Saturday Links

Links for your weekend reading:

Walking with a Limp

Were I left to my devices, choosing the "easier path," I would have little need for God. As it is, my weakness is actually the open door through which the grace and power of God enters.

Not That Bright

You don’t have to bear the burdens of the planet, just bear witness to the one who can.

Thoughts on Note-Taking During Sermons

I want them to see preaching in the worship service not as a lecture or as primarily an educational transmission to their minds, but as prophetic proclamation and as primarily aimed at their hearts.

Sing Your Heart Out

Here are five encouragements to enjoy this privilege and its benefits in the life of the body of Christ.

5 Trends to Watch in the Missional Community Conversation

These are the 5 trends to watch in your local church and in the broader missional church conversation.

  1. Re-Valuing of Sunday as Missional
  2. Customizing Missional for Each Church
  3. Patient Discipleship
  4. Dependence on Prayer
  5. Empowerment of women and youth

Religion Isn’t Dying. It May Be Rising from the Grave.

Religion in Canada isn’t declining nearly as fast as we think. A remarkable new survey finds out what Canadians really believe.

Nine Every Morning

I write when I’m inspired, and I see to it that I’m inspired at nine o’clock every morning.

Saturday Links

Links for your weekend reading:

Parents, Let’s Be Honest and Stop Acting like We Know What We’re Doing

I’m a sinful parent trying to teach his sinful kids about a great Savior. My parenting most definitely will not save my kids.

3 Bad Reasons to Leave Your Church

Stop treating your local church like your high school girlfriend, and start treating it like the bride of Christ.

Community Isn't A Bed of Roses

When you live in community with others it is dirty and intimate and confronting and sharp and challenging. It also provides amazing opportunities for growth and companionship.

Church Growth - From Evidence to Action

The findings of the Church Growth Research Program didn’t reveal a “single recipe” for growth but the researchers found that there are a number of common factors which appear to be associated with growing churches of any size, place or context.

10 Reasons to Consider Church Revitalization — Even Over Church Planting

There are so many churches who are ready to grow again with the right pastoral leadership. And, I encourage some of our young, eager, pastors — even some who may be considering church planting — to consider allowing God to use you in revitalizing an established church.

Seven Distinguishing Habits of Highly Effective Pastors

  1. They have genuine enthusiasm.
  2. They are great listeners.
  3. Their identity is not their vocation.
  4. They are intentional about personal witnessing.
  5. They have unconditional love of their critics.
  6. They have a gentle spirit.
  7. They persevere.

How to Design an Agenda for an Effective Meeting

Here are some tips for designing an effective agenda for your next meeting, with a sample agenda and template below.

Come and Die

Come and die (and live!).

Saturday Links

Links for your weekend reading:

God Doesn’t Want Matt Chandler to Be Your Pastor

God doesn’t want Matt Chandler to be your pastor (unless you happen to be in his church). God has placed your pastor in your church to care specifically for you.

9 Marks of an Unhealthy Church

Here are nine marks that your church–even one that believes the Bible, preaches the gospel, and embraces good ecclesiology–may be unhealthy.

How to Be Happy When Someone Leaves Your Church

When another church prospers, I rejoice in God’s grace to them.

5 Things People Blame The Church For ... But Shouldn’t

Here’s the challenge: Be part of the solution. And the solution is not to walk away or be endlessly critical.

12 Ways to Overcome Fear and Confront like a Master

Excellence requires confrontation.

MLK on Creative Street Sweepers

Anything you do with emotional investment and creativity is a type of art, and all work is to be done in an artful — rather than merely utilitarian — way.

Saturday Links

Links for your weekend reading:

3 Ways to Be a Friend of Sinners

Given the priority of scripture, and specifically the life of Jesus, I would prefer to come down on the side of being a friend of sinners. How do we do that, though, in a way that is faithful to his word, and honors God all the while?

Seven Ways We Can Guard and Repair Relationships

  1. Let’s rejoice in one another, because the Lord rejoices in us.
  2. Let’s create an environment of trust rather than negative scrutiny.
  3. Let’s judge ourselves, even as we give each other the benefit of the doubt...

Parenting Means Wrestling Demons

There is a war on children, and we are all, in one way or another, playing some role in it.

3 Well-meaning (but Unhelpful) Approaches During Grief

Through the years as a pastor, and now as a husband more intimately involved, I have seen at least three well-meaning but unhelpful approaches to a grieving person.

Preaching: 3 Questions for Managing the Heart

What we, and our churches, need most is for us to be engaging our hearts as we prepare to preach, after we preach and as we work through our own emotions in the days following.

How the Local Movement is Revitalizing Church

Thousands of Christians are reclaiming the ancient idea of the “parish” and weaving together a shared life in the place they call home.

Are You Ready to Minister in the Cities?

Consider cities. They are the next last frontier of Christian missions.

Saturday Links

Links for your weekend reading:

Why We Need to Practice Confession

Here are four arguments for the practice of regular, public confession.

A Pattern Among Fallen Pastors – Lessons for Us All

During my time in seminary I took a leadership course taught by the late-great Dr. Howard Hendricks. As we studied the life of David, Prof shared a study he conducted with a group of men in full-time ministry who had fallen into a morally disqualifying sin.

7 Things NOT to Say to a Depressed Christian

You’re not given a podium to preach to the depressed; you’re given arms to hold them.

What’s Their Problem? Sharing Our Pews with Sexual Abuse Victims and Survivors

The first step in creating a healthy atmosphere for victims/survivors and recovering offenders is to focus our empathy on the victims/survivors.

Till Death Do We Part – Keeping the Vow Till the End

As he grieved and planned for her funeral, he wanted to honor his wife one last time and fulfill his vow “until death do we part.”