In your efforts to bring someone back, you are not alone. Your congregation is a valuable ally. Everybody feels a need to belong somewhere. That’s what made the Cheers tavern so much fun. Remember the theme song? A place where everybody knows you is a comforting place to be.
God made people to need other people. We need to know somebody is interested in us, cares about how we’re doing, knows and loves our children, and is always there for... Read More
In your efforts to bring someone back, you are not alone. Remember first of all that God is loving your efforts. Winning hearts and minds and souls of people is God’s number-one agenda item, after all. He wants to help you. He will help you.
“Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest, and repent. Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come... Read More
Every parent feels rejected by his or her children at some point, and rejection always leaves wounds. It is one thing, however, to see your children squander money, drop out of school, or hook up with a high-risk boyfriend or girlfriend. It is far more devastating to see your children appearing to reject Jesus Christ.
You trained the child right. You taught her to pray. You took him to Sunday school and worship. But now you have a prodigal. What... Read More
How hard it must be to have an unbelieving husband—to have to pray alone, go to church alone, read your Bible alone, and receive no spiritual support. How hard it must be to feel like a widow or divorcee in church. What would make it seem even worse is a situation in which the husband once was an active believer but fell away.
Is that your life? Don’t give up—maybe just change your strategy. Not all witnessing for your faith... Read More
“Husbands, love your wives as Christ loved the church” is St. Paul’s charge and commission to all Christian husbands of all time. Love them not as James Bond or Hugh Hefner “love” their girlfriends; love them as Christ loves us, that is, unconditionally and freely, permanently and patiently.
That means you keep loving them even if they fall away from their faith and seem to become a boat anchor on yours. True love, Christ-love, doesn’t fluctuate like feelings. Christ-love originates... Read More
I’ve been lied to plenty in my life, but there is one person from whom I absolutely must have the truth and nothing but the truth—my doctor. If I have a problem, I want straight talk.
It is indeed important to be gentle and respectful when we talk to people who seem to be slipping away from the Lord. But we still need to communicate clearly and passionately that the wages of sin is death but eternal life is God’s... Read More
Simple question: What’s the difference between the church and a country club? Sarcastic answer: There isn’t any. Country clubs thrive on being seen as exclusive. They are hard and expensive to get into, and they sure aren’t for everybody.
Jesus’ gift of salvation is for everybody, though, and he wants his church to be that way too. He wants his church to serve people, not vice versa. In all the church’s blessed work of spiritual reclamation, it is Jesus’ intent... Read More
The two greatest missionary heroes of the age of the apostles were Peter and Paul. Both had an enormous impact on the early church, gathering believers and planting congregations. They both left behind profound writings that anchor the doctrinal portion of the New Testament.
And yet both had much in their pasts to be ashamed of. Peter denied knowing or believing in Jesus on the dreadful night of Jesus’ arrest and trials. For the rest of his life, the crowing... Read More
One of Jay Leno’s regular features in his television shows is called “Jaywalking.” He walks the streets of L.A. with a mike and cameraman and asks pedestrians simple questions about U.S. geography, politics, and history. The audience shrieks with laughter to hear the ignorant and crazy things in people’s heads.
We shouldn’t be surprised if people have crazy ideas about religion too. If you are trying to draw someone back into the truth, you won’t get very far if you... Read More