Saturday, October 31, 2009

Hear! Hear!

This lady is being very Christlike in her "friend of sinners" approach. Our "hit and run" tactic is certainly non-relational. We should all wish we had a group of sinners willing to sit and talk regularly with us as was done with Jesus and is being done with this ministry leader! Personally convicting isn't it.

When a Beer Separates You From God

"I want the people who don’t want to go to church, those who are wounded and broken, especially from religion. I want to reach out to the person who believes a beer separates them from God. … Jesus said what comes out of the heart is more defiling than what goes into the mouth. … I love [people] where they are at rather than where they are supposed to be. There’s nobody I refuse to fellowship with. I’d much rather hang out with someone who is broken than someone who thinks they don’t have any need. Religion doesn’t always do that."

—Beloit, Wis., ministry leader Kathy Price, on meeting at a local bar with a "non-church" crowd every Sunday to talk about Jesus over cocktails, cigarettes and chicken wings. After learning about Catholic Saint Katherine of Sienna, a fellow pub preacher in the 14th century, Price said she felt impressed by the Holy Spirit to begin reaching out to regulars in bars and launched The Red Door ministry. [, 10/19/09]

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Set The Example!

Perry Noble's Worship Leader wrote the following :

Be a person worthy of authority. Let me put it this way: if you are lazy, expect laziness from your staff. If you aren’t passionately in love with God, expect moral failure and disunity in your staff. Perry won’t broadcast this, but ever since I have known him, he gets up at 5am or earlier, spends an hour or two with God, and then spends hour or two in the gym. And then he hits the office. So, when I go into a meeting and he tells me something i don’t really agree with, I keep my mouth shut and I listen before I say anything in response; I know he walks with God and I have tremendous respect for that. It’s much easier to follow a leader who is more disciplined than you. If you want a humble staff, be humble. If you want a staff that is anything… you must be that, first. your staff will reflect your own character. So, if your staff is lazy, doesn’t value excellence, or is disconnected from culture, look no further than your own mirror for the reason why. Everything rises and falls on leadership. Be a Proverbs 15:33 leader.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Thanks for your time!

A young man learns what's most important in life from the 'ole guy next door.

It had been some time since Jack had seen the old man. College, girls, career, and life itself got in the way. In fact, Jack moved clear across the country in pursuit of his dreams. There, in the rush of his busy life, Jack had little time to think about the past and often no time to spend with his wife and son. He was working on his future, and nothing could stop him. Over the phone, his mother told him, "Mr. Belser died last night. The funeral is Wednesday." Memories flashed through his mind like an old newsreel as he sat quietly remembering his childhood days. "Jack, did you hear me?" "Oh, sorry, Mom, Yes, I heard you. It's been so long since I thought of him. I'm sorry, but I honestly thought he died years ago," Jack said.

"Well, he didn't forget you. Every time I saw him he'd ask how you were doing. He'd reminisce about the many days you spent over 'his side of the fence' as he put it," Mom told him."I loved that old house he lived in," Jack said. "You know, Jack, after your father died, Mr. Belser stepped in to make sure you had a man's influence in your life," she said. "He's the one who taught me carpentry," he said. "I wouldn't be in this business if it weren't for him. He spent a lot of time teaching me things he thought were important...Mom, I'll be there for the funeral," Jack said. As busy as Jack was, he kept his word. He caught the next flight to his hometown.

Mr. Belser's funeral was small and uneventful. He had no children of his own, and most of his relatives had passed away. The night before he had to return home, Jack and his Mom stopped by to see the old house next door one more time. Standing in the doorway, Jack paused for a moment. It was like crossing over into another dimension, a leap through space and time. The house was exactly as he remembered. Every step held memories. Every picture, every piece of furniture....Jack stopped suddenly. "What's wrong, Jack?" his Mom asked. "The box is gone," he said. "What box?" Mom asked. "There was a small gold box that he kept locked on top of his desk. I must have asked him a thousand times what was inside. All he'd ever tell me was 'the thing I value most,'" Jack said. It was gone. Everything about the house was exactly how Jack remembered it, except for the box. He figured someone from the Belser family had taken it. "Now I'll never know what was so valuable to him," Jack said. "I better get some sleep. I have an early flight home, Mom."

It had been about two weeks since Mr. Belser died Returning home from work one day Jack discovered a note in his mailbox. "Signature required on a package. No one at home. Please stop by the main post office within the next three days," the note read. Early the next day Jack retrieved the package. The small box was old and looked like it had been mailed a hundred years ago. The handwriting was difficult to read, but the return address caught his attention. "Mr. Harold Belser," it read. Jack took the box out to his car and ripped open the package. There inside was the gold box and an envelope. Jack's hands shook as he read the note inside. "Upon my death, please forward this box and its contents to Jack Bennett. It's the thing I valued most in my life." A small key was taped to the letter. His heart racing, as tears filling his eyes, Jack carefully unlocked the box. There inside he found a beautiful gold pocket watch. Running his fingers slowly over the finely etched casing, he unlatched the cover. Inside he found these words engraved: "Jack, Thanks for your time! -Harold Belser." "The thing he valued most time?" Jack held the watch for a few minutes, then called his office and cleared his appointments for the next two days. "Why?" Janet, his assistant asked. "I need some time to spend with my son," he said. "Oh, by the way, Janet, thanks for your time!"

To all my ministry friends: "Thanks For Your Time!"

Richard G. Hanner

Monday, October 19, 2009

Semper Reformanda

[See Tuesday September 8th post to understand why this phrase is meaningful to RMS]

"...where did this phrase come from? It's first appearance was in a 1674 devotional by Jodocus van Lodenstein, who was an important figure in Dutch Reformed pietism -- a movement known as the Dutch Second Reformation. According to these writers, the Reformation reformed the doctrine of the church, but the lives and practices of God's people always need further reformation.

Van Lodenstein and his colleagues were committed to the teaching of the Reformed confession and catechism; they simply wanted to see that teaching became more thoroughly applied as well as understood. However, here is his whole phrase: "The church is reformed and always [in need of] being reformed according to the Word of God." The verb is passive: the church is not "always reforming," but is "always being reformed" by the Spirit of God through the Word. Although the Reformers themselves did not use this slogan, it certainly reflects what they were up to; that is, if one quotes the whole phrase!"

Saturday, October 10, 2009

50 Years of Ministry Equals 10 Leadership Lessons

Chuck Swindoll, accepting a Lifetime Achievement Award at Catalyst 09, offered the following lessons he has learned:

>It’s lonely to lead. Leadership involves tough decisions. The tougher the decision, the lonelier it is.

>It’s dangerous to succeed. I’m most concerned for those who aren’t even 30 and are very gifted and successful. Sometimes God uses someone right out of youth, but usually? He uses leaders who have been crushed.

>It’s hardest at home. No one ever told me this in Seminary.

>It’s essential to be real. If there’s one realm where phoniness is common, it’s among leaders. Stay real.

>It’s painful to obey. The Lord will direct you to do some things that won’t be your choice. Invariably you will give up what you want to do for the cross.

>Brokenness and failure are necessary.

>Attitude is more important than actions. Your family may not have told you, some of you are hard to be around. A bad attitude overshadows good actions.

>Integrity eclipses image. Today we highlight image. But it’s what you’re doing behind the scenes.

>God’s way is better than my way.

>Christlikeness begins and ends with humility.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

John Piper Confesses His Sin!

Greetings Brothers,

Our Evangelical/Continuationist stream must urgently recapture the biblical prescription admonishing us to "confess our sins" to one another as a means of grace for healing.

During the first five minutes of this audio, John Piper is transparently vulnerable regarding his own sin while speaking at a Conference of Christian Counselors.

I implore you to take a few minutes to listen now. This is refreshingly honest!
May the Exalted Christ be pleased to grace each of us to emulate John Piper's charactered example.

You will note that John Piper is somewhat perplexed by the audience laughter...Priceless!

Click to listen:


Sunday, October 4, 2009

Here is A Big Dose of Reality!

Check out these stats extracted from "Pastoral Care Inc." Click on their link for a complete profile of ministerial reality and see why our Covenantal Friendship is a chief priority today. [rgh]

*1 out of every 10 ministers will actually retire as a minister in some form.

*The profession of “Pastor” is near the bottom of a survey of the most-respected professions, just above “car salesman.”

*Over 1,700 pastors left the ministry every month last year.

*Over 1,300 pastors were terminated by the local church each month, many without cause.

*Over 3,500 people a day left the church last year.

*Many denominations report an “empty pulpit crisis.” They cannot find ministers willing to fill positions.

#1 reason pastors leave the ministry — Church people are not willing to go the same direction and goal of the pastor. Pastor's believe God wants them to go in one direction but the people are not willing to follow or change.