transparency

Why Not to Floss Before You Go to Church

Why Not to Floss Before You Go to Church

“We’ve got just enough time. Let’s go!” My wife and I had run an errand on our day off and had a dentist appointment in 45 minutes. If we didn’t get caught in traffic we would just be able to get home, brush, floss, swish some Listerine, and then head to our afternoon dentist appointment. Why? Because in our world, you don’t show up to a dentist appointment without your teeth in their best condition.

Two days later I drop my car off at the shop. It has a strange squeak that has me nervous. I haven’t so much as popped the hood. The car isn’t washed and a fine powder of crumbs dusts the backseat.

When I go to the dentist I go hoping that I will get a good report. I don’t want any cavities, and I hope not to be scolded that I don’t floss enough. I have a strange desire to receive the dentist’s approval.

When I go to the car shop, I go messy. I go honest. I hope that they hear the squeak I keep hearing. I don’t know anything about cars and I hope that the mechanic can fix the problem. I know I sure can’t.

How do I go to church? Like I go to the dentist’s office or like I go to the car shop? Do we clean ourselves up or do we come messy?

Too many of us go to church like we go to the dentist’s office.

Teaching for Change, part 2

Teaching for Change, part 2

I took three preaching courses at seminary. They were all excellent. I didn’t take any courses on teaching, and wasn’t aware of any offered. It wasn’t until a campus minister sat me down for a conversation I would have even considered the need for a separate class on teaching. Aren’t they both just presenting biblical truth accurately and memorably?

That conversation ended with the most impactful advice I’ve ever received about teaching: prepare your lesson around several open questions that engage the group. Such preparation maximizes what small group teaching environments can do so well: connect biblical truths with individual hearts to bring about change.

Let’s unpack how I prepare to teach with the aim to experience change myself and help those in the group experience change.

10 Reasons to Leave Your Church

10 Reasons to Leave Your Church

It’s that time of year, when transitions happen: seasons close and new seasons begin. Maybe you’re a student who will be headed off to college in couple months. Maybe you got a new job. Maybe your employer transitioned you. Those are some of the many natural reasons that you might be leaving your church in the coming weeks.

Maybe you’ve left or are planning on leaving your church for entirely different reasons, though. Maybe your pastor is in a rut. Maybe the worship grates on you. Maybe you feel like you just don’t know anyone there any longer. Maybe you were injured by someone at the church and you tense up at the awkwardness of returning. Maybe you feel like you’re not getting spiritually fed there any longer.

In this four part series we will explore appropriate reasons for leaving a church, how to leave a church, how to choose a church, and how to join a church.

Let’s explore some of the most common reasons[i] people leave the church and reflect whether they are appropriate or not.