Building Spiritual Muscles in the Mundane

In the 1984 film “The Karate Kid,” an enthusiastic karate student is disappointed when his first lesson involves cleaning and waxing his master’s car. Day after day, Daniel questions the point of laborious tasks such as sanding a wood floor, refinishing a fence and painting Mr. Miyagi’s house. But when Mr. Miyagi finally begins to …

Why Does Growth Require Suffering?

Hebrews 2:10 “For it was fitting that he, for whom and by whom all things exist, in bringing many sons to glory, should make the founder of their salvation perfect through suffering.” The phrase, “perfect through suffering” stands out to me in this verse. Why did Jesus need to be made “perfect” and why did …

Summer Memories

For some reason certain seasons of the year evoke different types of personal reflection. For instance, there is something about summer that lends itself to reflecting on family -particularly children. Maybe it’s the fact that school is out and the kids are having a blast. Or maybe it’s the way that summer is just a …

Nature vs. Nurture in Discipleship

Do these names sound familiar? –OJ Simpson, Martha Stewart, Michael Jackson, Timothy McVeigh, Scott Peterson, The Menendez Brothers, Jeffrey Dahmer, Lindsay Lohan, Casey Anthony, Justin Beiber, Jay-Z, Kim Kardashian, Donald Trump, Brad Pitt, and Angelina Jolie. What is it that we so desperately want to know about them? For some reason, we are all fascinated …

To Build or Not to Build?

Building programs. Surely that phrase ranks somewhere on the top ten most polarizing issues in church life. Having pastored a church through a building program, I know first-hand about the added stress and strain they can cause. At the same time, I recognize the benefits that new facilities offer. Like any other major decision in …

5 Character Traits of Growing Churches (Excerpt)

Here is an excerpt from my new free e-booklet, Five Character Traits of Growing Churches: “He sure is growing up.” That’s a common phrase around my household. I swell up with a sense of pride as neighbors, friends and family notice my son’s growth. Bryce is six now and it is hard to keep up with …

I’m Happy He’s Growing Up

Over the past couple of days, I was able to spend some time alone with my son on a short “get-away” trip. As we were having a major water-gun war, I realized something: My son is growing up. Don’t get my wrong, he’s not going to college next year –he’s only four. Okay, four-and-a-half (the …