Christian marriage (in contrast to secular marriage) is a paradigm shift so radical that it transforms our leadership, our relationships, our parenting, our decision-making, our team building, our missional strategies, etc. Virtually nothing remains the same once we “get” this shift. The chart below lays out the contrast between the two: May God give us grace to develop marriages that are a sign and wonder that point to Jesus and offer a visible picture of the depth of God’s love for the world. –Pete Twitter @petescazzero PS Let me invite you to call in with your questions to a FREE webinar I am doing on this topic next Tuesday from 12 noon EST to 1 pm. I will spend the first 20-25 minutes sharing a theology for Leading Out of Your Marriage, and then take questions for the remaining time. Click BELOW to sign up:
To embed emotionally healthy spirituality into your church (i.e. a serious discipleship model that involves The EHS Course and The EH Relationships Course)is slow…very slow. As I shared at my final talk at the EHL Conference 2016 last week, if we are not to be derailed, we must grasp two core biblical truths – limits and loaves. My greatest sins over the last 30 years of leadership have revolved around embracing God’s limits. It remains my greatest temptation to this day – enticing me into rebellion, anxiety, and impatience. Like you I am limited, for example, by my time, my age, my physical energy, my gifts and talents, and the ministry context/people God has entrusted to me. As a result, it is easy to grow frustrated and look for a quick fix, especially when it comes to discipleship. If we define a disciple as a follower of Jesus who surrenders to His will and. Read more.
I have loved studying church history and global Christianity for well over 30 years. This passion has been fed by my thirty-year friendship with Scott W. Sunquist, a gifted scholar who now serves as a Dean at Fuller Theological Seminary. While God led Scott into PhD work and seminary teaching, God led me to pastor a local church. Yet our different paths, along with our common passion for Christ and His mission, have served as an “iron sharpening iron” experience over the years for us. Scott recently released an important book entitled – The Unexpected Christian Century – that captures some important insights as we consider the work of God today. Consider the following image: The graphic illustrates the following: Christian faith has deep roots going back to Creation and the work of God in Israel over the centuries. What holds The Church together is Jesus (God incarnate who has entered our world as. Read more.
Elijah understood that silence and listening are the starting points for true, authentic spiritual leadership. Without it we lead from our own mind and ideas. But the only way to listen is to deeply engage the radical spiritual disciplines of silence and solitude – the most challenging and least experienced disciplines in the church today. Elijah lived in the desert for years – dependent on God alone for food and sustenance without projects or programs. The silence and solitude positioned him to listen and be formed into the leader God desired. The longer he remained in the silence of the desert, the more free he became to follow God’s direction. Studies say that the average group can only bear silence for 15 seconds. Most of our personal lives and church services confirm this. Yet it is essential that silence and solitude become a regular and normal part of our days and weeks. How else. Read more.
Theologian Robert Barron argues, at the heart of original sin is the refusal to accept God’s rhythm for us. God gave Adam and Eve enormous freedom in the Garden. Then, without explanation, God set a boundary before them. They were not to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil (Gen.2:15-17). They were to trust and surrender to Him, bowing humbly before His incomprehensible ways. They were to be active, then passive. They were to work, then they were to surrender in trust. They were to be active, and then they were to let go. The essence of being in God’s image is our ability, like God, to stop. We imitate Him by stopping and resting. For this reason, when we stop to practice Sabbath each week, or the Daily Office (fixed hour prayer) each day, we touch something deep within us as image-bearers of God. How are your rhythms today?. Read more.
Jesus focused a disproportionate amount of time discipling the Twelve – and one of them didn’t even work out! This was His upside down strategy to reach the world with the love of the Father. Yet we have programs to run, meetings to lead, people to pray for, money concerns, attendance to monitor, administration to be done, messages to prepare, strategies to execute, visions to cast, and crises that won’t wait till tomorrow. We live in the great tension of the big and the small – a tension I carry with me each week as I set priorities. How do I focus on the few, my Twelve, when modern culture demands the big… and now? It helps me to remember that so much in and around me resists focusing on the few. Why? Discipling the few is slow. The kingdom of God is a mustard seed and always will be. Discipling the few is. Read more.