Posts Tagged 'pastor'

What’s a Great Pastor?

I got asked the question tonight what makes a great pastor… What an awesome question. Here we go…

A great pastor (working definition)…

(1) Has openly declared that Jesus is Lord – He believes his heart that God raised Jesus from the dead, openly declaring He is saved through faith alone. (Romans 10:9-10)

(2) Has not taken lightly the calling from God on his life (Phil. 3:14) but striving to shepherd the flock entrusted to his care by striving (not obtaining perfection) in being blameless, the husband of one wife, temperate, sober-minded, hospitable, able to teach, not given to wine (not a drunk), not violent, or greedy for money – but gentle, not quarrelsome, not covetous but one who rules his own house well, having his children in submission with all reverence. He is not a novice puffed up with pride but has a good testimony among His fellow man avoiding the snares of the devil. (1 Timothy 3:1-7)

(3) Makes every ambition to preach the Good News (Gospel) of Jesus Christ where it has never been heard. (Romans 15:20) until Christ returns again (Matthew 24:36)

What did I miss…



Embracing the Curiosity of the Christian

A view from the good seats (at the feet of Jesus – Matthew 18).


The Rewire

Rewiring is not only essential to getting information and power back to the people; it’s vital to us growing in our spiritual walk with the Lord. Internal rewiring is a concept that consists of going back into our memories to see where negative feelings and emotions have caused pain.  If we can see where our emotions stem there can be great change in the future. While rewiring can be painful, if we are willing to open ourselves to identify internal pain, the freedom obtained will change the course of the future. Imagine being free… Imagine healing and restoration. It’s possible.

Identify the problem can take some time and honesty.

STEP 1: Identification – The first step involves identification of what negative emotion you re actually experiencing.  Is it unhealthy anger, pride, resentment, loneliness, guilt? What exactly is the emotion causing the main issues in your life? If you are experiencing anger, then you need to understand the first and foremost you’re angry. When we’re aware of our emotions and willing to accept that these emotions exist, that is exactly where at a place where God can use this the most.

NOTE: Sometimes we can identify negative emotions and sometimes it takes the voice of another. Identification also means that we are honest with ourselves when these emotions are presented. This means that identification could come from our own knowledge or a result from hearing the same thing from various people in different situations and circumstances.

The rewire can be done alone but it’s better to enlist help.

STEP 2: The Rewire – Once the emotion is acknowledged, we can now retrace or rewire back to where these emotions stemmed. This involves starting at the most recent event or occurrence the emotion occurred and then tracing back days, weeks, months, and even years to how long this emotion has been prevalent.

NOTE: Understand that this is the most effective when these timelines are written down in a tangible format (think journal, piece of paper, etc.). To actually be able to visually see an emotion and how it has taken root in the soul is what ultimately helps us become free.

Find out the trigger that fires the gun and you can stop the bullet.

STEP 3: Trigger – To deal with an emotion and properly run another “clean” wire means that we will look openly and honestly at what exactly triggers these emotions and terminate them immediately.

NOTE: Understand that some emotions can be tied to people, some emotions can be tied to places, and some emotions can be tied to things. When one identifies these people, places, or things that cause these emotional triggers they then can see what needs to be released from their life.

Radical transformation takes radical amputation.

STEP 4:  Terminate – The last of the rewiring is extremely challenging, involving a radical amputation of whatever has caused these specific emotions. In situations that are extreme one may need to move from house, eliminate a relationship (not spouses), or throw out/give away material items such as computers, cars, possessions, etc. We see this a lot with people who smoke cigarettes, as they are encouraged to get rid of their vehicle if they have smoked in that specific automobile. Again, one must understand that this takes either great personal dedication or enlisting the help of someone else.

It’s possible to rewire but understand it takes time, patients, an open mind, and lot of help. You were not born to live with negative emotions from scars in the past. That’s what Christ restores to the broken when they identify, rewire, trigger and terminate what is causing unrest. Allow people to hold you accountable and seek the opportunity to do the hard things to make big change.

You can do it. There is no better time than now.


Backyard Battlefield

In my younger years the neighbor kids and I used to play army in the backyards of our neighborhood. We would chase each other around glorious gardens shooting make-believe bad guys with artificial ammunition. We were soldiers. Warriors. We loved every minute of our fairy tale firefight.

Kids playing war outside

While my friends loved hand-to-hand combat, my own internal exhilaration came after moving troops in various directions. In the heat of battle I barked orders in the heat of imaginary firepower. My fellow soldiers would then go out and win the war under my direction. I hated fighting on the front lines. They loved it. I would rather be in the background tactically figuring our how demolish the enemy while they put in the blood and sweat on the battlefield. Don’t get me wrong, sometimes I fought but my passion was in the tactical approach.

I’m sure you might be thinking how much of a pansy I was for not going our to
slay the imaginary enemy. Thanks for the confidence. However, the friends on
the frontline loved every minute of being in the battle while I loved being on the back lines. After some time there was a realization that evaluating the situations as a whole gave a better ability to be victorious by attacking the enemy in the right way. They needed me to scout out the enemy. They needed a leader.

People need a leader.

We all do. In life some people want to be on the front lines while others would
rather facilitate victories. There are leaders on the frontlines of hand-to-hand combat and there are leaders who gather various points of view to maximize the potential of the team.

People needs a leader

Remember Jesus? Remember Jesus sending out the twelve disciples? He sends them out, giving them “authority to drive out impure spirits and to heal every disease and sickness.” (Matthew 10:2). He doesn’t have to be on that front line because the disciples are going to experience a better victory if they are faithful with the orders from their captain. They know the the mission is going to be one of great difficulty. Jesus himself says, “I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves. Be on your guard; you will be handed over to the local councils and be flogged in the synagogues.” (Matthew 10:17)

What a rush; for both sides!

What am I getting at here? I’m glad you asked.

There are so many implications for these two stories. The question I would ask is, “Who are you?” Do you like being on the front lines or are you more of a background leader who facilitates through stimulating, listening, observing, capturing, promoting, clarifying, and summarizing? How has God gifted you?

If you’re a frontline leader keep fighting and taking direction from your superiors. Your captain is most honored when you follow his directions closely and carry out the mission in precise detail. If you’re a back line leader, don’t lead with your opinions. Draw out conclusions from the people you are leading through listening and learning so that when you do need to summon an attack you can state your position with more conviction and clarity.

War is an art and as such is not susceptible of explanation by fixed formula.” General George Patton Jr

Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.” 1 Timothy 6:12


Your Greatest Gift

From the time I discovered speaking, chatter consumed my life. The instrument of voice was instantly used to echo personal thoughts off every wall, in every room, off every structure I inhabited. Elementary school consisted of yelling the most random statements in lunch lines, on field trips, and other odd places. There was no “inside voice” or even a desire to whisper properly.  Teachers were quick to point out my favorite instrument may very well be a curse.


In Junior High and High School my voice was only engaged in private arenas. The thought that the voice was a weakness was to much to publically display. Therefore, the art of mastering raising tones, articulating pitch, and adjusting volume was done quietly to maximize future public impact. The “curse” must become a craft.

This is probably what I looked like to a lot of grown ups when I was a little kid.

After a year of switching majors in college, a communication degree was the goal. What was done in private would now become public. The voice would go under scrutiny. Feedback would be administered from professionals who were masters at using their mechanism properly. These men focused on my voice, spoke about their own experiences that matched up with my own. They offered suggestions on tweaks while treating me like a person who wasn’t cursed but blessed with a God given ability. They correctly handled untapped potential. Cast a thrown lump of clay into a blazing fire. This experience changed my life forever.

It took over twenty years to take what others thought was a weakness and revolve it into God given ability (and it’s still being tweaked and developed to this day!).

In life we are often most sensitive about what we are most passionate.  What we are most passionate comes from a resource that is often untapped.  That resource is often what one thinks is weakness. We concealed our passions because we often let others limit our potential because of the amount of difficulty it will take to make something weak into something amazing.

“He gives power to the weak and strength to the powerless” Isaiah 40:19

Have you ever thought that your greatest weakness might just be your greatest gift?

Improvement is never easy. It takes a lifetime to master your skill. A pianist never sits down in front of a full arena the first time they play the instrument.  A runner works for months just to cut down on seconds.  A factory worker may work for years just to move up one position on the cooperate ladder. These actions and desires to be better come with sacrifice and are often met with criticism.  “It’s not possible,” they will say. “Just give up,” they will murmur. However, the determined one never stops making weakness ability. They learn, indulge, consume and correct.

The old saying is true, “Rome wasn’t built in a day.”  Neither were you. God has given you gifts.  Others may see those gifts as weakness. Don’t buy into the lie.  With the proper attitude, training and determination you can take turn insecurity into a powerful God honoring instrument.

Why are you so scared to take that weakness into a passion? “Don’t be afraid,” says the Lord. “Have faith!” whispers the Holy Spirit. I read somewhere that Michael Jordan lost almost 300 games, blowing the game winning shot 26 times. Paul, Peter, Timothy, even Jesus Christ Himself delivered the Gospel to people who rejected it. However, the passion for the gift sparked the ability to take a personal weakness into a potential powerhouse.

What are some things right now that needs tailored or adjusted that you personally think are weakness? This may take time, energy, resources, etc. However, let God do the heavy lifting.  You simply say, “I’ll go… send me”. Think about the possibilities if we utter those words when God says go! Never tell God wait, later or I’ll get to it. Answer the Lord with “here am I… send me”. This attitude will change your life forever. Remember, the best part of doing what God has gifted us to do is that we never have to go at it alone.

My attitude is that if you push me towards something that you think is a weakness, then I will turn that perceived weakness into a strength.” Michael Jordan

He gives power to the weak and strength to the powerless.” Isaiah 40:19


Prayer Requests & Speaking Stops

It’s been a busy time prepping and studying God’s Word.  There are some awesome events coming up. Here are some dates and events you can join in and help us out by praying on the day/time or in a general way.  As with any event there always a striving to execute biblical truth accurately, softening the audiences heart to the truth, and communicate God’s Word in a real, relevant way.  Here we go!

Stop 1: 10/20-10/22 Weekend (youth) The Strands of Spiritual Authenticity (Indiana)

  • Friday (10/20): Speaking – Rainbow Christian Camp (Luke 6:45 & The Gospel)
  • Saturday Evening (10/21): Speaking – Rainbow Christian Camp (Ephesians 1:3)
  • Sunday Morning (10/22): Leading Worship and Speaking (Philippians 2:3-4)

Stop 2: Sunday Evening (youth)  Ruthless – Dating in Relation to Ruth (A Guide for the Young)

  • Sunday Evening (10/22): Speaking – Velocity Youth (Ruth 3)

Stop 3: 10/28-10/29 Weekend (youth)  Title TBA (Michigan)

  • Friday (10/28): Speaking – Title TBA
  • Saturday (10/29): Speaking – Title TBA

Stop 4: 10/30 Sunday Sessions (Community Gospel Church)

  • Sunday (10/30) Morning Session (Adult/Morning Service) – Speaking – Title TBA
  • Sunday (10/30) Session (youth) – Speaking – Is there a Spiritual Significance to Halloween?

Thank you for joining us in prayer and intercession.

If you are in the area and fit into the appropriate age group come on out!


Current Readings and Areas of Study

Click Title to Purchase

Elders and Leaders: Gene Getz

Getz believes that few understand the biblical pattern for church leadership. He has written Elders and Leaders to unravel the mystery and alleviate the confusion surrounding this critical topic.

Who Stole My Church?: Gordon MacDonald

MacDonald creates a cast of church members in their 50s, 60s and 70s who meet each week to discuss where their church has been, is now and should go in the future. All I know is that someone stole my church and I’d like to get it back, says one. MacDonald delves into the feelings of the older generation as they watch new leadership take over, see changes in music and use of technology, and begin to wonder how they will fit in. He challenges their understanding of what the church is, then looks at the early church and the modern church and the many cultural influences that transform Christian spirituality.

Why We’re Not Emergent (By Two Guys Who Should Be): Kevin DeYoung and Ted Kluck

Kevin and Ted are two guys who, demographically, should be all over this movement.  But they’re not.  And Why We’re Not Emergent gives you the solid reasons why.  From both a theological and an on-the-street perspective, Kevin and Ted diagnose the emerging church.  They pull apart interviews, articles, books, and blogs, helping you see for yourself what it’s all about.

Joshua: The Bible (God)

The Book of Joshua provides an overview of the military campaigns to conquer the land area that God had promised. Following the exodus from Egypt and the subsequent forty years of the wilderness wanderings, the newly-formed nation is now poised to enter the Promised Land, conquer the inhabitants, and occupy the territory. The overview that we have here gives abbreviated and selective details of many of the battles and the manner in which the land was not only conquered, but how it was divided into tribal areas.

What are you reading?


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