Tag Archives: Churches of Christ

When All Your Elder-Candidates “Just Say No”

If you’ve been through an elder selection process recently, I suspect you heard one word more than any other: “No.” Not from the existing elders. Not from the congregation. Not from the staff. No … the “no” you probably heard repeatedly came from elder-candidates who reasoned that “now, is not the time” for…

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7 Reasons Women Oppose Change

The Churches of Christ are in the midst of change. Many of our congregations are moving away from our legalistic, sectarian roots in the direction of grace and ecumenical partnership. But change is hard. As much as we long for change, and indeed can’t avoid it, change never happens without discomfort and struggle.…

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Putting the Practical in Theology

When I tell people that I am a practical theologian, I am typically met with one of two jokes: either the person will scoff and say, “Is any theology actually practical?” or they will say, “Shouldn’t all theology be practical?” I am certain that every profession under the sun is subjected to tired…

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Missional Hospitality: A Beautiful Emptying

Contrary to how it’s regarded in some circles, missional hospitality is not an outreach strategy. It’s not about far-away “missions” and it’s not a strategy at all. The specifics will look different for everyone and each community, but if you choose to practice missional hospitality, there’s a good chance you’ll be asked to…

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Small Church, Big Heart

New Zealand is a small country with a small population (4.5 million). Perhaps because of this small size, we shouldn’t be surprised that the 25 or so congregations of churches of Christ in New Zealand reflect this by ranging from 5 to around 100 members. These congregations are probably very similar in many…

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The Privilege of Participation

Lisa has two young children. She is married to Andy, a kind man who works hard and cares about Lisa and their kids, but he doesn’t share her faith. Every Sunday morning Lisa takes her kids to church while Andy swims and lifts weights at the local gym. While she wishes he would come to…

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For the Sake of the Gospel

Homonoia is an ancient Greek concept which means “of one mind.” This concept was largely political in is origins, as classical Greek thinkers and rulers adopted the understanding to create unity among their subjects and states. Phillip II of Macedonia utilized Homonoia around the year 338 BC to unite Greek states and wage…

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The Women’s Issue

We often refer to the conversations around women in the church as “the women’s issue.” Churches are studying “the women’s issue.” Churches are dividing over “the women’s issue. Men and women, myself included, have emphasized the importance of “the women’s issue.” But is “the women’s issue” truly a women’s issue? Does it belong…

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Is There Power in the Pulpit?

The very first piece of criticism I received when I began to emerge as a preacher, while a student at Lipscomb University, came from one of my peers: “Women preachers just seem power-hungry to me.” The comment seemed so strange to me at the time, but over and over again I’ve continued to…

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Top 5 CHARIS Posts in 2017

As managing editor of our Church channel, I get to work with a team of insightful, gifted writers who think deeply about God, the world, spiritual health, ministry, current events, Scripture, and so much more. As we lean into 2018, I’m pleased to look back on 2017 and share with you these most-read…

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