17
Oct
2014
0

Making It In Ministry- Part 2 (Reprised)

Yesterday, I reprised a series of blogs from a class I taught to some Junior and Senior Ministry Majors at Dallas Christian College back in 2009. Here are a few more thoughts for all of us to chew on. Again, remember to play nice in the comments.

5. Spend More Time Working & Developing Your Strengths Instead Of Your Weaknesses- For the first few years of ministry I had people tell me all the time that I needed to really spend the majority of my time working on my weaknesses. So I did just that. I spent hours trying to be more administrative, more organized, more of a type “A” personality. The problem with that was the fact that I was absolutely miserable and became ineffective in the areas that I was actually gifted in. Do I think weaknesses need to be developed…? ABSOLUTELY!!! Do I think that should be your focus? NOT A CHANCE. I have learned to surround myself with people that are strong in the area’s that I am not and let them be passionate about those things. When you can truly focus on your strengths in ministry, you become way more effective in ministry.

“When you can truly focus on your strengths in ministry, you become way more effective in ministry.”

 

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16
Oct
2014
0

Making It In Ministry- Part 1 (Reprised)

Five years ago I had the opportunity to sit down with a group of junior and senior Ministry Major students at Dallas Christian College. They asked me to share with them on the topic of how to make it in ministry. At the time I had only been in ministry for a little more than a decade. Now you need to know that I do not think I have all the answers and I sure as heck do not think I am qualified to teach on what it takes to make it in ministry. But, at their request, I gave it the “Ole’ College Try” in hopes that some of my life lessons from ministry would helped these incredible young men and women. I gave them eight lessons I have learned from being in ministry that I wish I would have learned sooner.

As I was reviewing these thoughts I noticed that in the five years since then, these principles have not really changed much. In fact, they are more true today than when I first wrote them down. If you are a pastor,ministry leader, volunteer at your church, elder, or the average church member, I would love to hear your thoughts. Remember to play nice in the comments sandbox! :-) Read More

14
Oct
2014
0

Hot Tubs and Vomit

A few weeks ago I had the privilege to take my dad on a long and over due trip for his birthday. It was actually supposed to be for his 70th birthday last year, but then he needed surgery again and we had to postpone it. However, two weeks ago we converged on Hilton Head, South Carolina and had an incredible week of golf and relaxation together. One of my favorite moments was the first night after playing golf. In our family we have what I like to call “the inherited bad back syndrome,” which means we were going to get ample use out of the hot tub at the house we were staying in. I remember being stiff and sore as I made my way to the levitating steam just a few short yards in front of me. Dad and I converged on the basin of goodness at the same time. At first, it was almost hotter than one could bear to touch. Gradually though, we made our way into the warmth and our bodies enjoyed the healing benefits of the liquid doctor.

As we were sitting there my dad made a joke about me jumping in the pool that was just in front of us. Now I had felt the water of the pool prior to getting into the hot tub and it felt normal, but feeling it from in the hot tub it felt frigid. The next few phrases were a blur, but I think jeers like “pansy” and “wimp” were thrown in my general direction. With that I was out of the hot tub and standing on the edge of the pool. For the record, I have never been and probably will never be a person who gradually gets into anything. I prefer jumping in with a splash and getting it over with.

As I was flying through the air towards the icy abyss under me, I immediately regretted my decision to hurl my body into shock. As quickly as I jumped, I was in. My body went into shock and awe. My breath was taken from my lungs. I sprung forth from under the frigid box I found myself submerged in. My head broke the surface, deep breaths were hurling from my lips, and chaos started to calm. As I stood there catching my breath again, my body quickly started to adjust. Unlike the healing quality of the hot tub waters, the pool water was refreshing and vibrant. Energy was surging through my extremities and veins. I felt alive and ready to go again. It was actually quite amazing. One moment I needed healing and the other I was experiencing refreshment. My body needed both. Funny thing is, if I would have sat in a room temperature bath or tub, I would not have experienced either one of these things. Read More

12
Oct
2014
0

Sunday Morning Thoughts

“One hundred religious persons knit into a unity by careful organizations do not constitute a church any more than eleven dead men make a football team. The first requisite is life, always.”

A.W. Tozer

 

“Too many churches are little more than four walls and a roof.”

Billy Sunday

 

“A prayerless church member is a hindrance. He is in the body like a rotting bone or a decayed tooth. Before long, since he does not contribute to the benefit of his brethren, he will become a danger and a sorrow to them. Neglect of private prayer is the locust which devours the strength of the church.”

Charles Spurgeon

8
Oct
2014
0

Laughing At An 8 Year Old Little Girl

Dear Natalie,

Eight years ago you enter this world with a bang. No, literally you were the shot heard round the world. It was 29 minutes from ER door to you entering the world. You have not changed since. Everything you do is larger than life. Your personality…Your laugh…Your determination. When you set your mind on something, no one can stand in your way.

You are the funniest person I have ever met. You make us laugh every single day. In fact, come to think of it…you make yourself laugh every single day.

You are the most compassionate kid on the planet earth. I have watched you include, care for, love on, and take care of kids that no other kids would give the time of day too.

You are a leader. You do what is right and respect others. When you know something is not right, you will lead others to what is right.

You are a prayer. I love to hear your prayers. The way you pray for your family, your friends, and for those far from God amazes me. I learn more and more about prayer by listening to you pray.

You have a depth in Jesus. For you being eight years old I am constantly amazed at how you see Jesus. You ask questions and those questions keep leading you to a more accurate view of the God I know you love and pray to. I pray everyday that my faith is as strong as yours.

I know that one day you will grow up, be on your own, and some boy will come along and try to sweep you off your beautiful feet. I pray for you and that boy all the time. I pray that just like you don’t settle for anything but what is right today, that you will not settle for any man less than one who loves and chases after Jesus with all his heart.

I don’t know why Jesus gave me the privilege of being your daddy, but I love you more than life itself. I pray that in spite of me, you will continue to grow and be ten times the person your daddy is.  I could not be prouder of you and I cannot wait to see what God is going to do with the rest of your life. You have taught me so much in your short 8 years on this earth, and I am sure you are going to teach me a lot more in the years to come.

I love you more than words and life!!!

-Daddy-

6
Oct
2014
0

3 Marks That You Are A Church Member

As many of you know, over the past 5 weeks we have been in a series called “I’m A Church Member.” I cannot say it enough, but this is one of those series that I believe every church and every church member should go through. After reading Thom Rainer’s book by the same title, we developed a series and devotional around the content, and the results have been incredible so far. Over the course of my time of study and prep I have noticed that there are really three marks that every church member should be doing if they are going to be called a disciple. Which by the way, our running definition of a disciple here at CCM is this: A follower of Jesus and a leader of people with a reproducing influence. With that said, here are the three marks of a true disciple:

“Disciple: A follower of Jesus and a Leader of People with a Reproducing Influence.”

  • They Are Serving- In 1 Corinthians 12 Paul talks explicitly that we are to use the gifts we have been given and we are to use them with diligence. He talks about the fact that we all have a gift. He does not say we all have the same gift, but that we all have a gift, and we should use that gift for the benefit of growing the Kingdom. In fact Rainer says, “The idea of an inactive church member is an oxymoron.” If you are a part of the body of Christ and you call yourself a member of that body, then the only response is to be active. The mark of a functioning church member is that they participate not spectate. Remember we all have a gift, but we don’t have the same gift, so use yours to the best of your ability. As Paul says in Colossians 3:23- “In everything you do work at it as working for the Lord not man.” If you call yourself a disciple you must serve in the body. It is a command not a suggestion.

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