Lead Like It Matters with Innovative Minds

If what your church or ministry is doing now is effective and changing lives, enjoy it while it lasts. Because what’s working now won’t work in the future. The message we preach must never change, but how we communicate it must change as the world changes. This may sound discouraging, but it’s true. If you don’t change, you won’t last. If you don’t adapt how you share the gospel, your effectiveness will likely lessen over time because the world is changing too fast. William Pollard said, “The arrogance of success is to think that what you did yesterday will be sufficient for tomorrow.”

If you are ready for change, you are ready for growth. This mindset changes how you see problems. When you think about it, every innovation is really a solution to a problem. Problems aren’t things to be feared but opportunities to embrace

How Your Pain Becomes the Path to Living Again

Everyone aches to be whole. We ache to be healed. We ache to be restored. Most of the time, though, we wouldn’t put it in those words. We just know we are broken because our child is addicted. We ache because the depression of our youth is now the depression of our golden years. We are stretched to the point of breaking because our career ambitions position us to commit to a pace we can’t sustain. Miscarriage, divorce, loneliness. In all of it, we ache. We ache for some way to walk through this life and not give up or give in.

An Unexpected Gift in Bible Study

When you come across a passage of Scripture that makes you uncertain, what do you do? Do you skip it, rush past it or just avoid asking questions?

That’s why the words of a meme I read recently stirred up some deep questions for me. It read, “The more certainty you can bring to the table, the greater your value.”(1)

The writer spoke with such authority. She seemed so… well, certain which made my misgivings feel wrong. But is that principle correct? Is our value really based on our level of certainty?

As I pondered certainty and human value, these words from an unknown author sprang to mind. They’re a reminder that certainty shouldn’t be our highest goal. This meme read, “Just because you’re certain doesn’t mean you’re right.” This thought has been shaping the way I’m approaching both interpersonal connections and my Bible study.

Certainty is an obstacle for both.

What is a Parable, Anyway?

As a young Christian, I often heard a parable described as “an earthly story with a heavenly meaning.” That’s not a bad description, but the parables are not just about heaven, they are about the kingdom of heaven, the kingdom of God. They are about faithfulness in the present as much as they are about God’s promises for the future. They are about God’s reign, now and in the kingdom in its future fulness. They are about the Good News—the gospel—and none of them is to be understood apart from the gospel.

Pastors, Get Time Back in Your Week

The Thompson® Chain-Reference® Bible is an excellent tool to engage with for Bible study and sermon preparation. For well over 100 years, professional clergy, lay pastors, and Bible teachers in many settings have profitably used its study systems to enrich their instruction. The TCR’s in-depth study system identifies the interconnectedness of God’s inspired Scripture as it links topics throughout the Bible. In this article, we’ll examine how this study system, and all the tools associated with it, save time in study and sermon preparation.

Unboxing the Find Your People Curriculum Kit with Jennie Allen

Jennie Allen unboxes her Find Your People Curriculum Kit and gives us a tour of what's inside!

Dealing with guilt, is it my job to save everyone?

I knew I had seen something I was not supposed to see. I felt a feeling I had never felt before. Guilt. I remember feeling like I was supposed to save somebody, but I didn’t. The early inner workings of guilt were planted within my heart. They continued to sprout like weeds. I signed up for as many community outreaches as possible, but our neighborhood’s needs never seemed to lessen. I tried to do more, save more, and save better, and instead, the disappointing results left me insecure and angry.

Do pastors struggle with loneliness, anxiety or depression?

The pulpit can often be the loneliest space in the room. In their private lives, these seven pastors were isolated relationally. Somewhere along the way, they substituted friendship with counterfeit versions of community (likes, followers, and fans). But followers are a poor substitute for healthy, accountable, encouraging, loyal friends. Pastoral failure was a symptom. Isolation was the underlying disease.

What is True Resilience?

I’ll cut straight to it: We haven’t yet paid the psychological bill for the last two years. The pandemic, the high-octane politics, all the tension––what we have just emerged from ...

A Sense of Sin

It is impossible to remain the same when you think about or experience the glory of God because you will get a sense of your sin. That is why I object to prophetic ministry that is not accompanied by gospel preaching.

New Testament Everyday Bible Study Series | Scot McKnight

In the New Testament Everyday Bible Study Series , widely respected biblical scholar Scot McKnight combines interpretive insights with pastoral wisdom for all the books of the New Testament. Each volume provides: Original Meaning. Brief, precise...

Is your church talking about anxiety, depression and mental health issues? You should be.

A Letter from Pastor Shawn Johnson Hi friends, We recently polled the people in our church and asked them what they were struggling with most in life. Unsurprisingly, anxiety and depression were at the top of the list. The CDC currently says that...

On Earth As It Is In Heaven | N.T. Wright

Like time itself, certain ideas creep up on you and, before you know it, they have changed the way you think about everything else. That’s how it was for me with the resurrection of Jesus. Brought up to go to church, to sing the hymns and say the...

The 7 Markers Your Congregation is Growing in Spiritual Maturity

Organic Disciples is a book by Kevin & Sherry Harney What is spiritual maturity? We are God’s ambassadors. His mouthpieces. The presence of Jesus in a world that desperately needs to see the face of the Savior. The truth is, none of us is the...

An Encouraging Note to Pastors Navigating Racial Conversations

4 Encouragements for Pastors Navigating Racial Conversations Thoughts from Isaac Adams What can we say to encourage pastors who are dipping their toes into racial matters as they lead their congregations? We could ask why they’re just now dipping...

Saying So Long to People Pleasing with Karen Ehman

Saying So Long to People Pleasing Karen Ehman I found myself in a lawn chair at our fire pit on an early evening. The heaving of my chest slowly subsided as I began to calm down and finish up my spontaneous crying session. As I stared up at the...

Free Resources

Using How (not) to Save the World with your church or small group?

Using How (not) to Save the World with your church or small group?

Here are some tools to help: 

The Small Group Tool Kit includes two mobile-friendly invitation cards, reflection cards to enhance your small  group experience, and a worship song playlist curated by Hosanna Wong that can beplayed during small group meetings or personal Bible study time. 

The Church Tool Kit includes a downloadable poster, bulletininsert, invitation card, and Power Point slide.

Is your church talking about anxiety, depression and mental health issues? You should be.

Is your church talking about anxiety, depression and mental health issues? You should be.

Shawn Johnson, lead pastor of Red Rocks Church, gives a
searingly honest portrait of anxiety and depression and shows readers how to fight back and live free. He also has put together three free tools pastors can use to help their congregation have a productive conversation around mental health, including a discussion guide, sermon notes and key Scripture verses.