Jan 122014
 
Jury

Judge and lawyer in the courtDon’t be mistaken – accusations WILL come.  There are always those who will cause division and strife in the Body of Christ by their words and actions.  Oh, that we could avoid such people – but they will always be with us.  It is something that we as pastors and ministers need to be constantly aware of for several reasons.

 As we live our lives in the famed “glass bowl” we are responsible for our actions and the words we speak.  All of us have made mistakes or said things we wish we hadn’t.  Whether said in exaggeration, or just said in wrong timing causing misunderstanding – we are made constantly aware of the fact that the words we, as pastors speak, carry more weight than anything others may say.  Whether it is fair or not doesn’t matter – it is so.

Oct 172013
 

In the middleHow many times have you felt stuck in the middle of an argument by two people that you love?  You can see both sides of things, but there’s an impasse and the relationship appears to be falling apart, or the opportunity will be lost and at no small cost to those involved.

In the case of children involved in a marital dispute, they just want Mommy and Daddy to stop fighting. In the case of a business deal, or government shutdown, people want an agreement to be made that will allow people to move on with their lives without paying a higher price for someone else’s poor decisions or stubbornness.

Jul 312013
 

Emotional dramaAre you being challenged in your relationships? Whether that relationship is with your spouse, your friend or a congregational member, making assumptions about what they “really” mean – can be deadly.

The death of many a relationship has been caused solely by blind assumptions regarding motives and intentions. As a leader in a church, or other position of leadership such as a parent, there is a tendency to assume that you are  the answer, or have the answer. 

Whether you believe that or not isn’t the problem with this assumption– it’s believing that you must be the answer … or you must have the answer. After all, you’re the leader, right?

Oct 312012
 

Forgiveness is layered. The events that occur to cause bitterness are rarely one time events. Even if they are, they still take time to un layer them because of all the meanings that are instantly applied to the wretched event. Why do you think that Jesus said we should forgive 7×70 (Matthew 18:22)?  Because it’s an active state of forgiveness … it doesn’t end. Unfortunately, its not something that you can just check off your list. 

In fact, forgiveness is like breathing. When we actually forget to inhale oxygen and someone says, “breathe” it’s not something that you do once and then check off your list. It continues – being told to “breathe” is just a reminder. The same when people say, “forgive” it’s a reminder… 

Aug 112011
 

Within the past seven years or so, I’ve had many chance encounters with people who proudly stated that they once were Christians … but had been delivered from that horrendous belief system.

In asking them to describe to me what areas they had the greatest problem with, none showed any hesitation as they listed the familiar complaints of

  1. control
  2. judgment
  3. bitterness
  4. resentments
  5. manipulation
  6. humiliation
  7. abuse … and the list goes on.