Archives for category: leadership

I met Dan King (perhaps better known as @bibledude) through the Idea Camp, a unique tribe of idea-makers who collaborate for good in their neighborhoods, and around the world. Dan’s love for his family and for the church to rise up and become the force for good that God intends stood out to me as we shared a meal together.

The title, The Unlikely Missionary: From Pew-Warmer to Poverty-Fighter, captures the essence of what Dan seeks to do with this book — to move people from lukewarm church attending to passionately following Jesus to serve those He loves. For a more in-depth conversation on why Dan wrote this book and what he hopes to accomplish through it, read this interview I conducted with him for ChurchLeaders.com.

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This is the second of a two-part series, reflecting on the news of a handful of well-known pastors leaving their churches.

As a pastor of a local church community, I have often been asked, “So, what, exactly, do you do during the week?” This lack of clarity about the pastorate as a vocation extends not only to curious congregants, but ministers seeking to be faithful to God’s call as well.

As Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove writes,

Our vocation is facing something of a crisis. Many pastors aren’t sure how to describe their calling or explain why it matters to the rest of the world.

My wife and I have served together in vocational ministry as pastors for the last eleven years, but neither of us would claim to have even begun figuring this thing out. Far from being a systematic treatment, here are a couple of my thoughts on pastoral ministry:

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News of author and pastor Rob Bell leaving the church he founded, Mars Hill in Michigan, has set off another round of tweets and updates in the Christian blogosphere and Twitterverse. While this particular flare-up doesn’t seem to carry the particularly nasty tone of the whole Love Wins controversy, a few prominent church leaders have already taken to their keyboards with harsh words (which I won’t be quoting here).

While the cynic in me wants to wipe the dust of this latest Christian dust-up off my feet, particularly in light of some of the important national and geopolitical happenings this week, this news raises some significant issues for the Church and how we’re called to be the people of God together Read the rest of this entry »

I just returned from visiting three cities across India in ten days with a team from my church community here in San Diego in partnership with Justice Ventures International, on whose board I serve. Putting into words all that we saw and experienced is extraordinarily difficult — in each city we visited, each day felt packed with a week, and the overall impression was a sort of “everything all at once.”

In this series of posts, I’ll share a bit about what we did, but more importantly, highlight people and organizations on the ground who refuse to be overwhelmed by the evil of slavery and human trafficking but, rather, hold fast to hope and continue to fight on behalf of those being crushed under the weight of sin.

As Dietrich Bonhoeffer said, “We are not to simply bandage the wounds of victims beneath the wheels of injustice, we are to drive a spoke into the wheel itself.”

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The Idea Camp tribe has been so life-giving to me over the last couple of years.  This amazing group of compassionaries has inspired, challenged, and partnered with me in ways that have changed me and compelled me towards concrete action for good — to demonstrate the reality that God has not given up on the world by becoming better expressions of God’s love for the world.

I loved being a part of #Ideation11, even if it was only for a day. While the Ideation Conference is not strictly faith-based, this gathering of amazing idea-makers, creatives, and doers from both the nonprofit and business worlds moves powerfully together for good. A huge thanks to Charles Lee and the team for bringing together such an incredible gathering.

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As Eugene Cho commented recently, it’s altogether too easy to act like a jerk in the name of “contending” for the Gospel.

I think Rob Bell’s characterization of broader American culture is unfortunately true of the church many times as well: “There is this low-grade boiling rage that many people carry around with them everywhere they go.”

[Ironic edit: The aforementioned Rob Bell has become a trending topic on Twitter because of a group of people who are adamantly opposed to him, filled with the typical name-calling, gnashing of teeth, and end-of-the-world-as-we-know-it hysterics typical to such trending topics.]

Apologies for sounding like a stereotypical, institution-suspicious Xer when I say this (but totally not apologizing for still nerding out over The Breakfast Club, as seen in the photo above!), but I am growing weary of the infighting in my denomination. I think we could play a pretty mean game of church insider-bingo with the vocab being thrown around: tall steeple churches, white papers, open letters, angry responses, clarification letters… BINGO!

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I just posted the first of a two-part interview with Daniel DK Kim over at Next Gener.Asian Church.  DK is the worship leader at Newsong Church in Irvine, California; he and his family are moving to Mexico City this month for the next two years to fight human trafficking.

We all need stories of courage and redemption to push us further along the path to which God has called us.  You can support DK and his family in their journey by purchasing his album thefirst over at his site.