Church Transformation

Does your church or organization need more diversity?

A couple of months ago, one of my neighbors had a party.  Frequently when someone has a party in our neighborhood, all of the available street parking fills up, and this one was pretty typical – with one exception.  There was a certain sameness about the vehicles.  Here’s what the street looked like:   It … Continue reading »

Categories: Church and the World, Church Leaders, Church Transformation, Diversity, Reaching Out, Undercover Pastor | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Fear vs. faith – which will decide our future?

Fear blocks much of what God seeks to do in our churches and lives… When we choose fear, we miss out on God’s blessings. Continue reading »

Categories: Church, Church Leaders, Church Transformation, Faith, Undercover Pastor | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Public Restrooms and the Church

On a recent coffee run I saw a sign at a local restaurant located near a major freeway.   “No Public Restroom (Customers Only),” it read. The sign was posted on the front door where everyone would see it – in fact, that and the hours were the only things posted there.  It reminded me of … Continue reading »

Categories: Church Transformation, Hospitality, Marketing, Reaching Out | 2 Comments

Denny’s Big Breakfast Gamble and the Church

I saw the Super Bowl ad for a free grand slam breakfast at Denny’s on February 3rd.  And I was planning to take the family.  Only each Denny’s we visited had a line around the block.  Apparently, Denny’s served 2 million breakfasts that morning.  They estimate that they got $50 million worth of free (positive) publicity … Continue reading »

Categories: Church Leaders, Church Transformation, Current news, Marketing, Undercover Pastor | 4 Comments

Why would God confuse us?

In his well-known daily devotional book, My Utmost for His Highest, Oswald Chambers writes “Ye know not what ye ask.” Matthew 20:22 There are times in spiritual life when there is confusion, and it is no way out to say that there ought not to be confusion. It is not a question of right and wrong, … Continue reading »

Categories: Church Transformation, Faith, Listening to God, Undercover Pastor | Leave a comment

In memoriam: Edith Whitney, 102 years of life and faith

My grandmother died almost two weeks ago now at 102, and I now have the bittersweet task of officiating at her memorial service.  My grandmother didn’t have an easy life.  As a polio survivor, her reaction time was slow and her sense of balance was unreliable.  She lived with a lot of pain at various … Continue reading »

Categories: Church Transformation, Discipleship - learning from Jesus, Faith, Family, Undercover Pastor | Leave a comment

Dreams vs. Reality

Tomorrow is the fifth anniversary of my first day as pastor at Trinity Presbyterian Church.  I can still clearly remember talking to the pastor nominating committee at my face-to-face interview with them back in 2003.  After they asked me their questions, I asked them a few, including what would you to see happen in the … Continue reading »

Categories: Church Transformation, Leadership, Pastor to pastor, Undercover Pastor | 1 Comment

The front or the back of the line?

Eleanor and I were headed for a rare cup of coffee without the kids and during the five-minute drive, we encountered two different people who were angry over someone getting into the lane of traffic ahead of them.  Eleanor and I actually let a couple of people in and then found a great parking place!  … Continue reading »

Categories: Church, Church Leaders, Church Transformation, Leadership, Smaller Church Ministry, Undercover Pastor | Leave a comment

Worship space decisions revisited

In response to my earlier post about the difficulty of making space in a smaller church, Becky made this suggestion: Have you thought of starting a new (small) church? I love the idea of small churches being so appealing that they multiply like bunnies. It’s really a reasonable thing to think about too – a … Continue reading »

Categories: Church, Church Leaders, Church Transformation, Smaller Church Ministry, Undercover Pastor | Leave a comment

Small churches have a unique call

I had a wonderful opportunity to address pastors and elders from small churches at the Presbyterian Church’s biannual General Assembly on Monday.  I really do believe in the ministry of small churches.  By their definition, we are Trinity are now a medium-size church, but we’re still a lot smaller than many of the churches around … Continue reading »

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Decisions, decisions!

The past couple of weeks, I’ve been troubled in my spirit…  Is that good Bible language for spiritually messed up? Our church has experienced a lot of growth lately and we’re having growing pains.  That’s partly because our building is way too small.  It was built in a time when a) churches didn’t have parking … Continue reading »

Categories: Church, Church Transformation, Following Jesus, Smaller Church Ministry, Undercover Pastor | 2 Comments

Our God Is a Great Big God

My wife woke me up for morning prayer this morning and I went back to sleep.  This was a bad choice because there’s a lot going on in my life and the life of our church right now.   As a church grows, it can no longer connect everyone “automatically.”  It’s a much more conscious and … Continue reading »

Categories: Church Transformation, Following Jesus, God's love, Undercover Pastor | Leave a comment

Dr. King’s legacy – The work continues

Today is the 40th anniversary of the death of Dr. Martin Luther King Junior. I think everyone in this country owes him a debt of gratitude for raising the consciousness of a nation that has always prided itself on being the land of the free. Well, it’s not over.  Since I’m a white man, people … Continue reading »

Categories: Church, Church Transformation, Discipleship - learning from Jesus, Undercover Pastor | Leave a comment

Evangelism in 2007

I’m on my way home from the Presbyterian Church’s Evangelism Conference.  It’s clear to me that evangelism has really changed since the days when you could follow a script or hand people a booklet and they would make a decision to be a Christian.  These days it’s all about having relationships with people and about … Continue reading »

Categories: Church, Church Transformation, Undercover Pastor | 2 Comments