Thursday, August 29, 2013

Preach it!

But what should we preach?  Who should preach?

We normally leave "preaching" for a pastor and think that he should "preach" a sermon.  But is that a Biblical idea?  Awhile ago I did a word study of preaching (passages below).  Here's what I learned:

It was a word that Luke (the author of the Gospel and Acts) absolutely loved.  It seems that nearly every chapter he mentions preaching.

Nearly every time... enough that I could say "Every Time"... what was preached was the "good news" (or a similar variation like "the Gospel", "the message of Jesus", etc.)  There are only a few times you could even make a vague connection to our modern-day sermons.

Sermons aren't bad things, but when we delegate preaching only to those who are comfortable up in front of a crowd, we've taken away something that anyone should be able to do: Preach the Good News to those around them.

The sense you get from the whole new testament use of the word is that anyone can preach, everyone should preach and we should all be preaching the Good News of Jesus Christ.

So today.. preach it!

Matthew 11:5; Luke 1:19, 2:10, 3:18, 4:18, 4:43, 8:1, 9:6, 16:16, 20:1; Acts 5:42, 8:4, 8:12, 8:25, 8:35, 8:40, 10:36, 10:42, 11:20, 13:32, 14:7, 14:15, 14:21, 15:31, 16:10, 17:18; Romans 1:15, 10:15, 15:20; 1 Corinthians 1:17, 9:16, 9:18, 15:1-2; 2 Corinthians 10:16, 11:7; Galatians 1:8-9, 1:11, 1:16, 1:23, 4:13; Ephesians 2:17, 3:8; 1 Thessalonians 3:6; 1 Peter 1:12, 1:25, 4:6

Monday, August 26, 2013

Bringing back the Bible Study

Sometimes I think that good the old-fashioned Bible Study has gotten a bad rap.  I know this because I'm fully guilty of looking down on them.

Mentoring, accountability, discipleship, disciple-making... these all have a little more pizzazz than a Bible study.  And most people would rather go to a small group/core group/impact group/life group/(insert your favorite name here) group than a Bible Study.  Wouldn't they?

But what better way to mentor someone than with the Bible?  What better to hold someone accountable than God's word?  What better tool to disciple someone than the Bible?  And what better centerpiece to your Cool Group than the Bible?

I realize that a Bible Study can be brutally ineffective if done poorly.  But instead of throwing them out altogether, lets just lead great Bible studies.  Discussion-based, obedience-oriented and God-honoring Bible studies.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Task Management

Type that phrase into a Google Search and you're hit with literally hundreds of options, all promising to make you more productive and organized.

So what do you do? Which do you choose? How do you get it done?

I can say with confidence that if you're reading this and you're an adult (or at least pretending to be one), you're going to need something.  The world is too complicated and there's too much to keep tabs on to not have some system to organize yourself.

The reason there are hundreds of task management options (both hi-tech and low-tech) is that no one has created the perfect system for the entire human race.  I wouldn't wait for that.

The only real answer here is to pick something.  Organize your life and tasks.  Get it done.

Monday, August 19, 2013

What is church for?

I recently heard of someone who, because of a messy divorce, decided to leave their smaller church (of less than 200).

Their solution? Attend a larger church (1000+) so they could blend in better.

Excuse me?  Blend in?  What is church for?

God didn't give us the body of Christ so we could hide.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

31 @ 31

  1. College is overrated, not useless or unimportant, but overrated.
  2. This side of heaven you'll never stop battling pride.
  3. The Bible is easier to understand than most people think. Obedience is the hard part.
  4. Good coffee is worth paying more for.
  5. I haven't seen good evidence that Jesus is dead.
  6. Talk less, listen more, ask good questions.
  7. Kids are awesome.
  8. Being lost is still scary.
  9. What you do with today is more important than any future plans you are thinking about.
  10. Good authors, professional and amateur, are approachable and responsive.
  11. Blogging is easier than you think.
  12. Quality time is found in quantity time.
  13. Make disciples.
  14. The people around you are a bigger influence on you than you realize.
  15. Good wholesome food is worth the money, time and effort.
  16. The ability of the human body to heal itself is nothing short of miraculous.
  17. Cohabitation is wrong.  Unless you're married, then it's a great idea.
  18. Keep TVs and computers out of your bedroom.
  19. He who finds a wife finds a good thing.
  20. We put too much emphasis on our own safety, security and comfort.
  21. Saving $100 is better than earning $100.
  22. Scamming the elderly is one of the most shameful crimes around.
  23. One of these days I'm going to start acting my age.
  24. 95% of the population pretends to be busier than they are.
  25. Children's sports leagues are getting ridiculous.
  26. What you don't know can hurt you.
  27. Raising children well is a hard job that shouldn't be taken lightly.
  28. Most guys aren't as good at grilling out as they claim.
  29. Just because you can and want to doesn't mean you should.
  30. I wish I could be more bold.
  31. Life is a whole lot funnier than we want to admit.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

HIRI: What Did You Expect? by Paul David Tripp

A few thoughts and points from What Did You Expect?: Redeeming the Realities of Marriage by Paul David Tripp

Quotable: "You can probably name only two or three life-changing situations you have lived through. We are all the same; the character and quality of our life is forged in little moments. Every day we lay little bricks on the foundation of what our life will be. The bricks of words said, the bricks of actions taken, the bricks of little decisions, the bricks of little thoughts, and the bricks of small-moment desires all work together to form the functional edifice that is your marriage." (p58)

What I Liked: Reread the quote above.  That thought alone, applied to any area of your life, is worth the book's weight in Gold. I love that concept as it is one to live your whole life by, and especially so in marriage.  I also liked his discussion of self-love verses true-love and how we often confuse the two (in chapter 11).

What I Didn't Like: Nearly every chapter had a negative example of a marriage gone awry. I felt like each example was extreme.  I think the author's point was that any marriage can go really bad if we don't work on it.  But the extremity of the examples made it hard for me to personally apply the truth in the book.  Almost without trying I would think: "Well compared to that marriage I'm not doing too bad." I realize that's partly on me, but still some less extreme examples would have been nice.

2013 Personal Impact Ranking: 

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Write Stuff Down

I'll tip my hand.

If I tell you something and you say "Wait, let me write that down" I'm going to think you know what you're doing and you're someone I can rely on.

The truth is we all have thousands of things coming our way everyday.  To simply say, "I'll remember that" doesn't give me a lot of confidence that you will.

I think if I had to hire 10 people out of 1000, I'd start narrowing it down by the people who write down things they need to remember.

I know you have a lot of techy options available to you.  But start writing stuff down and see where it takes you.