Leadership is a process of influence. Anytime you seek to influence the thinking, behavior, or development of people in their personal or professional lives, you are taking on the role of a leader.Actually, all of us exercise leadership in some way. It really isn't a question about IF YOU LEAD; rather it's a question about WHO YOU LEAD and HOW YOU LEAD. Since God has given you a sphere of influence--even if it is a small sphere--that makes you a leader. Seek to use your influence for the sake of Jesus and His kingdom.
1) Buy my home. This would be great for two reasons. We would sell our home and you would get an great home in a great neighborhood. It's a win-win situation.
2) Tell other people about our home. Maybe you know a friend, family member, or co-worker who is looking for a great house in Anderson, SC.
3) Pray for our home to sell. We are confident that the Lord will make it possible for us to move to Newport News. Ask the Lord to bring the right buyers to us.
Behold, you have heard what the kings of Assyria have done in all the lands, devoting them to destruction….Where is the king of Hamath, the king of Arpad, the king of the city of Sepharvaim, the king of Hena, or the king of Ivvah?
Some trust in chariots, and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the LORD our God.
Up! For this is the day in which the LORD has given Sisera into your hand. Does not the LORD go out before you?
Truly, O LORD, the kings of Assyria have laid waste the nations and their lands and have cast their gods into the fire, for they were not gods, but the work of men’s hands, wood and stone. Therefore they were destroyed. So now, O LORD our God, please save us from his hand, that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that you, O LORD, are God alone.
My God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.
But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved.
Being around parents and their young children is an interesting thing--especially when a child is first learning to talk. To the outside observer, the child's talk is utter nonsense; yet, somehow the parent seems to understand. The child says, "Baa la mi" (or some other combination of grunts, beeps, or clicks) and the parent gives the child a cup of milk. Amy and I have experienced this with all of our children. We have listened and observed our children for long enough to be able to understand what they are seeking to communicate, even when others have no idea what they said. The ability to understand our children did not happen overnight. It takes time and effort. Other relationships are not much different. If we are really going to get to know others, then it is going to take time and effort. Deep relationships don't happen overnight. They are cultivated over time. Relationships are hard work, but they are well worth the effort. The importance of relationships really comes into focus when we consider what the Bible has to say about relating to one another:
Love one another – Romans 12:10
Honor one another – Romans 12:10
Live in harmony with one another – Romans 12:16; 15:5
Instruct one another – Romans 15:14
Care for one another – 1 Corinthians 12:25
Comfort one another – 2 Corinthians 13:11
Serve one another – Galatians 5:13
Be kind to one another – Ephesians 4:32
Forgive one another – Ephesians 4:32
Address one another with psalms, hymns, spiritual songs – Ephesians 5:19
Submit to one another – Ephesians 5:21
Be truthful to one another – Colossians 3:9
Teach and Admonish one another – Colossians 3:16
Encourage one another – 1 Thessalonians 4:18
Build up one another – 1 Thessalonians 5:11
Do good to one another – 1 Thessalonians 5:15
Exhort one another – Hebrews 3:13
Consider how to stir up one another – Hebrews 10:24
Confess sins to one another – James 5:16
Pray for one another – James 5:16
Show hospitality to one another – 1 Peter 4:9
Be humble toward one another – 1 Peter 5:5
So, commit yourself to doing the hard work of building relationships. In case you're wondering where to start, I'll leave you with three thoughts.
First, remember that the most important relationship is a relationship with Jesus. Without a proper relationship with Him, all of your other relationships will never be right.
Second, build relationships in the context of the local church.
Third, meet and build relationships with those who have yet to have faith in Jesus. The Lord can use you to help them find the relationship that they need most desperately.
Watch this video and then think through the following questions:
What are the benefits and drawbacks of the "attractional" approach?
What are the benefits and drawbacks of the "missional" church?
Can these approaches be integrated or are they totally opposed to one another? Why?
The comment section is waiting for you...
Knowing that Jesus was born in Bethlehem will not in and of itself empower them to speak the language of faith. Satan's use of Scripture in tempting Jesus is clear indication that a merely cognitive level of biblical literacy does not automatically result in the formation of a Christian character. To make a real difference in people's lives, biblical literacy programs will have to do more than simply encourage believers to memorize a select set of Bible verses. They will have to teach people to speak the language of faith...Biblical literacy programs need to do more than produce informed quoters. They need to produce transformed readers.I believe that Nienhuis is correct. While I believe that Bible memorization is a good part of educating believers, it does not exhaust the task. Here are a couple of suggestions for helping people become transformed readers of Scripture.
- Teach the Bible as a Story - From beginning to end, the Bible tells one grand story. The plot-line of the Bible moves from Creation to Fall to Redemption to Consummation. We must relate the many stories found within Scripture to the one, unified Story. In other words, we must not treat the Bible as a collection of unrelated stories; every story is part of the drama of redemption. (Recommended Resource: The Jesus Storybook Bible)
- Ask the "So What?" Question - The goal of reading Scripture is not simply to make us more informed or knowledgeable. Facts are good, but they are not enough--even the demons believe certain facts about God (James 2:19). The things that we learn in the Bible regarding God, ourselves, and the world should lead us to action. For example, the proper response of the one who learns of his or her sinful condition and of Jesus' death and resurrection, is faith and repentance. Every time we read Scripture we should ask the "So what?" question -- "So, what should my response be to what God has revealed to me in His Word?"
More than 70 dogs and cats attended the service (also one turtle and one bird), accompanied by their human families. Held outside, the animals gathered together, surprisingly well-behaved, to hear guitar music in their honor, and a message by our pastors. Bill and Eleanor then blessed each animal individually.Wow. I love animals--I have one cat and two dogs. But I do not think that this type of "worship" service has any place within a Christian ministry setting. What has happened to true, biblical, gospel-centered worship? Do animals really need to have music and messages in their honor? I think not. Let me know what you think.
I'm sure that many people can relate to this story. Maybe you came upon it accidentally as I did. Or maybe an older brother or friend showed it to you. Or maybe you searched it out. Maybe it disgusted you too. Yet, somewhere along the way, maybe confusion turned to curiosity. Maybe disgust turned to delight. Maybe that first view led you into a web of lust. You certainly would not the first person this happened to.
Sadly, so many men and women (both Christian and non-Christian) battle with addictions to pornography. The sin of lust has consummed so many. It can quickly become your god, your idol. This is exactly what our enemy, Satan, would want. He seeks to take what is good--the God-given gift of sex between husband and wife--and distort and twist it. He wants men and women to worship the gift instead of the Giver. But Satan is a liar and the father of lies (John 8:44).
Below, I've placed some links to a few free online resources (E-Books) that you can download and read. These two resources--one for single guys and one for married guys--are excellent. They are written by Tim Challies (www.challies.com). The table of contents contains these chapters:
Pornifying the Marriage Bed
A Theology of Sex
In addition, these guides included some very helpful discussion/study questions at the end of each section
Sexual Detox - A Guide for the Single Guy
Sexual Detox - A Guide for the Married Guy
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