From Shepherding to Spreading

For Carly and me, our call to ministry came long ago. Before marrying, we both sensed that the best hours of our days and weeks would be devoted to introducing people to Jesus and equipping them in their faith. We’ve been doing that in various ways for all of our seven years of marriage. For the most part, ours has been a shepherding kind of ministry. We’ve led small groups, taught classes, led in youth ministry, and for the past three and a half years, I’ve been a pastor. Yet we sensed Jesus moving us to shift focus. Last spring, when Carly … Continue reading From Shepherding to Spreading

Some Characteristics of Paul’s Missionary Methods

The apostle Paul is the greatest missionary Christianity has ever known, behind only the Lord Jesus himself. Paul used many missionary methods in his journeys. Of course, all of his methods and strategies were subject to the guidance of the Holy Spirit. This may actually be considered the supreme characteristic of Paul’s methods. Aside from this however, Paul’s methods contained a number of others which still inform our missionary efforts today. Here are five, and each of them build upon the previous one. Paul committed to preaching Christ where he has not already been named. In Romans 15:20, Paul makes clear that … Continue reading Some Characteristics of Paul’s Missionary Methods

The Result of a Debased Mind: Practicing and Approving of Evil Deeds

Though they know God’s decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them. (Romans 1:32) These unbelieving sinners that Paul has just spoken of in verses 28-31 know that what they are doing is wrong. Paul never speaks of the law in these verses, which is significant.  This communicates to us that all humans are under the same judgment, even if we haven’t received the Ten Commandments or a list of do’s and don’ts from God.  We all suppress God’s truth.  We all exchange his glory … Continue reading The Result of a Debased Mind: Practicing and Approving of Evil Deeds

Don’t Hide Behind Your Giving

In my last post, I talked about taking Jesus literally when he tells us to sell everything and give to the poor.  One frustration that I have with the Christian American Dream is that sometimes we are urged, albeit unknowingly, to “hide behind your giving.” Let me explain: Some people think that giving lots of money excuses them from actively engaging in God’s mission.  I know that my heart can be susceptible to this. Americanized Christianity tells us that if we write a check every other week, then we are the senders, we are the givers, we are the ones … Continue reading Don’t Hide Behind Your Giving

Are you on mission for Jesus?

During the last week, I have felt a greater sense of being on mission for God’s kingdom. I won’t give all the details (it’s not like my whole life has been upended) but God has been so gracious to change some attitudes and perspectives — and that does make a world of difference. So whether you are a businessman, a pastor, a retired grandfather, a stay at home mom, or a thousand other things, how are striving to be on mission for Jesus?  What are some practical things you have done or can do to influence people with the gospel? Continue reading Are you on mission for Jesus?