When I was in my mid-fifties (I am now 61), I began to struggle with aging. This intensified as I transitioned out of my role as Senior Pastor at New Life. I became aware that a number of negative scripts around getting older from the culture and my family of origin lived inside me. So I set out to “get discipled” in aging. I studied Scripture, read books, and met with 3 older mentors whom I respected. The fruit of what I learned is found in these two podcasts below. Growing Older in the New Family of Jesus – Part 1 Growing Older in the New Family of Jesus – Part 2 This is a significant discipleship issue, not only for those of us who are over fifty, but for younger pastors who are leading churches. In the year 2020, 1 in 6 Americans will be over 65. By 2030, that number will climb. Read more.
The wide disconnect between our spirituality and emotional health remains one of the greatest challenges in the church today, especially among us as leaders. The following is a modified, slimmed down version of the widely used EHS Personal Assessment found on our website. (We will be using this with our small group on Thursday night). It is also found in The Emotionally Healthy Relationships Course. The following list of statements offer a brief assessment of where you are on the continuum of being an emotionally mature Christian. Next to each statement, write down the number that best describes your response. Use the following scale: 5 = Always true of me 4 = Frequently true of me 3 = Occasionally true of me 2 = Rarely true of me 1 = Never true of me _____ 1. I am deeply convinced I am loved by Christ, and do not inappropriately borrow that love from others.. Read more.
Jesus models for us a letting go of control, earthly power, and reputation. He empties Himself at the cross, trusting in the goodness and love of the Father. God intends that we follow the same path. Yet, in situations both the large and small, we find this incredibly difficult. Why? I have been wrestling with our dilemma for months. Last week I preached a message on this entitled: The Cross: The Deepest Wisdom of God. Afterwards, I found myself listing the top reasons why I, along with so many others, continue to resist the very thing (our need to let go of control) that is the rich source of so much life and power. The following are my top ten reasons: Fear. Is it any wonder God says to us over and over again in Scripture—Do not fear? Things will fall apart. That is true – at least the things that God never intended. Read more.