Genesis 1:2 presents a world in watery chaos. How is Yahweh going to bring order? Why a watery chaos? Ancient Israelites would have seen a watery chaos at the beginning of a story as a genre trigger for a creation story (what we call a "cosmogony").
"A spiritual message cannot be conveyed by an unspiritual medium anymore than deep philosophical ideas can be conveyed by smoke signals. The form of secular leadership excludes the spiritual content of the gospel message, and is therefore an unfit medium of conveyance. True spiritual leadership is the servant leadership of Jesus Christ and Paul. It has as its source not expert power or personal power, nor resource power or positional power but spiritual power "
- Natural Church Life
Every ministry needs intellectual capital to thrive. By intellectual capital I mean the know-how, innovation, brains, talent, and imagination required to find and solve problems. The leaders I admire have an ability to design the workplace in a manner that liberates intellectual capital.
I was struck by the set up to the story of the feeding of the 5000 in the book of Matthew. (Mt 14:13ff.) Jesus had just heard about the death of John the Baptist. The text tells us that Jesus got in the boat attempting to get away to have some alone time, presumably to grieve, but people somehow heard what Jesus was up to and followed him.
Recently, I was asked to work with a congregation to improve their discipleship and evangelism processes. Almost instantly, I discovered a phenomenon that is present in many mainline congregations throughout the country: a division between discipleship and evangelism. The advice of the pastor was “I pray your good success.” What he was actually saying was “good luck.” I thought, “With this kind of division, it is impossible for them to make a kingdom impact among their membership and the community.
Warren Bennis wrote in On Becoming a Leader that "full, free self-expression is the essence of leadership." I found the comment a bit obnoxious when I first read it, thinking that it invited leaders to be self-absorbed, but upon reflection I think he's on to something. This post will briefly define terms, getting at the 'why' of each point.
I often get asked what makes The Pillar Seminary different from other seminaries so I figured I would put it into a blogpost...
In Exodus Chapter 12, we come to the Passover. The Passover is still a major Jewish holiday. In fact, you may observe it or know someone who observes Passover every spring. If you’re not Jewish, my guess is that you might not know much about the Passover, except that around Easter, grocery stores advertise specials on matzo and lamb.
In his book, The Great Good Place, Ray Oldenburg argues that we need a "third" place. Oldenburg's thesis is that the home is where we live and constitutes who we live with; our workplace/school is probably where we spend the most time but is very “task” oriented in nature. We need a “third” place to provide a mooring for community life and wider, more fluid, creative interaction. -Churchandculture.org
There seems to be a fair amount of confusion about what scripture means when it exhorts us to fear God.