Strategic messages

This page contains some strategic messages from Dave and guests at Engage Conferences / Shining Lights Trust events

Topics include


Follow the LINK HERE to find all specific messages on New Zealand History

The importance of history to the future of the NZ mission — with Dave

Many in our churches know very little about our own nation’s history, and in particular how profoundly significant the Christian faith has been within it. It is said that, ‘Those who tell the history write the future.’ This message suggests that re-learning the stories especially of our bicultural history, and ‘values history’, is more important to our future than many yet realise.

Online GO Train evangelism 2022 training event – 28min training video from Dave

Unable to attend at the time, Dave was asked to contribute via a video – as one of 6 ‘evangelists’, with 30mins each, creating a live 3 hour programme for GO Train (which was 30 April in 2022).

  • Dave’s presentation could work as a fill-in for a sermon – or for small group use.
  • He covers the simple message – then focusing on various dynamics of the conversational skills needed to communicate it.

The full 3 hour programme can be viewed here – inc 30min presentations from Luke Collis (UNASHMED), Joseph Lee (Pioneer Ministry), Robert Siokimotu (OAC), Pat Steele (YFC Australia / #hopestory challenge), Stu Millar (Train to Proclaim), Dave Mann (Shining Lights Trust).

GO Train 2023

The GO Train 2023 (Australia/Pacific) online event included training from 8 seasoned evangelists on 8 distinct topics. We have selected just three here. You can view the FULL EVENT HERE.

Evangelists and the equipping of churches

Stu (of Train to Proclaim) brings wisdom to the table, relevant for equipping evangelists and pastors together.
The ‘apostles, prophets and evangelists’ of Ephesians 4 are easily excluded. Both are needed! But they’re human dynamics here.
Stu articulates concisely, and with insight!

Evangelism and large crowds

Joseph Lee (of Pioneer Ministries) is a practitioner in this area, and we (a the SLT) – amongst others – would credit him as the most active evangelist in New Zealand. Widely trusted, Joseph and his wife Leslie are hosted continuously across across our nation – as well as throughout the pacific. How could we get crowd and event evangelism happening at a greater level again?

Evangelism and church culture

Dave Mann (of Shining Lights Trust) outlines a simple and transferable approach to leading the ‘outreach base’ of a church – for church pastors.
Having applied this as a pastor, Dave has given effort to helping pass on the principles and habits to others, to help them get different (better) results in the mobilising of their members. Countless presentations, a video series and 2 books have followed, with over 1000 churches engaging at at least some level with the resources in New Zealand as a result.

Cultural change and what a united Church can do — with Dave

In this ‘bubble-popping’ message Dave talks about how and why our potential TOGETHER is still greater than we imagine – but also why uniformity won’t get us there. Hear 4 long-range goals we could unite in, with 15 applications – all of which are possible. But it’s a slightly different way of thinking and working together that is needed. If communication lines could exist, we could achieve much ‘in unison’ – without requiring uniformity, and this is already working in our nation!

Te Tiriti o Waitangi – and implications for today — with Dave

A presentation by Dave from a Thinking Matters conference in 2019, related to the story of Te Tiriti, followed by some strategic reflections on current trends and where this might be heading – with awareness of implications for the Church as a whole in Aotearoa-New Zealand.

The importance of history to the future of he NZ mission — with Dave

The same message as an audio, and to a congregation rather than at a conference.  Strategically important!

Conversational skills Part I – The example of Jesus — with Dave

An equipping message from an Engage Conference in 2021 with Dave speaking. This gives an overview of some conversational skills for spiritual conversations, with no agenda except to encourage, taking every conversation as it comes.

Conversational skills Part II – Jesus In Hostile Environments — with Dave

An equipping message from an Engage Conference in 2021 with Dave speaking. This message gives an overview of some conversational skills for hostile environments, with Jesus as the role model. How do we engage wisely, respectfully and winsomely when the environment itself is becoming prejudicial and hostile?

The gospel in the Book of Revelation — with Dave

‘End times’ predictions are not only given us by God to inform us of the (deliberately very) short terrible time coming – but as a motivation point for the gospel, and for holiness.

I believe it’s time for that discussion to re-enter our pulpits.

This message – about the gospel in the book of Revelation – (beyond a 7min fun interview with Dave and Heather) gives an introduction to and overview of the Book of Revelation  as a whole – all within the one message.  It could help to open this timely and important topic up for more discussion.

Listening to the whispers of the Spirit — with Dave

Times are changing – and is in a context of this that Dave here affirms the importance of a high valuing of the Spirit’s whispers for the Christian. Where is security to be found when the world seems to be going mad? How are we to love others when the world is in crisis for everyone? The Christian believes we have the Holy Spirit with us to help us, protect us, guide us and enable us!

But how does that even work? I mean – how do you actually hear God? Hear Dave unpack some of the challenging realities – with humour – of ‘hearing God’s voice’!

Making sense of our Democracy (FULL MESSAGE) — with Dave

The Christian foundations of our Democratic freedom. Why intelligence, faith and law are the bedrock of equality, prosperity and freedom.

Here’s the full 38min message and deliberately covers a range of areas in an  attempt to shed some ‘big-picture’ light on the topic.

Click HERE for shortened sections of this message by topic as ‘Q&A videos’.

The Christian and Politics (FULL MESSAGE) — with Dave

This is ‘Part 2’ of Dave’s talk about the origins and values of democracy, and considers socialism, communism, fascism – and their comparisons to capitalism. What are the flaws? Which of these are redeemable – and how have we enabled a capitalistic democracy as well as we actually have (including freedom to own property, initiate a business – and to vote)… …to become one of the most free, equality-based and prosperous cultures not only in the world, but in history?

Click HERE for shortened sections of this message by topic as ‘Q&A videos’.

The importance of Church small groups — with Dave

A stirring 40 minute message on the importance of church small groups if the Church is to more fully become what God intended it to be in this world.

In this message Dave traverses history and Scripture to present a compelling challenge, principally suggesting that the goal is not that we have churches with small groups, but instead become churches of small groups.

  • Notes for a pastor preaching this: Here
  • Powerpoint content (no design or image): Here

30 min small group leaders training (1 of 3)— with Dave

The previous audio is an introduction to the importance of small groups.

The video here is the first of three – summarising 8 key areas of training, to enable small group leaders to deliver measurable results. The goal is disciples who make disciples.

Download student notes for all 8 sessions (3 half hour videos) here.

All within 30 minutes – this first video concisely articulates:

  • Three key goal areas – and how to achieve them through simple ‘fringe’ habits (because habits are what builds culture);
  • Programme flow and priorities;
  • Discussion leading tips – Part I.

30 min small group leaders training (2 of 3)— with Dave

The text next to the first video explains what is being gifted here.

Download student notes for all 8 sessions (3 half hour videos) here.

This second of three videos covers:

  • The essentiality of small groups to the function of the Church;
  • Small group life-cycle;
  • The essentiality of annual goals to life-changing small groups (including outreach goals);

30 min small group leaders training (3 of 3)— with Dave

The text next to the first video explains what is being gifted here.

Download student notes for all 8 sessions (3 half hour videos) here.

For this final session – also download the sample ‘calendar’ (as a editable Word doc) here.

This third of three videos covers:

  • Discussion skills – Part II (group management)
  • Planning (putting it all to practice – to deliver measurable results).

The Treaty of Waitangi today — with Dave

A stirring 45 minute presentation on the little-known background to Te Tiriti o Waitangi, concluding with a challenging strategic forecasts from Dave on where biculturalism is going in New Zealand, and the implications of this for the Kiwi Church – in view of how we might (or might not) achieve things we may be hoping for.

Engage Pastors’ Morning: The need for a united national and city voice — with Dave

A strategic presentation by Dave on the role and function of city pastors’ groups in relation to the wider mission of the church, and of the relationship of these to denominations, para-Church and local churches. This message gives a context for some ‘next level’ united function.

See more video content on this topic by Dave, as created for NZ pastors and pastors’ groups, at

Engage Pastors’ Morning: The DNA of a pastors’ group that brings change to the city — with David Dishroon

A presentation and reflection on the dynamics involved, and therefore importance of, the united function of the Church at a city level – spoken with the past 25 years of consistent effort in the Tauranga Moana in view.

See more on this topic above – or at

Engage Pastors’ Morning: Story-telling and discussion panel — with David Dishroon, Colin Shaw and Dave Mann

A question and answer time related to the role and function of city/town pastors’ group – and related thoughts, observations, concerns and strategies.

See more on this topic above – or at

What it means to have a mission — with Dave

A strategic presentation for local churches about the ‘four pistons of outreach mobilisation’ – clarifying the strategic place and significance of each ‘piston’ to the greater-accomplishing of our mission within our nation as the Church (united).

The Call to Change Culture — with Dave

A 45 minute strategic presentation made at Engage Conference 2017 in Auckland, NZ, about cultural challenges and opportunities facing Christianity in the West, followed by a summary of 3 broad areas of needed response — one of which will be considerably new to the thinking of most NZ believers.

Te Tiriti o Waitangi – a document to be proud of — with Jay Ruka

An excellent presentation, that imparts an understanding of Te Tiriti o Waitangi (the Treaty of Waitangi), it’s remarkably Christian context, and the implications of this for us today.

Authentic Conversion — with Lynne

A ‘powertalk’ presentation made by Lynne Taylor at Engage Conference 2017 in Auckland, NZ.

The ‘Expelled – No Intelligence Allowed!’ story — with Logan Craft

An inspirational story about the production of a now-acclaimed movie documentary purposed to challenge hypocrisy in academia, and of the journey through some wide-reaching reactions and opposition to it that followed.

Understanding the Change in our Culture — with Dave Mann

2013 Evangelism Conference. Dave speaks about cultural changes in our nation, and how this affects thee way we approach personal outreach, and also the way we equip church members to engage with those they know.

To the Ends of the Earth — with Dr Stuart Lange

A main session strategic presentation made at Engage Conference 2017 in Auckland, NZ with Dr Stuart Lange.

For One Million Children – The Dynamics of a Unity Movement

A highly strategic message on the dynamics of a unity movement – as contrasted with a ‘regular’ local church ministry or ministry with national reach. This message was purposed for an online conference for Christian children’s workers desiring to collaborate – but hits on the strategic keys to unity movements, their dynamics, how organisations naturally drift from their original vision, and therefore how to position a work as a movement owned by and for all, rather than as a ‘ministry’ that becomes owned by one group.

The Power of God in Evangelism — with Matt & Alison Harding

A presentation made at Engage Conference 2017 in Auckland, NZ by Matt & Alison Harding.

Changing the outreaching culture of your local church

A message from the pastors’ morning at Engage 2017 — in which Dave communicated his perspective on how to build an authentic outreaching culture in a local church through a habit-based approach, to see members actually mobilised (as contrasted with an approach that is based around running programmes).

When we all think differently we will all act differently.

The results could be greater than we ever expected!