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where god does his best work

In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth and everything in them he didn’t do it alone. He did it in the context of perfect relationship with Jesus the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Check it out for yourself and you’ll find language like this, “Let us make man in our image.” When God established the nation of Israel you’ll find God saying, “I will be their God, and dwell among them.” In the first chapter of the Gospel of John you find this phrase, “The Word became flesh, and dwelt among us.”

Look through out the Scriptures and you’ll find that God has always done His best work in the context of relationship. And since we’ve been made in His image, like Him, we’re also at our best when we’re living in the context of relational intimacy. We were made for it. We chase after it. But why does it seem that so few people ever actually experience it? Genesis 3:8-10 may speak into this a bit. Adam and Eve have just sinned for the first time ever in the history of man kind, and this is what happens next:

“Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden. But the LORD God called to the man, “Where are you?” He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.” Genesis 3:8-10

Think about it for a moment. Before this moment man had never been afraid of God before, man had never run from God before, and man had never hid from God before. But ever since this moment we’ve been running from God, and from one another. It creates this awful internal conflict inside of us, because the very thing we long for is the very thing we run from.

So, a simple idea, and a simple question…if God does His best work in the context of relationship, are you missing out on God’s best work in you?

Here’s a short video that may get you thinking a little more about it…


Posted in Spiritual Formation

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a biblical commitment demands cultural relevance

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Much has been said and written in recent years, offering up all kinds of criticism of modern day Churches for trading off adherence to the Gospel of Jesus Christ for contemporary methods of communicating it. Interestingly enough the overwhelming majority of this criticism comes by way of other Churches. Typically it comes from Churches that are not growing criticizing Churches that are growing. After all, if a Church is growing, they’ve got to be doing something wrong don’t they?

I have a tendency to go the other way on this one. In fact, I’d go so far as to say if a Church isn’t working hard to be culturally relevant, it isn’t working hard to remain true to the Scriptures! You can’t be radically committed to the Scriptures without being radically committed to communicating the Scriptures in a culturally relevant manner.

It’s an easy statement to make because God has always communicated his message to people in a culturally relevant manner. Language, the time, place, ethnicity, gender, community, governance, and more has always been taken into consideration as the message of God was communicated to a particular audience. The Apostle Paul, a master missionary, knew this about the heart of God and understood that the Gospel must be contextualized to each specific culture. Check out this 4 step model…

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Posted in Leadership

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When is it right to leave a church?

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I’ve seen people come and go from churches for all kinds of reason. Most of the time when people leave a church it has more to do with personal preference than it does with a clear biblical directive or “God’s will.” Yet it’s funny how people can sprinkle a little “Jesus dust” on their circumstances or preferences, pull single verse out of context, or poorly apply the Scriptures and turn things that are nonessential into “God’s will.” As if God really has a favorite style of music, teaching style, cares about the times of the services, the color of the carpet, or what the preacher is wearing (as long as it’s not a Speedo). If it’s not a personal preference that’s driving the exodus then it’s usually driven by relationship. Some close friends move away, leave the church, or perhaps their favorite Staff Member moves on and is no longer at the church.

While people leave churches for all kinds of reasons, I believe there are two great reasons to leave a church, but neither should be arrived at lightly.

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Posted in Leadership, Spiritual Formation

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8 Core competencies of Family Ministries

What does a comprehensive and holistic approach to developing students from birth through late adolescence and the families that influence these students mean to the infrastructure and ministry of the Next Generation Team?

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Posted in Family, Leadership, Spiritual Formation

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8 Questions to ask yourself about family ministry

Getting to the right answers means first starting with the right questions. In fact some of the best questions are both diagnostic and visional at the same time. Below are eight questions about Family Ministry that should help you in evaluating your Church or ministry environment and determine if it’s right for you to chase after a Family Ministry approach.

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Posted in Family, Leadership, Spiritual Formation