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3 Ways to Become a Better Leader by Following Like Joshua

Joshua, also called Yehoshua in Hebrew (literally meaning “Yahweh is deliverance”), was the charismatic Old Testament leader of the Israelites who came to leadership after the death of Moses. Joshua conquered Canaan after the Exodus from Egypt, distributed its lands to the 12 tribes, and is well known in the Bible for reminding the Israelites how much Yahweh had done to bless and deliver them, and encouraging them to stay the course while being faithful to covenant law.Full of courage, daring, and even spies! The Bible book of Joshua shows that obedience to God supersedes all, even when the going gets tough and uncertainty lurks around every corner.Here are three ways to follow like Joshua, becoming a more effective leader in the process:Photo Credit: ©SparrowStock

What Is There to Praise God about When Life Is Hard?

Hard times come to everyone, but for believers, the journey through life’s dark valleys looks very different. Your ability to triumph amid adversity is going to start with your determination to “walk by faith and not by sight.”

How to Discern if a Song Is Appropriate for Worship at Church

The songs chosen for praise and worship services have a unique flavor and flair that is deeply reflective of how each church is comprised. Older congregations have a style. Younger congregations have a style. Traditional churches have a style. Contemporary churches have a style. Pentecostal churches have a style. Baptist churches have a style.But when it comes to the songs used in a praise and worship service at church, are there guidelines for what is and is not appropriate? Is it just a matter of personal preference, or does the Bible provide any insight? How can you discern if a song is appropriate for worship at church?Think about this:There are plenty of songs that are musically or emotionally attractive but are not theologically sound.There are plenty of songs that have solid theology, but are long and wordy, or hard to sing.There are plenty of songs sung in churches that were written by unbelievers or people whose lives are being lived in disobedience to God’s Word.There are plenty of songs sung in church that aren’t even about God!The truth is, both natural wisdom and spiritual discernment are necessary in choosing which songs are appropriate for worship at church. Remember, praise and worship are holy to the Lord. That’s why it is important that—above all else—His plan for praise and worship is put first.Photo Credit: Unsplash/John Price

3 Dangers of Emotion-Driven Churches

Why do we have emotions?Emotions are an incredibly powerful way to experience something. They help us feel life in a way that nothing else can - the joy of staring into our kids’ eyes for the first time in the hospital; the sorrow and gratitude as we bid farewell to a loved one who gave so much to us; the compassion that moves our hearts to help someone in need; and the anger at injustice in the world.Companies, communicators, and churches have all realized the power of emotion to get a reaction out of people. But is getting people to “feel” something a good thing or a bad thing? And what place do emotions have in the Church?It’s not a bad thing to have emotions in the Church, in fact having the right emotion, at the right time for the right reason, can help us experience and connect with God in powerful ways.Emotions are a good thing, but they shouldn’t be the main thing. Here are three dangers with emotion-driven churches.Photo Credit: Hannah Busing/Unsplash

How Do I Heal from Hurt around the Holidays?

Fortunately, holidays can bring out times of great joy. Unfortunately, for others, holidays can bring out the pain. Could you give us some advice on how to heal some of the hurts we may encounter?

These Are the 12 Pastors Who Are 'Most Effective' Preachers

A dozen pastors known for their consistently stellar performances in the pulpit made Baylor University’s list of the most effective preachers in the English-speaking world.The list of 11 men and one woman, chosen by scholars of homiletics, or the art of preaching, was released Tuesday (May 1).“In a world where talk is cheap and there seems to be no end to it, the preacher has to recover the priority and power of the word,” said W. Hulitt Gloer, director of the Kyle Lake Center for Effective Preaching at Baylor’s Truett Theological Seminary in Waco, Texas.“Words are the tools of the preacher and that gives them incredible power,” Gloer added.The dozen preachers in the top 12 — academics, pastors and authors — were picked from nearly 800 nominees.Photo courtesy: ©Thinkstock

How to Become a Man of Purpose

Ultimately, what Adam and Eve’s mistake shows is that being a man of purpose does not come from what we do, it comes from the fact that we are created in the image of God. It means trusting that God’s promises are true.

11 Critical Warning Signs You're on the Road to Burnout

More than a few of you reading this know you are on the edge of the cliff we call burnout. And probably a few of you are in free fall right now. What’s so perplexing about burnout (and especially low-grade burnout) is that more than a few of the symptoms strike people as “normal.” So how do you know if you’re heading for burnout? I’ll describe eleven signs and symptoms I personally experienced as I burned out. If you recognize one or two of them, you’re likely not burned out. Consider them warning signs. If you show six to eight, you may be in low-grade burnout or heading for the cliff. If you resonate with most or all of them, you’re likely in full-fledged burnout. I hope these signs can help you see the edge before you careen past it. Photo Courtesy: Thinkstock

Is the Bible against Women Leading in Church?

Why not be a celebrator of women, seeing their value and inviting them to the table? Now is not the time to limit the workers, but rather encourage them to share the Gospel. We are all part of the Body and when one hurts—or is marginalized—the whole Body suffers.

5 Ways to Put a Stop to the Fall of Today's Youth Group

What our kids need most right now isn’t another Wednesday night filled with games and a quick lesson about why God says this or that is bad. Our kids need their parents willing to talk about their personal relationship with God and how God still loves this world—no matter how messy it seems.

5 Amazing Ways to Throw Satan off His Game with Worship

Here is a secret that Satan doesn’t want you to know about worship: It has the power to defeat him.Of course, you have many spiritual weapons to use in every fight of faith you’ll ever encounter in your life—the most powerful one being the Word of God. However, while prayer and the Word were given exclusively to the people of the Kingdom, worship was Satan’s before it was ours.Satan understands the power of worship. He understands its purpose more than many Christians do. Satan understands that worshipping God draws you closer to Him—and above anything he ever tries to do, He wants to keep you apart from God!Of course, nothing can separate you from God’s love, but plenty of things can separate you from connecting with the Spirit of God in worship. Well, it would be more accurate to say this: Plenty of things can make you feel separated from God in worship.The truth is that you have as much access to God’s holy presence in worship as you ever did. But sometimes we feel like we can’t because we aren’t “worthy.” Satan expects that your natural inclination will be to avoid worship altogether or to just go through the motions when life gets hard, or when you’ve messed up, or when your emotions don’t “feel” like he will throw everything he can at you to keep you trapped and disconnected.If you want to throw Satan off his game in worship, here is your 5-part winning strategy:Photo Credit: ©GettyImages/FatmirBajrovic


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