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Church Life

Family Pastor, Your Home is Your Focus Group

By Church Life, Family Discipleship, Parenting: Childhood, Parenting: Early Years, Parenting: Teens and Beyond

As a side benefit of my conference ministry, I am privileged to meet a number of godly young pastors. Some have the role of family pastor and some are senior pastors with a heart for family discipleship. The very reason they have me in to speak is because they want to equip the parents in their church to pass the gospel to the next generation.  They also know the church is important in this calling. And so they will launch initiatives to encourage and help parents. But too often those initiatives have less success than they wanted. What seemed like a…

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Understanding and Helping the Pastor’s Kid – Barnabas Piper

By Church Life, Family Discipleship, Parenting: Childhood, Parenting: Early Years, Parenting: Teens and Beyond, Podcast
On this episode of The Disciple-Making Parent, we delve into the unique challenges and blessings of being a pastor's kid with Barnabas Piper. Join us as we explore the pressures of being on display and the expectations that come with it. We discuss the importance of genuine friendships and the need for pastors to advocate for their children. Discover the nuances of being a pastor's kid in different church sizes and roles, and how parents can navigate the balance of modeling their faith while allowing space for their children's questions. Tune in to gain insights and encouragement for raising children...
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12 Proverbs on Communication

By Church Life, Family Discipleship, Scripture & Scripture Lists

I find myself coming back to what the Scriptures have to say about speech. Why? So much blessing can come from good speech habits and so much harm can come from sinful speech habits. I hope you enjoy the following list. We would often post some of these around the house and memorize them. Our purpose was to create good speech habit and show how God’s authoritative Scriptures talks about our words. Here are 12 of my favorite communication verses. Memorize them. Post them around your house. My dear brothers and sisters, understand this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak,…

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A Growth Cycle for Those Who Lead

By Christian Living, Church Life, Leadership

As I have been writing and thinking about leadership, it caused me to think about how I have sought to grow over the years. Without realizing it, I have regularly practiced the following cycle. If I had time I would picture these components in a complete circle. For the sake of writing, though, I will lay them out in a linear fashion.  Let me start with a foundation. I believe an effective Christian leader will be convinced of two things: 1. The Lord wants to continually teach me. The Lord is continually bringing circumstances into my life to make me…

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Why are Christians so Judgmental?

By Christian Living, Church Life, Family Discipleship

“Everyone in our church is so judgmental.” So said one of my children when returning home from their sophomore year of college. “What are you talking about? Our church certainly has made many faults, but I would have never put some of the members of the church in the judgmental category. Help me understand where this is coming from. Can you give me some examples you have seen or heard that I may not be aware of?” As that child went on to try and explain the reason they said that, their real heart condition became clear to me and eventually them….

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Hospitality: A New Testament Value and Duty

By Christian Living, Church Life, Family Discipleship

They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer…Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts. Acts 2:42, 46, 47 Practice hospitality. Romans 12:13 Now the overseer must be…hospitable. 1 Timothy 3:2 There is something mystically bonding when true hospitality occurs. The more a church becomes building oriented, the more this spiritual activity will atrophy. In a healthy church, hospitality and table fellowship are occurring in families and across families. There is nothing…

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How Children’s Directors and Teachers Can Help Parents

By Church Life, Family Discipleship, Parenting: Childhood, Parenting: Early Years, Parenting: Teens and Beyond

What can I do as a children’s director or teacher to help parents disciple their children? I have been asked this question or a variation of it many times. A children’s director or children’s teacher loves working with kids. However, he or she knows the biggest influence happens in the home. So even as he or she is working with the children, there is a longing to help parents. Often he or she is worried about the influences in the home but doesn’t know what to do. There are a number of obstacles that children’s ministers have. Sometimes it is the…

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Guy Wilcox – How to Use The Disciple-Making Parent to Equip Parents in Your Church

By Church Life, Family Discipleship, Leadership, Parenting: Childhood, Parenting: Early Years, Parenting: Teens and Beyond, Podcast
You're a person who loves the material that The Disciple-Making Parent produces, but how do you help others catch the vision? What can you do to help others pass the gospel to their children and keep them from becoming spiritual casualties? In today’s episode, Guy Wilcox, a youth pastor out of Fayetteville, Arkansas, gets very specific about how he used the book, The Disciple-Making Parent to equip the parents in his large church. ----- We want to help you raise strong disciples of Jesus Christ, who can stand strong in today's culture, and you can get the audiobook of the...
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Should I Make My Teen Go to Church?

By Church Life, Family Discipleship, Parenting: Teens and Beyond
I have been asked this question four times in the past four months. Though there are variations, the basic question is, "Should I make my teenager go to church if he or she doesn't want to?" One parent thinks of a 16-year-old son who says, "I am not a Christian and don’t enjoy church; why do I have to go?" Others were thinking of a similar scenario. One added the twist of having a 19 or 20-year-old still living at home and negatively influencing the younger siblings. The following are some wisdom principles that would lead me to conclude that...
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Pastor All the Sheep

By Christian Living, Church Life, Family Discipleship

I recently was asked to give a very short talk to pastors about the pastor’s family. I wrote about the subject several years ago here: How Churches Can Care for Their Pastor’s Children How Pastors Can Care for Their Children *The following are my rough notes from my most recent talk.* dHaving pastored for over 30 years and raised my children as a pastor, what advice would I give that is unique to a pastor? Here are three specific thoughts. 1. Pastor all the sheep. When you study the life of Jesus you see that there was a priority in discipleship: the crowds, the 70,…

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