Cancer Didn’t Change The World – It Changed Me!

Three years ago today, I received the phone call which any person would cringe to hear. The call came from my family doctor, and he said, “Terry, I’m sorry to have to tell you this, but we have the pathology back from the incisional biopsy; you have cancer.” The moment was surreal and time seemed to stand still. The pain I saw in the face of my wife and three boys was beyond description…though I understood it because I felt it myself. Questions immediately began flooding my heart as I struggled to understand the purpose of this. I had surrendered to Christ when I was 18 and entered full time ministry when I was 22. Here I was one week removed from my 46th birthday and I am facing this huge valley. Why, Lord, why???

My story is not uncommon. Many have walked down the well trodden path of affliction and asked the same questions. In fact, I found a plethora of the similar questions asked by the writers of Scriptures, from Job to David, from Jeremiah and Habakkuk to the Apostle Paul. I was among friends!   Continue reading “Cancer Didn’t Change The World – It Changed Me!”

3 Questions Good Leaders Ask

During the first part of the 1980’s, while spending several years in preparation for ministry, I worked in sales. During this time I found I had a keen interest in the personalities and decisions which shaped my older clients. My interest involved the personal and business levels. Though I was in my early twenties, I knew that life was a fading vapor and that I would be their age before I could turn around. I found there was a wealth of knowledge to learn from the generation ahead of me if I knew what to ask. Also, I knew the Lord was calling me into ministry and that I had much to learn from those who were responsible for leading others, in the secular and the church world. I soon came up with 3 main questions to ask those I found interesting in order to extract wisdom from them. Continue reading “3 Questions Good Leaders Ask”

Marks of Mature Leadership – #1

Mature Leadership – aspired to by many, reached by few. We are not in lack of leadership in our church settings and church planting. However, a quick glance at the churches around us, and the continual upheaval of ministry problems, reveals there is a great lack of ‘mature leadership.’ Discussions with believers from various denominational settings and house churches also reveal our need in this area. Now, it is obvious, that maturity is not instantaneous; but it should be continual. We all, myself first, want to walk more sensitive to the Holy Spirit, more compassionate to those hurting and more obedient to our Lord.

Mark #1 – An Inward Realization of the Depth of Our Depravity

What are some of the marks of a mature leader? We will look at several over time, but here is our first installment. A mature leader will continually grow, not just in theological Continue reading “Marks of Mature Leadership – #1”

Restored Legalism – The Danger of Messianic Christianity

There is a legalistic wind blowing among many circles within the Christian faith. That wind is the attempt by natural minded men to restore or mix the Christian faith with Old Testament Law — usually called Messianic Christianity. It produces bondage to carnal ordinances and perverts the grace of God. It demotes Jesus Christ from Lord to a Rabbi and keeper of the law, and ultimately attacks the liberating message He announced during His earthly ministry. Those whose embrace and attempt to bring the Torah (Mosaic Law) into the Gospel of Jesus, are actually abandoning the message of Jesus and the Apostles in order to make disciples of men instead of disciples of Christ.

Here are some ‘catch words’ and ‘actions’ which should alert us. If you are around a friend or person who frequently adopts these words/phrases or actions, be careful…they are Continue reading “Restored Legalism – The Danger of Messianic Christianity”

Learning From Pirates

Buccaneers and Swashbucklers offer a romantic view of life on the seven seas. Imagining a free lifestyle of no responsibility or accountability strikes the common chord of harmony with most in the west. Freelance movements and adventure are the actions of dreams and vision…giving opportunity for expressing oneself without answering to anyone or anything.

This fairy tale lifestyle is similar to the hotdog attitude expressed by many young believers, including immature church planters. However, upon closer examination, we actually learn the opposite concerning pirates. Their work and lifestyle was not the independent one, as envisioned by those who aspire to copy their romantic pattern of travel. Pirates had several rules which governed their code of conduct. These were essential for maintaining order. Here are nine things we can learn from Pirates! Continue reading “Learning From Pirates”

Living Among The Tombs

We become captivated by the story of Jesus meeting a man who lived among the tombs. (Mark 5:3) This story is one about how the power of Christ overcomes the forces of darkness and demonic oppression. Restraint from chains and shackles could not contain this man. Day and night he spent his life among those who were dead. However, Jesus set him free! Recently, I thought upon this story from the Gospels as I visited a famous graveyard in Savannah, GA. I began thinking and praying about this while driving home and realized that we are a society and church which mirrors much of what this man experienced…we live among the tombs!

After reading through the passage (Mark 5:1-20), here are several points I reflected upon as I considered the application of this story to our day. Continue reading “Living Among The Tombs”