Archive for the ‘ministry’ Category

Have you ever had a difficult time ending something? It could have been moving past a dream, a relationship, an employee that wasn’t contributing, a strategy or program that wasn’t working, a way you’ve always done something. This last month I started our Elder board on a journey through a book by Dr. Henry Cloud, “Necessary Endings”. In it Cloud discusses some of the obstacles that keep us from “ending” these things in our lives. Sometimes it’s because we don’t want to face reality, maybe we don’t want to admit defeat or maybe it’s just because we don’t know how. Cloud points to pruning in a garden as an example of what happens when we don’t prune the things in our life or organization. These situations end up draining energy and resources that are needed else where so there can be thriving growth.  For a Christ follower Jesus is the vine and He points to the “Vine Dresser” our heavenly father who desires to “prune” what is not helpful or necessary in our lives or in the life of a church.

As a pastor I’ve seen churches be so in love with their strategy that they could not “end” it when it was clear that it was not working. Pastor and author, Andy Stanley, states that “we should be in love with our vision but only infatuated with our method. I don’t want to be that leader that can’t see when something needs to end.

I’ve asked our elders to go on a journey with me over the next few months to pray and think through any areas that might need to be “ended”in our lives personally or in our church so that we can thrive.

What about you? What areas in your life are you holding onto that just need to be ended? A friendship, relationship, an employee that does more harm than good, a dream, a goal, a strategy? My prayer is that God would give us the courage to do what’s needed.

Pruning is painful, but necessary,

Nathan

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>The Whole Gospel….

Posted: April 1, 2010 in Gospel, ministry, preaching

>My son’s preschool class was asked today what Easter was all about. Landon told the class that we have Easter because “Jesus came back alive.” While I was thrilled that He knew why we celebrate Easter, I was sad to hear he was the only one.

The resurrection of Jesus Christ is nothing but awe inspiring.  Yet in many pulpits across the world the resurrection is rarely ever preached on. There is great emphasis on Christ’s death on the cross as well there should be. BUT, The resurrection is NO LESS important than the cross. Without Christ’s resurrection from the dead the cross would have just been vain torture. It is by Christ’s death AND resurrection that we have life.

1 Peter 1:3-5

3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, 5 who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

Bottom line: Christ’s resurrection shouldn’t just be a yearly topic that’s celebrated. It is the bedrock of our Christian faith and should be preached and shared as such!

I will rise because He did,

Nathan