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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Christian Living

Tackling COVID-19 Vaccination Questions from a Christian Worldview

Note: The posts on this website are my personal thoughts and conclusions based upon Scripture. They are not endorsed by any church I have attended, pastored, or served in.
This is an especially important distinction to keep in mind when reading thoughts on hot-button topics, such as the one discussed in this post.

Christianity and the COVID-19 vaccine. Chances are I already have your attention. These two worlds bounce off each other, all around us, every day.

To say they collide is to imply it is a war. To say they are partners together is to suggest an ease in fitting together. To quote a science fiction starship captain, “It’s never easy.”

In the North American, capital “C” Church at large, there are believers who take a strong position for both sides of vaccines. Local churches are often more split than they realize, until a side conversation becomes a lengthy, passionate discussion.

But what is the right side? Is there a right side? What lessons are we supposed to be learning and putting into practice as we go through this season? This is my take on a Christian’s perspective regarding the COVID-19 vaccine.

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Christian Living

The Fine Line: COVID-19, Vaccines, and Social Media

I stopped myself recently. It wasn’t anything inflammatory or even for/against any side of the debate. It was just math; information based on calculations from other information. Zero commentary. All I had to do was copy, paste, and post.

Are you wondering what it was? Tempting as it was, and is, I had to choose to leave it alone.

Discussing COVID-19 vaccinations is a dangerous game. Just saying the term out loud sets off defense mechanisms on all sides of the camp.

How involved should we be? Can’t we share our opinion? What about if it is “just the facts”? Sounds like another “Fine Line” we have to walk as Christians.

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Ministry

You can’t be “Pastoral” with Everyone

When you are a pastor, there are two primary elements of your ministry you and the people agree on. You study the Bible and you tell people about it. Whether you preach, teach, or write, most people understand these basic parts of what you do.

Another element of pastoral ministry is counseling. Real counseling isn’t just listening and being a friendly ear to hear about people’s problems, though some who go to a pastor’s office think of it like that. It also involves sharing biblical guidance for problems and situations.

As a result of all of this talking about the Bible, the impulse for a pastor or Bible teacher is to try and speak into everyone’s life as a pastoral influence. But we do not have permission to be such a voice into every life we are connected with or bump into.

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Christian Living

The Fine Line

To be a Christian is not easy. There is a constant battle between who we could be and who we should be, what to desire and what to turn away from. No one of us is perfect and yet God calls us to strive for it.

At times we walk along a fine line and have to choose a side to fall on. Culture makes us choose. Work makes us choose. Maybe it is family or friends. In a world constantly flipping over or twisting around us, it could simply be the gnawing in our guts driving us to pick a side.

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