Five Characteristics of a Faithful Believer

October is Pastor Appreciation Month – a time for church folks to let their staff and pastors know how much they’re appreciated. I’m grateful for this time and thank all those who express their appreciation to all the pastors out there. Believe me, we are incredibly grateful.

But do you know what pastors want more than cards, cash, gifts, letters, and words of appreciation? They want you to be faithful. That’s right, the best gift a pastor can ever receive is a faithful church member and believer.

If that’s what a pastor loves to see, I guess it’s important to answer the question, what does it mean to be a faithful believer? Of course, this list covers members and pastors alike. Here are five characteristics of a faithful believer. Continue reading

Too Many Christians Are Like Siri

Most of you have heard of the highly touted artificial intelligence feature on the new iPhones call “Siri.” Since January, I’ve had one of those new-fangled iPhones with this software that’s supposed to change my life.

If you pay attention to those iPhone commercials you would think Siri would be revolutionary and life-changing. You’ve seen them right? Where famous people have a conversation with Siri. It’s almost breathtaking. They’re talking to their phone! Simply amazing.

There’s only one problem. It just doesn’t work like that. Continue reading

Take Time to Clear Your Mind

Our world is full of clutter. And it doesn’t take long for all of the clutter around us to become the clutter within us. That’s why it’s important that you find things that clear your mind. Things that recharge your batteries.

One of the things that works for me is what I call “tractor time.” Every other week or so during the summer I get to spend a few hours on the tractor cutting grass. It may sound like torture to you. But to me it is sweet relief.

That’s what we all need from time to time. You need it too. Clear your mind, disengage, just chill. Here are four quick guidelines for clearing your mind.

1. It must be enjoyable.
2. It must be relaxing.
3. It must recharge your batteries. 
4. It must make you feel better.

For you, it may not be time on the tractor cutting grass. It may be a game of golf, an afternoon fishing, an early morning in the deer stand, or a day at the mall. But from time to time, it’s important that that you take time to clear your mind.

The Significance of Summer Camp

I’m so excited. I’m at Summer Camp. That’s right. Right now I’m in Cocoa Beach with students from Second Baptist. It’s going to be a great week!

As I’m here, multiple memories of camps just like this one come flooding to my mind. Such. Great. Memories.

Let me make a confession. I don’t like the beach. Really never have. My family loves the beach. So I tolerate the salt and sand out of love for them.

But I love summer camp with my church. Why? Continue reading

Confidence in Leadership

Pastor, what brings you confidence as you lead God’s people? Where does your confidence come from in leading a staff? In setting direction for a church? Casting vision? Creating momentum? Pointing the way? No doubt this is a huge task entrusted to the pastor/shepherd. It’s one that I do not take lightly.

The role of the pastor is wide and varied.  In previous posts, I’ve talked about the pastor’s role to love, lead, protect and feed.  I take very seriously the task of preaching the Word (we’ll save that for another post). But I think many pastors minimize their God-given responsibility to lead. If you are a powerful preacher and a solid theologian that doesn’t automatically make a powerful leader. Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate strong preaching and proper doctrine. But it takes more than that to be a pastor.

Let me explain my situation. I recently returned to my home church to serve as the Senior Pastor. I have been called to lead the people of God at Second Baptist Church – many of whom have known me since I was a child. Several of the staff I serve with now were pastors here while I was growing up. My mom and dad attend this congregation as well. So, where does my confidence come to lead God’s people?

Does it come from my education? My pastoral experience? My gifts, skills, abilities and strengths?  Absolutely not!  My confidence in leadership comes only from my relationship with the Lord. It is only through studying the Word, spending time in prayer and following the Spirit that I gain the courage to lead God’s people onto His agenda.

You won’t find the courage, confidence and competence to lead God’s people in a textbook or a classroom. You will only find it at the feet of Jesus.

What about you? What brings you confidence as you seek to lead God’s people?