With people coming from different Christian traditions, or no Christian background at all, we believe it's important to explain why we do what we do on the Lord's Day.
Sometimes we don't went to do what we are created for. And in that moment we make a common mistake. We think since our heart isn't in it we shouldn't do it.
Two things smaller churches can do is opt out of a couple of things they often end up doing that they shouldn't.
Smaller churches are no less hindered from doing what God has called his people to do than are larger churches. Having more people does not maker it easier.
As I have seen several churches in my area continue to dwindle in size I have watched the leadership of many of these churches settle into into one of three dangerous mentalities . . .
My wife and I once attended a small church that had no worship leader. No choir. No instruments. No overhead projection. No cool lights. The building was plain-Jane. Yet their gathering was powerful. Why?
Today is my first day back from two weeks of vacation. The time off was great, and because the vacation was a real success I'm eager to get back to the regular life God has called me to. This is the real end (goal) of all our recreation: to fit us to do what God has called us to. Richard Baxter says it well:
No doubt but…
Pastors sometimes say stupid things. Sometimes those stupid things are catchy and wind up being repeated by many other pastors. One of the more preposterous pithy statements I have heard many preachers say is, “Sheep are dumb.”
Lean into the means of grace that you may lean on Jesus himself.
Sunday is a glorious day and marks not only our calendars but also our lives. Yet, Sunday is not enough.
I am fairly tech-savvy, but I'll be honest. I'm not a fan of texting. I do it, of course. It's become a common means to communicate for certain things, so I'm on it. But I don't have to like it. However, texting began to look different to me as my good friend, Matthew Molesky, started sending me what I call "sabbath texts."
Matthew is the Sr. Pastor of…
In my assessment for church planting with the SBC back in 2000 I was told by one of the assessors that I had an anger problem. I argued that I did not. A lot. Half way through the conversation let's just say my anger decided to join the conversation. I spent many years being angry—from my youth to well into adulthood. Before my conversion it could be violent. After my…
I spent many years being angry—from my youth to well into adulthood. By the grace of God I have found freedom from its grip on me, but it took years of growing in grace.
What's the one thing the local church needs to get right in the 21st century?
To lead and serve God's people demands that we feed them the truths of God's word; that is applied theology!
In our vocation and recreation, in days of peace and days of persecution, in the valley of the shadow of death and in the pastures of comfort, we are created and called to glorify and enjoy God.
How can smaller churches conduct successful ministry training?
5 years ago I was assessed by a group of pastors for the Acts 29 Network. We had just launched Redeemer Fellowship and wanted to partner with like-minded brothers and churches who share our core theological convictions and approach to ministry. When I received the completed assessment a week later, welcoming us into the network, the brothers were careful to include thoughts on my strengths and weaknesses.
There are many ways in which we should be loving one another in the church, and most of these practical steps might seem like no-brainers, but it's always a spiritually healthy and Christ-honoring exercise to work through how we might flesh out 1 John 3:18: "Let us love not in word or talk but in deed and in truth."
Evangelism is not only winning someone to Jesus by the grace of God in the preaching of the gospel. It is also winning them to the church by that same grace and gospel.
The deep and regular confession of sin is one of the paths we walk to experience close communion with Jesus Christ. Its absence is certain to lead to a weakening faith, and a lack humility, joy, and zeal. Yet I have found some Christians who are uncomfortable with a push toward the ongoing confession of one's sins as if it's guilt-driven religion. But, the confession of our sins is not…
We need tools to help us, but we need the Holy Spirit to illumine, convict, and empower.
We need more partnerships between churches, and we need more churches. Working together to plant churches is a biblical way to fulfill the cooperative commission to make disciples.