Don’t Let Your Comfort Zone Kill Your Church
My question is this: are we willfully blind in our churches? As the body of Christ, do we intentionally turn a blind eye to problems in the Church as a whole, or more specifically, in our local congregations? Why do we ignore problems that persist in our churches? Are we like the rest of the world, afraid of being labeled as some sort of pharisaical whistleblower in our church?
What if your church would be better off if you had the courage to speak up and help solve problems that may plague your congregation? Can you think of a persistent issue in your church that needs to be dealt with? Why aren’t you dealing with it?
Well To Start With, Your Last Theologian Was A Idiot
And that’s where it starts reminding me of theology, especially the kind of theology geared for public teaching. Some theologians adopt the same rhetorical tone when disagreeing with other theologians or traditions. They don’t say, “well, there are several opinions about that, and what you’re describing is A, while I’m persuaded by C.” They don’t attempt to get inside the mind of the other view, or try to explain sympathetically what previous teachers must have been thinking. Instead they trash the other view, and then assure listeners that NOW they’re getting the real story.
How We Can Learn From One Another
Our cities contain a diversity of persons with different perspectives, communication patterns, and presuppositions about the world in which we live. We desire to be heard and we desire to be understood. In order for this to occur, we must do the hard work of knowing and intently hearing from other ethnic groups.
When we pursue the hard work of knowing and hearing intently what life as an African American or Caucasian American resembles, embrace becomes possible. It is in the work of creating this new fellowship with each other that we have the opportunity to also demonstrate God’s embrace of a diverse humanity in Jesus Christ.
One of the things the IBC [Ice Bucket Challenge] did for me was to see that somebody behind this went public with it. They filmed it. That’s all. No billboards. No TV ads. Filmed by amateurs on phones. That’s it!
What if we filmed baptisms the same way? What if we moved these sacred events through the media for others to see how it’s done and what it’s for? Additionally, what if we helped novices to baptize their friends and their friends baptize their friends?
A guide to four types of Bible study learners
Here are four types of adult learners that I’ve found in church small groups:
- “Go deeper.” These are the folks for whom the Bible can never be complicated enough.
- “Whatever. If the doors are open, I’ll be there.” At the opposite end of the spectrum are those who don’t care what the lesson is about or who the teacher is.
- “Let’s talk about that.” Lectures were once the dominant form of adult teaching in most churches, but today many people prefer a discussion format.
- “Make it fun.” A friend of mine once observed that a successful pastor we knew was not much of a preacher, “but he is a great after-dinner speaker.” The same can be true of small-group Bible study leaders.
Illiterate People of the Book
69% of adult Americans consider themselves Biblically literate according to a study conducted in 2013 by the Barna Group. But the same study found that 58% of American Christians are not interested in Biblical insight on how to live their lives.
Instead, the survey found that the highest-ranking topic about which we look to the Bible for wisdom was death. This disconnect between reading God’s Word and believing that God’s Word applies directly to our lives is troubling.
A Look at Labels
The following links are posts on labels and why they often do more harm than good.
Doctors Say We Should Let Students Sleep in Longer
This is exactly why doctors are now urging schools to delay their start time until after 8:00 am to accommodate kids’ natural sleep cycles. Right now, only about 15% of all high schools start after 8, but a handful are heeding the doctors’ advice, and it’s paying off. Research published earlier this year from the University of Minnesota in St Paul showed that later start times improve grades, test scores, and lower teen car accidents by a dumbfounding 65 to 70 percent.
64 People and Their Famous Last Words
Poignant, funny, sad, weird or mean—last words can make quite the impact as we shuffle off the stage of life. Here are 64 notable examples.