It’s fairly common to talk with non-Christian friends who may, even in passing, say they struggle to believe any religion because they’re “fact-based” people (or something … Continue reading How Should I Respond to My “Fact-Based” Friends?
An updated version of Acts 14:19-23: But Jews came from Antioch and Iconium, and having persuaded the crowds, they stoned Paul and dragged him out of … Continue reading What if Paul Planted Churches Like We Do Today?
Trusting people is hard for me. What about you? It’s not mainly because I believe people are so sinful they aren’t worthy of being trusted. That’s can be true sometimes. No, it has more to do with me. I don’t want to trust them. Trust means I need to be close, vulnerable, intimate. It’s easier to keep my distance. What’s the solution? Friendship. As friendship increases, so does trust. I’ll represent this reality with a mind-blowing, universe-altering, life-trajectory-changing graphic. Revolutionary, right? Actually, it is. Have you ever heard someone talk—in any context—and, as you listen from afar, you sense a deep distrust … Continue reading The One Thing That Grows Trust
Today is an important day. It’s Reformation Day, the day that sparked the Protestant Reformation in Europe. In fact, it’s the 500th anniversary of the day, October 31, 1517, when Martin Luther nailed his 95 Theses to the door of the Wittenburg church, challenging several unbiblical doctrines and practices of the established Roman Catholic church in Europe. The core issue of the Reformation, of course, was justification: how are people declared righteous before a perfect God? Luther argued it was by faith in Christ, as the Scriptures reveal, not our own works. The church needed this correction. We need to … Continue reading Three Brief Reflections on Reformation Day
Inspired by Philippians 4:10-20 Dear Ministry Partners at Grace Chapel, We have greatly rejoiced in the Lord because it’s very clear you are concerned for us. Indeed, you’ve always been concerned for our well-being. You’ve showed it in various ways. Yet you didn’t always have opportunity because our needs weren’t always tangible. Sometimes they weren’t even noticeable! Our need now is for prayer and financial partners in our new ministry. But this need is not burdensome. Even if it were, we’ve learned how to be content in any situation. We know what it’s like to struggle. We know what it’s like to prosper. In all … Continue reading A Brief Message to Our Ministry Partners at Grace Chapel
This has been a season of lasts for Carly and me. Tonight was our last congregational meeting on missions at Grace Chapel. We came so that I could serve as a pastor. We will be sent out as missionaries one month from today. To begin our meeting tonight, I set the context with three key biblical texts that are always bouncing around my mind. These texts show that we don’t just “do missions.” Missions is not one program of the church or something that a few people have a heart for. Mission is our main task. How do we know? For the earth will … Continue reading We Don’t Just “Do Missions”