Monday, February 25, 2013

Praying with Authority

Years ago, I remember hearing on the radio ads in the guise of programming for a book called "Prayer Secrets." In a deep southern drawl, a nationally known preacher would claim to know the secret of getting prayers answered. Was he right? Or perhaps there's something more to praying with authority than some religious formula.

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Friday, February 22, 2013

Bein' All Things

(From The Archives) Paul strove to be all things to all men in order to reach some. Paul's effectiveness isn't in doubt so perhaps we need to do the same. With a vastly diverse culture, how can the modern church effectively work to the same goal?

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Wednesday, February 20, 2013

The Leaven of Herod

(From The Archives) As we move to becoming the church that Jesus wants us to be, we need to consider His warnings. What exactly is the "Leaven of Herod" He tells us to avoid and how can it destroy the church and us personally?

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Monday, February 18, 2013

Rightly Dividing

The Word is powerful, of that there is no doubt. Unfortunately, it isn't always easy for a finite, fallen human being to interpret. Today's program tries to give you a few tools to make the task easier so we can all be diligent to be "workmen approved by God, rightly dividing the Word of truth."

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Friday, February 15, 2013

Inward Bound

(From The Foundations Archive) Introspection isn't all bad. It's necessary at times. The problem comes when we look inward too often and our gaze never looks outward. We can even start to think it's the point. When the church is only focused inward, the consequences can be grave.

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Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Moving Forward

It's been a while since I've had time to update this blog due to a series of situations ranging from family to work related that have taken away the time I would have normally dedicated to keeping you, my gentle readers, in the loop. As I promised, part of this blog is going to be the journey as we take the next major steps in the ministry the Lord has laid before us.

Over the last couple of weeks, I have been working diligently to pull all of my notes together into a single, semi-coherent document. When I sit down to look at the volume of notes I've made and finally see them all in one place, it's a little intimidating. Even in an outline form waiting for the full details to be fleshed out as the Lord provides the leaders to help, the church we are planting is an overwhelming task. What we will be doing is so different from what most other ministries do that it almost feels like we're reinventing the wheel. If we didn't have a model to work from and wise counsel, I would feel like the task is too much.

However, I trust God to send us the help we need. There is no way we can accomplish such a sweeping vision on our own. We need leaders, workers, and other visionaries to come along with us to build upon the skeleton we have at this point. I have been long determined that while I may have been given the initial vision, I will not be the sole driving force behind the ministry. One of the many lessons I've had to learn over the years is to make certain that other people are given the opportunity to contribute to the overall vision and take stewardship over the ministry.

Very soon, likely as soon as March, we will be starting to hold prayer gatherings for interested people and anyone who just wants to come pray with us. I am convinced that starting with a foundation of prayer is absolutely essential to our success in accomplishing the mission that we've been given. I felt impressed to start with prayer rather than Bible studies to begin our journey. Yes, we will discuss the Word, but seeking the Lord's face and His guidance is the main purpose.

I have also been forced to make some very difficult choices. One of the main ones is that I need to entrust the selection of most of the pastors and ministry leaders to the elder board. I have only offered one position to one person that has been on my heart for that role since this was first laid on my heart. I will select the first elder after prayer and fasting, but all others will be by consensus with the rest of the board. I have made my share of mistakes over the years and have seen the results of not only my choices going wrong but also the unilateral selections of others. I do not want to make those mistakes again.

At this juncture, I need to express something. I expect some resistance to what we are doing from within the local church community. As I said, I've made my share of mistakes in ministry, perhaps more than my share. Because of these, I know that there will be people who will not support us in planting a new church. I have grown a lot these last several years out of necessity and deliberate efforts in prayer and study. I am convinced that the time we have taken to rest and not be involved in ministry other than Jesus' Outsider has been greatly beneficial to both the lovely bride and me.

For many years, I was frantic to serve anywhere and everywhere. I made a lot of mistakes out of zeal and allowing my wretched excess of personality to push aside wise counsel and often go my own way. I found myself outpacing God's plan for what I was doing and thereby not accomplishing much of anything. Maybe that's why I'm proceeding at a very methodical pace despite my growing sense of urgency. At each step, I am asking the Lord if I should lift my foot or set it down. I am trying to balance my zeal with wisdom. I pray that I am succeeding.

I know the road ahead is a difficult one. I expect that starting a church will needing to work full time will be a strain and more stuff will have to be taken off my plate, at least for a season. The one thing I never want to do at any point in this adventure is to neglect the most important ministry I have been given; my family. If they are left in the dirt, then all my efforts are not of the Lord and are vanity.

I have the notes pulled together. If anyone is interested, let me know in the comments or drop me an email.

Twisting Scripture

Deception is far too common in the church. Scripture is often twisted, distorted, or otherwise misused within our walls. Three common errors and misuses of the Word and their dangers are the subject of this episode.

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Monday, February 11, 2013


Michael Jordan didn't become Michael Jordan by practicing double-twist, black flip, reverse layups. He shot free-throws, layups, and from different points on the court. If we want to be successful as the church, we need to get back to the basics starting with the first pillar, the Word.

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Friday, February 8, 2013

Foundational Introductions

It's time to move from assessment and obstacles into the goal. What does the church look like when she's functioning as the spotless bride of Christ? The Pillars of the church must be explored, shored up, and set if we are to see a healthy body and a strong Kingdom.

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Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Overcoming The Opposition

The specifics of the attack may change, but the source and the strategy don't. We're back in Nehemiah again to find out how he dealt with the the opposition he faced in building the walls. There are some very real lessons we can learn from how he dealt with Sanballat and his cronies that we can apply to our own battles.

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Monday, February 4, 2013

Behind The Opposition

Lincoln can teach us a lesson or two about handling opposition and warfare. When we start to do the work of restoration of the Body of Christ, we will face a lot of opposition both from within the church and from the outside. If we are to win this war we find ourselves in, we need to handle it right. Victory hangs in the balance.

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