It has been six month since I finished my last role as Pastor of a small to medium sized country church. In this time I have been reflecting on what my ideal role going forward might look like.
My heart has always been teaching the Bible, reaching people for Christ and seeing them grow in their relationship with Christ. I guess you could say reach, disciple, teach.
So how does that translate to my current situation working part time in a secular role ordering medical supplies for a hospital?
One thing I am reflecting on is staying in my part time role at the hospital and being an non paid asscoiate Pastor who preaches once a month, and oversees of evangelism and discipleship.
I think this fits with my heart and giftings from God and being non paid, it would not take finances from the church which can be used for outreach and discipleship materials. And I would still be in contact with a lot of people through my secular role.
Time will tell is this is just prayerful reflections or it is something from God. As I have said before on this blog many times, time is always a great measure if things are from God or not.
Have you ever reflected on your ideal church role?
Who God says we are is a subject that as Christians we need to be reminded of every so often.
For many of us we hold a picture of ourselves that has been generated by what others have said about us over the years. It might be a teacher at school, a former boss or maybe a family member. Some of the pictures might not be that good.
For others the person who has been saying the wrong things has been ourselves. Sometimes our self talk is very negative and quite condemning. For some the things we think or say about ourselves is very wrong.
For this reason I want to look at who God says we are from the Bible. God as the Creator and Sustainer of the universe has so many positive things He says about us in the Bible, so this week I am going to let Scripture speak.
I believe that when we have a right picture of ourselves, through God’s eyes, we truly become alive to our potential and we are able to step out and be all God has created us to be.
I am hoping that we will be reminded of who we are in Christ. You can find the full text here.
I really like this blessing. It is one of my favourites to say at the end of my prayer when I finish a sermon.
I want people to be completely full of joy and peace as they trust in Christ. I want them to know what it is to overflow with a confident hope in the power of the Holy Spirit.
It is one of those blessings like Numbers 6:22-27 when God tells Aaron that when the Priests say the words, God Himself will bless them.
Being a Pastor/preacher is a blessing. It is also nice to bless others by your words and prayers.
Have you got a favourite blessing?
Hello all, my sermon from today in now online. It was titled, “Having the right attitude in 2018”.
In it I used the letters from the word attitude to make the main points. The points were as follows…
A – ASK God to examine your heart.
T – TELL God the truth about where you are at.
T – TALK to someone else about your struggles.
I – INVITE the Holy Spirit to control your mind.
T – TRAIN yourself in the things of God.
U – UNDERSTAND you are a work in progress.
D – DETERMINE to stay the course.
E – ENJOY the journey.
You can find the full text here. The audio is available here or below.
One of my weekly events at church is our KYB Bible study group. KYB stands for Know Your Bible.
Generally in most churches I have attended it is a ladies Bible study group. But in our church I was given special permission to attend by our ladies!
Each week we meet to discuss the Bible and work through our book. At the moment we are doing the Holy Spirit in the Old and New Testaments. In the past we have looked at the Books of Ephesians and John.
I really enjoy this group. Even though I have been to Bible college I am finding each week I am learning something. Sometimes it is from the study, sometimes it is from the others in the group.
KYB recommends that you work through the study alone and come together to discuss the answers. We tend to work through the study together. This works well for us.
If you are looking for a pre-prepared Bible study that is in booklet form I would encourage you to check them out. You can find them here.
This weekend I am doing a different kind of sermon than I have done before. I am doing what I am calling a bookend sermon.
After a brief introduction, I am going to read the passage, share some points and then read the passage again.
I am hoping the passage will speak to our church both times, even moreso the second.
I have never done this before, but I think it is important to shake up your preaching routine every now and then.
Here is an excerpt from a recent sermon. I felt to share it as a stand alone post…
1 John 4:1-3 NIV – “Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. 2 This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, 3 but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world.”
John recognised that false teachers with ulterior motives were coming into the church to lead people astray. John warns us to test the spirit that is behind what they are saying.
When someone says, they have a word or teaching from God there is three places it can come from – God’s Spirit, the human spirit or Satan.
Messages from God’s Spirit line up with Scripture and have a sense of rightness or truth about them. Messages from the human spirit feel like they miss the target and have a sense of selfishness, worldliness or ambition attached to them. Messages from Satan are designed to lead us astray and can often sound right, but are not right when tested.
So how do we test if someone is from God or not? We can observe them over a period of time and prayerfully ask these questions.
- Does what they say line up with the Bible, or as one of my Bible teachers used to say, “Does it sound like God?”
- Does their life and character line up with Scripture? (Titus 1:5-9, 1 Timothy 3:8-12)
- Do they bear fruit worthy of Christ or what is the fruit of their ministry?
- Do they respect other believers and have good standing in their previous church/es?
- Does what they say about Jesus line up with the Bible? (v2-3)
These things, especially what they say about Jesus is key to knowing if what they are saying is from God. John warns us to test the spirit behind what people say. That is why we need to take it slow when new people come to the church before we give them opportunities to serve in a place of responsibilities and speak into the life of our members.