Teaching kids to interact with God

As I was teaching John 15 last night to one of my Bible study groups, one of the subjects that we covered was “how do we abide in Christ in a practical manner?”. The answer is found in the passage itself, “abide in the Word of God and have the Word of God abide in us”. Our discussion was, “as I focus on making disciples, how to I connect them with the vine, as I am connected to the vine?” In other words, “how do we teach people to interact with God?” according to John 15. The group answer was, teach them to come face to face with God through His Word. If I am a disciple-maker, am I teaching people to interact with God through His Word or I am “telling them what the Word of God says” keeping them from coming face to face with God unfiltered? Continue reading

Understanding the Spiritual Gifts in Corinth

I have really had a good time studying this subject of spiritual gifts with my staff. It has been a pleasure for me learning right along side my staff members and you as well if you have been reading the posts on spiritual gifts. The previous two lessons have been very eye-opening for us as a staff. To recap, here they are:

This week’s lesson is powerful and freeing when properly understood. There was a lot of confusion in Corinth when it came to the subject of spiritual gifts. Some false teachers had come in and led many of the believers astray, even trying to turn them against their mentor, the church founder, the apostle Paul. Apparently, these false teachers were teaching that some of the Spiritual gifts were more important than others and that everyone needed to have certain gifts in order to be true believers. There was mass confusion. Paul takes quill, ink, and parchment to write to the believers and clear up the misunderstanding. Here is what we can learn from him as he was inspired to write all of this by the Holy Spirit. Please take a moment and read the following verses from I Corinthians 12:1, 4-11, 28-31 Continue reading

Showing appreciation in the ministry

volunteersLast night at our church, we celebrated the volunteer teachers in the children’s department. I had the privilege of speaking during this dinner and all throughout the week I prayed about what to share. God brought me to Romans 16 where Paul appreciates all of the people who served with him in the ministry. Paul mentions people by name to show his appreciation. What really stuck out to me was the fact that Paul commented on how they served. He did not just “appreciate” them for offering their time. He writes about how they served. Let’s take a look at how these people served. Take a look at Romans 16:1-16. Continue reading

Connecting with others

Last week during the ROC pictures (reaching others for Christ) we learned how to connect with God. God has done everything to connect with us and then motivates us to connect with others by loving and serving them so that they can connect with God too. We saw how the mid-wives in Egypt had connected with God and as a result, they could not murder the innocent Hebrew boys just after they were born. Moses’ parents had connected with God and they did all that they could to protect the life of their new born son. They also taught their daughter Miriam to connect with God and as a result, she loved her brother and did all that she could do to protect him. They all put their lives on the line to help others because they had connected with God. Moses grows up and learns to connect with God. Continue reading

The giving of the spiritual gifts

During our last staff meeting, we covered an overview of spiritual gifts. This week we are going to take a look at the initial giving of the spiritual gifts to the early church. We learned last week that it is Christ who gives us the gifts. He is the One who chooses which gift(s) we receive. We do not pray for a certain gift. We also discovered that we do not all have the same gifts. Not everyone has a speaking gift. Not everyone has a serving gift. Both types of gifts are equally important. The gifts are given to us to be used in serving one another and not ourselves. If the gifts are used properly, the Lord is glorified and the ministry grows. Continue reading

Connecting with God

I hope you have had an awesome week serving the Lord by investing in the Word of God and investing the Word of God in the lives of the people around you. Today, I am going to begin a new series during children’s church, a series called “Connecting”. This week, we are going to learn how to connect with God and how that motivates us to connect with others in a meaningful way. Continue reading

A full week of teaching

I was just reflecting over the past week of ministry and realized just how many Bible lessons God allowed me to be blessed in teaching. One of the lessons that I taught this past week was “Understanding Spiritual Gifts“. In the lesson, we learned that if we have been given a speaking gift, then we need to speak the Word of God when we teach. I have the gift of teaching so I love to teach God’s Word. I am most fulfilled when I can teach others how to study and apply God’s Word. Here are the lessons that I was able to teach this week. Continue reading

Spiritual gifts: An overview

I am beginning a new study today with my staff at church. We have covered a plethora of topics over the past 8 months since I have been on staff. Mentoring was the first series that we covered. Then we moved to the Sermon on the Mount. After the Sermon on the Mount we moved to leadership according to God’s Word, looking at such leaders as Abraham, Moses, Joshua, and Caleb. Today we are beginning a new series on Spiritual gifts based on a study by Kay Arthur called, “Understanding Spiritual Gifts“. I just finished filling out the first lesson and would love to share my thoughts before teaching later today. In order to understand this subject better, I will post some passages and then see what we can learn from them. Continue reading

How do you respond when someone sins against you?

ForgiveI had the privilege of spending almost 5 days in the Ukraine last week at the Azov sea. I was part of a team from Hoffmantown church that went to Precept Ukraine’s annual festival. We spent 5 days together studying God’s Word and encouraging one another. There were over 800 attendees at the festival from all different parts of Ukraine, even some from the war torn areas.

While there, one of the evening messages was preached by Costel Oglice, one of the leaders of the Precept Ministries Eurasia. He preached on what do you do when someone sin’s against you. I would like to share that message with you here.  Continue reading

Leadership: Helping people break the cycle of sin

slavery_to_sinAs I prepare to teach my staff tomorrow on the subject of leadership, I sit here thinking about the problem that all humanity faces, our slavery to our sin nature, which we inherit from our parents. Do you understand how the cycle of sin works? Are you still stuck in that cycle? Do you know how to lead people out of that cycle?

All of mankind is born into this cycle of sin because of original sin. We all inherit a sin nature from our parents. Sin is in us and it begins to manifest itself from an early age. I have written this before but I believe that it is worth writing again. We see inherited sin in children through the fact that we do not have to teach them to lie, steal, be selfish, harm others etc. Instead, as parents, we have to teach them not to do these things. Continue reading