Faith

Finding Fulfillment in Personal Worship

I have very strong feelings about worship. Worship has opened many doors for me in ministry and gives life to my personal relationship with Jesus. It has been a continual study of mine, and I think it about it so much i even wrote a book about it.

According to one personality profile, music is so important to who I am that not having it in my life for an extended time can actually be harmful to my mental health, and the vast majority of the music in my life is worship related.

Worship is a powerful element of our life in Jesus Christ. It isn’t something new, finding purpose because of the growth of the worship music industry. Quite the opposite, actually. It is because of our inner desire for and benefit from worship that kept lead worshipers going and be able to take advantage of today’s technologies to explode worldwide.

But maybe you go to church and wonder what the big deal is about worship. Maybe you haven’t grabbed hold of what it can mean for you. You are not necessarily opposed to the music at church, it just does not affect you like it does others. You love God, but this worship thing is not really a “need” in your life.

In a previous post I talked about how COVID-19 is giving us an opportunity to rediscover personal worship, to spend time with God, singing to and about Him, all on our own. This post cracks the idea of how it is different from congregational worship and bit of how to make it happen.

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Faith

Are You Willing to Worship Alone?

Church has changed in the past couple of years. COVID-19 will do that. The good news is we are in a slot of this pandemic where in most areas churches are allowed to be open.

We are glad to be able to get together and feel the power of Holy Spirit connection in one room. For a lot of folks this is better than the online church we had before. But it still isn’t the same, is it?

In my slice of the world we still have to wear masks, social distance, and are not supposed to have congregational singing. That last one is hard. Some sing anyway under their masks but most try to open themselves to God’s ministry through the worship team and quietly set their hearts and minds on Heaven.

It seems like an oxymoron, worship without singing. Yet it feels like a good to remind us of a lesson I learned while leading worship teams and writing a book about worship: the importance of being able to worship on our own, away from everyone else.

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Faith

Is My Bible App Making Me Lazy?

I am a tech guy. I love innovation and possibilities when it comes to technology. One of my friends calls me first whenever something doesn’t work on any of his devices.

As a pastor and worship leader, my favorite tool was my iPad. It is loaded with applications for writing, reading and researching, note taking, Bible study, sermon writing, worship leading, and much more.

When I was a kid my dad brought home a Commodore 64. I used one of the first word processing programs on that computer, and played a game called Lode Runner where you were a white stick figure running back and forth on different levels of white lines.

So when Bible apps became a thing I jumped on them. I have two favorites, one for casual reading and one connected to my ministry library. I highly recommend Bible apps.

But this week at a prayer meeting, I saw a few pastors on their phones, and I assume they were checking on Bible verses. That got me thinking: While I love my Bible apps, and rely heavily on them, are they making me lazy?

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Christian Living, Faith

The Fine Line: Tearing Down Government Leaders

Today marks 100 days since President Joe Biden took office. Media will be posting all types of statistics to help shape our personal opinion of the President, some of them based on the opinions of others.

It’s a tempting today for people to jump online and look for ways to fill their social media ammunition buckets. There will be posts to rave about the President and others to tear him down. Comparisons will be made to past leaders. Fact-checkers will be busy proving and disproving stats. And President Biden will be judged against the promises he made while campaigning.

Which side will Christians be on? Both. Unfortunately, we will join the masses in picking political fights, debating and arguing with each other, all with the name of Jesus attached to us.

I defined the idea of The Fine Line we walk as Christians a little while back. Here is a great example of it in action. Choosing whether or not to tear down our government leaders.

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Christian Living, Faith

The “Magic” of Christmas (1) ~ 3 Reactions

Our Town recently hung new banners for the Christmas season. We use banners in our downtown area throughout the various seasons and special days of the year.

This year’s Christmas banners invited passersby to “Believe in the magic of Christmas.” Reactions to such a phrase could swing between the dismissive to the outright hostile.

It isn’t too far a stretch, though, to apply the idea of magic to a Christian view of the holiday. It might even open some doors of conversation to share the Hope we have as we near the end of a frightful year.

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Faith

6 Complications to Admitting Our Sin and Facing Our Need for Jesus

Everyone who bumps into Jesus has to decide whether or not they need Him in their life. Whether a search for truth or life or forgiveness or hope led us to Him, or we found ourselves presented with the life and work of Jesus by a friend or stranger, there is a basic evaluation we run through to decide how far we are willing to hear or receive this Jesus. But the admission of sin requires us to overcome complications which tend to stop us in our tracks.

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