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October 2016

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Jan 24, 2017
evangelism, baby boomers, millennials

Does It Really Matter? How Generational Dynamics Impact Our Evangelism

We need different methods for reaching those over 40 and under 40.
Does It Really Matter? How Generational Dynamics Impact Our Evangelism

How should generational dynamics affect evangelistic methods? Or we could put it this way: “How is reaching people over the age of 40 different from reaching those under 40?”

This is a tricky issue. We must first recognize that the categories are nuanced. Generally, ...

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Nov 10, 2016
diaspora missions, missiology, refugees, migrants

Diaspora Missions: Diaspora Churches as Equal Partners in Mission

Hispanic, Korean, Chinese, and Nigerian churches embody the vitality and vibrancy of Global Christianity.
Diaspora Missions: Diaspora Churches as Equal Partners in Mission

A few weeks ago I had the privilege of attending the first united symposium of the Chinese Alliance churches in Canada. These churches are part of the Canadian Christian and Missionary Alliance (C&MA) and offer services in Mandarin, Cantonese, and English languages. They ...

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Nov 4, 2016
diaspora missions, missiology, refugees, migrants

Diaspora Missions: Who Is Sitting Behind You?

Invite an international student to share a meal with your family.
Diaspora Missions: Who Is Sitting Behind You?

The world is at our doorstep, but in some cases the world’s future leadership may be sitting near you in church! As we greeted people around us during a recent Sunday service, we met two international students sitting behind us. They had taken the bus on their own. It ...

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Nov 3, 2016
diaspora missions, missiology, refugees, migrants

Diaspora Missions: The Uncomplicated First Step of Entering the Other’s World

The first step can be learning to pronounce an unfamiliar name.
Diaspora Missions: The Uncomplicated First Step of Entering the Other’s World

Suresh the Tamil Taxi Driver

Tonight I was treated to a lovely dinner at a local Korean restaurant by a Korean friend of mine. Our dinner party also included three Filipinos, a Japanese, and one Canadian. We are together in Singapore. Such a gathering of the scattered in today’s ...

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Nov 2, 2016
diaspora missions, missiology, refugees, migrants

Diaspora Missions: East Meets West (and North meets South): Reflections on Polycentric Missions

Christianity is not declining in the U.S., but is being ‘de-Europeanized.'
Diaspora Missions: East Meets West (and North meets South): Reflections on Polycentric Missions

Last month, as I stood on the banks of the giant Panama Canal in Panama, Central America, and saw ships cross from the Atlantic to Pacific Ocean side, I was reminded of a famous quote from a poem by Nobel Laurate Rudyard Kipling—‘East is East and West is West, and ...

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Nov 1, 2016
evangelical, marriage

Evangelicals Across the Spectrum Are Clarifying Marriage as a Core Belief

For Evangelicals, same-sex marriage is not an "agree to disagree" issue.
Evangelicals Across the Spectrum Are Clarifying Marriage as a Core Belief

Marriage, as Jesus defines it in Matthew 19—where a man leaves his father and mother and joins with his wife in covenant marriage—is a core evangelical belief.

It might not seem that way these days, when we hear of a few people making news by changing their views ...

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Nov 1, 2016
church planting, church growth

Breaking the 200 Barrier: Renaissance Church in Decatur, Illinois

Church seeks to meet the needs of the un-churched and de-churched.
Breaking the 200 Barrier: Renaissance Church in Decatur, Illinois

My church, Renaissance, is located in a small Midwestern city with around 100,000 people living in the county. It began as a Sunday night Bible study in the home of our pastor. Once his living room was outgrown, the church began meeting downtown at the local Arts Council building ...

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Oct 31, 2016
diaspora missions, missiology, refugees, migrants

Diaspora Missions: People on the Move in the Borderless World

As of the end of 2015, 65.3 million people were displaced.
Diaspora Missions: People on the Move in the Borderless World

In 2015, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) declared that year to be the Year of the Migrants.

The 21st century world, a world that the Creator-Redeemer God loves, is a different world from 2,000 years ago when the Apostle John wrote, “For God so loved the ...

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Oct 31, 2016
election, evangelical, republican, democrat

Why Evangelicals Dislike and Distrust Hillary Clinton So Much

To many Evangelicals, Mrs. Clinton is a perfect storm of divergent values, dismissive advocacy, and distrusted personality.
Why Evangelicals Dislike and Distrust Hillary Clinton So Much

On Saturday, I was speaking at the Society of the Scientific Study of Religion. I was there to present data on Evangelicals and their voting patterns, explaining the new LifeWay Research / National Association of Evangelicals tool that helps classify Americans by Evangelical ...

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Oct 28, 2016
halloween, trick or treat, trunk or treat, harvest festival

Don't Waste the Opportunity: 4 Reasons You Should Go Trick or Treating This Weekend

New poll asks "What are pastors telling their congregations?"
Don't Waste the Opportunity: 4 Reasons You Should Go Trick or Treating This Weekend

I know lots of Christians who avoid Halloween. I did years ago. I get it and even respect it, depending on how you handle it.

Many churches put on wonderful events as Halloween alternatives, and I understand their goal. The last church I planted did so. Some churches do it due ...

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Oct 28, 2016
church growth

Growing Young

Six Essential Strategies to Help Young People Discover and Love Your Church
Growing Young

We keep hearing that young people are leaving the church and the faith in droves. Is it true, and how do you hope your research helps churches today?

Much of the doom and gloom about young people leaving the church is true. Church attendance is declining overall. The share of ...

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Oct 27, 2016
missions, tentmaking, seminary

3 Growing Needs in Missionary Education

Missionaries need a biblical, theological, and missiological foundation.
3 Growing Needs in Missionary Education

Any conversation around an exponential increase in the global missionary force must include methods for missionary education and training. When we think about those things, our gut reaction is often to rely solely on seminaries and missions agencies to fulfill educational needs. ...

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Oct 26, 2016
church planting, church growth

Breaking the 200 Barrier: Cornerstone EFCA in Casper, Wyoming

Church seeks to meet the needs of a community that often travels on the weekends.
Breaking the 200 Barrier: Cornerstone EFCA in Casper, Wyoming

History of the Church

Cornerstone Evangelical Free Church of Casper, Wyoming, began in 1971. For the first several decades, the church was relatively small and occasionally faced significant difficulties in attendance and giving. About 15 years ago, Pastor Jack Olsen was hired, ...

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Oct 26, 2016
election, evangelical, republican, democrat

Evangelicals are for Trump, Clinton, and Others

Party affiliation is a much stronger predictor of voting preferences than faith.
Evangelicals are for Trump, Clinton, and Others

This week, I will be in Atlanta speaking at the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion, presenting data alongside Greg Smith, of Pew Research, on evangelicals and the election.

A few months ago, I worked with LifeWay Research and the National Association of Evangelicals ...

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Oct 25, 2016
church planting

Rural Church Planting and Coaching Church Planters: November CPLF Gathering

If you're a church planting leader in your denomination, you should join us for this gathering.
Rural Church Planting and Coaching Church Planters: November CPLF Gathering

For the past few years we have hosted a gathering of denomination and network church planting leaders from across North America to consider process and practices of church planting. We call this group the Church Planting Leadership Fellowship (check out our new website!). This ...

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