Relationships: Why They Are The Most Neglected But Important Resource In The Church

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Most of the time when someone feels disconnected, disappointed or discouraged in the church those emotions can be traced back to a lack of relationship with others in the church. Relationships help us to bend and work together when times seem tough but they also strengthen the church body in such a way that when working together they provide shelter for others in the storms of their lives.

Guilt vs. Shame and why every Christian should know the difference

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And now, little children, abide in him, so that when He appears we may have confidence and not shrink from Him in shame at His coming. – 1 John 2:28 ESV The most destructive aspect of sin is not simply the act of sin itself but often the shame that accompanies it. Shame entices us to believe that we have not just failed but are in fact failures. It calls to us to accept we are loved but not fully loved and that even in the smallest of ways we must fix ourselves in order to be made whole. Our sin does not hide God from us but causes us to hide from God and cover ourselves when He calls our name out …

Doubts Series | Will The Church Ever Change?

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Will the church ever change is a question I find at the root of many Christians struggling to find hope and meaning in a church that often appears void of either. Doubts Series Today, I’m launching a new series that explores these doubts, along with others, that many people have with the church and Christianity in general. This will not be a church bashing series, so don’t get worried but we will explore some topics that may stir up deep held emotions. This is ok. It’s part of the healing process that not only rebuilds our hope but also brings along the creativity and persistence that change is built from. The Church Paradox My goal is to hopefully bring a …

What You Do Matters

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What you do matters. Taking the time to appreciate and reflect on the work of your hands is something I think we, all too often, forget to do. Whenever I finish a new project and all the dust has settled, I have this habit of staring at my finished work while saying nothing at all. My wife pokes fun at me about it because of how often she finds me doing it. It’s almost like a ritual for me. Bringing Ideas Into The Light A project is not fully finished until I take the time to stand in silence, looking it over and taking in what I have just completed. I find myself going through all the steps I took …

Out Of The Dark: Finding Hope In the Silence

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As I sit here this morning I can’t get around the erroneous feeling that I have absolutely nothing to say. I have found myself in this situation from time-to-time. Most writers refer to this as the dreaded “writer’s block”. I suppose over time I’ve come to appreciate the process writer’s block brings. It forces me to dig deeper inside myself to find answers and at other times to just relinquish myself to being silent. It forces me to search harder for God in the silence by not cluttering my search with words. Being Still Is Ok It reminds me it’s ok to be still and wait. Everything around us moves so fast and we live in a culture where we …

Real Talk: Does Going To Church Service Really Matter?

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So, does going to church service really matter? In a roundabout way, I see this topic come up quite often. I’ve even asked myself the same question a few times. But, I always come back to a few key points that help “clear the water” on this topic. I’d like to share those with you today. 1. Church Service Is About Much More Than “Service-ey Stuff” The first few things that come to mind when most people think of “church service” are getting out of bed early on Sunday mornings, worship music, preaching, offering and then lunch. Generally in that order. While these are all things that happen during a Sunday service they are not really what’s important. Before you …

Everything Changes

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Being a pastor’s kid as a child I became very accustomed to moving around and in turn that meant becoming accustomed to change; because everything changes, especially when you’re a pastor’s kid. Change meant new schools, new friends, new church, and a new house with a new bedroom. Most of the time the new house was really just an old run-down parsonage that the local church body thought was God’s gift to the pastor and his family. Save Us From The Parsonage I saw them more as a mediocre, human-sized dog houses conveniently located close enough to the church building that the local church trouble-makers could show up at all hours and spew their stale coffee scented venom whenever they …

How To Be A Christian Returning To The Church

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“We can never work with a lie but we can always work with the truth” That’s something my Dad used to tell me when I was younger. This old sage wisdom generally surfaced from its heart dwelling cavern any time the temptation to lie to myself, or others, would come up. Like any kid that age, the temptation to dust over the truth of a situation, especially when I was in the wrong, was a periodic thorn that presented itself as a means to avoid potential hurt. It offered the chance of postponing consequences with the hope that those consequences never appeared in the first place. Something so small as a lie could, at the moment, offer so much freedom. …

So, You Feel Like You’ve Failed God? Let’s Talk.

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So, you feel like you’ve failed God? Now, what do you do? I can’t tell you how many times this topic has come up, in some form, in conversations I’ve had. Those exact words are not always used but the idea behind them; the idea that this person has failed God… This idea is there buried under mounds of either regret, confusion and sometimes even pain. There is a frustration present that pulls and tears at their heart causing them to believe that in some form God is disappointed and angry with them and they must do better to earn His favor. This mindset often forgets the verse in Romans, “But God proves His own love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us!” Failing God By Failing Others …