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Discipleship

This category contains 43 posts

5 Tips for Opening those Closed Groups

A farmhand convinced the rancher to eat lunch right after breakfast so they’d have more time in the back 40 digging in fence posts. And then he convinced him to eat supper, too. But after dinner, the farmhand went to bed. The rancher found his bunk. “What do you mean going to bed after three … Continue reading

Does Your Small Group Stink?

Have you noticed the abundance of anti-stinking going on in our world? From underarms to kitty litter, we are barraged with odors to avoid. Then we are hit with the latest manly colognes, sexy perfumes, and plug-in air fresheners. At least one major auto-maker gives scientists big bucks just to manufacture new car smells. What … Continue reading

Experiencing Joy

Experiences bring more joy than things you own. Family vacations, mission trips, Christian concerts, and, yes, lively discussion in a Bible study over time become more precious than things you own. My wife and I tackled a major downsizing this past month. We conducted an estate sale and jettisoned sofas, a bedroom suit, at least four entire shelves of … Continue reading

In the Furnace

After interviewing five men from Central Asia in refugee camps, I asked them what would attract them to actually listen to Bible stories on the radio. After suggesting five or six options, I asked, “Would you listen to conversion testimonies from Muslims, even Muslim religious leaders?” Their eyes grew wide. One asked through an interpreter, … Continue reading

Stopping Church Shopping

We’ll call them Brian and Victoria Samples. They are followers of Jesus, born-again, and church shoppers. Following the tried-and-true method of how to select a new church passed down from their parents, the young couple sits through several worship services, boldly leave their toddler in childcare, and pray about their fit with that church. Now, … Continue reading

Why I Hate Drywall (and Why You Should, Too)

Standing around with pastors during a break at an associational pastor’s conference, one pastor lamented that his church had stopped growing. When I asked why, he said that his building could only hold so many people. When I asked him why a little thing like drywall would prohibit growth, it was like scales fell off … Continue reading

Oh, those purple jars! or… Disciple-making despite distractions

My mother’s favorite story is about a little girl who needed new shoes, but foolishly spent her money on a beautiful purple jar. One day she opened the jar and dropped it on the floor. All the purple water spilled out and she was left not only with a useless jar, but shoes that hurt … Continue reading

Millennials and Evangelism-Discipleship Using Storying

When I led a Sunday School class for our church’s college students for four years, I was astounded one Sunday when one long-time Christian and faithful attender blurted out, “Just tell us what to believe.” My Baby Boomer generation grew up doubting the Establishment with its political corruption, humiliated tele-evangelists, rampant inflation, and unethical business … Continue reading

Being Agents of Spiritual Transformation

Lawrence led a man on the street to Jesus as part of Crossover prior to the SBC in Indianapolis. The man immediately asked, “May I go tell my sister?” Lawrence agreed and soon watched as the man brought his sister out of an apartment building. After Lawrence led her to faith in Christ she admitted, … Continue reading

Shredding Clutter, Living with Purpose

Priorities help you rifle into the heart of the evilness called clutter. Busyness is the noise of life. And trust me that noise can be deafening. There’s a phrase that I’ve learned in a Bible study: Look for where God is at work and join Him. Maybe you know it, too. Some manage to raise … Continue reading