Reading for Your Weekend 3.29.13

How and Why to Become a Lifelong Learner - The Art of Manliness

For the first twenty-two years or so of our lives, our main “job” is learning. The bulk of our time is spent in classrooms acquiring new knowledge. And then, once we graduate, we feel like the education phase of our lives is done and now it’s time to go out into the world. Have you ever thought about how odd that idea is? That only a quarter of our lives should be devoted to learning, and then we should simply rest on our laurels for the remaining three-quarters of it?

It’s an erroneous idea – but one many have absorbed, at least subconsciously. But school need not be your exclusive provider of learning. Just because you’ve finished your formal education, doesn’t mean that your education is over!

Five Steps to Get Beyond Sacred Cows in Your Church - Thom Rainer

 

I estimated that we had invested nearly 1,500 hours of our members’ time in this ministry during the past year. The apparent result of our ministry had resulted in, at best, two Christian families joining our church. If you assume a workday of eight hours, our members had worked 187 full days with no evangelistic fruit.

 

When I presented my research to a leader in the church and suggested we look at other alternatives, he raised his voice almost to a scream: “But we have always done it that way. And ten years ago we saw dozens of people become Christians through this ministry every year. We’re not about to change!” When I asked what we should do about the 1,500 hours of apparently fruitless ministry, he said we should try to increase the number to 3,000 hours.

 

Don’t get me wrong. Your church may have great success in door-to-door outreach. My purpose in writing this article is not to pass judgment on a methodology. My purpose is to ask the question: Are organizational memories, commonly known as sacred cows, hindering our effectiveness for the gospel?

Do Pastor's Conferences Do Any Good? - Daniel Ritchie

Pastors’ conference (n.) – a gathering of mostly middle aged men gathering together to hear hours of sermons and breakout sessions.

I don’t think you’re going to find that definition in Webster’s Dictionary, but if you were to ask the average person to describe a pastors’ conference that is likely the answer you will get.  Doesn’t sound terribly exciting.  So how does a pastors’ conference do anyone any good?  It can seem to be a gathering to celebrate “rock star” pastors and guys who took churches of a 100 people and saw attendance rocket to 10,000.  In fact, I was able to attend a conference this past week called Advance 13.

Many of the speakers were popular pastors & authors and if you’re not careful a conference like this certainly can turn into hero worship.  Yet, conferences can be a great time of refreshing for your pastor and a time where the Spirit can move in their life.  So here are some of the ways that God can use a conference for His glory and purpose.

20 Years Ago Today: Mohler Elected as President of Southern Seminary - Justin Taylor

Twenty years ago today—March 26, 1993-R. Albert Mohler Jr. (age 33) was elected president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, the flagship school of the Southern Baptist Convention.

Younger readers may not realize this represented and resulted in an unprecedented transformation of a school from  deep theological liberalism to a bastion of orthodox fidelity. George Marsden says the institutional shift is unprecedented in denominational history.

Holy Week and the Insomnia of Jesus - Russell Moore

When the disciples screamed in the face of a storm, Jesus slept (Mk. 4:37-38). When Jesus screamed in the face of a cross, the disciples slept (Mk. 14:37,41).

Why could Jesus sleep so peacefully through a life-threatening sea-storm, and yet is awake all night in the olive garden before his arrest, crying out in anguish? Why are the disciples pulsing with adrenaline as the ship is tossed about on the Galilee Lake, but drifting off to slumber as the most awful conspiracy in human history gets underway?

Peter, James, and John rebuke Jesus for falling asleep on the boat: “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” (Mk. 4:38) Jesus rebukes them for falling asleep as he prays before the cross: “Could you not watch one hour?” (Mk. 14:37)

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