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Don’t Believe Everything You Read or Hear

Several years ago, Michael Hyatt (former CEO of Thomas Nelson) responded to a rumor on his blog. In the post, Michael wrote,

“According to the most recent rumor—which I’ve now heard twice—we [Thomas Nelson] are planning a layoff for June 19th … We are scheduled to close the transaction on June 12th, so, supposedly, this will happen the week following. I want to assure you that this is indeed a baseless rumor. There is absolutely no truth to it … If you hear this rumor, I would be grateful if you would help me short-circuit it. You can tell ’em it’s not true, and you heard it directly from me.”

I recall when this rumor was circulating and was saddened (and surprised) at how many Christians believed it without going straight to Michael to see if it was true or false.

Another example that’s much more national.[Continue Reading...]

What You Need to Know About Gmail & How It’s Preventing You From Seeing Valuable Emails

One of the most frustrating things to encounter is to send a highly valuable email to someone, only to discover that they never saw it.

Equally frustrating is to sign up for a blog or email list, and then never see the emails you signed up to receive.

If you use Gmail, you’re never seeing some of your most important emails.

Most Gmail users aren’t aware that Gmail has created something called  a PROMOTIONS tab.

And genuine emails that you signed up for often go into that tab. So unless you check it regularly, you’ll never see those emails.

Here’s what the tab looks like:[Continue Reading...]

If You Subscribe to This Blog, Please Read . . .

I’m announcing a change that will effect all of you who subscribe to this blog.

Jesus gave us a particular model for ministry.

One tier of His ministry was to the masses wherein He gave specific ministry to the multitudes.

Another tier of His ministry was to 70 people whom He sent out on a special mission.

A third tier of His ministry was to the Twelve. Jesus shared the mysteries of the Kingdom with the Twelve and some women who Luke refers to as “The Women.”

Beyond that, there was the smallest tier of all. Peter, James, and John, 3 of the Twelve whom Jesus included in special cases.

Note that the 70, the Twelve, and the 3 (Peter, James, and John) were all present when Jesus ministered to the multitudes, but they received special ministry beyond what He gave to the masses.

I’ve reflected on this pattern for many years, and beginning in September, I’m making some changes inspired by the Lord’s four-tiered ministry model.[Continue Reading...]

The Unsearchable Riches of Christ

My close friend and co-worker Jon Zens just released the 40th anniversary edition of his amazing little periodical, Searching Together.

The new issue is tremendous. Here’s a vintage photo.

Jon Zens

Listen, if you subscribe to this blog, you’d be wise to subscribe to this magazine. It’s only $10 a year for a subscription, and it will be mailed to your house whenever a new edition is released.

This is by far the best Christian magazine/periodical available today. Hands down, walking out. (I say that based on the fact that I’ve subscribed to virtually every major Christian publication at one time or another.)

Click here to subscribe to Jon Zens’ Searching Together. You won’t regret it.

That said, we’ve just released a new episode on the “Christ is All” podcast.

It’s a conference message I delivered in 2005 in Ohio called “The Unsearchable Riches of Christ.”

Remember, if you’ve benefited from the podcast, share the love so your friends can benefit.

Listen to the episode in the following ways:

[Continue Reading...]

A Superb Book to Prevent & Heal Cancer

According to friends who are older than me, people hardly ever heard of someone getting cancer 30 years ago.

It was a rarity.

Today, however, it’s all too common.

On that score, Jacquie Woodward has written a marvelous book based on research and her own proven experience called Slam the Door on Cancer.

I liked the book so much I interviewed Jacquie on the blog.

If you are interesting in how to avoid getting cancer and/or how to treat it, you’ll want to read this interview, share it with your friends, and get the book.

Enjoy!

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What provoked you to write the book?

When I was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, I needed this book desperately. Available literature was piecemeal, and I had no time to chase down rabbit trails—I needed solid consensus factually (science) and truthfully (God’s Word).

Doctors admitted they had nothing for me.  A physician friend told me “If you get through this, you will have to be your own doctor.”  My faith had been latent for many years.  There was much to learn and time was of the essence.  My story illustrates the blessing of “seek and you shall find.”[Continue Reading...]

Character Caller Poll

If you’re new to my blog and you haven’t yet listened to the 100th episode of my podcast (which, mind you, is nothing like any past episode), you can do so by clicking here.

As promised on that particular show, I’ll be doing a full interview with the character caller who gets the most votes from you all.

Go here and choose your favorite character caller

The next episode of the podcast will be a conference message I delivered in 2005 in Ohio entitled “The Unsearchable Riches of Christ.”

It will be published next Thursday.

New post coming on Monday.[Continue Reading...]

Starting Missional Churches

InterVarsity Press has just released a new book called Starting Missional Churches: Life with God in the Neighborhood by Mark Lau Branson and Nicholas Warnes.

I caught up with the authors to interview them on their new book.

Enjoy!

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Instead of asking, “what is your book about,” I’m going to ask the question that’s behind that question. And that unspoken question is, “how are readers going to benefit from reading your book?”

Nick Warnes: Good question. The benefit of readers is two-fold. First, readers will encounter a fresh theological framework for how new churches are started. We contrast the pre-conceived notions of how new churches begin with four new priorities.

We want to encourage everyday people in everyday churches to become engaged in the local neighborhoods and to develop contextual imaginations. Link these new priorities with seven practical, on the ground narratives of people doing this work across America, and readers will experience the four new priorities in action.

To add to this, we are finding that many existing churches, along with new churches, are finding encouragement and very practical stories in our book. This came as a bit of a surprise to us, but we are enjoying the activity! The book is meant to be accessible and we hope that it will inspire planters and churches to become aware of how God is already ahead of them in their own contexts so they can be witnesses of Emmanuel in their communities.[Continue Reading...]

What Christian Authors & Speakers Can Learn from the Music World of the 1960s

The 1960s was a remarkable time for music.

The British invasion brought to the United States enduring bands like The Beatles, The Animals, The Rolling Stones, and The Who.

Then the California sound emerged with The Beach Boys, The Doors, Janis Joplin, and a host of other bands.

Other artists emerged quickly, namely, Cream (Eric Clapton), Led Zeppelin, and the inimitable Jimi Hendrix.

Then you had Bob Dylan who inspired many of these artists and vice versa.

What’s incredible to me about this time period is that virtually all of the above named musicians met each other, hung out together from time to time, listened to one another with adoration, and respected each other.

They would also play informally with one another at certain times. And even more encouraging, they inspired one another.

I’ve watched so many interviews with so many of these artists and marveled at how each of them would praise the others. Not just from afar, but because they took the time to get to know one another.

Each time, I’ve had two reactions.[Continue Reading...]

A Magazine Worth Reading

Today I interview Rachael Jackson, the Editor-in-Chief of Shattered Magazine. This is a quality magazine for Christian readers.

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What provoked you to start Shattered magazine?

I am West Point graduate, for Army Captain, and Apache Pilot. At one point, my identity was firmly planted in that of soldier. I took the road less traveled and excelled in my demanding environment. Feeling a sense of pride and accomplishment, yet still missing something in life, God began to systematically dismantle everything I thought I was and teach me what it truly means to rely on, satisfy myself with, and pursue a relationship with Jesus.

Through experiencing and overcoming the challenges in my life and witnessing hardships in the lives of people I love, a strong desire grew in my heart to reach out to those who struggle in life (and we all do at one time or another) and connect them with an all-powerful and loving God who cares enough to walk us through our valleys and rejoice with us on our mountaintops.

As the founder and editor-in-chief of Shattered Magazine, my desire is to create a publication that can cut through the noise of the rest of the world and help point people towards a truly satisfying and rewarding life (now and in eternity) – regardless of temporary afflictions or momentary struggles.[Continue Reading...]