snoderly of Crossroads Calvary Chapel
Like the Dead Sea, without an outlet, believers will not produced life-giving water. There is nothing like outreach—and doing good—to stimulate and strengthen believers in their walks with the Lord.  In this episode, show host Bill Holdridge interviews Pastor John Snoderly, the newly appointed Director of Calvary Disaster Relief. After explaining how John was called into the ministry, he shares about how Calvary Disaster Relief came into existence, and how this kind of ministry glorifies God and expands His kingdom. 
January 21, 2020
048 Preaching with Power in the Pulpit- with Pastor Bryan Newberry
Pastors want to do better. Sincerely they want this. They want it because their calling is to feed the flock of God with His Word; their calling is to equip believers for their ministries and works of service, using the Bible.  There is a lot riding on whether or not the pastor's teaching is anointed and clear. For the Great Commission to be fulfilled, there must be preaching power in the pulpit. Pastor Bryan Newberry has a passion for helping pastors with their pulpit preparation and delivery. In this podcast episode Bryan will be talking about the difference between preparing the logos part of our messages vs. waiting upon God for the rhema part of our messages.  There will also be a clear path to further help and encouragement, should it be desired. 
January 14, 2020
047 A Successful and Challenging Pastoral Transition (Calvary Chapel Red Bluff)- with Pastors Terry McNabb and Greg Phelps
Pastor Greg Phelps is the new senior/lead pastor of Calvary Chapel Red Bluff, CA. His is the story of eventual agreement with God's calling upon his life for this role, although he was like Moses initially ... very hesitant.  Pastor Bryan Newberry was the Transitional Senior Pastor from Poimen Ministries that moved to Red Bluff with his wife Cheryl for nine months, and helped the church move from being stuck to unstuck. Pastor Greg and Poimen Ministries pastor Terry McNabb tell the story of this church transition, and how the church was restored to health.
January 07, 2020
046 Year in Review- 2019 Snippets from Each of this Year's Episodes
It's been a great year for Strength for Today's Pastor, and we thank God for what He has done, and how He has used each of our interviewees to strengthen pastors, to strengthen their churches. In this episode, snippets are played from each podcast participant.  This is a rich collection ... very rare to have this much wisdom packed into 50 minutes.  May you be blessed, and may 2020 be the most fruitful year ever.
December 31, 2019
045 Merry Christmas Words from the Lord- by the Pastors of Poimen Ministries
The pastors of Poimen Ministries have a huge heart for their fellow senior pastors. Huge. This Merry Christmas end-of-the-year podcast features all eleven pastors that are part the Poimen team. In two minutes or less, each of them share what's on their heart for those currently serving as senior or lead pastors of their churches.  Encouraging words to strengthen pastors, to strengthen their churches.
December 24, 2019
044 The Amazing Example of Joseph- with Pastor Trip Kimball
In this podcast episode, Trip Kimball takes us into the heart and example of Joseph, step-father of our Lord Jesus. Trip shows us how Joseph's life is a strong model for pastoral ministry, especially for the senior or lead pastor.  Practical and timely, Trip is a longtime pastor, missionary, and now part of the team of pastors serving with Poimen Ministries. Merry Christmas! 
December 17, 2019
043 (Almost Totally) Crashed, Burned, and Supernaturally Revived- with Pastor Brian Ewing of Calvary Chapel Juneau AK
A hard-to-hear-to beginning, as Pastor Brian shares authentically about the hard times of his ministry. Doesn't get much more real than this. Then came the wonderful working of God. Listen in as Brian tells their story. Spoiler alert: lots of 'quotables' in this podcast. Enjoy. Super encouraging for today's pastor.
December 10, 2019
042 The Circles or Impact of Revival- with Pastor David Guzik
Well known Bible teacher and commentator David Guzik again shares with us about revival. What does revival look like? What happens when revival comes? What is revival's impact? Obviously, those who know and understand the times in which we live also know and understand the need for revival in the church and spiritual awakening in our world.  David's website is  Send your feedback, comments, and questions to
December 03, 2019
041 Revival- What Is It, Can It Happen Again- with Pastor David Guzik
Pastor David Guzik is a student, as well as a pastor-teacher. As a student, he has done extensive study on the subject of revival. In this podcast episode, hear David speak about what revival is and is not, as well as the possibility of a revival happening once again in our communities, our states, our country, or in our world. For David's website, go to:
November 26, 2019
040 How Can the Senior Pastor Work with His Worship Leader- with Pastor Holland Davis
Let's face it ... in almost every church, about 1/3 of the worship portion of the service is devoted to singing to and about God. And another significant portion is devoted to teaching/preaching. Doesn't it make sense we pastors should pursue a great, unified relationship with our worship leader(s) and team(s)? Yet many of us are bewildered concerning how to get that done. Holland Davis has been leading worship since he was 16 years old. And he has served as the worship leader for pastors of a couple of the largest churches in America. He is currently a senior pastor himself—of Calvary Chapel in San Clemente, CA.  Therefore, Holland is uniquely fitted to help every pastor know how to serve, lead, and enable his worship leaders be the best Jesus has made them to be. Show host Bill Holdridge speaks with Holland in this podcast episode #40 of Strength for Today's Pastor.
November 19, 2019
039 What Is the Heart of Worship? (with Pastor Holland Davis)
Holland Davis has a lot to say about the worship of God. His approach has the fragrance of Christ all over it. Senior pastors can learn from worship leaders, to be sure. But it may be even more helpful if a senior pastor hears from a man who is both an anointed worship leader and a senior pastor.  He can cover both sides of the same coin in terms of understanding worship in the church. Holland is the senior pastor of Calvary Chapel San Clemente, CA. He is also the writer of the worship song "Let It Rise," along with the book by the same title.  Join show host Bill Holdridge as Holland helps us explore the heart of worship. 
November 12, 2019
037 Getting Into the Flow of the Spirit in Pastoral Ministry- with Pastor Marc Knutson
Ministry may not have to be as hard as we pastors make it sometimes.  Marc Knutson shares with us some of what he has learned over the years, and what he learned from Pastor Chuck Smith up close and personal, about flowing with the Holy Spirit in the ministry. The Holy Spirit has a mind and will—and His mind and will are in complete cooperation with that of the Father and the Son.  Host Bill Holdridge joins Marc in this encouraging conversation.
October 29, 2019
035 Are We Charismatic Enough? (With Pastor Paul Berry)
The early church, aka the apostolic church, was wholly dependent upon the Holy Spirit. As was the case in Corinth, the spiritual gifts were regularly manifested. Signs and wonders accompanied the preaching of the gospel. Divine healing happened. Believers were being baptized by the Holy Spirit, in fulfillment of the Promise of the Father. Paul Berry is the senior pastor of Calvary Chapel Santa Marian, CA. His church is a charismatic church, in the Biblical way of understanding what that means.  This podcast will be an encouragement for pastors to move beyond fears and apprehension about the work of the Holy Spirit, and into the fullness of life promised by Jesus to those who believe in Him.
October 15, 2019
034 The Greatest Summer of My Life- the Effect of My Sabbatical Upon My Ministry to My Family with Pastor Nate Holdridge
Time away ... distance ... can often bring new perspective.  Pastor Nate Holdridge of Calvary Monterey gained new wisdom and insight into the way he is to minister to his family, and he gained this perspective while on sabbatical. This podcast isn't a spanking, it's an encouragement. It's wisdom for the pastor who loves his family. 
October 08, 2019
033 The Greatest Summer of My Life- The Effect of My Sabbatical Upon the Ministry Back Home (with Pastor Nate Holdridge)
Strength for Today's Host Bill Holdridge interviews his son Nate, the senior pastor of Calvary Monterey on the Monterey Peninsula in California.  Nate was able to take a two month sabbatical after 20 years of ministry in the church, and he shares some of what he learned and observed from his time away with his family.  This will bless and encourage the senior pastor to make room for sabbath, and some of the valid and important reasons to do it.
October 01, 2019
032 The Life and Legacy of Lonnie Frisbee- with Danny Lehmann of YWAM
Lonnie Frisbee was an important part of the Jesus movement of the late 60s and early 70s. His ministry was characterized by unusual spiritual power, amazing boldness, and strong evangelistic fruit.  YWAM and Calvary Chapel leader Danny Lehmann knew Lonnie well. In this podcast, we will hear from Danny about some of the takeaways from Lonnie's life. 
September 24, 2019
031 Pastor ... Share the Good News- with Danny Lehmann of YWAM & Calvary Chapel
Danny Lehmann is a major leader in Youth With A Mission (YWAM), an author, an elder of Calvary Chapel Honolulu, and an evangelist. Danny is eminently qualified by the Lord to encourage and help pastors in their task of doing the work of an evangelist, which he does in this podcast interview with Poimen Ministries Director Bill Holdridge. Danny has been walking with the Lord for 45 years, and is as relevant as ever. 
September 17, 2019
030 Sustainable Ministry- Equipping Leaders Who Equip Other Leaders (with Pastor Jim Larson of ICM)
Jim and Janice Larson serve the Lord in Tanzania, East Africa. Their ministry there is an amazing model of developing sustainable leaders and ministry. The lessons learned are transferable to any culture.  Learn from Pastor Jim as he discusses vision and how it affects actual ministry.  Hear about bold, forward thinking radical discipleship as it pertains to raising up leaders. You will be encouraged and challenged. 
September 10, 2019
029 Vision For and the Practicality of Producing Leaders- Pastor Bruce Zachary
Bruce Zachary is the founding pastor of Calvary Nexus in Camarillo, CA.  Along with the oversight and shepherding of that flock of believers, Bruce has been very active in leadership development all over the world.  He co-directs the Calvary Church Planting Network with Pastor Miles DeBenedictis, which helps prospective church planters with training and other aspects of church planting. He also oversees the Velo Church Leadership team that comes alongside of churches and leaders to further equip and strengthen their leadership and service for God's Kingdom. He is also the author of 16 books, as well as two training manuals (which are also in Spanish).  Bruce breathes leadership, and oozes leadership. He is a leader's leader as well as a man eager to learn and grow. In this podcast, Bruce will lay out the basics of a church leadership development plan, and will overview the many great resources available through Calvary Nexus, CCPN, and Velo. If you want to grow in leadership, this podcast will help you. 
September 03, 2019
028 A Successful Pastoral Transition, and Beyond- Pastor Bill Walden
Stepping aside from a senior pastor role can be a fearful and uncertain venture. Who will lead this church moving forward? How will the congregation adjust to a new pastor? What will I do after the transition is complete? Pastor Bill Walden of Cornerstone Ministries of Napa, CA (now called Calvary Chapel Napa),  led his elders and church through a five year process that is going very well on both ends.  Bill and his leaders read a lot, prayed a lot, talked a lot, and planned a lot. And the end result is working. If you're considering transitioning your church in the future, this will encourage you.  Remember: unless you are still the senior pastor when Jesus returns, someone else will be the senior pastor of your church!
August 27, 2019
026 Missionary Care Is More Than Money- with Neal Pirolo of Emmaus Road International
Neal Pirolo is a missionary and kingdom builder. His excellent book Serving As Senders Today has been used by countless churches and missionaries as a primary text concerning the "how to" of sending and being a missionary ... from recruitment to return from the field. His followup work The Reentry Team: Caring For Your Returning Missionaries is also a vital work which will help ensure a successful return for missionaries to their country of origin. This podcast explains how caring for missionaries is not only financial. As referred to in the epistle to the Philippians, there are at least six ways to care for missionaries.  Learn how your church can do a great job sending and maintaining a fruitful, kingdom relationship with those you send out or support into another culture.
August 13, 2019
025 Do the Work of an Evangelist- with Pastor David Johnston
Paul exhorted Timothy to "be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry" (2 Timothy 4:5).  Yet for the busy pastor, this is often a very challenging and perhaps lacking area in his life and ministry.  In this episode, Pastor David Johnston strengthens us by giving very practical and strong ways to fulfill this part of our calling.  David is a bi-vocational senior pastor who serves in Calabasas, California. He is a pastor-teacher, but also gifted as an evangelist. As an evangelist, he is uniquely positioned to equip his fellow pastors to follow Paul's admonition to his young protege.  Spoiler alert: this will bless you.
August 06, 2019
023 What About Pastoral Counseling? (With Pastor Paul LeBoutillier)
Pastor, is counseling a burden or a blessing to you? How is your 1:1 ministry oriented? What's your end game? Paul LeBoutillier speaks with program host Bill Holdridge about counseling, and the way the Lord has taught him to approach it in his church of almost 30 years. It promises to be both liberating and encouraging to any pastor.
July 23, 2019
022 Keeping It Real- with Pastor Ed Taylor
Pastor Ed Taylor is an open book in private as well as in public. His transparency and sincerity are evident in this podcast episode, in which Ed provides abundant encouragement with regard to dealing with extreme loss, the pastor's calling, the pastor's own self-assessment and identity (spoiler alert: the pastor is not to be deemed successful on the basis of the size of your church!), and thinking and living within the good things that God has done and is doing. Ed is the pastor of Calvary Chapel Aurora, Colorado, a solid, growing and relevant congregation near Denver. He and the church have completed 20 years as a fellowship, and during those years Ed has learned, and is learning valuable and transferable lessons in life and ministry. Ed's keeping it real...
July 16, 2019
020 Pastor: Why You Should Wash the Feet of Your Fellow Pastors- Tim Brown
Pastors are often isolated and feel alone. It's difficult to find others that can relate to the unique challenges of the ministry.  Not too surprisingly, pastors report that they often suffer from discouragement, and even depression.  Can isolation and feelings of being alone contribute to discouragement and/or depression? In this episode, Pastor Tim Brown of Calvary Chapel Fremont, CA discusses the great need for us senior pastors to reach out to our peers in ministry, and to wash each other's feet. Spoiler alert: this will encourage and strengthen you. 
July 09, 2019
018 How Does the Pastor Make Disciples? (With Trip Kimball)
Join host Bill Holdridge and Pastor Trip Kimball as they discuss some of the how-to's of disciple making, especially within the ministry of the senior/lead pastor. Questions like, who should we look for? or what is the goal of disciple making? or how did Jesus do it? are part of the discussion. This episode can be helpful to restart or jump-start an existing discipleship emphasis with our churches.
June 19, 2019
017 The Pastor As Disciple Maker (With Trip Kimball)
Every senior/lead pastor knows about the Great Commission and its importance in fulfilling God's vision for the church. But what does that look like in the life and ministry of the busy pastor? Pastor Trip Kimball has a long history of pouring into people that they might follow Christ well. In this podcast, program host Bill Holdridge will interview Pastor Trip to help us all discover how we can grow as disciplers.
June 18, 2019
014 So You're Thinking About Going On Sabbatical? (With John Cowan- Part Two)
You've heard about this idea, and you've been thinking about it. There are roadblocks to consider, and you're reviewing some of them in your own mind. Yet just the hope of an extended restorative time away charges your batteries. How can the obstacles to actually doing this be overcome?  What about your church's leadership, how will they ever get on board? Why not just take an extra week of vacation? In this podcast, Pastor John Cowan of Poimen Ministries responds to these questions with Program Host Bill Holdridge. May the Lord bless you as you live in, and enter into His rest!
June 05, 2019
013 Is It Time for the Pastor to Take a Sabbatical? (With John Cowan- Part One)
Many pastors do not consider the idea of taking an extended time away from their normal pastoral duties, to be renewed and strengthened personally and in ministry.  Yet at the same time we hear about how many pastors are leaving the ministry these days ... many of which admit to experiencing burnout, lack of vision, or a weakened spiritual life. Maybe you, pastor, may be in need of a sabbatical. In this program, Host Bill Holdridge speaks with longtime pastor John Cowan about what a sabbatical is, and why it's important to consider.  John calls a sabbatical a time of "refueling." If you've been in your church for ten years or more, you may indeed be a candidate for a sabbatical. Perhaps this podcast can help you determine that.
June 04, 2019
011 The Pastor's Legacy- How He Can Care For His Family and Widow (With Gillett Doggett)
Poimen Ministries Director (and program host) Bill Holdridge interviews Pastor Gillett Doggett on the subjects of the senior pastor's retirement, care for his widow should the pastor go home to be with the Lord, and adequately preparing for a church transition when and if it gets to be that time. This program will be helpful for church boards of directors, elder boards, deacon boards, and finance and budget committees. The senior/lead pastor may consider making this show available to his leadership team(s). Gillett Doggett has served the Lord for many years, and is like a modern day Caleb. This octogenarian has a great passion for the care of pastoral widows, and for the pastor and his family.  
May 29, 2019
006 What We Can Do to Reconnect Young People to the Church? (With Bryan Newberry)
Host Bill Holdridge interviews Pastor Bryan Newberry, a senior pastor for 32+ years. Bryan is passionate about connecting with the next generation, and exudes proper confidence in the Lord that it's doable.  Many pastors are asking, "why are the young people leaving?" And most of the time, we pastors are unclear about what to do about it! But the next gen WANTS to be reached, and Bryan provides Biblical, practical, Jesus centered, and easy to implement practices that will encourage any pastor to go for it.  Part two of this two part series focuses on some of the 'must do' practices for the church that wants to fulfill the Great Commission as it reaches the younger people. Bryan's suggestions, if applied, have the potential to radically change the dynamic of any church. 
May 08, 2019
004 How Can We Connect the Young People Back to the Church? (With Bryan Newberry)
Host Bill Holdridge interviews Pastor Bryan Newberry, a senior pastor for 32+ years. Bryan is passionate about connecting with the next generation, and exudes proper confidence in the Lord that it's doable.  Many pastors are asking, "why are the young people leaving?" And most of the time, we pastors are unclear about what to do about it! But the next gen WANTS to be reached, and Bryan provides Biblical, practical, Jesus centered, and easy to implement practices that will encourage any pastor to go for it.  Part one of this two part series focuses on the mindset of today's youth, and how our churches can adjust to that mindset. The message and foundation remains the same as we reach out to young people, but the approach and methods can and must adjust. 
May 06, 2019