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Tag Archives: midday prayer

Measuring “Success”

Measuring ministry impact with numbers is biblical. The book of Acts uses numbers to describe the impact of the gospel — about 3,000 baptized (Acts 2:41), about 5,000 believers (Acts 4:4), crowds coming to faith (Acts 5:14). We have a whole book in the Bible called Numbers. So, in the context of the church, it is good to measure things like attendance, baptisms, membership, number of small groups, and financial giving. The problem comes when that is all we measure. Measuring deep, beneath the surface transformation in people’s lives is also critically important – if not more important. (Consider Paul, Gal. 4:19, Jesus mentoring the 12). The specifics of these internal markers will differ from ministry to ministry and from context to context. The following are several examples we set to measure at New Life Fellowship Church: Each leader at New Life will develop his or her relationship with God by spending ten to. Read more.

Good Friday: A Time to Embrace Our Endings

On Good Friday we remember that at the cross Jesus wipes away our sins, becoming a global magnet that draws the whole world to Himself. Good Friday also reminds me that embracing endings (deaths) and new beginnings (resurrections) is the pattern of life for every Christian. Nothing new takes place without an ending. A real ending—a final death—often feels like disintegration, falling apart, a coming undone. It feels that way because that is what death is. It is an ending that requires walking through a completely dark tunnel, not knowing when or if any light will come again. If we embrace these losses for the severe mercies they are, God does a profound work in us and through us in ways that are similar to what the apostle Paul describes as “death is at work in us, but life is at work in you” (2 Cor. 4:12). As a person who tends to resist. Read more.

Why Transformation Takes So Long!

Last week at our two-day EHS Consultant Training, Wendy Seidman shared Bloom’s taxonomy of how people learn to help us understand why it takes so long for individuals and church/ministry cultures to “get” EHS. The following is her adaptation of Bloom’s classic work on the process people need to move through to really “get” something like EHS: 1- Aware. People hear about EHS for the first time (e.g. Sabbath, slowing down, past’s impact on the present, grieving, learning to feel). 2- Ponder. People think about it, trying to understand or sort through issues as they gather more information. At this point they don’t have a clear inclination for or against it. (e.g. They continue reading, listen to messages, go through the EHS Course, learn a few EHS Skills, talk about Sabbath with others). 3- Value. People think it’s important, find value in it, and commit to it, saying, “I really believe in this EHS. Read more.

Midday Prayer: The Gift of Pilgrimage

Silence, Stillness, and Centering before God (2 minutes) Scripture Reading – Psalm 84 1 How lovely is your dwelling place, O LORD Almighty!2 My soul yearns, even faints, for the courts of the LORD; my heart and my flesh cry out for the living God.3 Even the sparrow has found a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may have her young— a place near your altar, O LORD Almighty, my King and my God.4 Blessed are those who dwell in your house; they are ever praising you. 5 Blessed are those whose strength is in you, who have set their hearts on pilgrimage.6 As they pass through the Valley of Baca (i.e. trouble) they make it a place of springs; the autumn rains also cover it with pools.7 They go from strength to strength, till each appears before God in Zion. Devotional Both the king and his prophet certainly have. Read more.

Midday Prayer: The Gift of Pilgrimage

Silence, Stillness, and Centering before God (2 minutes) Scripture Reading – Psalm 84 1 How lovely is your dwelling place,    O LORD Almighty! 2 My soul yearns, even faints, for the courts of the LORD; my heart and my flesh cry out for the living God. 3 Even the sparrow has found a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may have her young— a place near your altar, O LORD Almighty, my King and my God. 4 Blessed are those who dwell in your house; they are ever praising you. 5 Blessed are those whose strength is in you, who have set their hearts on pilgrimage. 6 As they pass through the Valley of Baca (i.e. trouble) they make it a place of springs; the autumn rains also cover it with pools. 7 They go from strength to strength, till each appears before God in Zion. Devotional Both the king. Read more.

Two Questions for Prayer

At New Life, we have been in a sermon series on the Lord’s Prayer for the last two months. At the same time, for the past year, Geri and I have been working through the Ignatian Exercises. Out of this synergy, two questions have emerged for us. They have enabled us to get at the heart of God behind the Lord’s Prayer itself. I offer them to you to slowly ponder before the Lord: 1. What is God’s deepest desire for my life? 2. What is my deepest desire for me? What might be the implications of your answers for the way you lead and live today?