LEADERSHIP & If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously.

“If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously.”

– Romans‬ ‭12:8‬ ‭NLT‬‬.  Read more at … http://bible.com/116/rom.12.8.nlt

LEGACY & Leaving a Bigger, Better “Barn” & Combating Greed

“Someone out of the crowd said, “Teacher, order my brother to give me a fair share of the family inheritance.”

He (Jesus) replied, “Mister, what makes you think it’s any of my business to be a judge or mediator for you?” Speaking to the people, he went on, “Take care! Protect yourself against the least bit of greed. Life is not defined by what you have, even when you have a lot.” Then he told them this story: “The farm of a certain rich man produced a terrific crop. He talked to himself: ‘What can I do? My barn isn’t big enough for this harvest.’ Then he said, ‘Here’s what I’ll do: I’ll tear down my barns and build bigger ones. Then I’ll gather in all my grain and goods, and I’ll say to myself, Self, you’ve done well! You’ve got it made and can now retire. Take it easy and have the time of your life!’

“Just then God showed up and said, ‘Fool! Tonight you die. And your barnful of goods—who gets it?’ “That’s what happens when you fill your barn with Self and not with God.” He continued this subject with his disciples. “Don’t fuss about what’s on the table at mealtimes or if the clothes in your closet are in fashion. There is far more to your inner life than the food you put in your stomach, more to your outer appearance than the clothes you hang on your body. Look at the ravens, free and unfettered, not tied down to a job description, carefree in the care of God. And you count far more.

“Has anyone by fussing before the mirror ever gotten taller by so much as an inch? If fussing can’t even do that, why fuss at all? Walk into the fields and look at the wildflowers. They don’t fuss with their appearance—but have you ever seen color and design quite like it? The ten best-dressed men and women in the country look shabby alongside them. If God gives such attention to the wildflowers, most of them never even seen, don’t you think he’ll attend to you, take pride in you, do his best for you?

“What I’m trying to do here is get you to relax, not be so preoccupied with getting so you can respond to God’s giving. People who don’t know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. Steep yourself in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met. Don’t be afraid of missing out. You’re my dearest friends! The Father wants to give you the very kingdom itself.

“Be generous. Give to the poor. Get yourselves a bank that can’t go bankrupt, a bank in heaven far from bankrobbers, safe from embezzlers, a bank you can bank on. It’s obvious, isn’t it? The place where your treasure is, is the place you will most want to be, and end up being.” ‭

Luke‬ ‭12:13-34‬ ‭MSG‬‬

Read more at … http://bible.com/97/luk.12.13-34.msg

GENEROSITY & Do not be so preoccupied with getting so you can respond to God’s giving

“He (Jesus) continued this subject with his disciples.

‘Don’t fuss about what’s on the table at mealtimes or if the clothes in your closet are in fashion. There is far more to your inner life than the food you put in your stomach, more to your outer appearance than the clothes you hang on your body. Look at the ravens, free and unfettered, not tied down to a job description, carefree in the care of God. And you count far more.

‘What I’m trying to do here is get you to relax, not be so preoccupied with getting so you can respond to God’s giving. People who don’t know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. Steep yourself in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met. Don’t be afraid of missing out. You’re my dearest friends! The Father wants to give you the very kingdom itself.

‘Be generous. Give to the poor. Get yourselves a bank that can’t go bankrupt, a bank in heaven far from bankrobbers, safe from embezzlers, a bank you can bank on. It’s obvious, isn’t it? The place where your treasure is, is the place you will most want to be, and end up being’.”

‭‭Luke‬ ‭12:22-24, 29-34‬ ‭MSG‬‬

Read more at … http://bible.com/97/luk.12.22-24,29-34.msg

#WesleyTour
#BibleQuote

CULTURAL BIASES & Don’t fuss about what’s on the table at mealtimes or if the clothes in your closet are hip.

“He (Jesus) continued this subject with his disciples.

‘Don’t fuss about what’s on the table at mealtimes or if the clothes in your closet are in fashion. There is far more to your inner life than the food you put in your stomach, more to your outer appearance than the clothes you hang on your body. Look at the ravens, free and unfettered, not tied down to a job description, carefree in the care of God. And you count far more…

‘What I’m trying to do here is get you to relax, not be so preoccupied with getting so you can respond to God’s giving. People who don’t know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. Steep yourself in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met. Don’t be afraid of missing out. You’re my dearest friends! The Father wants to give you the very kingdom itself’.”

‭‭Luke‬ ‭12:22-24, 29-32‬ ‭MSG‬‬

Read more at … http://bible.com/97/luk.12.22-24,29-32.msg

BIBLE & View of the Bible Divides Nominal and Practicing Christians #LifeWay

by Aaron Earls, Facts & Trends, LifeWay, 6/8/16.

Both nominal and practicing Christians see the Bible as sacred, but that’s where the agreement stops.

Those Christians who attend church services at least once a month, and say their faith is very important to them, hold the Bible in the highest regard for them and for society, according to the 2016 State of the Bible from American Bible Society. The same is not true for other self-identified Christians.

Ninety percent of non-practicing Christians say the Bible is sacred. That is only slightly below the 96 percent of practicing Protestant Christians who say the same. Only 36 percent of Americans of other faiths or no faith agree.

In virtually every other area, however, nominal Christians are closer to non-Christians in their attitude toward the Bible.

Read more at … http://factsandtrends.net/2016/05/23/view-of-the-bible-divides-nominal-and-practicing-christians/#.V1gFdfT3aJI

 

BIBLE & Who Was the Beloved Disciple? #SBL

by Christopher W. Skinner, “Who Was the Beloved Disciple?”, n.p. [cited 27 Mar 2016], Society of Biblical Literature (SBL).

…The shadowy figure known as “the disciple whom Jesus loved” appears in five scenes in the Gospel of John (John 13:21-30, John 18:15-18, John 19:26-27, John 21:7 with John 21:20), though some also regard the unnamed disciple in John 1:35-39 as the beloved disciple. In these scenes the beloved disciple stands in contrast to Simon Peter, who is characterized less positively. In each instance the beloved disciple responds to Jesus in a way that the narrator considers praiseworthy, while Peter expresses confusion, doubt, and misunderstanding before he denies that he knows Jesus. In a sense, the beloved disciple gets everything right: twice he is found in a location that indicates his loyalty to Jesus (John 18:15-18, John 19:26-27); he responds appropriately by believing at the empty tomb, even when he does not understand (John 20:3-8); he also recognizes the risen Jesus from afar while the other disciples do not (John 21:7). In what is probably the most important comment about the beloved disciple, the narrator depicts him as “leaning back on the chest of Jesus” (author’s translation, John 13:25)—an English rendering of the same Greek phrase used to describe the relationship between Jesus and God the Father (“close to the Father’s heart,” John 1:18). Each of these depictions reinforces the idea that the beloved disciple should be seen as an ideal follower of Jesus—one with whom any faithful reader can and should identify.

Perhaps a historical individual actually stood behind the figure of the beloved disciple. Nevertheless, the beloved disciple is anonymous in the text and must remain so to fulfill the role given him in the story. The point John’s Gospel makes is that any reader who wishes to follow Jesus can become a beloved disciple by following his lead. From the pages of the story the beloved disciple beckons the reader: “Follow Jesus as I have followed him, and you too can become a disciple whom Jesus loves.”

Read more at … http://www.bibleodyssey.org/en/people/related-articles/who-was-the-beloved-disciple

 

NEED MEETING & The 25 Top Topics Searched for in the Bible

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: Bible Gateway is a go to website for finding biblical references. Their release of the “Top 25 topics most searched for in the Bible” can help leaders in two ways.

First, it indicates the topics for which people are searching for biblical answers. These should be the topics of our sermons and our Bible studies.

Secondly, this gives us a glimpse into the needs for which people are seeking answers in the Bible.

Familiarize yourself with these topics and allow more of your ministry to revolve around answering them. (And, if you want to know the most popular scriptures search for the other Bible Gateway, see this post: )

MOST-POPULAR KEYWORD SEARCHES

By Bible Gateway, 2015.

Here are the most-popular keyword searches in 2015 in both English and Spanish.

Rank English Español
1. love amor
2. faith fe
3. peace paz
4. hope oracion
5. joy corazon
6. marriage gracia
7. grace amigo
8. prayer esperanza
9. holy spirit misericordia
10. healing espiritu santo
11. forgiveness mujer
12. strength perdon
13. children gracias
14. fear luz
15. love one another gozo
16. heart diezmo
17. forgive ofrenda
18. trust pecado
19. comfort padre
20. pray obediencia
21. light ayuno
22. salvation salvacion
23. worship espiritu
24. fruit of the spirit fortaleza
25. love is patient palabra

Based on over 1.6 billion pageviews and over 160 million unique visitors to Bible Gateway from December 2014 through November 2015, this data provides a glimpse at how people engaged with the Bible in 2015.

Read more at … https://www.biblegateway.com/year-in-review/2015/