I have always heard people say that the best way to run a church is to run it like a business. Let me be clear when I say that managing a church like a business is the absolute worst way to see to ministry tasks. While there are parallels between the principles that make for efficient ministry practices and those of business enterprises, the dynamics of ministry are vastly different. For example, churches are primarily in business to make disciples, not a profit.
One of the challenges of doing church today is finding the right ministerial leadership to help the church meet its ministry objectives. While that’s been a persistent challenge for churches, the dwindling supply of young people aspiring to ministry today makes identifying the best candidate for a ministry opening much more daunting than it even used to be. But if a group patiently persists in their openness to the Holy Spirit’s leading, God always comes through.
This past week has seen no shortage of commentary regarding the remarks of Attorney General Jeff Sessions to an audience in Fort Wayne, Indiana, comprised largely of law enforcement officers. What landed Attorney General Sessions in hot water was his application of a passage in Romans 13, regarding submission to the governing authorities, to the current controversy over the administration’s immigration policy.
Growing up in a retail family, I learned early on that few things in life come previously assembled. Indeed, I spent most of my adolescent years piecing together everything from bicycles to barbecue grills. In fact, I have often wished I had a dollar for all of the contraptions I assembled during my adolescent years. Without question, I’d be a rich man today.
All of the “experts” tell us that we are now in a “post-denominational” age, a time when people don’t locate their identities in their relationships with any group outside their local church. While I would be the last to quibble as to the lack of strong connections between congregations and their denominational partners, I still contend that for most Baptists it means something when the body with whom they identify or through whom they channel substantial missions dollars does something that merits the notice of the secular media, especially when the denomination’s actions reflects unkindly on them and their local church.
Invitations are an ongoing part of life. Hardly a month goes by when we don’t receive some sort of invite to a party or a celebration or to pay someone a visit, and of course, each invitation anticipates some sort of response on our part.
This Sunday is the Memorial Day weekend. It’s a time when the summer season unofficially begins and families take the opportunity to enjoy the long weekend before everyone sets off on his or her summer plans. That’s to be expected. Family times are important for creating healthy bonds of love and support.
You’ll remember that back during our Vision 2020 conversations, our church felt led to consider Missions as one of our six core priorities. As we committed “to serve others,” we set as forth as a strategic objective “to emphasize the importance of every member’s involvement in some area of ministry beyond MBBC.” In the coming weeks, we will see signs of that objective being fulfilled as we send teams from our church to Eau Claire, Wisconsin, Fort Collins, Colorado, and Cape Town, South Africa. In fact, throughout the month of June, some team from MBBC will be on mission in one of these locations. While our numbers will be down here at home, our level of enthusiasm will be high as we pray for our fellow members and the people with whom they’ll be working.
As the story goes, a teacher gave her class of second graders a lesson about a magnet and what a magnet does. You probably still remember the first time you were introduced to magnets and the astonishment that came over you at their power to attract. The next day in a written test, the teacher included this question: “My full name has six letters. The first one is ‘M.’ What am I?” When the text papers were turned it, the teacher was surprised to find that almost half of the students answered the test question with the word “Mother.”