There is no question whether the apostle Paul had the gifts to be a powerful and effective evangelist, but the skills of an evangelist are different from those of a church leader.
I was away from my church for two weeks. It’s called vacation. I am fortunate to have enjoyed some of God’s beautiful creation. I spent some good time with my family. What I realized I missed, however, was my church...
Readers of the Network,
Heath King, former Yale Professor and author wrote according to Newsmax, "He (Williams) fit the profile of an entertainer trying to manage-and mask-mental illness with laughter." I do not think so. Robin Williams was first a comedian who happened to be suffering...
I am intrigued by the repetitive act in the Old Testament where God’s people would erect stone monuments. They served as a visual way of reminding themselves (and sometimes future generations) about God’s acts of faithfulness.
Many voices, messages, and perspectives come into play in evaluating pastors and/or church staff. And there may well be no “right” answers. But there are helpful practices born of thoughtful deliberation. This training tool is intended to help church leaders have a fruitful conversation about evaluation in their local setting—and to strengthen the local church by blessing its staff with timely, effective feedback.
This is the last week of our summer break. Accordingly, I want to reflect a bit on our experience. As I take a moment to think about it, I’ve been reminded of at least three things over the last month.
Preaching should mostly be about saying something nice, but not at the cost of saying nothing at all in case the soundness of the faith is threatened.
This book presents an alternative model for churches, from its leadership structure to its mobilization of the laity, that hopes to recreate the church Jesus and the apostles cultivated: a church not chasing the wind but rather going into the world and making disciples of Jesus.
The question has been raised by many in the church as to why there needs to be genuine unity and connectedness among believers.
When sermonating or reading at my office, I get interrupted. So, yesterday I did something different. I went to the library to get some work done. I got more done in two hours than I had in the week. But it felt weird. I hadn’t been interrupted...
Mondays are the days in which I rest, relax, enjoy a cup of coffee in the morning and pretty much try as hard as I can to do nothing. Unless absolutely important, I try to do no church work on a Monday.
I hear more stuff that makes me wonder sometimes – “Are we running a business, or some organization…. or are we a church?
“In a typical congregation of 200 adults, 50 will experience depression at some point, and at least 30 are currently taking antidepressants.” (Dan Blazer, Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Duke University, in Christianity Today, March 2009). What could that mean for your church's preaching, programming, pastoral care, and congregational care?
I want to remind you of a trusted faith formation resource provider: Faith Alive Christian Resources. The Faith Alive 2014-2015 catalog is full of Sunday school curriculum, Bible studies, and other resources to help people of all ages to grow in faith.
As summer approaches, I've been reflecting on a subtle language shift around summer plans. Can we recover a glimpse of creational goodness by altering our language from summer vacations toward summer "holy-days"?
This book presents a incredibly comprehensive vision for how pastors and ministry leaders can adapt to a post-Christian culture without abandoning orthodox theology. It offers challenging insights and provocative questions based on Keller's more than 20 years of ministry in an urban context.
Most weeks, I receive a note or two regarding the Sunday service. They are usually encouraging. Father God knows I need them. Most Monday’s, I suffer a little bit from what I call my “Elijah moment”. I feel like I’m the only one left in Horeb (Read 1 Kings 19:10). Your notes pick me up,...
A while back I was at a classis leadership event and noticed that most of the presenters were not “home grown”. It got me wondering whether something ought to be done about it.
I realized this was a challenge for churches when I saw the large role expectations played in the relationship between pastors and churches, particularly when stated expectations were not met, but even more so when unstated expectations were not.
In life and in ministry, I need to be reminded that what I have related to as “initial success” is different than “impact.”
This survey focused on United Methodist clergy, but I would guess that it's conclusions are broadly applicable to clergy from many denominations. "Answering God's call shouldn't be bad for your health. But for about half of all ordained United Methodist clergy, it is."
I have been given a Sabbatical by my Council and congregation and as part of it I am enrolled in a three credit course through Tyndale Seminary in Toronto on the "Spirituality of Henri Nouwen. The course is taught by Dr. Wil Hernandez who has written a three volume analysis of Nouwen's "...
If there’s one disadvantage to knowing Bible stories, it’s that they don’t always surprise us anymore. Take the story of Jesus’ transfiguration. That Jesus’ clothes become dazzling white and that Moses and Elijah show up...
So, when and how and why should we laugh with God? How do you laugh with God?
I grew up in a decidedly non-liturgical tradition in the Christian Reformed Church. One year after I graduated from seminary, I still had very little sense for the Christian Year. During my first year of ministry, an issue of Reformed Worship magazine arrived in the mail. This particular issue covered the Season of Epiphany, and so I asked my wife if she had ever heard of that word...