Spiritual Life

I Want to Be a Remnant


Today’s Bible Passage: Amos 9 Scripture: “In that day I will restore the fallen kingdom of David. It is now like a house in ruins, but I will rebuild its walls and restore its former glory.” Amos 9:11 ObservationIn this chapter, God has given Israel 4 affirmations of things he would do. The first 3 are negative. They basically say …

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Small Group Leaders     Spiritual Life

What Makes Meetings a Failure – You Might Be Surprised


Today’s Bible Passage: Amos 5 Scripture: Amos 5:4-6, 21-24 Observation Amos 5:4-6: God’s constant call to us is “Come back to me and live!” “Come to me you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest” (Matt. 11:28). There is a call to repentance here: Come back to me (see v. 6 as well). God is pleading with them …

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Spiritual Life

Necessity or Luxary?


Today’s Bible Reading: Amos 4 Scripture: Amos 4:1-3 (NLT) Listen to me, you “fat cows” of Samaria, you women who oppress the poor and crush the needy and who are always asking your husbands for another drink! The Sovereign Lord has sworn this by his holiness: “The time will come when you will be led away with hooks in your …

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Discipling     External-Focus     Ministry Leaders

Small Group Charades


Tonight we began our small group meeting playing a game of charades as an icebreaker. Guys vs. girls. Girls won. Lots of laughing. Good times. Then we discussed three Scripture passages, looking at them to answer the question, “Why do we meet as a small group?” Read through these yourself, reflecting on that same question for your group: Hosea 6:6 …

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Spiritual Life

Religion, Prophets, & Leading from the Heart


As I began reading the Book of Amos this morning, I read the Introduction from The Message about religion and the role of prophets. While I don’t usually share longer quotes here, I think this is well worth sharing. See what you think. More people are exploited and abused in the cause of religion than in any other way. Sex, …

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Small Group Leaders

Is Our Group Healthy or Unhealthy?


I received a good question from one of our small group leaders today. I think this is a critical question that many leaders and groups are asking: What are the top 3 things a healthy small group should be doing? Shouldn’t it be more than just social, or just project driven? Here’s my response: Below are the top 7 hallmarks of a …

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Spiritual Life

Hosea 14 Prayer


My Father, I confess that going my own way has brought me down. I have suffered the consequences of trying to go my own way without You. So now once again I return to You. Forgive me of my sins and graciously receive me, so that I may offer you a sacrifice of praise. Government programs can’t save me, nor …

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Small Group Leaders

On 3 … Point to the Group Leader!


What–or, more precisely, who–is missing from many small groups? In my last post, I wrote about the model of small groups many of us have taught for years. But we were wrong. We were leaving out what was most important. The power for small group health, growth, and multiplication comes not from a model, program, or even one’s leadership abilities. …

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Small Group Leaders

Leadership Is Not a Solo Act


For several decades, small group leaders have been taught that leading is a solo act. I’ve seen (and even used) a model that pictures a small group leader sitting alone in the middle of a circle, surrounded by all the members of the group. That picture illustrates that the leader has been given the sole responsibility for finding, inviting, shepherding, calling, praying for, …

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Spiritual Life

How God Parents Brats (Like Us)


God’s children are like spoiled brats. God cares for us in His mercy and grace, and we take advantage of Him. We want our own way. God’s chosen children, the people of Israel, did this over and over. I read Hosea 11 this morning. This chapter reads like the transcript from an interview with a loving mom and dad whose …

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