In other words, unless you believe in demons, you will begin to demonize whatever political apparatus you find yourself opposing. You will treat your political and cultural opponents not as compatriots with wrong opinions, but as the ultimate enemy of the human race, and imagine that you are involved in a life or death struggle against them. And that, in turn, justifies whatever you think you need to say about them or do to them in order to stop them.
Far too many of us (including church leaders) seem to be almost obsessed with listening to the negative, fear-based, anxiety rooted messages that are within us. We listen to ourselves and we hear hopelessness, futility, and reasons to give up. We just don’t have enough of this or that. Of course, we then talk to our spouses, fellow church leaders, colleagues, etc. and our anxiety spreads like a highly contagious disease.
Old men. We need you. And we need you to live your life in such a way that evokes admiration and respect. You don’t have to be a great orator. You don’t have to write books on theology. We just need you to be godly. That is your calling, and it should be the aspiration of every man. Set the pace for us. Your family, church, and community need this from you more than anything else.
We must always go back to the teachings of the early church, the New Testament, but the church itself was a mess. Much like today. We are a mess, too, so we go back to the teachings that went to our messy brothers and sisters. We learn from them and the teachings—not to be like them, but to be faithful to our risen Lord.
Even an unhealthy church that seems to be dying can be changed.
Jesus, Scripture, loving God and people.
You do not need a big staff to do these things. Or a lot of programs. Or a large budget. Or even a building.
Start evaluating your church based on these things and you can be healthy.
The question this brought us face-to-face with though was; “Is what we are doing in our worship gatherings celebrating the gospel (and by the gospel I mean to celebrate Jesus as God’s sent Son who lived perfectly obedient to God the Father, died the death of a treacherous sinner in obedience to God the Father, rose from the dead in obedience to God the Father and by the power of the Spirit, and who sits at the right hand of God the Father making intercession on our behalf today) or is it celebrating something else?”
I believe that far too often our worship gatherings celebrate something other than Jesus and the gospel. Not intentionally, of course, but nevertheless. We don’t get up on Monday and plan a worship service to celebrate ourselves, but is that what happens unintentionally?
A new study from Nashville-based LifeWay Research of Protestant senior pastors found 51 percent approve of how President Trump has handled the job, with 25 percent strongly approving.
Sunshine Home, a privately run, state-funded senior living center in Hangzhou, China, welcomed about a dozen 20-somethings into the facility this past July. Costing just 300 yuan, or about $44, a month, the home is an affordable option for many recent college graduates looking to start their careers in the city. As part of the deal, they’re asked to spend at least 20 hours a month with the elderly tenants, either by reading to them, chatting, showing them how to use their smartphones, or leading classes.