Tag Archives: leadership

Five Reasons the Church Should Support Recovery Groups

On January 1, 2018, the West-Ark congregation realized a vision we had worked toward for over a decade. We began our Celebrate Recovery program that night. Eight months into the process, this program has blessed me and has been an opportunity to minister to other in Christ’s name. Charles Siburt was the first…

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Leaving Church: What I’m Learning (Part 1)

“Come and help us learn to be the people of God in the neighborhood where we find ourselves.” Three and a half years ago, we moved our family from Thousand Oaks, CA to the Portland, Oregon area—Beaverton, to be specific. We left our jobs at Pepperdine: I was associate chaplain, and my husband…

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When to Quit, and When to Persevere

“Winners never quit and quitters never win.” —Vince Lombardi — Deep within the psyche of every American lurks an idea. A dangerous idea. It’s one that is reinforced in film and music, it’s hinted at in inspirational posters and videos shared on Facebook, and its opposite is held in such high esteem one…

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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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Dispatch from the Contemplative Ministers’ Initiative

I’m currently with 23 other ministers at the Montserrat Jesuit Retreat Center near Dallas. We are here as part of the Contemplative Ministers’ Initiative, coordinated and directed by the Siburt Institute at Abilene Christian University. CMI is now in its third year. As the name suggests, the aim of the program is to…

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Can You See Me Now? Women, Service, and the Small Church

A while back, I had an appointment with a new optometrist. She examined my eyes and then she changed my prescription (the one I had for at least ten years) and went on with her day. I wasn’t too happy about her change—the old prescription worked just fine. Last month, my left eye…

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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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Going to Church on Christmas

Pope Julius I was not a forward thinking leader.  Instead of fixing Christmas on the 25th of December, he could have set the date of Christmas on the last Thursday of the month.  That’s what Abraham Lincoln did with Thanksgiving, and it is so much easier to schedule worship services and office closings…

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