dangerouspassion

A dangerous passion for growth

Pastoral Ministry

A deep and abiding passion to see our churches grow is a very dangerous thing.

That may seem an odd observation to make, but it is a critical one. If we run with a passion to grow things without at the same time being aware that it is one of the most dangerous passions you can have, then the passion will destroy us and our work.

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George Whitefield @ 300

Pastoral Ministry, Sola Panel

Today, three hundred years ago, on December 16, 1714, was born the man Martyn Lloyd-Jones said was “beyond any question, the greatest English preacher who has ever lived”. The great Bishop J. C. Ryle had said, “No Englishman … dead or alive, has ever equaled him.” (more…)

How ‘the DNA of ministry’ drives my meetings

Pastoral Ministry

Titus 2 is one of my touchstones for women’s ministry.

Most women live quite different lives now than they would have in Titus’ time, but we still need to be self-controlled, pure, kind and submissive, adorning the word of God in our daily lives. The women on a staff team are to help the women in the church to do this.

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When God de-prospers us

Couldn't Help Noticing, Life, Sola Panel

12-12-Alcorn

Courtesy: Tim Challies, challies.com

Mightn’t it be true that sometimes God lowers our standard of living to raise the standard of our giving!?

This meme is one where I feel very ambivalent (see original at end of this post). I normally like Tim Challies‘ illustrated quotes. And I understand Alcorn is a solid evangelical. And I know nothing of the context of this thought Challies has featured from Alcorn’s works. [* see below for update.] No doubt he says much that’s good.  (more…)

1 Corinthians 13:12-13

Bible Brief

For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.
So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

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training

The dreaded ‘T’ word: training

Pastoral Ministry

This article is an edited transcript of a talk given by Phil Colgan at the 2014 Nexus conference in Sydney, written up and edited by Sam Freney. Personal references throughout are therefore applicable to Phil, not Sam.

 
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1 Kings 19:11-12

Bible Brief

The ‘still small voice’ of 1 Kings 19 is possibly the most frequently preached text from the books of Kings. Preachers love to point out that hearing God is often a matter of quietness, that God more often speaks in whispers than thunder, and that sometimes the most spectacular signs are the ones that pass by almost unnoticed. This is true, but often what passes by unnoticed is the biblical-theological significance of this moment. (more…)

Photo: istockphoto.com

Ignore the digital outrage

Couldn't Help Noticing, Everyday Ministry, Life, Sola Panel

Sometimes the best strategy is to say nothing. Ignore the offence. At least be careful how you share your digital outrage! (more…)

Children’s ministry: burning brightly and longer

Everyday Ministry

The fourth of four principles in this series on children’s ministry is about training others to get involved in the work. The most important thing to do in order to achieve this is to protect your existing children’s ministry team from the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, insofar as this lies within your power.

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Saying yes and no: a Briefing farewell

Everyday Ministry

I’m an avid reader, and social media brings an endless flood of articles my way—often very interesting, sometimes useful, occasionally mind-changing! So with that flood it’s hard to be sure, but I think the article that’s had the single biggest impact on my life and ministry was not published in The Briefing magazine. But that article by Ben Patterson explains why The Briefing has had more influence in shaping my Christian mind (and hopefully practice) than any book has ever done—apart from the Bible!
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startingsmall
fourways

Four ways to God

Thought

I suppose it’s like looking at old baby photos, but over the past month or so I’ve been browsing through some of the classic early articles in The Briefing. I chuckled over some of the ‘Lead Balloons’ we ran in those early days, like the article that proposed we should build deliberately crummy church buildings from now on, so that when the next generation needs to rebuild them or tear them down in 50 years’ time, there won’t be any loud objections from the heritage lobby about the destruction of our beautiful architecture.

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balsa-cover

A mighty balsa wood boat

Everyday Ministry

This article is an edited transcript of an address given at the 2014 Nexus conference in Sydney.

~

And when [Paul] had said these things, he knelt down and prayed with them all. And there was much weeping on the part of all; they embraced Paul and kissed him, being sorrowful most of all because of the word he had spoken, that they would not see his face again. And they accompanied him to the ship. (Acts 20:36-38)

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Editorial: The end of the beginning

Editorial

Back in issue #1 of The Briefing, in 1988, the feature article was entitled ‘Have Evangelicals lost their way?’ With this being our final edition ever, readers may be wondering: “Has The Briefing lost its way? Is there nothing left to say?”

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