CAPTAIN OBVIOUS Pastoring has changed in many ways from the way I entered it 33 years ago. The expectations are now so different. Not just the expectations of others, but the expectations we have for ourselves. As podcasts have become available, the obvious challenge is: Can I keep up with the quality/level of preaching of…

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One of the ongoing challenges of ministry, particularly occupational ministry, is taking up the work God gives us to do without allowing it to become the primary driver of our identity. We all know the temptation, and gravitational pull on our hearts, to feel less valuable when things are going poorly and more valuable when…

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SAM, A PASTOR Let me tell you a story about a friend of mine.  Let’s call him “Sam.” Sam, a pastor with 30 years of service said to me one day, “John, I’m so tired.” I understood him completely in that moment, and I knew he needed deep rest. My response to Sam? “Listen to…

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This is a time of abundant information (and misinformation), improvement tips, and evaluation tools concerning EQ (Emotional Intelligence) in the fields of counseling and psychology. As Christians, we need to biblically understand how to evaluate, process, challenge and maintain our emotional health. Here are four key things you can do to develop and maintain emotional…

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There are only a few moments in our lives when our understanding and role as leaders change dramatically. The first for me was being inducted into my first pastoral position at the young age of 23. The next came when I became a husband at the age of 25, followed by becoming a father at…

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