NACBA Weekly Update
Sep. 5, 2014

Designating a housing allowance
Church Law & Tax
Many churches are lax in their housing allowance designations. Internal Revenue Regulation 1.107(b) requires that in order to be housing allowance, the amount must be designated as such pursuant to an official action taken in advance of the payment of the allowance by the employing church or other qualifying organization.More

Church phone systems vulnerable to costly hacking
By Robert C. Foreman
Most churches with multiline small-business phone systems are unaware of the potential for their phones to be hacked by international criminals. This can be a very costly problem, as we discovered when our phone system was hacked over a weekend from outside and used to make tens of thousands of international calls to various foreign countries. The numbers called were "premium" numbers, well-known by phone security experts.More

How your church can innovate by asking 'what if'
Center for Church Communication
Sometimes church innovations are simple, like putting Scripture passages on worship slides to give the congregation context for the words they're singing. Sometimes these innovations are more complex, like a church that created a character named Phillip Randoll whose whole life story was part of their Easter services. Churches have a similar model for innovation in each of these situations. But what is this model? It's a question: What if?More

A metric that matters
Leadership Journal
Numbers are maddening, particularly when it comes to the church. One reason is simple: How do you gauge how a church is doing in a quantitative, much less qualitative, way? Can you chart pastoral care, or community, or spirituality? One line you hear all the time is, "We're not into numbers." But the equally common response is, "We count people because people count." Numbers matter because they represent people, and people matter to God. More

5 ways to turn your Twitter followers into raving fans
Center for Church Communication
Have you ever asked yourself why a church should use social media platforms such as Twitter? With the overwhelming popularity of these social networks, its purpose can easily get lost. Platforms like Twitter were created for the world to connect with others in a meaningful way and to share the things that are most important to them. But, if we are not intentional, we can easily reduce our social accounts to nothing more than just noise that loses the interest of followers fast. To keep social media social, there should be just as much time put into engaging your followers as there is posting great content. More

Cut through the noise with an effective church communication strategy
Church Tech Today
The Church has the most meaningful and important message of all time. It has the power to transform history, culture, and lives — and far too often, it’s lost in transmission. Unless you want to have a "failure to communicate," your church needs an effective communication strategy. Here are a few great ideas from the thought leaders that can help you communicate a message that cuts through the noise.More

Where college football is a religion, and religion shapes college football
The Washington Post
Throughout most of the United States, church attendance is on the decline, but according to a "religion census" sponsored by the Association of Statisticians of American Religious Bodies, eight states in the South, including Mississippi, saw increases between 2000 and 2010 — in some cases dramatically. College football’s influence in the region grew, as well, with bulging stadiums and iconic millionaire coaches.More

North Carolina restaurant gives 'praying in public' discount
Christian Headlines
A restaurant in Winston-Salem, North Carolina offers a surprising deal: If patrons pray before their meal, they receive 15 percent off. Mary’s Gourmet Diner has been giving praying customers a break for four years, but the unpublicized discount is only just now gaining attention. Jordan Smith visited the diner and was surprised to see $6.07 taken off her $40.50 bill. When she posted a photo of the receipt to Facebook, it piqued national interest.More

Cut through the noise with an effective church communication strategy
Church Tech Today
The Church has the most meaningful and important message of all time. It has the power to transform history, culture, and lives — and far too often, it’s lost in transmission. Unless you want to have a "failure to communicate," your church needs an effective communication strategy.More

Church payroll and tax laws
Church Executive
Sabra Rowley, CPA, assistant vice president of Affiliate Operations at Brotherhood Mutual Insurance Company in Fort Wayne, Indiana shares her thoughts in an interview on church legal matters ranging from church compliance with federal regulations to common tax mistakes churches can avoid.More

7 habits of highly effective church meetings
Church Central
Over the past decade Thom Rainer has been on a quest to find highly effective church staff meetings. He has been fortunate to observe several, which he seeks to emulate in his own staff meetings. Though all of the good meetings have several diverse characteristics, he has found seven that are the hallmarks of highly effective meetings.More

7 Bible verses that will give you the boost you need when having a bad day
Christian Post
Are you having a bad day? Need something to give you a clear head and make you feel better? Well, you don't have to look further than the Bible. The Bible has great verses and scripture quotes to help Christians brighten up and reflect on their attitudes. Here are seven Bible verses that are perfect for when you are having a bad day.More

Alabama megachurch introduces $26 million entertainment complex to low-income community
Christian Post
An Alabama megachurch recently held an open house to showcase their $26 million multipurpose complex complete with a 12-lane bowling center, wedding venue, fitness center, and cafe. Faith Chapel Christian Center located near Birmingham funded the project with tithes and offerings from their more than 6,000 members. Although the entertainment center has been open for a year, the megachurch is just now getting around to introducing it to the low-income community that it is located in.More

The better way to 360-degree feedback
Faith & Leadership
Leaders of all stripes — parents, pastors, principals — need feedback; we need to hear the good, the bad and the ugly. And in many institutional cultures, thin skin, fear of retribution or the failure of a leader to ask can prevent honest feedback. One way many organizations skirt these impediments is through the anonymous survey. Our anonymity guaranteed, we are able to say what we really think about our leaders. And if our leaders get their feelings hurt, that’s not our problem.More

5 habits that make you powerless to change your life
What keeps us stuck in bad circumstances? Whether it's a bad job, financial problems, addictions, unhealthy relationships, or maybe even something as minor as a bad attitude we can't seem to shake — when we're in the midst of these problems, it can often seem like there’s nothing we can do to pull ourselves out of them. Have you ever felt powerless in the face of situations like these? And is there something we could be doing differently to change our lives, even when our circumstances seem unchangeable?More

Do you think biblically about your work?
Work is one of the most significant parts of our lives. Of the 168 hours we are given each week, most of us will spend at least 40 at the workplace. Many spend closer to 60 or 70, sometimes juggling two jobs or more. One of the most pressing questions for a Christian to answer, then, is,"How do I think biblically about work?"More

9 habits that lead to terrible decisions
Harvard Business Review
Harvard Business Review looked at 360-feedback data from more than 50,000 leaders and compared the behavior of those who were perceived to be making poor decisions with that of the people perceived to be making very good decisions. Nine factors emerged as the most common paths to poor decision making. Here they are in order from most to least significant.More