Seek Approval From Others

Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ. (Galatians 1:10) Why do we work for the approval of others? One reason is that the results are immediate. Irrational fathers and nazi …

I am what I am because…

“But by the grace of God I am what I am…” (1 Corinthians 15:10) Consider, for a moment, about what defines you. Think slowly and honestly. Who are you? What milestones in your journey have led you to this place? The issues surrounding identity do not only belong to the young. Although it is doubtless that adolescence is the crucible …

let your gentleness be evident to all

There are some verses we love because we already do them well. We remember these scriptures, and when we are humble, we thank God for his blessings. Some teachings we hate, because they challenge the very core of our brokenness–time and time again. When we are humble, we ask God for his strength. For me, Philippians 4:5 falls into this second class: …

finding God

It’s not really difficult to find God. The difficulty lies in deciding to look for him. “…seek and you will find…” (Matthew 7:7)

Devoted in prayer

“Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.” (Colossians 4:2) I love these simple instructions for prayer. Prayer doesn’t have to be elaborate for it to be effective. What does it mean to be watchful? Here are some ideas: Watch the condition of your heart. (Proverbs 4:23) Watch for the temptations in your life. (Mark 14:38) Watch for where God is moving so we can keep in step …

Three Benefits of Temptation

“..temptations are often very beneficial to us, even though they are troublesome and grievous, for in them we are humbled, purified, and instructed.” Thomas à Kempis. “Imitation Of Christ.” HUMBLED — Temptations move us to greater dependence on God because we cannot stand up under them without divine power. Worldly successes can lead to a stronger sense of self-sufficiency (believing …

Surrender

The best way to give God everything is to give him the next thing.

shaping your leadership culture

Recently, our staff had a conversation about what it might look like if we were more aware, accepting, and welcoming of our visitors. I captured the ideas, refined them a little, and then got feedback. We wanted to make an impact beyond the staff, so after a discussion with our key leaders, we challenged everyone–staff and key leaders– to walk through the …

Trust: A Conversation with my oldest son, Max

After church last weekend, I asked my oldest, “What did you talk about at church today?” He’s 11 … so I want to have the appropriate expectations for his response. More importantly, he’s a human, so I don’t want church to become a meaningless ritual. My goal: I want our conversations to be as natural as possible. The last thing …

Leaders Worth Following

Follow a leader who: Authentically loves Jesus, not simply appearing to follow him Knows God’s calling on their life Listens to their convictions, instead of their critics Acts with confidence, not bravado Cares about people, rather than controlling them Has a plan to move forward, rather than just keeping people busy Earns trust, rather than expecting it Demonstrates integrity, rather …