Launching the Amazing Life

I was sitting next to an acquaintance at a banquet when the conversation weirdly drifted onto spiritual topics. In response he said, “I’d like to get together for dinner sometime. In college I made a choice to become an atheist and I love to debate religion.”

I have other “friends” on Facebook who write what I call “drive-by shooting” posts about religion from their atheist viewpoint.

 

None of these are really interested in discussing. They’re only interested in arguing.

And frankly I don’t have the time or desire.

I’ve also observed that often those same ones carry a real anger that leaves them restless and unhappy. Sometimes they may even be successful by the world’s standards but there’s a hole deep inside. [Read more...]

How to Take Back Control of Your Thoughts

Mental health is the new growth industry of our society.

Psychotherapists, Marriage and Family counselors, personal therapists are graduated from universities by the thousands each year.

Prescription drugs to treat mental and emotional issues bring in billions annually.

And even the church has gotten involved. Many mega-churches have full time counseling departments to treat their church members.

 

What’s happened? [Read more...]

Growing Together into Greatness

The “Lone Ranger” Christian perspective flat out doesn’t work. The individualist who alone with God conquers life is a myth.

Yet, it seems particularly in the west that’s become our focus.

People enter into a relationship with Jesus and many gravitate to a mega-church. It’s easy, fun and there’s no commitment. Just show up, listen to a good message and great music then go home.  I mean what’s not to like?

For a while it even works. It’s new and exciting.

But then life happens, some issue blindsides them and suddenly it’s not enough.

 

And being the rugged individualist believer stops working. [Read more...]

How to Help Each Other Grow Successful

I get frustrated sometimes seeing Christians who’ve been believers for years struggle and fail with the most basic spiritual issues.

 

I’ve said, “They don’t have years of experience. They have one experience repeating itself over years.”

In other words they never grow up. They trip on the same challenges. Make the same mistakes. Keep responding to issues in the same ineffective ways.

Many go to church regularly and are involved. Some are church leaders and teachers.

And what’s really terrifying? Some are pastors and denominational leaders.

What’s happened? Where did they go off the rails? [Read more...]

Stability in the Storms

Why is it in churches we see nearly the same levels of divorce? Why the same percentage of people struggling with depression and other emotional issues? Why almost no difference in the levels of dysfunctional families?

 

Something is terribly wrong.

I think, in all honesty, the culture of our churches has bred a generation of spiritual infants.

Now, I’m not trying to be harsh so let me explain. [Read more...]

Living the Adventure

I never cease to be amazed at how many Christians live stale lives. They rarely see God work. When faced with challenges they often cave in. They fight about insignificant issues in church.

Yet, Sunday after Sunday they’re promised an extraordinary life from God. And I think most hope for that. Some have even experienced it at some point.

Yet, they’ve settled into mediocre spirituality. They’ve become complacent just going through the motions. They think more in terms of the required minimum to just keep God happy.

 

And their lives have become well, dull. [Read more...]

Want to Change Our World?

I’ve heard the church compared to a football game. Thousands of people desperately in need of exercise watching a few people desperately in need of rest perform.

Unfortunately I think that describes way too many churches today. Hundreds flock to services to watch a few exhausted super saints. Yet, never get involved beyond sitting for an hour on a Sunday.

And the exhausted “ministers” finally burn out. I know. I did.

Then the church goers leave wondering what it’s all about. Never growing closer to God or having the joy of making a difference.

I’m not really condemning anyone.

 

I just think we live in such a consumer culture that it spilled over into the church. [Read more...]

Experiencing Unlimited Power

Every summer I meet with a group of my high school buds that I graduated with at a mini-reunion. What a great time.

I started it a few years ago because a couple of our buds died unexpectedly way too young. I thought there’s no reason to wait.

Every year it causes me to think back on the dreams we each had. And how life has taken unexpected paths. Some good, some difficult.

 

Health issues, career setbacks, death of loved ones. Things that can derail us.

Challenges each of us face. And as a result we can end up with lives of frustration or fulfillment depending on our response. [Read more...]

Touched by Unimaginable Love

We live in an impersonal world. Yet we all desperately need to connect with those we care about.

Some people have hundreds of Facebook friends yet never meet one for coffee.

Many are surrounded by colleagues every day yet go home to an empty house.

Many attend mega-churches yet remain anonymous.

And frankly too often at church we’re told about a God who will love us. But only if we’re spiritual enough. Attend often. Follow the rituals. And keep all the rules.

Then maybe God in some distant way will concern himself in our lives. Maybe.

But it leaves people feeling alone. Like orphans. Unloved and untouched. [Read more...]

Free to Live Your Fullest

So many people live trapped in the past. They live weighed down never able to live at their fullest.

They carry hurts from past relationships.

They live defeated because of past failures.

They carry guilt and sometimes shame.

They live fearful that the past will repeat.

Sometimes they go to church to find answers and way too often are told they’re unworthy and God is angry.

And it leaves them just trying to survive with their dreams crushed. [Read more...]