Practical Ways to Worship as a Disciple

In the last post I asserted that if your worship is off then all of your life as a disciple will be off. If that is true, then it behooves the disciple to ask, what will it take truly to worship our sovereign God? In other words, after we establish WHO it is we are to worship, we must establish HOW we are to worship. By how, I am not speaking of style or method, per se. If you are looking for a good series on Worship Wars you should check out my friend and colleague Kenny Lamm’s series on the subject. I am speaking more of the practicalities of living out a life of worship to the Father.

Image: thephotoholic / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Discipleship is holistic; however, it is helpful to think of specific environments in which the disciple lives out his faith. Four environments for discipleship are (1) personal; (2) family; (3) church; (4) world. Each dimension of discipleship–worship, community, and mission–can be explored in each of these environments. Help in establishing best practices for worship can be found in examining worship through the lens of these four environments: personal worship, family worship, corporate worship, and worship in the world. [Read more…]

Four Ways Churches Can Help Parents

It is clear in Scripture that parents have the primary role in the spiritual formation of children. We have affirmed this and noted that parents ought not outsource this responsibility to the church. But what is the place of the church in partnering with parents?

 It is true that Deuteronomy 6, Psalm 78 and other biblical texts place the onus on parents for discipleship, but in those same passages we should note that these parents aren’t discipling kids in a vacuum. In fact, this command to parent discipleship is given within the context of a broader faith community. In the Old Testament, this faith community is the nation of Israel. The passage known as the Shema in Deuteronomy 6:4 begins, “Hear, O Israel.” The command was given to the whole nation, not just the family. Implicit in this is the idea that families need support from the broader faith community. Today that faith community is not a nation, it is the church.

The church should not replace the parents, but parents should not undervalue the church’s role in discipleship. A few years ago the motto for The Home Depot was “you can do it, we can help.” As I have studied the role that churches should play in discipleship for the family, I think that is an excellent motto that could be applied. Churches should affirm that parents are the primary discipling agent, but that the church can encourage, equip, and resource them.

Alan Hirsch is Coming to North Carolina

I am delighted to announce that Alan Hirsch is coming to High Point, NC sponsored by North Carolina Baptists, and because you are reading this blog, you can be one of the first to register! I was first exposed to Alan’s thinking a couple of years ago when I read The Forgotten Ways. Through his words I found a voice that articulated much of the tension I had been feeling for at least a decade with the institutional forms of church in the West in which I have been raised.

God used Alan to help me examine once again the Scriptures to try and really understand what church, mission, and discipleship really should look like. I had the joy of facilitating a webinar with he and Deb earlier this year and have heard him teach in multiple venues. Every time I hear him I’m stretched and encouraged to contend for the Gospel in North America. I am currently reading On The Verge and it is equally challenging.

Here’s the deal. Because this is a white board session with Alan there are only 200 seats available! Registration will not open to the general public until next week, but we are making it available through this blog NOW. You can register today by clicking here.

Here are the details:

A Whiteboard Session with Alan Hirsch

A key missional leader, strategist, and author Alan Hirsch draws from his own experiences, as well as the experiences of ministries around the world, to provide examples of growing churches, church planting movements, and other missional projects. You are invited to join us for an informal session with Alan, seasoned with profound thinking, stimulating dialogue, contemporary expressions of church, and mixed with practitioner-based principles, stories, and a touch of humor–all pointing to the gospel.

Where and When:

The Crossing at High Point

921 Eastchester Drive

High Point, NC 27262

September 1, 2011

10:00AM-2:30PM

Cost:$20.00*Lunch will not be provided however, there is a food court located in the mall.

Register today because I know this will sell out fast!

 

 

 

Is Your Church a Culture Club?

Culture is something that Christians spend a lot of time fighting about. We use martial terms and speak of the “culture wars.” Believers are told to be “counter-cultural.” Typically, though, when Christians talk culture we are talking about “them.” We talk about “their” culture–meaning those outside the faith. Let’s think for a few minutes about “us” and “our” culture. That is, Christian culture.

 

Your church is a culture club. To some extent, all churches are. [Read more…]

Why you should read this blog

There are almost 165 Million blogs on the internet. Now I’ve added one more. So, why should you read this blog? Here are some possible reasons:

  1. You’re my wife or my mom. (Thanks, ladies!)
  2. You’re a friend (I owe you all lunch).
  3. You’re a student who may take a class I’m teaching (mentioning you read a prof’s blog is the 21st century equivalent to bringing him an apple). OR
  4. You’re interested in learning more about being a disciple who makes disciples.


I have decided to come out of a long hiatus from blogging because I believe God has given me some things to say that you need to hear (and hopefully you will want to hear). [Read more…]