I finally wrote my resignation letter (Chris Thomas): “Without exaggeration, I think that this past year may be the most difficult period of ministry I’ve faced. Don’t misunderstand me when I say, ‘ministry’, I don’t only mean my vocational hours as the lead teaching pastor at Raymond Terrace Community Church. I mean ministry. I mean the life and gifts, the passion and purpose, the uncounted minutes and unseen labour—the sum of the efforts of my life spent in service of King Jesus. And when I say, ‘difficult’, I don’t just mean challenging. I mean, discouraging, disheartening, and disappointing.” Read more at The Ploughman’s Rest.
3 reasons church leaders should observe the Sabbath (Russell L. Meek): “I know there are arguments for and against keeping the Sabbath as Christians. But I’m not going to get into how we apply Old Testament Scripture as Christians, nor will I discuss the New Testament’s view of Sabbath as a rest we enter into as Christians. I’m going to leave those aside and work from the assumption that the Sabbath is something God intended as both a gift for humans to enjoy and a command to keep. Here are three practical reasons we—particularly as church leaders—should keep the Sabbath.” Read more at Facts & Trends.
How to seek your joy in God (David Mathis): It is almost too good to be true that God not only saves us from the eternal punishment we deserve for our sin, but he also satisfies us forever with himself. And this is the very joy for which we were made. God is not the cosmic killjoy many of us may have feared in our youth. Rather, he is the God who, in Christ, stretches out his arms to us, saying, “Come, all who are thirsty!” Read more at Desiring God.
8 nuggets of wisdom when you can’t figure out God’s will (Chuck Lawless): Some good wisdom from a seasoned pastor and leader. Read more at ChuckLawless.com.
Take sin seriously (Geoffrey Thomas): “Take Christ seriously. Yes, of course. For every look at your sin, take ten looks at Christ. But will you want to look at Christ if you have not seen your need? Will you see your need if you have not seen your sin?” Read more at Table Talk Magazine.
14 questions to ask before you preach (Peter Adam): Some good questions to ask as you prepare your Sunday sermon. Read more at The Gospel Coalition.
10 tips on sermon illustrations (Barry York): Illustrations can be a glorious bridge in a sermon between the text of God’s Word and the congregation. A good illustration can open up a passage of Scripture, bring understanding to God’s people, and touch their hearts with application. They paint a picture upon the listener’s imagination to bring clarity and ways to implement the spiritual truths being set before them. Yet an illustration can also distract and disorient if not done well. So here are ten tips that can help make illustrations connect for preachers with their congregation. Read more at Gentle Reformation.
6 non-controversial ways Christians should deal with disagreements about the end times (Justin Taylor): Eckhard Schnabel is the author 40 Questions about the End Times (Kregel, 2011). He gives the following advice—which he says should all be non-controversial—for followers of Christ who want to understand the biblical teaching and to avoid an unbiblical “party loyalty.” Read more at The Gospel Coalition.