When Geri and I became committed followers of Christ, we learned about spiritual disciplines – Bible Study, worship, giving, community, prayer, spiritual gifts, etc. We immersed ourselves in the best of Christian training and discipleship for years. It was always confusing, however, that people in the church were supposedly growing in love for God, but they clearly weren’t growing into greater love for people. We couldn’t figure out why people with “great passion” for Christ and Scripture were often defensive, judgmental, critical, unapproachable and unsafe to be around. (Sadly, this was often true for us as well.) We gradually acknowledged a painful truth – the quality of love inside the church was not really that different from the quality of love among people outside the church. How could this be, especially when Jesus repeatedly linked love for God with love for others as the essence of true spirituality? The answer lies, I believe, in. Read more.
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.
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
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.
Jesus said we must lose our lives to find it. One essential way we do this is by learning the art of interior silence. This choice to turn away from internal and external noise in order to be with Jesus is work…a difficult work. Externally, we face the unrelenting pressure of our culture– the noise, the clutter, the grasping, the confusion, the distractions, the excessive amount of information – all of which make it difficult to hear ourselves think. Internally, our stillness and silence muscles are weak. As beginners, we have problems focusing attention and facing the normal distractions of body and mind. Just like we cannot simply read a how-to book on running a marathon and run, so we must build up muscle and stamina slowly over time. Maggie Ross, in her Silence: A User’s Guide – Volume 1: Process, argues that the tradition of silence was handed down unbroken from the time. Read more.
I believe in the indispensable place of building the local church, preaching sermons, and speaking at conferences. The problem is we can do these things and still not make disciples who make disciples (Matt.28:18-20). That involves focusing on a few. It is one thing to know about Jesus’ plan of discipling the 12 over a three-year period for the sake of the world; it is another thing to actually follow Him in a similar strategy. I think I am finally getting it. Geri and I drastically shifted our global strategy in our trip to Korea and Singapore this August. Instead of doing large EH Leadership conferences, we chose to invest ourselves in a small group of highly committed people in both countries. This picture below is Geri and I speaking last year. (We are the little dots on the stage). Are you impressed? Don’t be. Now this picture below is Geri and I speaking. Read more.