Ministry

What Homeless Veterans Can Teach Churches

Earlier this week I led the mid-week service at a local shelter for homeless veterans. But what began as a standard-issue Bible study for men who served our nation turned unexpectedly into a worship service that I believe has something to teach the church.   We met in the facility’s cafeteria, and the forty or…

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People and Churches Are Looking for the Real Thing

Among all the changes going on in modern American churches—music, dress and organization to name a few—one thing is beginning to stand out. Today’s congregations value authentic spiritual experience more than anything else. And after the last few decades of the rotating buffet line of church programming, it’s a relief to see people and pastors starting to pay…

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Millennials Are the Church’s Next Great Generation

Millennials—the demographic cohort born from the 1980s through the early 2000s—have a reputation for being self-absorbed, liberal political leanings, an obsession with social media, rejecting traditional morality and a lackadaisical work ethic.  Most of all—if you believe the various surveys that claim to measure such things—Millennials are known for rejecting the Christian faith of their parents.  …

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Pastors Should Stop Buying Their Sermons Online

The growing trend of pastors who buy sermons online and preach them as their own is hurting churches. I recently saw how that works and haven’t been able to get it out of my head. I received an email a couple of weeks ago from a reputable nation-wide ministry to pastors with a catchy enough subject…

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What Pastors Wish Congregations Knew About Their Marriages

This week Pam and I celebrated our 36th wedding anniversary. On November 29, 1980 we recited our vows before her father in the sanctuary of the First Baptist Church of Bamberg, South Carolina where he served as pastor and began the journey together as husband and wife. It was Thanksgiving break at the seminary where…

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The Super Bowl, Spam and the Power of the Gospel

For the past two years Pam and I have attended a Super Bowl party with one of the Sunday School classes at our church, a thirty-something class with fifteen or twenty couples. It’s a blast to hang out with them on a night when most of America is doing the same thing. But this get-together has…

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Why Are Churches Not Teaching the Bible?

I ran into a young husband and dad this week who used to come to our church, left for a while and now has returned. In the modern American church his experience isn’t unusual. Many people today join a church for shorter periods than previous generations and will move their membership several times through the course…

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