Notes from the leadership journey!

Developing the Preaching Gift

No matter what our gifts are, we should constantly work on developing them. That certainly includes those of us called to the work forming and equipping followers of Jesus Christ through the proclamation of God’s Word. Unfortunately, too many people believe the old adage, “practice makes perfect.” I once heard John Maxwell say, “Practice doesn’t…

Evaluating Jesus’ First Sermon

This morning, I was reading in Luke 4. As I read the account of Jesus’ first recorded sermon, I thought about how “successful” it was in light according to the way we often think of success (i.e., whether or not it produces some positive response). In a Nazareth synagogue, located in the community where Jesus…

Elk Country

The last several-month leg of our journey has been a very busy and stressful time in our lives while completing work for ordination. So after Easter Sunday, we finally carved out some time away. We stayed fairly close to home, renting a cabin for two nights in neighboring Elk County. The rainy/stormy season continued during…

Easter 2011

Today is Easter. This season, and especially this past week, has been a busy time for us as pastors, but it’s been a fun time with the kids. Here are some photos, mostly from today. Now, it’s time to rest!

Take Up Your Washbasin and Towel!

Last night, at the combined Holy Thursday service of the Centre Grove and Curwensville UMCs, my sermon was on the example of Jesus in washing the feet of his disciples, hours before his betrayal. The story in John 13 is loaded with topics and lessons but I chose to focus on Jesus’ example. Jesus’ example…

Chuck Swindoll on Leadership

Randy is the cluster leader for the Clearfield Cluster, made up of twenty United Methodist churches in the area. The pastors of the cluster meet monthly for breakfast. Recently, we added a monthly gathering for personal growth. One day a month, we meet for about 90 minutes (including lunch) to watch a leadership lesson on…

“Reading Scripture as Wesleyans”

I just finished another book that I’m reading before ordination (see 75 Days of Preparation for Ordination). Reading Scripture as Wesleyans by Joel B. Green (now at Fuller Theological Seminary, formerly at Asbury) is described as “ideal for use with the Wesley Study Bible.” I enjoyed reading this book. It takes a look at how…

Theology of Ordination

In my recent post, 75 Days of Preparation for Ordination, I stated that I planned to review Bishop William Willimon’s Pastor: The Theology and Practice of Ordained Ministry. Here, I will simply post some quotes from the first chapter, which specifically deals with ordination. As we prepare for ordination (in less than two months), these…

Lenten Prayer Guide 6.0

At West Side, we handed out prayer guides each Sunday during Lent. Here’s the final one for use during Holy Week (see the first, second, third, fourth, and fifth guides). Lenten Prayer Guide “Now my soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’?” (John 12:27a) Ask God in prayer:…