The sheep with a broken leg? The danger of embellishing Scripture

Herdsmen Sebastien Uthurriague (R) and his father Michel watch their Manex sheep in Iraty, Larrau, in the Pyrenees on July 24, 2019. - In the 'Ibarrondua kayolar' (shepherd house), at 1300 metres, at the foot of the Mount Orhy, eight herdsmen take turns from June to September to watch some 1,500 sheep and to prevent bear attacks. (Photo by IROZ GAIZKA / AFP)

I’ve only heard the claim once from a pulpit but perhaps that was already one time too many. I’ve since come across other people who have heard the claim.  A preacher talking about the Lost Sheep in Luke 15 claimed that after finding the sheep, the shepherd would then break one of its legs. The… Continue reading The sheep with a broken leg? The danger of embellishing Scripture

Is narcissism the problem?

The Gospel Coalition have just published this article offering further engagement with Chuck De Groat’s book “When narcissism comes to church.”  The writer, Dan Doriani, is positive towards Chuck’s work but has some concerns, particularly with the thesis that: narcissism is especially common among pastors because they often enjoy a high profile. Narcissists crave power,… Continue reading Is narcissism the problem?

He’s the good good shepherd

I love Psalm 23 and it was really helpful to hear a speaker talking about this at a recent church leaders’ retreat.  On Sunday I shared my own attempt at a paraphrase of the Psalm. It’s been particularly on my mind over the past few days as it seems to link with a few particular… Continue reading He’s the good good shepherd

What does your pastor need to know?

Every so often I see comments about what pastors and church leaders need to have studied, to know and be reading now. At one end of the spectrum is the view that “all we need is the Bible” and we don’t need to make it complicated.  At the other end of the spectrum is the… Continue reading What does your pastor need to know?

House of Cards and a tragedy of mistaken heroes

Back when I was a student at University, anyone who was interested in politics and saw themselves as having a future in parliament was avidly studying the TV adaption of Michael Dodd’s House of Cards as diligently as they were paying attention to their actual subject. The protagonist in the original House of Cards is… Continue reading House of Cards and a tragedy of mistaken heroes

How did complementarianism end up becoming a boundary marker?

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This was a question asked the other day on twitter. It was expressed I believe as a lament as much as a question. There are Christians who stand foursquare with other evangelicals. They believe the Bible to be God’s inspired word, without error. They confess that Jesus died on the cross to bear the penalty… Continue reading How did complementarianism end up becoming a boundary marker?

Mutiny over the Bounty: Why it’s not a good idea to make decisions by popularity contest

The big controversy of the week is Mars’ decision to take bounties out of the Celebration variety tins and increase the numbers of other sweets.  It could have been worse.  They could have taken out one of the truly great sweets in the selection, the Malteser, the Galaxy (solid chocolate option not the caramel filling… Continue reading Mutiny over the Bounty: Why it’s not a good idea to make decisions by popularity contest

God did not make you a pastor to keep you going to church

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I want to pause and think about a type of comment that I’ve heard a few times over the years.  It goes something along the lines of. “Perhaps the reason that God made me a pastor was to keep me in church.” Such comments are perhaps tongue in cheek but personally I’m not convinced they… Continue reading God did not make you a pastor to keep you going to church

Refreshing our vision for youth and children’s ministry

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Two cheers for this tweet from Michael Bird. Bird is engaging with the problem about why young people too often walk out of church and Christianity as soon as they can.  He correctly identifies some significant issues with age based ministry.  His primary concern is that what we do with kids and teens can become… Continue reading Refreshing our vision for youth and children’s ministry

Curiosity is crucial

I think that often the difference between leaders who are able to change things and those that aren’t is often to do with curiosity.  Some people are naturally curious. They are always wondering why things are the way they are, always asking questions, always considering different options, scenarios and reasons.  They employ the famous “W”… Continue reading Curiosity is crucial