A handful of people have recently asked me how they should approach ministry to the poor. Specifically, they want to know how to get started. I used to tell people, "Pray and do what Jesus tells you." While this is still the best approach, I’ve realized it’s not the most helpful advice. Ministry to the … Continue reading Loving the Poor – “How Do I Get Started?”
This feels like a good week to give a personal update to those who are interested. First, a quick summary of the adventure that started six months ago. God revealed to Rachel and me that it was time to think about starting a family. The way he wants us to start a family is by adopting children. So … Continue reading A Personal Update
I met Derek years ago when he came to Midtown Cafe with his older brother, Tim. When I learned he was Tim’s brother, I expected the worst. Tim is an unapologetic drug addict who will lie and steal with no remorse. The last thing I wanted in my life was another Tim to have to … Continue reading When They Don’t Come Back
I first met Gene when he wandered into the Midtown Cafe asking for spiritual guidance. With some help from volunteers and local pastors, Gene learned the gospel, placed his faith in Jesus, and got baptized. He was on fire for Jesus and wanted everyone to know his story. Sometimes he stood up in the middle … Continue reading How We Love With Prayer
While I was at work the other day, I pulled out a giant flip chart, grabbed a Sharpie, and started writing down questions. A smart guy once said, “The first responsibility of a leader is to define reality.” In a neighborhood like mine, defining reality involves asking a lot of questions. I wrote things like … Continue reading What Is Church?
I’ve had one of those weeks where God has shown me something and I have to do something about it. A friend of mine recommended the book The Bondage Breaker by Neil T. Anderson, an older book about spiritual warfare. It’s not silly or over the top. It doesn’t encourage exorcisms or power encounters. Instead, the … Continue reading Are We Wrestling With Flesh and Blood?
I’m currently unemployed. The last time I was unemployed, I decided to work on my art skills. I borrowed a book called Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain and got to work. I used to be a pretty good artist, but had lost some skill over the years and couldn’t figure out why. … Continue reading Drawing On Jesus
A sinful woman once knelt before Jesus and anointed him with a jar of expensive perfume. The apostles saw the act as wasteful, because the woman could have sold the perfume and given the money to the poor. Jesus tells his disciples to shut up, because the woman had done a beautiful thing. He also … Continue reading Should We Try to End Poverty?
Christians are people who believe Jesus. This simple identity goes beyond believing facts about Jesus. That he is the Son of God, that he died for the sins of humanity, that he conquered death. Believing Jesus means that when Jesus opens his mouth to teach us, we listen and obey. The most succinct way to … Continue reading The Missing Phrase