Photo on 12-13-18 at 3.21 PM

Hi, I’m Wendy Seidman.

Inverness, IL

Phone Number

(847) 732-0846

Email

[email protected]

Experience

Thrive Church
Consultant

Education

Indiana University
B. S. in Business
Trinity Seminary
Masters in Religious Education

Church Affiliation

Non-Denominational

Years In Ministry

25 years

Personality

ENTJ

Skills

Leadership development, coaching/mentoring, writing curriculum, church operations (facilities, finances), problem solving, communicating

Tools & Software

Microsoft Office Suite

Personal

Married to Dan for 23 years
Kids: Josh (22) and twin daughters Abigail and Rebecca

Top 3 Strengths

People Skills0%

Strategic0%

Achiever0%

Discipleship Questionnaire Responses
Personal Info
Please share briefly how you became a Christian.
As a high school senior, I drove away from my Presbyterian church and thought “if this is Christianity, this is the biggest farce in history.” I believe God took that as “Game On!” And He brought me to a college where 50% of my floor were Christian gals. Fast forward, I was on my spring break, on the beach, when I prayed to ask Jesus to come into my life.
How would you describe yourself?
  • Fun
  • Intense
  • Motivational
  • Flexible
  • Loving
Personality Type
ENTJ
Tell me about some people (i.e. authors, mentors, and ministry leaders) that have had a big impact on you.
I am a shepherd leader and believe that’s the leadership Jesus modeled for us and called us to. Therefore, Lead Like Jesus has heavily impacted my leadership and personal life. Live, love and lead like Jesus. Also, Emotionally Healthy Spirituality/Leader/Church has also given me insight into developing people who live and love like Jesus. For that to happen, we have to offer wholistic discipleship.
Discipleship
How do you plan to engage and inform your church about your ministry objectives and progress?
My first step is to always listen. Listen to the current leaders and where they want to go and what they see the gaps or problems to be and then ask those same questions to people in the church. From there a plan is developed and when that vision or plan is cast, people are able to see their voice or input. They can see that they shaped the plan that the church is pursuing and then gives that plan a much higher chance to succeed.
Tell me about a time when you developed a new small group strategy. What did you do?
I’m currently doing that with a church. I listened and then drafted a framework of what I heard them say–what thriving Jesus followers look like, their characteristics, behaviors, etc. I then had them review and edit it. We then looked at each small group and pltted it on the path to see where they had gaps. And identified how we needed to begin aligning each small group to this plan. We started leadership development Zoom sessions to begin casting a vision for shepherd leadership and specific steps to take to move their small group or ministry group to be more caring. We will then share the framework to get their sense of where they think they are on the growth path and what next steps they need to take.
How would you alleviate confusion when you are communicating with someone and it becomes apparent that they don’t understand what you’re saying or vice versa?
I immediately stop to clarify by sharing with them what I heard them say and for them to please correct me. And if I’m feeling misunderstood, I ask them to share with me what they heard me say so I can clarify any misunderstandings.
Spiritual Growth
Once someone accepts Christ as their Savior, how do you begin discipling them?
That’s where a church’s growth process is critical. Getting them into community with other believers is critical. Life on life coaching which helps them hear the Holy Spirit is critical along with understanding what the Bible says and its relevance in their life. One on one coaching or what Jesus called discipling is critical.
As the spiritual leader of your ministry, how are you going to help small group leaders grow in their faith?
Shepherd them. Model for them what we want them to do with their small group. Meet with them to find out how they’re doing and what they’re struggling with. Pray over them. Based on where they’re at we might use a resource, unless there’s a resource already being used. Whatever the material is besides the Bible, it’s got to be relevant to that person and enable him/her to identify those areas or a trait they want to change to be and love more like Jesus.
Ministry Growth
What is your philosophy of ministry?
As I’ve mentioned, I believe in shepherding so that we love God like he did and love each other (families, co-workers, neighbors, friends) like he wants us to. Learning how to not only love God but also love each other is critical right now in our culture…especially if we don’t agree with someone. I believe that raising up churches of people who authentically love others and can disagree with them respectfully will create safe places for our world to come to.
Share with me how you deal with a fast-paced, always changing environment. Have you had this experience in a previous position?
Yes, I’ve had a lot of experience with that. The key is flexibility, adaptability and knowing your boundaries…those that would be destructive to you vs. those that are just hard.
How would you evaluate systems and structures to see if there could be improvement?
First, identify the goal what we’re trying to achieve to assess whether the structure/system is actually achieving it. Also, I’ve seen to many organization where the structures stopped serving the organization/goal and started having the organization and people serve the structure/system…which causes needless frustration to those working in the system.
What was the most creative idea you introduced in your last ministry role? What steps did you take to implement that idea?
The youth ministry had issues with their leaders not going up and talking to the youth coming to their event. I had someone follow him and videoed how he approached kids. We then equipped the leaders on the 3 steps to follow and used that footage to show them how to do it. The next few weeks 90% of the leaders were connecting and reaching out to new students and fringe ones.
How has COVID changed your approach on how to create community with the church members and nonbelievers?
Using Zoom has been on the increase, however, there’s zoom fatigue and it hasn’t replaced some of the one on one connections that happen when you’re meeting face-to-face. Therefore, we’ve supplemented it with small gatherings up to 15 people. We just had a dinner, worship and connecting event last night at someone’s house with a bonfire. The women’s retreat is now a weekend, however, you choose which time you want to attend with a maximum at each session (which is repeated on Friday and Saturday). (We’re also reaching out to those that we haven’t seen to check in with them.)
What is your experience with creating an online weekend experience via live stream?
My primary experience is with equipping events and small group events that have interaction.
What goals have you set in the past for your ministry area. Did you accomplish them and if so, how did you accomplish them?
Yes, I’ve set goals and accomplished them, however, I’m not sure what you’re looking for here. I set goals with the team (which comes out of the strategic or ministry plan), identify steps to meet those goals, assign people and dates and have frequent check-ins to make sure we’re on track…and if not, find out why we’re not on track. (Does the person need help? Did an unexpected obstacle occur or a different priority? Does the goal need to be adjusted? etc.)
What would it take to grow a successful discipleship program?
First and foremost, leadership. Identifying potential disciples, inviting them into the journey, and asking if they’d begin to disciple others–while continuing to shepherd and lead them the way we want them to shepherd and lead others…with the outcome being more people living their lives and loving as Jesus did.
Your members/guests come to church with specialized needs, different learning styles, and family stresses. Do you have a strategy to provide significant ministry to meet these needs?
My first step is, yes again! to listen and identify what those needs are. And then get some smart people around this issue/s to come up with a plan to address it/them.
Describe the diversity of some of the ministries with which you’ve worked. How did you go about learning and educating yourself in order to effectively reach your community?
I worked for a global organization that was in 6 continents. I asked good questions and listened intently to uncover needs/problems and what they’d like to see different.
Is there a process that you go through when choosing a platform for curriculum choices?
This is an area of expertise. I have a 6 step process for identifying what the course or curriculum need is. Then search for possible curriculum/course on one of many venues/platforms or decide whether it needs to be internally developed.
What have you done in the past to ensure your church has a safe environment, including emergency procedures.
I haven’t had first hand experience. However, I have worked with experts in that area to help other churches identify and come up with their emergency procedures.
How would you describe the ideal relationship between senior/lead pastor and discipleship pastor?
That it’s authentic, transparent and mutually respectful…which includes honest conversations where those reporting to the senior/lead pastor especially if there’s an area of disagreement. Also, if it’s a direct reporting relationship, the meetings need to be frequent enough especially in the beginning to provide support and/or direction as needed. (Situational Leadership)

References

Kathy Hotton || N/A || [email protected]
Kristen Aikman || N/A || [email protected]
Steve Bell || N/A || [email protected]
Cassandra Shepard || N/A || [email protected]

Favorite Bible Story

The story of Elijah

Favorite Scripture

Ephesians 4:11-12