What if the way to reach the nations is not through the extraordinary. What if in our Father’s Kingdom economy the primary way to accomplish the extraordinary is through the ordinary?
So read the books, go to the conferences and learn from other planters. Then spend enough time with Jesus to know what he wants you to do. And then do it.
In an effort to give people something “attractive” and “relevant” we embraced novel new methods in youth ministry, that 20 years later are having a powerful shaping effect on the entire church. Here are the marks of being market-driven; Which are hallmarks of your ministry?
Twelve months ago, Church Planter Marcus Toussaint moved from the heart of the Bible Belt in Dallas to the mountains of Northern Arizona to help start Flagstaff Community Church with a few friends … Recently, he blogged 20 lessons he’s learned about planting in what he calls a ‘postmodern, post-everything frontier,” including “All that stuff about ‘calling’ is true” and “A church plant is a lame idol.”
I don’t think that you should prepare your sermon with a “home run” in mind. Make sure you understand the text, make sure that you have done the hard work of prayerfully meditating on how the text applies to the lives of your congregation, make sure you have labored to organize your message in a helpful way, make sure you have chosen compelling ways to communicate the message, beg the Holy Spirit to attend the preaching of the Word… and then let it rip. The results are up to God.
I quickly learned that two of the demands of organizational leadership were (1) the ability to create systems and lead through systems and (2) the creation of systems that developed other leaders. If a leader cannot create and develop other leaders he will quickly find himself overwhelmed, burned out, severely limited, one-dimensional, and with a painfully stunted organization.
Just as parents need to be more conversant with their children regarding human sexuality, it is past time that Pastors learn how to normalize the conversation with their congregation regarding faith and finance. After all it is a critical aspect of discipleship, the prevailing idol of western civilization, and strategic in fueling Kingdom impact and expansion.
More than 1,000 books are printed every day in the world, and several thousand new religious titles come out each year. So how can you recognize jewels from junk when you’re looking for a book?
The tips are organized into different sections:
- How to create a successful mindset.
- How to develop your craft of writing.
- How to establish good writing habits.
- How to approach professional development.
- How to become a better writer.
- How to become more creative.
I recently picked up a copy of Premarital Sex in America by Mark Regnerus and Jeremy Uecker and was pleasantly surprised at some of the insights. While I have been writing, teaching, and speaking for years to both teens and adults on the issue of premarital sex, this book opened my eyes to some of the more important trends emerging today.
Julian: Does the disclosure that same sex attraction is one of your personal battles mean you are defining yourself as a homosexual?
Vaughan: No, it doesn’t. It’s important to reiterate that I have acknowledged a struggle in all eight of the areas the book covers and not just in one. The brokenness of the fallen world afflicts us all in various ways. We will be conscious of different battles to varying degrees at different moments of a day and in different seasons of our lives. No one battle, of the many we face, however strongly, defines us, but our identity as Christians flows rather from our relationship with Christ.
As I’ve grown in my relationship with God and trusted more in Christ’s finished work on the cross, I’ve learned not to define myself by sins or temptations. My identity is not bound to my sexuality, but to my Savior (Galatians 2:20). That’s why I don’t call myself a gay Christian; I’m a Christian who struggles with same-sex attraction.
David Livingstone was right: “The best remedy for a sick church is to put it on a missionary diet.” Such a diet, the Scriptures teach us, will always have a healthy portion of prayer.