Church & Culture

Church & Culture
Why Current Church Trends Mean Very Little In Smaller Churches
Small church ministry isn’t about following trends, it’s about knowing people.

In a couple recent articles, I wrote about current trends in church worship music. (You can read them here and here.)

If you worship or serve in a smaller church, you may have read those articles and shrugged, or maybe you saw the titles and didn’t even bother to read them. ...

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Church & Culture
Want To Accomplish Your Goals? Dream Bigger – And More Long-Term
While it may seem counterintuitive, thinking bigger and on a longer timeline is often a better way to get things done.

You won’t succeed at your New Years resolutions this year.

Sorry for the bad news, but it's highly unlikely, statistically speaking.

But here’s what you can do. You can start.

Want to write a book? Start writing every day.

Lose weight? Start a healthier lifestyle.

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Church & Culture
Understanding The New Apathy About Church Attendance
Most people who don’t attend church are not making a conscious choice against it. Choosing requires awareness.

Why are fewer people going to church? And what can we do about it?

This may be the main topic of conversation among pastors today.

For example, while scrolling through my Facebook feed last weekend, I came across multiple posts with sarcastic takes on how sad/interesting/ridiculous ...

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Church & Culture
This Year, Rediscover The “Why?” Behind Your Church’s Christmas Traditions
Asking “why?” can help a church infuse their Christmas celebrations with greater hope, joy, mission and purpose.

More than any other time of the year, Christmas is filled with traditions.

It’s one of the many reasons we love the holiday season.

It’s also something our churches need to pay closer attention to. Before a church holds any event, program or service, we should always ...

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Church & Culture
Be The Church Or Make Way For Something Else
Christ is not found in our institutions, he is found in the church. In people who love Jesus, love each other and gather together regularly.

Why does the church exist?

It’s not to get people together for meetings. Or to keep our theology pure. Or to defend our traditions. Or to look cool and appealing to the unchurched.

But it’s easy to fall into one or more of those traps if we’re not constantly ...

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Church & Culture
What Is Appropriate To Wear In Church? (2 Reasons It Doesn't Matter And 3 Guidelines)
Wear what helps you think more about Jesus and less about yourself – and what will help others do the same.


Is this still a thing? People aren’t still arguing about what we wear to church, are they?

Yes. Despite the much more relaxed approach most people have, the debate about appropriate church attire still rages in some circles. So I’m going to weigh in on it.

Where ...

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Church & Culture
Whatever Happened To Churches Meeting Felt Needs? – And What Should Replace It?
Meeting needs is a big part of the church’s mandate. But meeting "felt” needs has always been a slippery slope.

If you were in seminary or in active pastoral ministry in the 1990s and 2000s you probably remember what the big trend in pastoral training was.

Felt needs.

Back then it seemed like every church leadership book, article and conference was telling pastors that the way to reach ...

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Church & Culture
5 Terms Christians Need To Stop Misusing
The way we’ve been using these terms causes confusion for newcomers, nonbelievers and even for long-time Christians.

The mission comes first.


Ahead of my ideas, my preferences and my well-worn, dearly-loved terminology.

Because of that, whenever an extra-biblical idea or turn of phrase is anything but clear in the way it advances the message, we need to find and use a better manner of ...

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Church & Culture
Faithfulness: God's Goals + Ordinary Actions = Extraordinary Results
It’s great to dream big dreams. It’s greater to be consistent in the small, mundane tasks that make those dreams possible.

Great lives are made up of mundane tasks.

  • Getting out of bed every morning
  • Making sure the kids are clothed and fed
  • Going to work
  • Thanking a friend
  • Being honest
  • Helping a neighbor
  • Showing up at church

We’re always told to pursue excellence. To accomplish great things. To be world-changers. ...

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Church & Culture
What The Church Can Learn From The People Of New York About Being Repairers Of The Breach
When we’re at our best, the church isn’t just another group on one side of the partisan political conflict that pits people against each other.
What The Church Can Learn From The People Of New York About Being Repairers Of The Breach

Thank you, New York.

You taught me how to be a better Christian, pastor and peacemaker this week.

For the past five days, my wife, my sisters, their husbands and I walked all over New York City with my parents as we celebrated their 60th anniversary.

New York is filled with some ...

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