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Showing posts from September, 2013

GREAT STORY TELLERS

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People who are looking for a church that will minister to their kids are not necessarily looking for professional staff people, multimedia and exotic play centers. Those things are nice, but kids already have McDonald’s, Wonderland, Cineplex and bright, colorful, shallow moral stories. Why compete with what they already have?

Instead, where are the great storytellers? Where are the original people who can tell a great story about God in their life? Where are the teachers who get to know their students outside the classroom? Where are the teachers who pray for the students and track their lives?

It’s often easier to follow a lesson plan and put on a teacher hat for 40 minutes than to have a meaningful relationship with students. Psychiatrist Gordon Livingston has this to say about what older people have to offer the younger.
Attempts I have read to obtain oral histories from elderly people facing the silence of the grave make interesting reading as long as people stick to the stories of t…

NEXT TO JESUS

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Luke 9:46 An argument started among the disciples as to which of them would be the greatest. 47 Jesus, knowing their thoughts, took a little child and had him stand beside him. 48 Then he said to them, “Whoever welcomes this little child in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. For it is the one who is least among you all who is the greatest.”

BECOMING A GREAT SMALL CHURCH

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It would be great if every service was packed out, but it might not mean we are a great church. With a national average of weekly attendance at 75 or less people, many may not achieve greatness in the numbers game. But every church can be a great small church!


We just need to know what true greatness is.

Luke 9:46 An argument started among the disciples as to which of them would be the greatest. 47 Jesus, knowing their thoughts, took a little child and had him stand beside him. 48 Then he said to them, “Whoever welcomes this little child in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. For it is the one who is least among you all who is the greatest.”

Imagine Jesus at a pastors conference where they were arguing about who has the greatest ministry. One says they are running five weekend services and have fifty staff members. Another says they have a $20 million building paid off and are giving $2 million a year to missions.
Jesus goes over to the pastor shrin…

DISORGANIZED RELIGION

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There was a time when denominations and religions were carefully defined and kept at a distance from others. A defense of the faith had more to do with proving that your differences were superior and correct and little to do with uniting the body of Christ across borders.

Those who do not embrace organized religion but consider themselves to be spiritual are growing in number. However, they may in fact be embracing disorganized religion. Somewhere in the mix, we need definition and containment. You cannot be haphazard about truth.
‘I am not religious, but I am spiritual’ is often a reactionary statement to the excesses and failures of church in general. 

It may be that we have spent too much time studying our dysfunction instead of praying and living out the change that God calls for. It’s true that fewer Canadians attend church every week, but that is only part of the reality.
In his 2012 Project Canada Survey, Reginald Bibby made the following statements:
 No less than 2 in 3 people a…

DOORMATS AND DOORKEEPERS

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Psalms 84:1010 Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere;I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked. NIV




There are wicked places and systems in this world that turn people into doormats, something to be trampled underfoot and muddied.There are places of business, social circles, neighbourhoods, lifestyles and even churches that are extremely appealing but in the end leave you lying on the ground.


These are the ‘tents of the wicked’ that everyone raves about.Places and systems that promise to fill your every desire, but drop you and trample you underfoot when your purpose has been used up.
In the Psalm, the doorkeeper was not our modern idea of a butler or doorman.The doorkeeper was not the security guard or the bouncer.
Rather, the Psalmist was talking about one who sat longingly on the threshold of the house looking in and desiring to be part of things.In the sense that the Psalm describes, Lazarus is a model of one who sa…