Ministry Life

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Go Ahead and Grin—Church Is Hilarious

Ministry is a lot more fun if you laugh at just about everything.
Go Ahead and Grin—Church Is Hilarious

Somewhere along the line, I decided that it was better to laugh at all the craziness that goes on in churches instead of feel complete and total angst. This state of mind came about after our family’s visit to a friend’s first pastorate. We wrote down careful directions on how to get to his country church. He said there would be a welcome sign at a crossroads ...

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Can We Stop the Fall from Grace?

It’s unwise to believe we can fight temptation in our own power.
Can We Stop the Fall from Grace?

Three days after I read an article by a church leader who had fallen into sexual sin with someone in the church, my husband asked me to pray with him because he felt he was being tempted by women at his job. He said the attacks happened quite suddenly and wanted me to know what he was dealing with so I could stand in prayer with him.

My husband is on the board of trustees ...

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Tips for Preventing Suicide

Take action based on the level of risk
Tips for Preventing Suicide
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Unfortunately, there is no miraculous human intervention that resolves suicide risk. But there are specific actions you can take to prevent suicide, actions that become more extensive with increasing risk. Following are several ideas for pastoral care, which is different from mental health counseling, an important distinction that argues for referral to mental health services. ...

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3 Ways to Fight Back with Joy as You Lead

It’s a potent weapon for life’s battles
3 Ways to Fight Back with Joy as You Lead
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What begins as a gift soon becomes a grind.

Endless demands. Pressing deadlines. Unexpected interruptions.

The pressure to perform and produce can leave us feeling weary in the marrow of our being. The joy designed to grow into sweet plumpness soon shrivels. Smiles become forced. Sparkling eyes grow dim.

Those closest to us see the shift long before we recognize it ...

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Top 10 in 2014

A list of our most popular reads last year
Top 10 in 2014
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Happy New Year!

Let me be among the first to welcome you to 2015! None of us can know what this year holds in store, but we can all know that God has gone before us and has good plans for all of us. Today I pray that you are walking forward in the confidence and hope that comes from knowing the one who holds the future.

In keeping with our custom at this time of year, ...

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When Pastors Pray, Part 2

God called me to minister to desperate ministers
When Pastors Pray, Part 2
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Pastors now wear so many hats, they have only small “windows” of time to pray, give attention to the ministry of the word, and tend to the sheep.

When pastors are spread paper-thin, the place we think they would go for help is to their knees. But sometimes they feel this response is insufficient. Therefore, they spend enormous amounts of time trying to resolve ...

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When Pastors Pray, Part 1

God called me to minister to desperate ministers
When Pastors Pray, Part 1
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During the fall of 2013, the church witnessed a devastating travesty. A Georgia pastor, Teddy Parker, was one of 12 pastors to die by suicide. In a sermon that aired during the investigation around his death, Parker made the following statement: “I try to pray, but God is not hearing me.” I personally identified with his statement and was quite disturbed. After ...

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Thoughts on Q Women 2014

A conference review
Thoughts on Q Women 2014
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Last month I attended the Q Women gathering with my leader friend Jodie. We both were looking for challenging conversations that would stimulate our thinking about faith and women leaders. The tagline for Q drew me in: “Stay Curious. Think Well. Advance Good.” Through Q, husband and wife co-founders Gabe and Rebekah Lyons have cultivated an environment where ...

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Study Reveals Missing Influence of Women among Nonprofit Leaders

An interview with researchers Dr. Janel Curry and Dr. Amy Reynolds
Study Reveals Missing Influence of Women among Nonprofit Leaders
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The Women in Leadership National Study, funded by the Imago Dei Fund of Boston, has completed two phases of a three-part study that examines institutional leadership among evangelical nonprofit organizations. Researchers have studied a number of organizations that include World Vision US, InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities, ...

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Did Jesus Say to Welcome Only the Documented Stranger?

I am firmly convinced that I am obligated to love
Did Jesus Say to Welcome Only the Documented Stranger?
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When my former boss sent a link to preview the new film The Stranger, I grabbed a pen and a journal, ready to take notes. I was so eager to learn more about immigration from a Christian worldview. I desired to become more educated about immigration reform, so I couldn’t wait to download the film. As I began to become engrossed in the picture, I had no idea it would ...

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