• pencils drawing of Jesus on vintage paper. with ornament on clothing. Old sepia structure paper. Eye contact. Spiritual concept
    The Day of Confrontation (Tuesday) The Day of Confrontation (Tuesday)

    The Day of Confrontation (Tuesday)

The Day of Confrontation (Tuesday)

After spending Monday night in Bethany, according to Matthew, Mark and Luke, Jesus returned to Jerusalem. He stopped along the side of the road by a fig tree for breakfast but found the tree to be fruitless. He cursed the fig tree in front of his disciples to teach them another lesson about prayer. Upon arrival in the city, the temple leadership confronted him for what he did the previous day. The commotion he caused in his rebuke and cleansing of the temple had not gone unnoticed. They questioned his authority and purpose while Jesus used the parables of the two sons, vineyard, and wedding banquet to teach the people. Later, Jesus will also thwart an attempt by the Pharisees to trap him in a question about paying taxes. Confrontation is a part of life for everyone, but personal confrontation can be the most painful and difficult kind to absorb. Through Jesus’s example on this day, we learn several things. First, we need not fear confrontation, or try to avoid it. Instead, with God’s help, we should boldly face whatever confrontation comes our way. Second, we clearly see in his example that it is possible to take the high road even in the most savage of confrontations. Despite being harassed, embarrassed, and personally challenged in many ways, Jesus’s responses were always thoughtful, sincere, level headed, and productive. Pray today that God will give you the wisdom to handle confrontation in your life like Jesus did in his. Ask God to show you past confrontations that were left unresolved. Maybe there is someone you recently had a confrontation with that you need to ask for or give forgiveness if you handled that confrontation wrong. Take action […]

  • painting of Jesus with a lion, on beautiful colorful background with hint of space feeling, lion profile portrait
    The Day Of Zeal (Monday) The Day Of Zeal (Monday)

    The Day Of Zeal (Monday)

The Day Of Zeal (Monday)

It’s Monday, just three short days until Jesus’s crucifixion. What happened on this day in the life of Christ, and what can we learn from it? According to Matthew 21, Mark 11, and Luke 19, Jesus made his triumphal entry into Jerusalem to the cheers and excitement of the entire city on Palm Sunday. The following day, upon his return, he visited the Temple area. This was a place that was suppose to be dedicated to God. A place that was suppose to be holy, pure, and a shining example of what the Kingdom of God is like. Instead, it had become full of worldly, deceitful, greedy, and power hungry people. Jesus was not impressed Matthew 21:12–13 (HCSB) —12Jesus went into the temple complex and drove out all those buying and selling in the temple. He overturned the money changers’ tables and the chairs of those selling doves. 13And He said to them, “It is written, My house will be called a house of prayer. But you are making it a den of thieves!” Jesus is zealous for his people and his church. After causing a real commotion in the temple, Matthew records that “the blind and the lame came to Him in the temple complex, and He healed them.”  The children in the temple area praised Jesus  shouting “Hosanna to the Son of David!” causing the chief priests and scribes to become more indignant. And when the time came, Jesus returned to the town of Bethany (about a two-mile walk over the Mount of Olives).  He most likely spent the night in the home of Mary, Martha, and Lazarus. So what can we learn from this day in the life of Christ? We see […]

  • Businessman with cardboard box on his head showing a crying sad expression concept for headache, depression, sadness, heartache or frustration
    God Expects Less God Expects Less

    God Expects Less

God Expects Less

1 Timothy 3:1 (HCSB) —1This saying is trustworthy: “If anyone aspires to be an overseer, he desires a noble work.” Ministry has always been tough. Just ask the Apostle Paul, Timothy, Barnabas, Moses or Jesus. However, modern day ministers are under what I call “the expectation assault.” Over my almost two decades in ministry I have made many great friends who share my calling to serve God’s people.  My observation over these years has been that “the expectation assault” devastates our ranks. Part of the issue is the internet. Thanks to the World Wide Web, Christians today have unlimited access to great teachers, leaders, authors, preachers, and theologians. The result is that believers today expect much more from their local ministers. Below I have composed a list that sums up the expectations many ministers feel compelled to meet daily. 1)   Great Preacher 2)   Great Friend 3)   Great Father or Mother 4)   Great Theologian 5)   Great Thinker 6)   Great Leader 7)   Great Administrator 8)   Great Fund Raiser 9)   Great Comforter 10)  Great Therapist 11)  Great Mediator 12)  Great Role Model 13)  Great Community Organizer 14)  Great Teacher 15)  Compassionate Caregiver 16)  Great Scholar 17)  Great Author 18)  Great Blogger 19)  Great Counselor 20)  Great Website Developer 21)  Great Evangelist 22)  Dynamic 23)  Engaging 24)  Funny 25)  Firm 26)  Loving 27)  Available 24/7 28)  Generous to the point of poverty 29)  Sacrificial to the point of death 30)  Mission Leader 31)  Meeting Moderator 32)  Technical Specialist 33)  Carpenter/Handyman 34)  Groundskeeper 35)  Janitor 36)  Great Psychologist 37)  Expert on World Religions 38)  Master of Apologetics 39)  Master of Languages, especially the easy ones like Greek and Hebrew 40)  Special Event Coordinator 41)  Child Development Expert 42)  Mind Reader/Mentalist […]

  • Rear view of young businessman looking at faith door
    No Limits Faith No Limits Faith

    No Limits Faith

No Limits Faith

You do not have to look far to know that we live in a world defined by limitations. We have speed limits, physical limits, relational limits, and emotional limits that shape our lives. This reality causes many to create self imposed spiritual limits as well. One of the areas we wrongly create spiritual limits is within our faith. Have you ever said, “I just don’t have enough faith”? Is there really any limit to the amount of faith we can possess? Hebrews 11:1 says —1Now faith is being sure of what we hope for, being convinced of what we do not see. The only limits placed on our faith are the limits we impose ourselves. I want to encourage you to be a person of total faith this week. Remove the limits! Here are three different ways faith can play a part in our lives: Focused Faith removes our distractions. When your faith is laser focused little else matters in life. In Philippians 4:8 Paul says —8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Focus your faith on these kinds of things and you will notice anything of lesser importance fades away. When our faith is not focused, we embrace distractions that limit the potential of our faith. Crucible Faith renews or ruins our commitment to God. Everyone’s faith will be tested at many points in life. I call this the crucible of faith. How you react during those difficult times will determine if your faith is renewed or ruined. Some choose to run to God; others choose to run away from […]

  • February 29 is the Leap Day that occurs every fourth year
    What will you do with your extra day? What will you do with your extra day?

    What will you do with your extra day?

What will you do with your extra day?

“O LORD, help me understand my mortality and the brevity of life! Let me realize how quickly my life will pass!   Psalm 39:4 (NET) Have you ever wished for more time? Have you ever said “if I only had an extra day I would…” Well 2016 is a leap year and today February 29th is the leap day, so what will you do with it? For those who may not know, a leap year happens every four years to keep the calendar we use coordinated with the astronomical calendar. So you get an extra day this year, instead of 365 days you get 366 days in 2016. So what will you do with your extra day? The average person will only get about seventeen extra days like this over the course of a lifetime. So, shouldn’t we make the most of it? Here are some ideas I have about what could be done with this extra day… 1. Forgive that person you have been meaning to forgive. 2. Write that note you have been meaning to write. 3. Make that phone call you have been meaning to make. 4. Take that nap you have been meaning to take. 5. Share the gospel with that person you have been meaning to share with. 6. Go see that movie you have been meaning to see. 7. Start that book you have been meaning to start. 8. Clean that room you have been meaning to clean. 9. Go see that friend you have been meaning to see. 10. Take that day off you have been meaning to take. 11. Say those words you have been meaning to say. 12. Start chasing that dream you have been meaning to […]

  • Retro or Vintage Style Vote or Voting Campaign Election Pin Button or Badge.  Use this pin on infographics, blog headers, flyers, or web pages.  Or print it out and create a real pin or badge!
    I Voted Today I Voted Today

    I Voted Today

I Voted Today

I voted today. Normally I don’t endorse or explain my vote but I feel our country is facing a very difficult future and now more than ever we need the right leadership. I voted for Senator Ted Cruz and would ask that you consider supporting him as well. Why did I vote for Ted Cruz? Well not because I think he is perfect or will solve all of our problems. Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior. He alone is perfect, but Jesus was not a choice. None of the choices are perfect, and they never will be because they are humans. I voted for Ted Cruz because I believe he loves Jesus, loves his family, loves his country, and loves humanity. He is principled, dedicated, not easily enticed, and willing to stand, and stand alone if necessary. He has tremendous leadership ability and I believe he more than any other presidential candidate can unite our country. I know many are saying that Trump is going to be the nominee and we better get use to it. They are voting for Trump simply because they don’t want to be on the losing team. However keep in mind this is a primary. You should vote for your first pick, the person you think will be the best overall pick, not who you think will be the final pick. I could not vote for Trump because every time I think of him this passage comes to mind. Matthew 7:15–18 (NET) —15“Watch out for false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are voracious wolves.16You will recognize them by their fruit. Grapes are not gathered from thorns or figs from thistles, are they?17In the same […]

  • Save The Date Rings And Gay Paper
    Christian Myths about Gay Marriage Christian Myths about Gay Marriage

    Christian Myths about Gay Marriage

Christian Myths about Gay Marriage

For the first time in the history of the United States of America, two persons of the same sex can now legally obtain a marriage license in all fifty states. The reaction to this ruling from the Supreme Court has been extreme and divisive on both sides of the argument. Some are overjoyed, many are sympathetically supportive, and others are outraged. Personally, my heart is heavy. Primarily because there are so many false narratives being advanced by people who claim to be disciples of Christ. Because I know the attacks are going to come let me start by saying a few things that I sincerely believe to be true. While I am a disciple of Jesus Christ and as such, I share the biblical view on homosexuality, I am not aggressively attacking those who have chosen this lifestyle. I do love you, pray for you, and deeply desire to hear you, know you, eat with you, and understand you. Furthermore, I would like to ask for forgiveness from those of you who have been shamed, slandered, slurred, and humiliated by my brothers and sisters of the faith. Finally, if my comments below and in subsequent posts share this unholy  spirit in your mind or heart I humbly ask that you would contact me so I can seek forgiveness from you as well. My goal in these posts is simply to present what I consider truth on this issue based on my current understanding of culture, church, and ultimately scripture. Christian Myths about Gay Marriage             Over the past few days, I have been monitoring the news, web, and social media closely. One of the most astonishing revelations for me has been the lack of biblical […]

  • Volunteer message and red pencil
    19 Ways to Improve Your Ministry Recruiting By: Greg Baird 19 Ways to Improve Your Ministry Recruiting By: Greg Baird

    19 Ways to Improve Your Ministry Recruiting By: Greg Baird

19 Ways to Improve Your Ministry Recruiting By: Greg Baird

Every church I know of struggles to recruit the volunteers necessary to function at their maximum capacity. Recruiting is hard work, but Greg Baird has some common sense tips for us all when it comes to keeping that pipeline full of volunteers. 19 Ways to Improve Your Ministry Recruiting By: Greg Baird Start making it more about vision. A big, compelling, well-defined, life-changing vision. Stop making it about need, People won’t buy-in to or commit long-term to great need. Start identifying new places to find leaders. Have you recruited youth? College age? Seniors? What new group can you share your vision with? Stop doing it alone. Equip other leaders (your core leaders, staff, other church staff, etc.) to recruit with you. Start asking! It’s one thing to make the need known…it’s another to actually“make the ask”. Stop pigeon-holing people. Have multiple opportunities available for the people you speak with. Start being clear about available opportunities – specific functions, commitment time, etc. Stop losing volunteers by limiting their freedom to be creative and bringing their own ideas to what they do. Start creating systems to make volunteer assimilation easy, not difficult. Stop relying on cattle calls or bulletin invitations. Start asking personally. Stop making excuses that no one is interested in hearing. Start expressing appreciation to volunteers (personally, individually & corporately). Stop abandoning volunteers once they begin serving. Start being flexible with scheduling, training, subbing, etc. Stop talking about all the challenges you face in your ministry. Start telling stories about great things happening in the lives children, parents & volunteers. Stop doing program beyond your capacity to build teams to meet the need. Start doing what Jesus told us to do in Luke 10:2: “These were his instructions to them:…‘The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord who is in […]

  • Gift box / present or christmas gift hand close up. Decorative g
    Neglecting The Gift Neglecting The Gift

    Neglecting The Gift

Neglecting The Gift

1 Timothy 4:14 (NET) —14Do not neglect the spiritual gift you have…  The Greek word in this text for neglect is ἀμέλει  from the root ἀμελέω (ameleo). Most translations use the word “neglect” but the Greek denotes a “careless” neglect for the spiritual gift that Paul believed Timothy possessed.  Careless indeed are those who fail to utilize, develop, and maximize the potential for their spiritual gifts. One may elect to be careless with many things in life, but to choose careless neglect in regards to our spiritual gifting is tragic.  It is through our gifts that the church is built, sustained, and enriched. These spiritual gifts propel the message of the gospel into the world. Spiritual gifts have the unique potential to cultivate countless blessings in the lives of others. These gifts provide, promote, and produce, a Holy flood of God’s grace into the world. They comfort, heal, touch, and speak life. Therefore should we dare to be so careless with something so powerful and precious? Many today feel that their gift is to small, insignificant, or underdeveloped, to make a difference. They carelessly toss them aside into the bin of negligent. Others selfishly assume that these great gifts are for their benefit alone, failing to understand that these gifts from God are for His own body the church. He blesses His church through His people, with the various gifts they possess. What are yours? How are you using them? Have you carelessly neglected your spiritual gifts? Do not neglect the spiritual gift you have!      

  • Bad day
    Get Up! Get Up!

    Get Up!

Get Up!

2 Samuel 19:7–8 (NET) —7So get up now and go out and give some encouragement to your servants. For I swear by the Lord that if you don’t go out there, not a single man will stay here with you tonight! This disaster will be worse for you than any disaster that has overtaken you from your youth right to the present time!” 8So the king got up and sat at the city gate. When all the people were informed that the king was sitting at the city gate, they all came before him. But the Israelite soldiers had all fled to their own homes. There are difficult days for all leaders. Times of doubt, discouragement, tragedy, spiritual weariness, physical pain, personal hardships, these all abound in the lives of leaders. As a leader you are not immune from these certainties. David the man after God’s own heart faced such days. Two of his sons died violent deaths, Amnon in 1 Samuel 13:28–29 and Absalom here in 1 Samuel 18:15. David cries out “My son, Absalom! My son, my son, Absalom! If only I could have died in your place! Absalom, my son, my son!” (2 Samuel 18:33). It is impossible for this writer to imagine a more trying time than one like this. However Joab was right to encourage the King to step out and encourage his people. Leadership requires great courage, and at the advice of Joab David decides to go out and sit at the city gate despite his own personal tragedy, and sorrow. Leaders should never attempt to conceal their emotions in times like this however they must also not concede their responsibility to lead. As a leader you will face […]

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