Power of Proximity – Review

Leadership and Ministry

I have seen an encouraging increase in church’s dedication to helping the poor. Even evangelical churches are mostly beyond concerns of poverty relief as part of “the liberal agenda.” The teachings of Jesus on helping […]

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Thoughts on Family Ministry

Leadership and Ministry

I recently had the opportunity to teach a course on Family Ministry at Tyndale University College. It was a great opportunity for me to reflect on what family ministry looks like today. Many churches do […]

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What is the Difference Between Pastoral Counselling and Pastoral Care?

Leadership and Ministry

One of the roles of pastors is to be there for people in their congregation when they are going through a hard time. This may be called pastoral counselling or pastoral care. Except, those are […]

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A Surprising Discovery

Leadership and Ministry

I have been teaching at Christian schools on the undergraduate level since 2010 (you can find my CV here). Most of the courses I have taught have been in the area of New Testament, although […]

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What Are the New Steeples?

Leadership and Ministry

The past week I have visited the community that I grew up in. There are no high rises in this area of town. In fact the highest features are church steeples. Both times I was […]

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Good News: Praise in the Park

Personal Reflections

My Good News for this week is about the outdoor service Queen Street Baptist Church had yesterday. We do this Praise in the Park every year at Montebello Park. While we have a beautiful church […]

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The Church is Not a Building But Take Care of That Building

Leadership and Ministry

Growing up, I thought the church was the building. The church was a place that people went to. It was only as I grew in my faith that I understood that the people are the […]

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Reasons Why Family Ministry is More Complicated

Leadership and Ministry

Some people define family ministry as ministry aimed specifically at children or youth. I prefer a wider definition, one that includes the entire family. I have been reflecting on family ministry and how things have […]

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The Church of Us vs Them – Review

Leadership and Ministry

One of the problems with the church, whether the global church, within a denomination or even within a local church, is the conflict that has resulted in an us vs them mentality. The issues change […]

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How Should Churches Look at Past Ministry?

Leadership and Ministry

I have had people in my congregation make comments like, “This ministry was done thirty years ago and worked, filling the church, we should go back and do that.” The problem with that thinking is […]

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How Can Pastors Get Involved In the Community?

Leadership and Ministry

I love my church and spending time with the people in my congregation. They are great people and there is plenty of time I can spend with them. However, I also have a conviction that […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts I came across this week. The Type of Leader God Uses, Part 2 – Rick Warren The 4 Commissions from Jesus – Philip Nation The Importance Of Investing In People […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts I came across this week. Stop Walking Around Like a Sack of Stink – Dan Rockwell Five Ways to Identify Potential in People – Steven Ackley 3 Ways to Prevent […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts for you to check out. 7 Good Reasons Why I’ve Stayed In Ministry for 37 Years – Dan Reiland My First Days As a Pastor – Darryl Dash Nicodemus and […]

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How Scotiabank Taught Me About Leadership

Leadership and Ministry

Scotiabank, the bank we use, recently updated their mobile app. Not surprisingly, there were some glitches. I went on Twitter and found it was not just me but plenty of people were complaining about the […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts to check out. 5 Brain-Savvy Tips that Improve Team Creativity – Charles Stone Your Most Important Message – Gary Hoag 10 Things to Do When Your Christian Life Has Become […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts for you to check out. How to be a Kingdom Seeker and Not An Empire Builder – Steve Brown Ten Common Pastoral Care Challenges Pastors Face – Thom Rainer 3 […]

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Growing Young – Review

Leadership and Ministry

Most churches feel like they are growing old. But what if we could grow young? That is the topic of Growing Young by Kara Powell, Jake Mulder and Brad Griffin. They are all involved in […]

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A Picture of What Ministry Can Look Like

Leadership and Ministry

At Queen Street Baptist Church we have been running a ministry on Saturday nights for our downtown community. My wife Amanda gives leadership to both the worship service and the meal that takes place there, […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts for you to check out. Building Purpose Driven Churches the Jesus Way – Tom Holladay Clarity and then Cleverness – Philip Nation 7 Contradictory Cultural Trends – And 7 Ways […]

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The Family – Review

Leadership and Ministry

I have been doing some research on Family Ministry and came across The Family: A Christian Perspective on the Contemporary Home by Jack and Judith Balswick. This book covers so many topics concerning families, including […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts for you to check out. How to Respond to Stupid Suggestions – Dan Rockwell Four Ways Language Sustains Your Culture – Steven Ackley How to Have an Insignificant Ministry – […]

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What Theological Education Should a Pastor Get?

Leadership and Ministry

I would like to say as much as possible but it really depends. The more the better but life circumstances can limit how much formal education some can get. The first question to ask is […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts for you to check out. Criticism: How to Handle Your Critics Like a Pro – Carey Nieuwhof 5 Really Tough Decisions Pastors Make – Dan Reiland 3 Practical Challenges of […]

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5 Reasons I’m Glad I Quit Pastoral Ministry

Leadership and Ministry

No this is not an announcement that I’m quitting ministry or resigning from my church. This is a reflection about a decision I made just over six years ago. I resigned from the churches I […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts I came across this week. How productivity helps you pray – Matt Perman Real Hope for Real Life – Bill Finch 5 Smarter Ways To Embrace Infrequent Church Attenders – […]

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5 Ministry Killers and How to Defeat Them – Review

Leadership and Ministry

Pastoral ministry is one of the most rewarding careers and yet it has its share of difficulties. As long as we allow people in churches, pastoral ministry will be messy. However, if we are not […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts that I came across this week. 21 Ways to Keep a Church from Growing – Ron Edmondson Shazam and the Power of Word – Russell Moore Ten Reasons the Formerly […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts for you to check out. 5 Ways to Lead When You’re Not in Charge – Maina Mwaura Mothers are Drowning in Stress—Here are 6 Ways Your Church Can Help – Tara Beth […]

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A Helpful Exercise For My Preaching

Leadership and Ministry

While pastoring is more than preaching, developing my preaching skills is high on my priorities. There is one thing I do that I find is very helpful in this area. I always write out a […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts I came across this week. Seven Surprising Ways to Prepare Yourself to Share the Gospel – Kevin G. Harney The Danger of Veneered Christianity – Jeff K. Clarke In Church […]

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Perspectives on Family Ministry – Review

Leadership and Ministry

I began my pastoral career as a youth pastor. The model we worked with was that you had specific ministries for children, youth, young adults, young families, men, women and seniors. Dividing up according to […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts for you to check out. Are You Forgetting the People in the Pews While Growing Your Church? – John Bosman Adaptive Decision Making, Change, and Leadership – Part 1 – […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts that I came across this week. The Positive Side of Leading Under Pressure – Brandon Cox 5 Simple Ways to Assess The Effectiveness of Your Leadership – Carey Nieuwhof What […]

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Leadership as Influence

Leadership

Last Sunday I preached a sermon that some people felt challenged by. Some people even disagreed with me. In this sermon, I suggested that all people who have influence are leaders. Part of this was […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts to check out. Why it may be Good and Time for a Church to Die – Paul Alexander The Biggest Difference Between Churches That Are Raising Young Leaders And Those […]

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Preaching to a Diverse Audience

Leadership and Ministry

I love my church, especially in its diversity. We are have a variety of ethnic groups, ages and people with disabilities. It is something to celebrate but it is also a challenge, especially for preaching. […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts for you to check out. Is Your Sacrifice for Jesus Getting in the Way of Your Faithfulness to Jesus? – Michael Kelley Not Everyone Will Like You, And That’s Okay […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts you should check out. The Enneagram, Leadership, and Knowing Yourself – Daniel Im 4 Ways to Recognize Team-Members Without “Skin in the Game” – Eric Geiger Emerging Adults and the […]

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Bill Hybels and James MacDonald: Are Megachurches the Problem?

Leadership and Ministry

Ten years ago, if you looked at “celebrity pastors,” many would have considered Bill Hybels and James MacDonald to be as solid as they come. The expectation is that they would both finish well and […]

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When Helping Hurts – Review

When Helping Hurts

I have always been convinced that the church’s role is to help people in need, especially the poor. But what does that look like? Is it as simple as throwing money at a need? That […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts that you should check out. Prayer Doesn’t Fix Everything, But It Changes Everything (Yes, There’s a Difference) – Brandon A. Cox 5 Ways to Survive The Mental Game of Leadership […]

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Why I Still Learn From Andy Stanley

Andy Stanley

I regularly listen to Andy Stanley’s Leadership Podcast. I do this despite some of the controversy over Stanley and criticisms toward him by many evangelicals. If you look at posts about Andy Stanley on my […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts for you to check out. Pulpit Discipleship: Organizing Your Annual Preaching Calendar For Maximum Effectiveness – Jeff Hamilton Advice for the A-Type Leader with a Million Good Ideas – Ron […]

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Why As a Pastor I Read Military History

Military History

Many pastors read books on leadership, theology and other related subjects. But what about military history? This is an area that I read a lot about, both out of personal interest and professional development. I […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts for you to check out. 5 Pastoral Promises We Need to Make – Joel Rainey The 3×3 Goal Achievement Strategy – Michael Hyatt Church, Today We Need Dr. King’s Vision […]

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Why I Want to Return to Military Chaplaincy

Military Chaplaincy

For a number of years, I served as a chaplain (padre) in the army reserves here in Canada. I absolutely loved it. But I eventually released for two reasons: one was that I was starting […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts for you to check out. Clean Water or the Gospel? – Justin Narducci You’re a Pastor, Not a People Pleaser: Learn How to Say ‘No’ – Joe McKeever 7 Powers […]

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The Peacemaking Church – Review

Peacemaking Church

Unfortunately, one of the realities of church ministry is interpersonal conflict. As long as we allow people in churches, we will have conflict. That is why I was happy to read Curtis Heffelfinger’s The Peacemaking […]

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The REACTION Dashboard – Review

Leadership and Ministry

When I was sent the REACTION Dashboard, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I thought it might be a guide to help leaders react properly to difficult situations. That is not it at all. Rather […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts I came across this week. 5 Dangers of “Tower of Babel” Church Revitalizations – Chuck Lawless 10 Reasons Why I Am Thankful to Be a Pastor – Brandon Hilgemann How Do […]

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What a Pastor Should Accomplish in the First Year at a Church

Pastor

As I write this, I am just starting my fourth year at my church. It has been an amazing time and it has made me think about other pastors starting at new churches. Reflecting on […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts for you to check out. Twenty Really Weird Criticisms Pastors Receive – Thom Rainer 6 Apps to Help You Set 2019 Goals – Barnabas Piper How to Plan a Daily […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts I came across this week. A “Just in Case” Christmas – Michael Kelley 3 Questions to Evaluate This Year and 3 to Help Plan for the Next | Facts & […]

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Why I Do Blue Christmas on a Sunday Morning

Bue Christmas

What is Blue Christmas? Blue Christmas is an acknowledgment that Christmas isn’t joyful for everyone and that some people feel “blue,” often because of the loss of a loved one. Many churches offer a Blue […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts that you should check out. Favorite Resources of 2018 – Darryl Dash The Most Expensive Hire You Will Ever Make – Eric Geiger All Faith Groups, Evangelicals Included, Need to […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts for you to check out. Why Pessimists (and Realists) Are Hard to Follow as Leaders – Carey Nieuwhof 9 Ways to Boost Brain Power – Charles Stone Why the North […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts I came across this week. 7 Advantages Of Long-Term Church Membership – Karl Vaters 7 Words for Leaders Who Worry – Ron Edmondson Does God Believe in Elon Musk? – […]

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Why Our Church Celebrates Advent

Advent

I have had some people surprised that our Baptist church observes Advent. “Isn’t Advent a Catholic thing?” Advent comes natural to me as I was raised Anglican and it was an important part of our […]

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The Hospitable Leader – Review

Hospitable Leader

What kind of leader do you want to serve with? An authoritarian leader that simply lays down the law? There is another way and that is the Hospital Leader. Terry Smith writes in his book […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts that I came across this week. Staying for the Long Haul | Facts & Trends – Craig Thompson Inside the Surprising New Science of Gratitude – Erin Wildermuth Caring for […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts for you to check out. Your Marriage Is Your Most Important Ministry – Eric Geiger Live at the Intersection of Grace and Truth – Landon Reesor How to Keep People […]

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Top Five Things I Have Learned As a Pastor

Leadership and Ministry

I have had the role of a pastor, on and off, for over twenty years. It is an important part of my identity and I’m thankful to be able to serve in this way. As […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts that you should check out. 3 People Issues That Get Church Staff Teams Stuck – Carey Nieuwhof 7 Questions to Ask Yourself to End your Day Well – Charles Stone […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts I came across this week. 7 Attributes of Pastors Who Succeed at Church Revitalization – Ron Edmondson Five Ways a Congregation Can Prevent Short Term Pastoral Tenure – Thom Rainer […]

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Pastors and the Imposter Syndrome

I first heard of the imposter syndrome in the context of blogging. Bloggers often write from the perspective of an “expert,” giving advice in a specific area. But it is not uncommon for bloggers to […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts I came across this week. Go and check them out. The Spirit of Fear – Phillip Larsen Stop Being Your Own Worst Critic – Rishawn Biddle Eugene Peterson’s Long Obedience […]

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That I May Know God – Review

Spiritual Formation

I have been interested in the topic of spiritual formation and have been picking up books related to it. If you are unfamiliar with spiritual formation, it seeks to go beyond just imparting Bible knowledge […]

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Remembering Eugene Peterson

Eugene Peterson

As I write this, it is the day that Eugene Peterson died. I never met Peterson but I appreciated his ministry, whether the translation of the Message or his writings on discipleship. I truly believe […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts I came across this week. Renewing Your Church: Resetting, Refocusing, Restructuring – Brandon Boone How to Prepare to Teach Bible Study – Joe McKeever Frustrated with Others But Comfortable with […]

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I Wish I Wrote My Sermons Like This Before

Leadership and Ministry

I am so happy with my new routine for writing sermons. I wish I started doing this twenty years ago. The funny thing is I began this out of necessity. My wife has started at […]

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The High Definition Leader – Review

High-Definition Leader

The High-Definition Leader has been on my radar for some time. I held off because I misunderstood the title, By “High-Definition,” I assumed it was another leadership book making the reader guilty for not being […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts I came across this week. Go and check them out. 16 Types of Church Attenders and Workers – Chuck Lawless 7 Reasons People Are Not Leading Who Could Be – […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts that I came across this week. Go and check them out. Benched: 5 Ways Busy Leaders Shove Volunteers to the Sidelines – Tony Morgan The Biggest Challenge Of Restricted Funds […]

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White Picket Fences – Review

White Picket Fences

The concept of privilege, especially white male privilege has been prominent in the media and elsewhere. I will confess that I have struggled with how to respond to the concept. Many of the discussions have […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts for you to check out. 8 Characteristics of a Great Campus Pastor – Paul Alexander Intentional Friendliness: Making A Great First Impression In A Smaller Church – Karl Vaters 7 […]

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3 Major Reasons People Resist Change

Change

During my time as a pastor, I have often encountered people who resist change. They are not the majority but they are a vocal minority. Why do people resist change? While there are people in […]

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Becoming a Welcoming Church – Review

Becoming a Welcoming Church

I have spent the past year focusing on how to make our church more of a welcoming church. For that reason, I was happy to discover Thom Rainer had written Becoming a Welcoming Church. This […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts I came across this week. Go and check them out. 10 Things The Best Leaders Do To Get Even Better – Brian Dodd 4 Tasks of Mission – Juan Sanchez […]

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The Five Dysfunctions of a Team – Review

Five Dysfunctions of a Team

I had a copy of The Five Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni. What delayed me in reading it was the subtitle, A Leadership Fable. I pictured talking animals discussing leadership but it was […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts that you should check out. Russell Moore Responds to the Statement on Social Justice – Stephanie Martin Two Seemingly Contradictory Truths About Habits – Darryl Dash 3 Reasons Church Complexity […]

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What Our Church Does For Disability Ministry

Disability and Faith

When people find out that I’m interested in disabilities, I often get asked what we do at our church for disability ministry. Like myself, people are always look for ideas. So when I get asked […]

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2 Models of Christian Ministry to Avoid (Or Not)

Ministry

Over the last number of decades, there have been quite a few Christian leadership books that have drawn from business models. Some pastors even promote non-Christian business books as positive models for leadership. This is […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts for you to check out. Loving And Letting Go: 3 Keys To Serving A Community On The Move – David Fantin On Hoping – Barnabas Piper The 7 Most Likely Challenges […]

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2 Things I Wished I Learned More in Seminary

Seminary

My wife is just beginning her seminary studies and that is making me reflect on my own experience in seminary. I had a fantastic experience at McMaster Divinity College and I had a very good […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts I came across this week. Changing the Culture of your Church – Paul Alexander 5 Preaching Styles In 25 Years (Here’s What I Changed And Why) – Karl Vaters 7 […]

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Apologetics and Preaching

Apologetics and Theology

While I consider myself an apologist, my primary role is that of a pastor of a local church. But I don’t find these roles to be contradictory. I try to include apologetics in my pastoral […]

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When Pastors Mess Up

Pastors

This is not about when pastors mess up by having an affair, developing an addiction or being financially dishonest. I’m talking about the regular mistakes that pastors make on a regular basis. They are common […]

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How to Grow – Review

How to Grow

What is the gospel? For many people, the gospel is the message by which one gets to heaven. But the Bible presents a much fuller concept of good news. It is a gospel that is […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts for you to check out. Learnings of a Multi-Site Campus Pastor – Bryan Rose The Lie Church Planters Believe | Facts & Trends – Ryan Rice, Sr. When Goals Don’t […]

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1 Bad Response to Bill Hybels (and 3 Good Ones)

Leadership and Ministry

As we sort through the mess with Billy Hybels and the situation at Willow Creek, there are any number of responses we could have. There are both good and bad responses that we could have. […]

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My Experience With a Coach

Leadership and Ministry

You may have heard about life coaching. A life coach helps a person to ask the right questions in order to determine a direction for their life. Life coaching is for everybody. Did you know […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership

Here are some leadership posts that you should go and check out. Out of Step – Darryl Dash Mattresses, Experiences, and Instagramming Your Worship Service – Daniel Im 10 Questions Christians Shouldn’t Ask the World […]

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Should We Still Read Books by Bill Hybels?

Leadership and Ministry

The situation at Willow Creek with former pastor Bill Hybels continues to deteriorate as reported in this recent article at Christianity Today. Bill Hybels was for a long time one of the superstars of Christian […]

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Important Tools for Pastors

Leadership and Ministry

When it comes to pastoring, some of the most popular resources are in the area of leadership and other practical ministry tools. But I would suggest that pastors, especially those just beginning their ministry, work […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts for you to check out. 3 Pillars of Persuasive Public Speaking – Brandon Cox 5 Signs You’re A Lone Ranger Leader (And Can’t Grow A Team) – Carey Nieuwhof How […]

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The Hope’s Reason Podcast

Hope's Reason

I have been podcasting for quite a few years and I do enjoy it. Although my original podcast has been taken down by me, I am still active in podcasting. I offer a podcast that […]

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Should Churches Participate in Short-Term Mission Trips?

Short-Term Missions

There are many concerns about short-term missions trips. Some argue that they are more harm than good. Many of the concerns are quite valid. But I will argue that such experiences are good when done […]

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Weekend Leadership Roundup

Leadership and Ministry

Here are some leadership posts for you to check out. 4 Practices for Discipling Kids Who Live Justly – Tony Caldwell Why Most Small Churches Don’t Use (Or Need) An Organizational Chart – Karl Vaters […]

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Pastors and the B-Word

Leadership and Ministry

As a pastor, I try not to use the b-word. Which b-word? Busy. This is a change for me. Years ago, when people would ask how I was doing, I would always respond with “busy.” […]

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