Ministry Ideas: Floresta, Part 1

jesus-washing-footA recent article from Christianity Today.

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Church Plants and Missions: Replanting a Church, Education, Part 2

We are working through an article by Scott Thomas on replanting an existing church, that is, renewing a church so that it grows and matures as a church plant does.

A replanted church would have regular, repeated courses on parenting — courses that address how to raise children who will have a passion to be like Jesus. The teen ministers can’t do it. The parents can, though, and the teen minister can support the parents. But if the parents don’t have a passion to pass down, it’s awfully hard to convince the kids to be more passionate about Jesus than their parents.

Parents,

Here are the keys — Continue reading

Replanting a Church: Education, Part 1

We are working through an article by Scott Thomas on replanting an existing church, that is, renewing a church so that it grows and matures as a church plant does.

Scott’s fourth point involves education for discipleship —

c. Envision how education and discipleship could be effective (Acts 2:42).

  1. How will it become a passionate pursuit of the body (“continue steadfastly in the Apostles’ doctrine”, Acts 2:42)?
  2. What resources (people, qualities, gifts) do you have in place to launch greater disciple-making?
  3. How will the fathers and heads of households (single moms, etc.) be trained to be the priest and spiritual head of their homes?
  4. How will the older men and women teach and interact with the younger men and women? (Titus 2)
  5. Will the age groups be segregated (children, youth, singles, college, married, etc.) or will they be integrated into the body?
  6. What role will small groups play?
  7. What training will be needed to help develop disciples who are passionately pursuing Christ?

This covers a lot of territory — and territory that we often don’t discuss.

Continue reading

Church Plants and Missions: Mistakes to Avoid in Church Planting

I don’t often post videos (other than music), because I don’t have the patience (or time) to listen to a video when I can read so much more in the same time — and there’s so much worthwhile reading out there. And so I figure I shouldn’t unnecessarily tax my readers’ time either.

But this is a really good one. It’s 7:41 minutes. You can watch it during halftime.

The person being interviewed is Ed Stetzer, who works with the Southern Baptist Convention on church growth issues — and speaks to audiences of all denominations. The guy knows his stuff.

Replanting a Church: Evangelism, Part 2

We are working through an article by Scott Thomas on replanting an existing church, that is, renewing a church so that it grows and matures as a church plant does.

So how do we get our members to evangelize? Well, by teaching good news that is so good they can’t help but evangelize.

And this requires us to get away from the Reformation/Evangelical model of evangelism that says Christianity is all about going to heaven when we die. That’s just the first chapter, indeed, the preface to the Story that we are called to live in.

Rather, Christianity is also about joining an ancient, God-indwelt community filled with God’s Spirit on mission with God to redeem the world. We share this community with the saints who died before us and the saints not yet born.

Our mission is bigger than anyone of us and bigger than any congregation or denomination. It’s bigger than everyone alive today.

The mission is not to be a “Jesus follower” (the new euphemism for “Christian”). The mission is to be Jesus. Got that?

We are the body of Christ — and we are only the body of Christ as a united community. I am not Christ’s body. We are Christ’s body. Continue reading

Oh, Elizabeth! This is the big one! I’m coming to see you …

That was one scary football game!! I wasn’t sure my heart would survive it.

Thanks to Julio and company for taking Auburn down — eventually — 26-21. Whew!!

Happy Thanksgiving

I am astonished beyond words (metaphorically speaking, of course) that no one has offered me a punch line on the How to Count Church Attendance Post. I figure everyone’s too busy traveling and cooking turkey.

Therefore, I’m going to suspend posts until after Thanksgiving and the Alabama-Auburn football game (1:30 CT on Friday CBS). I mean, who am I to tempt you away from family and football — not to mention turkey and dressing?

And when you’ve recovered, come back refreshed and fed, and give me some punchlines! And have a great Thanksgiving!

By the way, I’ve changed email services. Those of you who’ve subscribed by Feedburner are welcome to continue to do so (you need do nothing to preserve the status quo), but WordPress (who hosts the blog) is now offering their own service that’s a bit more flexible. The link on the upper right for email subscriptions now links to the new WordPress native service.