Leap of Faith

One of my favorite movies is Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. In it Harrison Ford’s character is faced with difficult trials in order to regain the Holy Grail, the cup Jesus used at his last supper. One of the tests he has to endure is to make a seemingly impossible leap across a […]

What’s Excellent?

There’s an old axiom that goes something like:

Those without a destination are doomed to never arrive.

As I was pondering that the other day, a corollary to the axiom came to mind. “Those who don’t define excellence are destined to never achieve it.”

Most church leaders I know are invested in delivering excellence in all their […]

Who’s Bulletin Is It?

Let me start out with a thought … if you’re using screen technology, a worship bulletin is a colossal waste of resources. Why do you need a bulletin to follow the Responsive Reading? I mean, it’s up there on the screen? Besides, your office manager probably spent an hour typing it up, proofing it, […]

Don’t Stop … Thief!

One of those ten commandments is about thievery. The Bible generally frowns on stealing stuff from others. Although neither Israel nor Christians ever condoned cutting off a thieve’s hand as punishment, there were some pretty stiff penalties for thieves.

On the other hand, the writer of Ecclesiastes reminds us:

What has been will be again, […]

When Will You Hip Hop?

Do you remember the fight your church had when you added a drum kit to the sanctuary’s platform?

Well, that’s nothing compared to what’s coming.

Maybe you haven’t heard the news: As of 2019, Hip Hop is the number one selling music genre in the US … it surpassed rock-n-roll rather handily.

So, when will you […]

Embrace Entertainment

A recent comment about a local big box church (that’s successfully reaching, baptizing, and discipling young adults):

“They’ve given in to entertainment evangelism.”

… as if entertainment was a four-letter, distasteful, disgusting word.

If you’re going to reach young adults I’ve got three words for you:

Get
over
it!

Jesus specialized in entertainment evangelism. He told stories, AKA parables. He captured […]

Make This Father’s Day Service Special

Let’s face it, Father’s Day is the Rodney Dangerfield of holidays. It’s the, “I get-no-respect” little brother to Mother’s Day. Interestingly, the American version of Father’s Day was first proposed in 1909 by a grateful daughter, Sonora Smart Dodd. Her father, a Civil War veteran, singlehandedly raised six children after his wife died in […]

When Do You Cancel Church?

Everyone’s talking about the weather in the Mid-West. “Worst winter in decades,” they say.

Which isn’t quite true. Worst winter in terms of accumulated snow and ice over the last couple of years, but long-timers will tell you that this winter looks a lot more like what it used to look like almost every winter. […]

On Not Being Nice for the Sake of the Gospel

The following is one of our most asked-for blog posts.  It was written two decades ago, but it is still as relevant today as it was then.

Throughout all my consulting ministry, I have seen a disturbing pattern: most established churches are held hostage by one or two bullies. Either one individual or a small group […]