Thomas L. Friedman released an important book a few months ago called Thank You For Being Late: An Optimist’s Guide to Thriving in the Age of Accelerations. I usually take notes on the blank white pages in the back of a book. For a few seminal books, however, I actually type out key things God might be saying to me personally and as a leader. Thank You for Being Late was one of those books. My goal here is not to do a book review, but to share with you my top applications: We must be self-motivated, life-long learners. The world is changing at a pace so fast it has risen above the rate at which most people can absorb all the changes. Ray Kurzweil, director of engineering at Google, says it best: “The 21st century will be equivalent to 20,000 years of progress at today’s rate of progress; organizations have to be able. Read more.
The word “listen” or “hear” is found more than 1500 times in the Bible. The problem is that it is easy to lead FOR God without listening TO God. That is why the most important question every one of us must ask throughout our days is: “God, how are you coming to me, what might you want to say?” The question then needs to be applied specifically to different areas of our lives. Let me provide you with a few examples of what that looks like in my life: Time with God. “God, how are you coming to me in Scripture and silence today?” At times he leads me to linger over a passage, a phrase, or a text for days – even weeks. At times he leads me to read whole books of Scripture in one sitting. While I practice 20 minutes of silence and stillness each morning, I am also listening to. Read more.
One of the great questions confronting the church today in the face of our growing secular culture is: Can you be a believer and not a disciple? In this podcast, I talk with Rich Villodas about this question and the challenges facing leaders today. How do we make disciples when people are already over-committed and busy? What can we do to address the many under-developed, stunted, nominal Christians filling our churches? Click below to listen and wrestle with us on what it will take to make disciples who are deeply transformed so we can change the world for Christ. LISTEN HERE Save Save Save Save Save
I don’t know. Only God can judge and sort that out. But I do know that our obsession with getting people to make a decision for Jesus has led us to a reality where we have large numbers of severely under-developed, stunted, nominal Christians filling our churches. This two-tiered USA gospel, unlike the witness of the New Testament, supposes that a person can become a Christian and not follow Jesus. A disciple follows Jesus, allowing Him to change him/her for the sake of the world. A “believer” assents intellectually to what Jesus and Scripture says. But their lives are not directed by Jesus or oriented around Him. A disciple, however, is characterized by the following: A first-hand, personal relationship with Jesus A commitment to listen to Him for direction A love for Scripture Self-awareness–reflected in the ability to take their feelings and lay them out before Jesus. Read more.
A few years ago, a Christian publisher strongly recommended we reduce EHS discipleship into four, one-hour sessions because that was all that most American Christians can handle. “Let’s keep it simple,” many pastors and leaders argue. “If your people attend weekend services, participate in a small group and serve, that is all you can expect.” People are not experiencing deep transformation in our churches. Large numbers of people live off other people’s spirituality (e.g. worship teams, sermons, Christian radio and podcasts) and do not intentionally cultivate their own personal relationship with Jesus. We now have tens of thousands of believers in Jesus who are not necessarily disciples. And we continue to work day and night to add to this number. This raises a number of questions: Can a person be a Christian without being a disciple who makes daily, intentional choices to follow Jesus and remain/abide with Him? Can a nominal Christian who has. Read more.
The following are 25 powerful Emotionally Healthy Spirituality (EHS) truisms that have stood the test of time. They capture, in a memorable way, profound biblical truths about EHS as a discipleship paradigm. I use them often in my teaching and invite you to do the same. It is not possible to be spiritually mature while remaining emotionally immature. Jesus may be in your heart but grandpa is in your bones. We cannot give what we do not possess. What I do matters. Who I am matters much more. Limits are often God’s gifts in disguise. As goes the leader, so goes the church. For an expectation to be valid, it must be conscious, realistic, spoken, and agreed upon. If you skim on your inner work, your outer work will suffer as well. You can’t separate knowing God from knowing yourself. We cannot change what we are unaware of. Loss marks the place where self-knowledge. Read more.