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I’ve never watched awards shows. They’ve never captured my attention. Usually the Oscars go to movies I don’t like. The political correctness and lecturing from actors, musicians, and others isn’t funny, entertaining, or balanced. If I like a movie or a song, I’ll watch it, listen to it, and maybe even buy it. But I don’t need someone getting an award to determine value for me.

The same is true in the church. Too often we are reaching for titles and trophies and not towels. Jesus said if you want to be great, be a servant. Our flesh wants a stage; Jesus stooped to serve. Continue reading

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If I can be totally honest, I’m weary of the Prosperity Gospel of “name it and claim it.” I’ve listened to its preachers (none of whom seem to be poor) and seen the empty promises (many who follow them have little to show for their “faith” in this so-called gospel).

Countless stories can be found of people who planted a seed faith gift but still ended up losing their homes or their battle with cancer. The promises of the Prosperity Gospel are at best a shallow stirring of a soulish faith. They lack the depth of good biblical exegesis or the application of verses and promises in context. Continue reading

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In the city of Edinburgh, Scotland stands the statue of a John Knox. Knox was the key leader of the Scottish Reformation and the founder of Presbyterianism in Scotland. At his graveside, Regent Morton said, “Here lies one who neither flattered nor feared any flesh.” From everything I can learn about Knox, he makes William Wallace of Braveheart fame look like Chicken Little. Knox was known as the “Thundering Scot.”

During a visit to Edinburgh many years ago, we were taken on a tour of the key religious sites in the city. Again, these sites were mostly ignored by the professional tour guide. Edinburgh has a rich history, and Christianity around the world has been impacted by events through the centuries in this ancient city. Continue reading

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Over the last few months, I’ve had the privilege of speaking at three state conventions. Over the course of these weeks, I’ve been to New Mexico, Mississippi, and Oklahoma preaching for either pastors’ conferences or state conventions. The ten messages I’ve been able to bring have been focused on prayer, revival, or the need for the church to engage the culture.

Each state was a blessing to me. I always love speaking to pastors and leaders, and I never take these opportunities for granted. Leadership is the key to life change. As the pastor goes, so goes the church. A church will never rise above her leaders. The only way we are going to impact this lost world is with pastors and leaders on fire for God. If we want to impact the culture, we need leaders who pray, who long for the “much more” of Christ and who are not afraid to engage the culture and go into the community. Continue reading