Archive for 2017

Giving Grace in a “Gotcha” Culture

We’ve been studying the Gospel of Luke on Sunday mornings at Emmanuel—for 18 months. It’s been, for me, a life-changing and heart-shaping study. The journey of examining Jesus’ heart and ministry up close has been wonderful. So many aspects of His life rise to the surface—qualities you wouldn’t see by speed-reading the gospel. One particular…

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Make Sunday More Meaningful…

Make Sunday More Meaningful for Your Soul… Going to church tomorrow? I hope you will be in a healthy, thriving, gospel-centered, substance-rich environment. A healthy church is the most beautiful organization on earth, and makes Sunday the BEST day of the whole week. I hope you can anticipate Sunday! I hope God has placed you…

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Opportunities to Serve at Emmanuel

Over the last five years, God has been restoring His work of grace at Emmanuel Baptist Church and Emmanuel Christian Academy. This year, God has opened two doors of opportunity for those seeking placement in a Christian School environment. We are presently accepting resumes and applications for two positions in Emmanuel Christian Academy: Secondary Teaching…

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11 Questions to Diagnose Church Health

What does a healthy church look like? How does a healthy church function? Between examining the New Testament Church in God’s word, my personal experience in healthy church families, and then seeing/experiencing healthy churches—there are biblical qualities of health that clearly rise to the surface. In the list below, the operative words are: growing, increasing,…

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Develop Problem-Solvers — Leading Healthy Change Part 8

We’re talking about leading healthy change. In Part One we discussed discerning “good change” and “bad change.” In Part Two we discussed the starting point of appreciating “what is,” and managing the tension between “what is” and “what could be.” In Part Three we began discussing the first two of six steps in the process—building healthy relationships and communicating effectively. In Part…

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“Dead Church” in Six Simple Steps

I recently came across a powerful quote from an 18th century English pastor named Job Orton. Ironically, he wrote to the ministers of his day about doctrinal compromise. The struggles of churches nearly 300 years ago are the struggles of churches today. Read what he says: “I have long since found (and every year that…

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When You Don’t “Feel Like It…”

Do you ever have moments where your heart sort of just “crashes?” You hit a wall spiritually. Suddenly, you don’t feel like going to church. You don’t feel like reading God’s word. You don’t feel like caring. You don’t feel like exercising. The list goes on. What do you do in that moment? Do feelings…

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How to Make This Sunday Awesome!

Do you love your church? Do you help your church to thrive? Do you cooperate with your church family to make every Sunday as powerful as it can be for as many people as possible? Have you considered what you could do to make this Sunday even better? Here are some “two-degree” shifts that you can make…

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How Jesus Confronts My Leadership Heart

I’ve never had a conversation with God in which His voice was audible. But I’ve had many where His voice was clear. As a spiritual leader, my daily conversation with God is often drawn by His Spirit back to recurring themes. As Jesus asked His disciples “Who do you say that I am?” or “Will you also…

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Leading Healthy Change Part 7

We’re talking about leading healthy change. In Part One we discussed discerning “good change” and “bad change.” In Part Two we discussed the starting point of appreciating “what is” and managing the tension between “what is” and “what could be.” In Part Three we began discussing the first two of six steps in the process—building healthy relationships and communicating effectively. In Part…

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Wanna Get a Cake?

A few years ago, my son, Larry, and I were on a preaching trip in Maine. I preached in the morning, and had a break in the afternoon, so we decided to have some “father/son time.” It was a very masculine thing—hang out, watch an action movie, and eat snacks. Total awesomeness. So on the way…

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Why You Can be Thankful for Criticism

Do you ever face criticism? Some critics are compassionate and purely motivated—I’ve written about which ones I receive here. I’ve also written about qualities of unjust criticism, here, and why leaders should care about criticism, here. Today I want to take a different view—and not because I’m presently receiving any criticism. I have in the past,…

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Leading Healthy Change Part 6

We’re talking about leading healthy change. In Part One we discussed discerning “good change” and “bad change”—we essentially discovered that spiritual growth is change, and if you resist change, you’re resisting the work of what the power of the gospel actually does! In Part Two we discussed the starting point of appreciating “what is” and managing the tension between…

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Leading Healthy Change Part 5

We’re talking about leading healthy change. In Part One we discussed discerning “good change” and “bad change”—we essentially discovered that spiritual growth is change, and if you resist change, you’re resisting the work of what the power of the gospel actually does! In Part Two we discussed the starting point of appreciating “what is” and managing the tension between…

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The Most Powerful “THRIVE” Factor for 2017!

Are you ready to THRIVE into 2017? Have you considered recently the power of attitude—how much our attitude toward life and circumstances determines so many of our outcomes. I really believe my attitude toward a challenge is 90% of the battle of growing through that challenge. Attitude determines whether I see an obligation or an opportunity,…

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