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Showing posts from March, 2012

Train up a child. You can do it!

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One day this week, as I was heading out the door to the office, my 22-month old son asked me, "Bible book?" "Bible book" is what he calls our Bible Story Book that we read each night, as a family, before bedtime.  He has never asked to read "Bible book" any other time before this.  I think he asked because I had been out late at a meeting the night before, and missed the family devotions time.  Maybe he wanted to make sure I read the Bible, too.

We sat in my chair and went through what has become a nightly routine for our family.  He spells B-I-B-L-E, then says, "Bible!" We all sing the "B-I-B-L-E" song, you know... the one from Sunday School.  Then I point to the Man surrounded by children on the cover, and ask, "Who's this?"  He answers, "Jesus!" I then point to the children all around Him, asking, "And who are these?"  My son answers, "Children!"  We then sing, "Jesus loves the little…

God speaks. Listen.

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Recently, in the midst of a particularly tough week, I found myself in a season of fasting and prayer.  I spent days calling out to... at times crying out to... God; and I spent a lot of time listening to the Holy Spirit speak into my life through His Word, meditation, and the counsel of spiritual leaders.

I went to the fitness center where I work out regularly.  There was no one else there - no one.  So, I began my workout, talking to God at the same time (which I usually do, but especially during this particular difficult season).  On the floor of the weight room, by  my feet, I noticed a slip of paper.  I picked it up. 

God speaks in so many different ways, and what He says to you will always coincide with His Word.  You have access to the voice of God - the Holy Bible.  Listen.

What I would have tweeted (a recap of HGC)

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A few weeks ago, I attended the Network Gathering of Healthy Growing Churches (HGC).  Throughout the week, there were numerous times when I thought, "Oooh, I should tweet that!" only to remind myself that I am fasting social media during Lent.  I did take a lot of notes, though, so here are some things I would have shared in 140 characters or less, from the #HGCgathering:

* The 1st thing that needs to be done is figure out what needs to be done.
* Lead as Jesus would through tough circumstances.
* The responsibility for learning is the student's, not the teacher's (or coach).
* KNOW YOUR COMMUNITY!
* Trust God for the long-term; the things you may never see.
* We take ourselves too seriously and God not seriously enough.
* Not all leaders in churches really want their church to grow.
* Hiring staff is hard because pastors believe God can change anybody.
* The best choices for staff hires come from within.
* And I quote: "God is good, people suck."
* You att…

You'll never believe what I just heard!

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For many months I've been methodically studying, and teaching through, the Sermon On the Mount of Jesus (Matthew 5-7).  Two over-arching take-aways for me have been this: God really cares about our relationships, and He really desires that we embrace His peace.

This is why He has so much to say about how we interact with others.  This week, I'm starting chapter 7, which begins with , "Do not judge others, or you will be judged.  You will be judged by the same measure that you use to judge someone else."  There are two reasons why we're prone to judge:
1) we attempt to feel better about ourselves, to lift ourselves up, by putting someone else down.  Deep down we feel disconnected from a holy God, and being "better than" someone else, anyone else, means I'm not "the worst."
2) we attempt to control others with criticism, condemnation, and sometimes even ignoring them.  The thought is, "They don't do what I think they should, so let …

Why I'm fasting social media

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Lent is the season of fasting and prayer which prepares the follower of Christ for the unique celebration of His Resurrection on Easter Sunday.  As I mentioned in a previous blog article, what one fasts, or "gives up," for Lent, should be something of a sacrifice; something from which pleasure is taken on a regular basis.  For most folks, this is some food item or type of food.  For others, it is a specific "vice." Fasting doesn't take place on Sundays, as Sunday is the "Feast Day" or considered a "Mini-Easter."  Whatever one gives up for Lent, one is to redeem the time spent on that activity with renewed focus on Jesus and His Way.

This year, I prayerfully chose to fast social media.  Which led to a funny conversation in my Sunday morning discipleship group, and this very tweetable line: "So, what is 'social media' anyway?"  FYI, I am specifically fasting Twitter and Facebook... by process of elimination.

-Coffee. For thos…