Here is one for you electronic book aficionados–or if you are somewhere in the world where receiving parcels has its challenges.
Apostolic Church Planting: Birthing New Churches from New Believers was released earlier today for Kindle. I hope you will get a copy or let someone know about it. As always, thank you.
A few years ago, I wrote about the potential of Kingdom citizens putting their culinary skills to use for global disciple making and church planting. We can go to the world through the stomach.
NPR recently reminded me of this potential when they did a story on an Omani cookbook written by a New Yorker. Check out the story.
Do you see the potential? Not necessarily to produce a book, but what doors could open–both in your community and across the world–if you empowered and encouraged your church members to take their regional cuisine into the highways and hedges? To teach others their way of cooking? To learn how others cook?
Now maybe those annual church cookbooks have more potential than just teaching long-term Kingdom citizens how to make another chocolate cake.
If you have not had a chance to take a look at the contents of my latest book, Apostolic Church Planting, check them out HERE. I do hope you will get a copy and share it with others.
Here is an interesting article from NPR on the refugee crisis in Europe. This one, however, addresses Muslims converting to Christianity–some to avoid being sent home, others experiencing repentance and faith.
Check it out. It is worth your time and thought on an important issue today.
Apostolic Church Planting has been out for a couple of weeks. I was just told that it should be available on Kindle this week.
Many believers do not think of the book of Psalms as having much to contribute to an understanding of the mission of God. However, several passages reveal much truth about the peoples of the world submitting to God’s reign.
I have noticed this twice over the past two years. Our church has been reading through the 2-year version of the M’Cheyne Bible reading plan. By this December 31, we will have read through the Old Testament once, New Testament twice, and Psalms twice.
Rather than list the verses in Psalms, I want to encourage you to take them in context. Start with chapter 1 and read through 150. I think you will be both blessed and surprised. And your Great Commission preaching will begin to draw from this great book of praise!
We decided a couple of years ago to have a church-wide day of prayer and fasting, and continue this practice once per quarter.
We fast for 24 hours and pray. On that particular evening, the church gathers for a time of corporate prayer. No gathering is exactly like previous gatherings. We pray through songs, in small groups scattered across the worship area, with elders, and alone. Sometimes kids lead the church in certain prayers (We intentionally make this a family affair.). Sometimes we use the A.C.T.S (adoration, confession, thanksgiving, supplication) model as a guide. We may pray biblical passages.
Pastors, for many years I never challenged the people I led to fast and pray. And I am ashamed of this neglect. How about you? Consider teaching your people about fasting and prayer and calling them to a day, once per quarter, as a place to start.
Important findings were released today from the Pew Research Center. In a survey of more than 35,000 U. S. adults, the study examined numerous aspects about religiosity and Americans. Below are a few findings. Be sure to read the article.
- overall adult population is now less religious than in 2007
- religiously affiliated are more devout than they were a few years ago
- those who believe in God declined from 92% to 89% since 2007
- only about half of Millennials believe in God with “absolute certainty”
- religiously unaffiliated (i.e., “Nones”) at 23% of population, up from 16% in 2007
- half of evangelical Millennials believe that homosexuality should be accepted by society
- more than 1/3 of Evangelicals agree that homosexuality should be accepted by society, up 10 percentage points since 2007
- Nones now the largest single religious group among Democrats
- Evangelicals remain the largest single religious group among GOP
- Nones are becoming increasingly secular
It is also important to note how quickly these numbers have changed in seven years. Also, unlike previous generations, the Millennials are not showing signs of becoming more religious as they grow older.
It appears the United States is becoming more dichotomized when it comes to religion: The religiously affiliated are becoming more and more devout; the unaffiliated are becoming more and more secular.
Changes are happening, and happening quickly. Most churches do not relate well to quick. And many church leaders still live by the 10/10 rule. Different days are coming on quickly; and I have not even starting writing about the rumblings of persecution I hear in the distance.
The Kindle version of my most recent book, Apostolic Church Planting: Birthing New Churches from New Believers, should be available soon. Until then, check it out at Amazon.
Here is one of the most helpful (and brief) articles I have read on the statistical and geographical details related to the refugees and asylees in the United States.
Want to know the difference between a refugee and an asylee?
How many refugees will be allowed in the United States next year? The following year? And how many of these will be Syrians?
Where are refugees coming from?
What states have received the most refugees?
Jeff Iorg, president of Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary, shares a brief thought about my new book Apostolic Church Planting: Birthing New Churches from New Believers. Read it HERE and get a copy today!
Everyone wants to go to the cool places in the United States. The New Yorks, Seattles, Miamis, and Los Angeleses. There are many unreached people groups living in such locations. And we must continue to go to these places.
But the cost of living in such communities prohibits some church planting teams from long-term sustainability.
How about considering the small to mid-size U. S. cities and communities? The uncool places? There is a substantial Bosnian population living in Bowling Green, Kentucky. And remember Bubba from Bayou La Batre, Alabama in Forrest Gump? Well, about one-third of the population of that community is from Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam.
The strangers next door are living in the uncool places. This makes reaching them even more challenging. For now, not only do they remain hidden to most churches, but they are in the communities rarely considered by most church planting teams. Few want to plant churches in Des Moines or Lincoln among unreached people groups.
We may find that labors in smaller communities–where no one is serving–are not only fruitful but also more sustainable. And with technology and air transportation, those migrating to the uncool communities remain in regular contact with Asia and Africa. And that is very cool.
A flight from London to New York in 30 minutes? It does sound far fetched, but this article tells the story.
Would any Kingdom citizens of the nineteenth century have believed the technological advances of the twenty-first? What would the Moravians of the eighteenth century have done with the technology we have today?
Are we being good stewards with what we have in our day? And what are we doing to prepare for a future (Lord willing) when the flight from London to New York is only 30 minutes?
Apostolic Church Planting: Birthing New Churches from New Believers released this week. I hope you will get a copy and encourage others to do so too!
The International Organization for Migration recently released the 2015 World Migration Report. The focus for this year is migration and the cities. You can download the pdf for free in English, Spanish, or French. This report addresses how migrants are shaping the cities and being shaped by the cities.
Approximately one in five migrants lives in cities. In many cities, migrants make up at least one-third of the population. Places like Brussels and Dubai are comprised of 50% migrants.
This report contains a wealth of information. Be sure to get a copy.
I am partnering with Amazon to give away a copy of my book Kingdom Expressions. Be sure to check out yesterday’s post for more information.