21May

Ministry is personal

Ministry is personal. By it’s very definition, when we engage in ministry activities, we’re engaging with people. I hope you view it that way. In my previous post, I wrote about how we’re called to relationship, not to function. And based on the reality that this activity is relational, it impacts me personally.

Sometimes personal is encouraging, and sometimes personal is heavy and tough. Sometimes it’s both at the same time. The past several weeks, I’ve been encouraged and heartbroken simultaneously on many occasions in several different scenarios. One thing I haven’t been is unaffected.

Regardless of where you find yourself in your ministry service, it must to be personal. If we ever get to a point where every conversation or interaction can be handled in a clinical way, it’s a red flag. We need to pull back the curtain between our function and task to see the people who are affected. And when we pull back that curtain, we will be impacted by the personal nature of those people who we’re ministering to.

Ministry is personal because the gospel is personal. Jesus didn’t deal with us from afar. He came here and personally got involved. And in His interactions, Jesus didn’t demonstrate a macho man, emotionless reaction all the time. Read More »

21May

We’re called to relationship, not just a role

When we hear the word “calling,” we often associate it with a specific assignment or function that God has given us. While that can certainly be true, it’s secondary to the calling that He’s placed on us universally as a believer in Christ. Consider three places in scripture where the word “calling” is used:

Romans 8:28-39
- All things work for good for those who love I’m and who have been called
- Those He predestined, He also called, justified and glorified
- Who will separate us from Him? Read More »

16May

He must become greater; I must become less

Every day, I’m surrounded by a bunch of really gifted people. Engineers, designers, musicians, leaders, creatives of all types, encouragers, administrators – staff and volunteers, all really good at what they do! These people produce great results, and those results often attract compliments and encouragement (which is good, by the way!). We talk often as a team about our responsibility to point
others to Christ; to put Jesus on display and bring Him honor. But regardless of where you find yourself serving the Lord, I think we often set that as our focus but assume that our good work – our gifts and abilities – are needed and important, and should be recognized as such.

The book of John captures an incredible conversation between John the Baptist and his disciples, talking about Jesus and the start of His ministry. Remember that John the Baptist had seen many people coming out to him to be baptized. I’d say it’s fair to assume that John was identified with the function of baptism (the name kind of stuck). Even Jesus had gone to John and was baptized by him (Mark 1:9-11, Matt 3:13-17, Luke 3:21-22). But John also knew his place in God’s story, so much so that when Jesus showed up to be Read More »

22Apr

Rest

It’s been a busy season. When you’re working in ministry, the Easter weekend and the time that leads up to always is. And as I was coming through the other side of that particular time frame and setting aside a day to be home and rest, I gave some thought to the question: How best to rest? Knowing that I hadn’t seen my family as much in the week prior, and knowing there was a lot I could fill that time with, I was reminding myself about the truth behind what it means to really rest…

How do we view rest?
The concept of rest can be uncomfortable for us sometimes. I think society has linked all kinds of assumptions and thoughts onto it’s real meaning and can get us feeling funny about prioritizing it. It’s a two-sided coin in how we view our need to rest. Read More »

19Mar

My lesson on patience

Psalm 130:5: I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits, and in his word I put my hope

 

You’ll have to forgive the public post here, in which I’m fleshing out a lesson really aimed at myself. Hopefully it’s helpful for you as well, but this is a lesson God taught me this week…

By nature, I am not a patient person. Thankfully, it’s an area of my life where God has been working on me and forming me more and more into how He wants me to be. But it’s definitely an area that I wrestle with. I’m wired to move quick and keep moving; to press hard for results and assume that if I insist on getting them, that I’ll get it done. When that doesn’t happen, I can get easily frustrated. It’s ugly when I’m not surrendering that to God.

Read More »

7Mar

“ True love is not simply an emotional response. It manifests itself in acts of kindness, generosity and those actions that produce the greatest benefit to the object loved. ”

- William Wilberforce -
5Mar

Are You A Good Host In God’s Family?

Do you know the feeling when you go to someone’s house for the first time? Maybe you are just getting to know them or even have yet to meet them in person. You walk up to the house, hoping you’re at the right door and that this isn’t one of those places that never uses their front door. You ring the doorbell and hope they hear it. Then the door opens, and you come inside and stand awkwardly in their front entranceway, not knowing where to put your shoes or coat. It’s as if your feet are clued to the floor waiting for instruction from the host.

Then, even if they’ve made you feel welcome and directed you on where to put your stuff, you keep to where the host directs you. Usually that’s the kitchen, dining room, and living space. Even going to the bathroom becomes a question. You look around, and ask crazy questions like “Do you have a bathroom I could use?” As if the alternative would be “…or would it be Read More »

18Feb

Dream Big & Pray Bigger

Today, I’m reminded that God is bigger than I am, more passionate about His Kingdom than I will ever be, and able to do far more than I could even dream of asking Him to do. But I’m also reminded that He wants to involve us and wants us to dream big.

Ephesians 3:20 says “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.”

In diving deeper into this verse, I found the following commentary:

We can ask every good of which we have heard, every good which God has promised in his word; and we can think of, or imagine, goods and blessings beyond all that we have either read of or seen: we can imagine good things to which it is Read More »

17Feb

“ You cannot be an effective leader and be pessimistic. People who are cynical and gloomy debilitate everyone they speak to. ”

- John MacArthur -
6Feb

Unconditional Worship

This week I’ve been spending time reading in the book of Job.It’s an account filled with incredible insight into who God is and how we need to posture ourselves toward Him. In case you’re not familiar with Job’s account, here’s a quick summary:

(The links throughout will take you to scripture associated with corresponding statements)

1. Job was a wealthy guy who was respected and revered by everyone in his community. He loved God and was obedient to Him.
2. Satan argues that Job’s love for God was conditional on how God had protected and blessed Job.
3. God allows Satan to test that, and in one day Job loses all of his possessions and all of his children die.

If we pause the story right here, we see an incredible reaction that we can learn from. Job is told all at once that he has lost everything; everything he has worked for AND every one of his children are gone. And in that moment, Job falls to the ground in worship.  Read More »

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