Certainly, everywhere across America Christians and non-Christians alike will be celebrating on that day the freedom we gained from an oppressive king and government – which is certainly something worth celebrating.
But, over the last few years I have noticed an unhealthy trend in the Church toward lifting up their political party loyalty and our nation (the United States of America) above and beyond our loyalty to Jesus and the Kingdom which He is building. And so while I’m excited to celebrate on the Fourth on Sunday, I’m a little hesitant and concerned.
We have failed at showing you kindness and compassion even if we disagree with you about sexuality.
It’s 8PM on a Monday night, I’m sitting in the living room with my 4-year-old watching the Looney Toons version of “The Three (3) Little Pigs” and, of course, this gets me thinking about the message that is being communicated through this short little… Continue Reading “The Gospel of The Three Little Pigs”
After watching the western church response to John MacArthur/Beth Moore, Kanye, then Kanye/Joel Osteen, and now Chick-fil-A I can confidently say that the reality is these folks get triggered just as easily as their liberal and millennial counterparts…they just get triggered over different things.
In case you’ve been living under a rock or out of the country for the last month, let me just tell you…it’s been a busy couple of weeks for the American Church.
On one side you have the pastors and church leaders (the shepherds), and on the other you have the church body (the sheep). For decades (if not centuries) there has always been a tension between these 2 sides of the coin, which results in church splits, hurt relationships, broken testimonies, people being turned away from and turned off of the church, and a whole lot more. Each side of the coin seems to think they ARE the coin not realizing that they are but one side of the same coin….that there is another side.
There once was a man who was in the market for a car that was really good on gas mileage, was cheap, and was small (he worked in a downtown area where parking was minimal). This man found a 2002 Mini Cooper with 56,000… Continue Reading “The Parable of the 2002 Mini Cooper: A Lesson On Getting Help”
Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put… Continue Reading “A Beautiful Mess”
Being called a Spiritual Son or hearing someone call themselves my Spiritual Father (or mother) was something I wasn’t used to growing up in the Southern Baptist Church. Which is odd, because there is certainly this type of relationship displayed throughout the Bible.
In part one of this series of entries about why I trust the authority of scripture, I explained how important wisdom is. God doesn’t want us to be uninformed about the legitimacy of His claims, who He is or the implications all that has… Continue Reading “The Reliability of Scripture”
Notice: All of the answers you’re looking for are in the bible. I, a pastor, or any well educated theologian can tell you all about what we believe, why we believe it, and what we know about history that corroborates with it, but you… Continue Reading “Apologetics Intro – Bearers of Truth”
THROWING UP THE WALLS Since I’ve begun my foray into examining and critiquing modern Church practices and settings in hopes to find what the Church really should look like, I have found that from the moment I began I have been met with a… Continue Reading “Obese Church VS Keto Church”
Sometimes, I scroll through my timeline and wonder if a lot of people have any original thoughts of their own. The NPC meme sums them up in a tragicallty comical way. They have preset phrases they use to engage most issues and do not… Continue Reading “Facts > Feelings I”
CLEARING THE STAGE AND THE AIR Jimmy Needham put out a cover of the song “Clear the Stage” back in 2012, but I was only introduced to it a year or 2 ago by my former pastor. It is a song that challenges the… Continue Reading “Worship Is More Than a Song”
THE MOVEMENT Around 1997, a man by the name of Jay Shafer began a now growing and increasingly popular movement known as The Tiny House Movement. The purpose or vision of most who are moving toward the Tiny House movement is really quite simple:… Continue Reading “The Tiny House Movement: A Big Lesson for the American Church”
A ROYAL INVITATION Imagine, the Queen of England sends word to you that she would like for you to pay her a visit. She would like for you to come to England, sit down in her living room (or whatever that looks like in… Continue Reading “An Audience With the King”
It was announced back at the end of October that the church I had been serving on staff at would close it’s doors on December 30, 2018. And so it did. This, of course, left my family wondering what we were going to do… Continue Reading “The Table – What is Fellowship?”
Have you ever seen those commercials or read the inserts on some prescriptions that seem to describe side-effects that far exceed the issue it is supposedly treating? You know, crazy things like, “This drug treating a mild cough could cause internal bleeding, the breakdown… Continue Reading “No, Your Pastor Shouldn’t Be Expected to Lead Your Friend to Jesus and The Church Gathering is Not For The Unbeliever”
If you’re seeing this article, and haven’t had a chance to read Part 1, I HIGHLY encourage you to start there as I lay this whole thing out in a fairly structured way. And much of what will be said in Part 2 gets… Continue Reading “A Pastoral Epidemic of Biblical Proportions (Part 2)”
I just recently read an article titled 20 Signs of a Toxic Church Culture, where the author Dr. Joseph Mattera recounts several signs that he has observed over time that indicate that the church you are part of may have a toxic culture. The article appeared… Continue Reading “20 Signs of a Consumer Driven Church Culture”
I admit, it’s a weird and unsettling title for an article. But I cannot sugar coat the meat of the message. So why sugar coat the title as well? I say happy Father’s Day to you fathers who have and who are adulterous, not… Continue Reading “Happy Fathers Day to the Adulterous Fathers – We Still Love You”
Guest Author: Cherie Bates I should probably begin by introducing myself. Hello, my name is Cherie, and I have a confession to make: I am not making a New Year’s resolution this year. Instead, I am writing out a manifesto. A manifesto is defined… Continue Reading “2018: A Manifesto in Defiance of Generational Norms”
There’s an old Harry Chapin song called “Cats in the Cradle” that I recall my father saying frequently when I was a kid was one of his favorite songs. When he was a pastor, I even recall him using the lyrics of the song… Continue Reading “Cats in the Cradle: A Cautionary Tale”
You can’t simply state “Jesus fulfilled (“ended” – as is often interpreted) the law, therefore we are under grace.” without fully understanding what Jesus actually did, and what He said He actually did. Take a little journey with me through Hebrews 8 and 9… Continue Reading “We Need Grace AND the Law”
Victors take responsibility for their mistakes. Victims blame others for their mistakes. Victors receive correction as a teaching moment. Victims take correction as a personal attack. Victors let go of offenses. Victims horde their offenses and take on others offenses as well. Victors refuse… Continue Reading “Victor OR Victim: Which One Are You?”
No doubt you’ve seen them. You’ve seen the cars with the “Christianese” catchphrase bumper stickers on them…or the “Jesus Fish” or the crosses….or even the bumper sticker for a local church plastered on a car…and the rare car that has all of the above… Continue Reading “Bumper Sticker Christianity”
People are going to hurt you. It hurts, even more, when the hurt comes from those who you love the most. It is, unfortunately, the nature of a humanity that is deeply depraved and fallen, to hurt one another, to eat the wounded, to… Continue Reading “How to Respond When it Seems the One Who Hurt You is Succeeding In Life”
Ever hear someone say, “It’s just me and Jesus!”? Or something like, “I appreciate your concern, but Jesus loves me and His grace is enough for me, and I know he’ll forgive me and love me just as I am.”? Usually, these statements are… Continue Reading “Accountability: “I don’t need it, it’s Just me and Jesus!””
Recently a member of the Abolish Human Abortion (AHA) society put out a Facebook status that stated that the gospel was not the main thing. He argued that loving God and loving others was the main thing and that the gospel was secondary to… Continue Reading “The Gospel IS the Main Thing…and Here’s why”
“Those punk kids will never understand what it’s like to have responsibility. When I was their age I already had a full-time job.” “Those old people are such tightwads. I’m glad our generation is a lot more generous.” “Look at those parents, their kids… Continue Reading “World War Infinity: The Generational Wars”
Have you ever been so afraid that you were blind to what was really happening around you? I know I’ve experienced this. Especially when the pressures of life began to have a profound effect on more than just myself, but also my family, or… Continue Reading “When Fear Blinds You to Reality”
2016 has been….an interesting year. To say the least. But of all the interesting things in 2016, I think that it has been a pivotal year for the church in America. A revealing year. As I’ve stated in previous articles, the heart of much… Continue Reading “The Missing Spark of Revival and Unity”
When in the course of Church history it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the ideological bands which have connected them with another and to assume credibility and obedience to God despite the opinions of mankind that they should declare the causes which… Continue Reading “A Declaration of Independence from Situationism”
This election season, unlike any other I’ve witnessed in my very short 16-year voting history, has been one of the most stressful and disheartening elections I have personally been through. We are still a good 2 weeks out from election day, but let’s not… Continue Reading “Minds Are Made Up. So where do we go from here?”
“I just want to share with you what God has put on my heart.” In some cases (and I do mean some) this is a legitimate statement. God has indeed (in some cases) put something legitimate on the heart of a believer to speak… Continue Reading “Masking Words With Deceptive Phrases “