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Showing posts from March, 2014

10 Things I Think About World Vision

If you don't know what all the stir is about, that's fine. You don't really need to; your eternal destiny doesn't depend on it. If you must know, google "World Vision". Essentially it's this: World Vision announced they would no longer oppose employing people who were in gay marriages. Then they changed their mind. In the midst of that, a lot of people got really mad. I wasn't going to post anything about my thoughts on this, but I decided to... not because I think it is so important that I say something about this issue, but because I really want to say something about the more important issue which is: How we talk to each other. How we talk about each other. How we listen to each other. When I first read of World Vision's decision, I knew instantly what would happen. It was predictable. A huge amount of people who were loud and visible took the easy route. They responded in ways which lacked the grace and nuance necessary to appr

4 Ways to Serve Like Jesus Did

Jesus was the greatest servant of all time. His life defined service. From yesterday's sermon, here are four ways we can serve like Jesus did: Wear your Jesus Goggles Jesus was always aware of what was happening around Him. He viewed interruptions and inconveniences as God's interventions. Where others saw problems, He saw opportunities. Ask yourself, "What is God doing around me?" Consider  who God has brought into your life?  What situations has God allowed you to deal with right now? How can these become opportunities to serve others? Choose to see the best in people It's easy to see faults, or to view people as needy - hangers on - takers.  Instead, ask yourself "what can I give to help that person become all that Christ made them to be?" Choose compassion over judgment You will never have maximum impact if your first instinct is to find fault. When others don't behave as we would prefer,  It is easy to be annoyed or feel angry with

You Are Representing Someone or Something With Your Life. What or Who Is It?

I don't like Madagascar. Even before the animated movie came out, I didn't like Madagascar. I disliked Madagascar when most people didn't even know there was a Madagascar. Some people are surprised by this. They wonder why I have such strong feelings about a place I've never been. There are really two reasons. Typically, I'm anti-island. I don't think islands should get to be their own country. I think islands should be owned by other countries. Hawaii understands this. They are part of the United States. The Falkland Islands understand, they are a part of Argentina. Some islands are really big, and qualify as continents. If you are big enough to hold more than one country, I don't really have an issue with you. Australia is really pushing it. (Right now, some people are getting really mad. They might be frothing at the mouth and drooling on these pages. "Hey, moron!" They're shouting at me, "Haven't you ever heard of Japan?"

Why I Called an Audible This Sunday

This Sunday I called an audible. I set my sermon notes aside and talked about one of my favorite passages, 1 Peter 2:11-12 (AMSA, lemurs, you know the drill...). I am always happy to talk about these verses, because I think they are a great summary of what it means to be an ambassador of Christ... But, it wasn't the sermon I was supposed to preach. The schedule called for me to open up our new "The Truth About the Son of God Series. Here's why I changed the plan: 1) We had low numbers. A majority of the churches in Dayton were closed yesterday (I'm still not sure I understand this whole "snow emergency" thing... I don't think there was one yesterday and still churches were closing down). Our team felt it was fine to go on, and the churches in our near vicinity all stayed open so we went ahead... But many didn't come because of the weather (and that's okay. No one should have to deal with weather-induced anxiety while driving to church). 2

No One Can Lead a Church on Their Own. Team Leadership Is the Biblical Pattern.

God functions as a TEAM  John 16:13 But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he h ears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. 14 He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you. 15 All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it know to you. As believers, we do not function ALONE  John 17:20-26 “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one: I in them and you in me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me. “Father, I want those you

Ten Creative Approaches to Breathe Life Into Your Daily Bible Study

A while back, I came across an article about studying the Bible. I borrowed 10 of my favorite thoughts and pasted them below. If you want to get better at studying God's Word, here is a starting point! You can read the whole article here . 1. Survey the Word Whether it be the whole of Scripture, an entire book in the Bible, or a given passage, capturing the big picture makes a deeper engagement of the Word more accessible and productive. 2. Discuss the Word Discussions about meaning, interpretations, doctrinal substance, and sheer trivia can be a productive means of engaging the Word and driving it more deeply into our hearts. 3. Hand-copy the Word Hand-copying the Word slows the brain down and synchronizes the mind with the meaning of a passage. Bible on one side. Journal on the other. Copying the word is a tremendous way to nourish the spirit and align the mind with the thoughts of God. Take. Eat. Enjoy! 4. Cross-reference the Word Cross-referencing one passage with