Discipling     External-Focus

When Our Definition of Discipleship Keeps Us from Making Disciples


When Our Definition of Discipleship Keeps Us from Making Disciples

The church has redefined discipleship into churchmanship. Living as a disciple takes intentional effort and, according to Jesus, requires us to make costly decisions. It means more than just sitting in a row in a church building or in a circle at a coffee shop or in someone’s living room. In 1 Corinthians 7, Paul repeated the same message three times …

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Leader's Heart-Overflow

Love & Hate


To be holy is to hate what is unholy. To love a holy God is to hate what is evil. You who love the Lord, hate evil! He protects the lives of his godly people and rescues them from the power of the wicked. (Psalm 97:10, New Living Translation) To hate something (the Hebrew word here is ‏שָׂנֵא‎, sane, pronounced …

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Spiritual Life

God Is Calling You to Something New Today!


We love brand new things,  but most of us settle for the same old thing.  Sing a new song to the Lord! Let the whole earth sing to the Lord! (Psalm 96:1, New Living Translation) Today is a new day.This is the beginning of a new week.Today could be the beginning of a new life. In what same old ruts are …

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Small Group Leaders

How to Deal with the Person NO ONE Wants in their Group


In a small group discussion forum on SmallGroupChurches.com, Tim asked the following question:  The person who has attended your church since the flood, is a little “off” (possibly has a mental disability but nobody knows for sure), and effectively signs up for every group. Upon arriving at the “new” small group, with the unsuspecting rookie leader, they begin to take over the …

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Facilitating Discussion

Are You a Natural Small Group Leader? Advice from Dilbert


Yesterday’s post was pretty down and dark, so how about a little Fun Friday? Image Credit: Scott Addams – http://dilbert.com/2013-02-28/ Communication is a vital skill for small group leaders, but it doesn’t usually come naturally. Are you a great communicator? Would the members of your small group ever respond, at least silently, as Dilbert does in the second panel? What one …

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Spiritual Life

Lord of the Darkness: Trusting Jehovah When Suffering Comes


Psalm 88 must be the darkest psalm of them all, and one of the bleakest passage in the Bible. As I read this today, I kept waiting for the yet or however or but that you find in other psalms, but there are none. The author, Heman, goes on and on about how bad his life is. Read my journal …

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Ministry Leaders     Small Group Leaders

How to Build a Group of Real Friends: Throw Away the Signup Sheets!


The healthiest small groups can be described as groups of real friends…friends who accept one another where they are, friends who are there for one another no matter what, no matter what time of day or night, friends who speak the truth in love and help one another grow in their relationships with God. But how do you as a small …

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Small Group Leaders

Your Vital Roles as a Shepherd-Leader – #4 in Series


The role of shepherding a small group is not complex, but it does take continuous intentional effort. Of course, that starts with an understanding that these “sheep” have been entrusted to you by the Chief Shepherd. You are a shepherd, but he is the Good Shepherd, the Great Shepherd, the Real Shepherd of the sheep. Your role is to allow him …

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Small Group Leaders

What does your small group(s) do over the summer?


I’m writing my monthly Christian Standard small groups column for May, and I have this question. I’d liove to hear your response! What does your small group (or the groups at your church) do over the summer? Any great ideas I could share? Any values in play with this? Any philosophies of ministry/community involved? Please respond by clicking on the …

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Spiritual Life

When Cupid’s Arrows Bring Pain


Today I am blessed to celebrate Valentine’s Day with my beautiful bride and love of my life, Heidi. Valentine’s Day 2012 was not so happy. I won’t go into details in this public place–not yet anyway–but many of our close friends and family know the past several years have been a struggle for us. I know we’re not alone. Marriage …

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