Bible studies and discussion groups have their place, but in the context of the worship service, the authoritative Word of God (yes, from a pulpit) cannot be replaced by a discussion, however insightful. I would like a discussion on this topic. Maybe there is something I have overlooked.
Although there is still much that North American churches can contribute to the world in terms of ministry among unreached peoples, leadership training, and the application of Christian worldview, there is also much that we can learn and receive from our brothers and sisters in the Majority World (Asia, Africa, and Latin America).
I mentioned in my first synod blog the anxiety I felt driving to synod and then how it seemed to dissipate with meeting and greeting old friends and colleagues. I felt like the sparrow protected by God's almighty hand. So I'll refer to these synod blogs as the "view from the sparrow's nest".
The supportive material for Overture 7 provides a superb summary of the reasons why four leaders of the CRCNA should not have committed the denomination to the AGW activist political movement. I suggest that delegates consider the following six points.
Synod for me is like a lot of training events. In one respect, synod is a friendly environment to discuss a subject matter that is dear to my heart and therefore easy to talk about. On the other hand, delegates, like conference attendees, often ask pointed questions and challenge the speaker's knowledge or the opinions of others. It is this second respect which draws out the anxiety in me and probably in a few other speakers.
Ministry is one of the most demanding professions in the North American environment. It is a profoundly satisfying task because pastors daily have opportunities to impact others for all eternity. Yet, in spite of its eternal implications, it is a wrenching and draining profession as well.
Here's a brief email exchange about some technical issues on membership transfers between congregations and different denominations. I thought this might be helpful for elders, deacons, pastors, members because I think we deal with this at least ten times a year for people either transferring in or out. I think the two notes below are self-explanatory...
During advisory committee sessions at Synod 2010, delegates will have times of reflection and dialogue based on Bill Hull's The Disciplemaking Pastor. I read it years ago, and now reflecting on going back to a disciplemaking mode in my life and ministry again.