Preacher on the Run…

Faith, Family, Ministry, and Everything in between

Sticking with Community in a “Gotta Go” World (Feature Friday 02/14/20)

Ask my wife and she will tell you we first met when we were college freshmen. I don’t recall the “love at first sight” incident. It would be almost 2 years later, in July, until we began dating. Prior to that fateful and life-shaping July evening there was plenty of communication and interaction, but needless to say, I was often a bit naive.

I still have messages from my wife, hinting heavily at her interest in me and I didn’t see it. While we will look back on those memories and laugh for years, but they remind me how much I appreciate my wife’s character…she stuck with it when she could have (and some argue should have) headed another direction. Unfortunately, in today’s culture, it appears that we are a people far too easily exiting when we should be engaging.

For this reason and more I appreciate and highly encourage you to read Jay Kim’s article “Sticking with Community in a ‘Gotta Go’ World“. In it, Kim states: “If we really want true community, we have to be willing to endure necessarily difficult and uncomfortable situations. True connection is never as clean as a swipe or click would have us believe.”

I hope you enjoy the article, have a great Valentine’s day, and engage rather than exit relationships today…as always be with the Lord’s people on the Lord’s day.

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

Common Misconceptions (Feature Friday 02/07/20)

We have all heard them and probably still believe a few of them without knowing it. “Don’t go swimming for 30 minutes after you eat”. “Gum takes years to digest if you swallow it”. “Touching toads will give you warts”. These and many more misconceptions continue to spread and believed around the world (and my house).

While some misconceptions are harmless and ultimately don’t hurt you to believe (well besides costing you hours of good swim time as a kid), many misconceptions we all have cost us more than we realize. The most costly misconceptions have to do with our vision of the future. Where are we going? What do we think the future will be like? One of the greatest topics of misconception is Heaven.

Will there be a New Heaven and New Earth? Have people gone to heaven and returned? Will we go up to heaven or will God come down? All of these and other Common Misconceptions about Heaven are addressed in this podcast with Ian Smith.

Enjoy the podcastand as you do are there any other misconceptions you would add to the list? Have a great weekend and as always be with the Lord’s people on the Lord’s day!

Photo by Jonathan Velasquez on Unsplash

How to Pray for Unbelieving Family Members (01/31/20)

The holidays are wonderful times. We see family we don’t always see. We eat way too much food. And we have time away from the routine that can be refreshing. However, for me, there is a reality I face every holiday season with extended family. There are still some in my family that are living without a life-giving relationship with Jesus. But that is where the tension lies…I don’t see all my family very often. What am I to do?

While I wish I could see all of my family more often and live life with them and have more opportunity to share about my life-giving relationship with Jesus, that does not mean I have no opportunity to care for them. One of the greatest ways I can love my family from afar is by praying for them. This is why I enjoyed reading William Philip’s article “How to Pray for Unbelieving Family Members“.

I hope you enjoy the article, what else would you add? As always be with the Lord’s people on the Lord’s day!

Photo by Amaury Gutierrez on Unsplash

Planting Seeds of Truth for Your Kids (Feature Friday 01/24/20)

He had been so excited to wear it. The weather had just turned cold enough for winter coats and that morning he had thrown it on with joyful exuberance. The last thing I saw was a beaming smile as he strolled into his school. The next time I saw him was with head low and tear-filled eyes. What happened? One word – kids.

Children can be brutal on one another. While my son was excited and joy-filled to wear his new coat into school it seems his classmates were not so thrilled about his new attire. Apparently, throughout the day multiple classmates made fun of his “puffy” coat and had less than positive remarks about it. Kids are brutal. This is why parents have such an important role in how we use our words for our kids. I appreciate Candace Wynn’s article “Planting Seeds of Truth for Your Kids“.

I have come to realize and am still learning just how big my words are in the ears and hearts of my children. I hope this article encourages you to speak the truth in love not just to your own children, but to any child you have the privilege to interact with regularly.

As always be with the Lord’s people on the Lord’s day and I’d love to hear what else you’d add to the important list of seeds needing to be implanted in our kids.

Photo by Kat J on Unsplash

20 Questions to Ask Other Leaders (Feature Friday 01/17/20)

Having opened up my laptop and logged into my student portal, I sat excitedly waiting for the virtual classroom session to begin. It was my second semester as a graduate student and I was beginning to think I was in over my head. “I don’t belong here”. “Everyone else is so much more intelligent or successful or better leaders than I am”. “I’m still not even sure what I want to do with my degree if/when I get it”. These were all thoughts running around in my mind and I was considering calling it quits.

That’s when the professor started the class and uttered words I will never forget…”Leaders are learners”! My professor was Dr. Howard Hendricks and with that 3-word statement, I realized I was right where I needed to be – learning!

I had imbibed the myth that leadership is knowing all the answers and having it all figured out. That is a lie. Leadership is more about questions than answers. It’s more about listening than speaking. That’s why Michael Hyatt’s article “20 Questions to Ask Other Leaders” has been a game-changer for me.

As a leader, I need to be asking questions all the time…good questions. But sometimes I am out of good questions so this list is one I keep handy and fall back on often. What other questions would you add?

Enjoy the article and as always be with the Lord’s people on the Lord’s day.

Photo by Kari Shea on Unsplash

3 Key Components of an Effective Discipleship Group (Feature Friday 01/10/20)

I was reflecting this morning on yet another new year beginning. My reflection began looking to the past. I thought about the events in my life over the past year. I put time into thinking about how many of those things were the results of intentional decisions on my part and how many of them are the results of a lack of intentionality on my part. One of the areas I reflected upon was a small group of guys that I gathered with a couple times a month this past year.

This group of guys was an encouragement to me. Even though I may have initiated the gatherings and routine meetings, I feel as though I benefited as much if not far more than the guys I invited into the group. And as I thought about this group, I was reminded about so many other groups I have participated in or led before. All of these groups had a common purpose…discipleship. We all wanted to grow in our likeness of Jesus Christ.

That led me to think about the common threads of each group. What brought all of these diverse people together and what made each of the groups an encouragement and greenhouse for my growth and others. I think Jim Putnam hits the nail on the head in his article “3 Key Components of an Effective Discipleship Group.” As I think about the groups I have been a part of, the ones that were effectively shared these 3 aspects. The groups that were missing any one of these ended up being – well – less than effective.

Enjoy the article. What else would you add to it? As always be with the Lord’s people on the Lord’s day!

Photo by Dylan Gillis on Unsplash

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