How Should Pastors Want to Be Remembered When They Are Gone?

Dear brothers and fellow pastors, do not lost sight of for whom and what we labor to preach Christ and shepherd his people.

Begin now to consider how you wish to be remembered.  Will you want a tombstone like John Wesley (just outside Bunhill Fields) and so many others with monuments and flowery words that articulate all you accomplished for Christ?  Or, will you wish to be forgotten if it meant that Christ would not be forgotten to future generations?... Continue Reading

10 Mistakes Churches Make with Special Needs Families

How can churches better serve the special needs community?

What mistakes do Churches make when it comes to special needs families? Inaccessibility: Difficult to access main sanctuary or other facilities and services. Inflexibility: Resistance to adjust service times and format, youth activities. Impatience: Frustration with inevitable service disruptions, but also staying with the family through difficult seasons. Insensitivity: Comments, conversations, and decisions that unintentionally wound special needs (SN)... Continue Reading

Pastors Staying Put

Pastors too are called to be content where God puts them – urban, suburban, or rural.

“If you wish to benefit your flock spiritually, and, at the same time to gain spiritual and theological strength yourself, regard them as your beloved people; try more and  more to take an interest in them, and resolve, in the fear of God, to stay as long with them as Providence shall make it your... Continue Reading

Why Pastors Should Work Hard to Write Well

Pastors should work hard to become clear, competent writers

“You may not realize it, but pastors have to write every day. I’m sure every pastor has a love/hate (mostly hate?) relationship with email. There was a day last week when I wrote 53 emails. Many of those were short, but I hope none of them was sloppy.”   Pastors should work hard to become... Continue Reading

You Can Take the Curmudgeon Out of Presbyterianism…

Shouldn’t New Calvinists trust the God-ordained means of grace?

“To keep it straight, the Gospel Coalition attracts and promotes Calvinists (think Tim Keller and the PCA) who do not minister as Calvinists, that is, Calvinists who look the other way when it comes to worship and the ministry of the word. To be sure, New Calvinists care about ministry, but their concern is for... Continue Reading

Cynicism And The God Who Makes All Things New

Cynicism is a problem for many, especially those who have spent much of their life in the church

“We’ve heard great ministry ideas but they sound like a repeat of every other great ministry idea that failed. We hear people make promises and sit back and wait for them to let us down. Over time, our cynicism grows into anger and bitterness.”   In our homeschool, I’ve been going through a cycle of... Continue Reading

Should My Child Miss Church to Play Sports?

There’s been a radical shift in our culture’s attitude toward Sunday in recent years.

With the advent of traveling teams, Christian parents have a golden opportunity to teach their children about priorities.  Mom and Dad, what’s really most important to you?  Do you crave the ego-boost of bragging about what a terrific athlete your child is, or do you want them to know God’s will for their lives?  When... Continue Reading

Preventing Pastoral Burnout

Three areas to help pastors in particular not only recover from burnout, but also prevent it.

When I counsel pastors with burnout, stress, anxiety, or depression, I often find a strange reluctance to address the physical side of their suffering and an obsession with the spiritual. The spiritual side of things has to be addressed of course, especially because heart motivations are often the root cause of burnout. But even then,... Continue Reading

Confessing the Sin of Platforming

It’s possible to want to help others think biblically, to look to Christ, to learn God’s word, and also “market” or strategize or share online. But maybe the only way to navigate this area is to proceed with caution.

Babel and the Baptist are at odds. Let’s make a name for ourselves. Let’s not. Let’s increase our following. Let’s decrease, dwindle to peanuts, and baton everything toward Christ. How can we increase our social media buzz? How can people see more of Christ by what I do? There’s a fuzzy tension here.   “Let... Continue Reading

The Simplicity of Reformed Worship

Reformed worship simply consists of the Word (read, preached, sung, confessed, prayed) and the sacraments (the Lord’s supper and baptism).

The main reason for the simplicity of Reformed worship is the teaching of Scripture.  The Bible doesn’t command God’s New Covenant people to worship him with all the images and vestments and ceremonies.  The Reformers believed that the external ceremonies and images didn’t elevate the mind to God, but domesticated God and therefore were idolatrous. ... Continue Reading