Sunday, March 20, 2011
The full copy of the paper by Dr. Tim Keller regarding church size is available by clicking here. This full paper is most instructive and helpful as we educate ourselves on the particulars regarding the dynamics of our large church. The general principles in this paper have been unanimously embraced by the Session as part of our preparation and planning for Vision 2020.
As a follow-up to the congregational meeting, Bob Frederick (one of our Ruling Elders) sent me the following quotes from people who spoke to him this morning. My favorite is the one from his 9-year-old daughter:
“Of all the sermons that Jean will ever preach at Southwood, this one will be the greatest.” Vivian Tozer (Berean class)
“I am exited about the topically based Sunday School classes.” Sue Urban (Berean class)
“I am exited…
Monday, April 04, 2011
In the past few days, several people have asked me a version of this question: “Why is it our goal to have 4500 members in the next 10 years? Haven’t we learned our lesson from “mega churches” in the past? Why would we set it as our vision to be like them when we’ve seen those pitfalls?” How would you respond?
Great question. First of all, let me apologize if I left the impression that the ‘GOAL’ of Southwood was to be a large church, a very large church or a ‘mega’ church (although I don’t like the baggage that word brings with it but I do understand the question). Our ‘goal’ is to advance the Kingdom of God, not to be a 4,500 member church. We are growing and we believe that is wonderful. You are either growing or you are dying. No church ever plateaus in number. Churches are either growing or dying. If a church believes it has plateaued it is actually in decline it just doesn’t…
Wednesday, September 14, 2011
When I was a child my mother taught me that cute little game you could play with your hands folded, “Here is the church. Here is the steeple. Open it up and see all the people…” We would do it over and over again. As a child I loved to laugh and watch the ‘church’ open up and see all of the people.
On September 18th we are going to do the same thing, but at the end of our exercise things may look a bit different: “Everything is remodeled, except for the steeple, but when I look around where are all the people?” You need to know this: the empty chairs and pews are empty ON PURPOSE. You read that statement correctly: the empty chairs in Sunday Seminars and empty pews in worship there by design!
Some might say that empty seats indicate our decision to go to three services was premature. Some might say empty seats are a testimony to the failure of Sunday Seminars. There is a temptation to see these potential realities a referendum on a poor strategic decision.…
Jesus+Nothing = Everything
“Jesus + Nothing = Everything will remind you of the ancient yet ever-fresh truth that everything we need is found in the perfections of Christ—not in ourselves, not in our reputation, our relationships or wealth or accomplishments—in Christ alone. If you’ve never rested in the finished work of Christ this book is for you. If you’ve rested in it for decades like I have, this book is for you, too. Why? Because we forget; And, although we love Jesus, we’re blind to the ways in which his work connects to our daily lives and we wonder why joy and zeal are foreign concepts to us.” -Elyse Fitzpatrick
A Scandalous Freedom
Get ready to be bothered by the Gospel. Steve Brown teaches grace in a way that gets under your skin—- Reading Brown is like having a gospel hair in your mouth of your conscience. The more it bothers you the more beautiful the pearl produced will be
The Gospel Mystery of Sanctification
From the publisher: “It is a deep and rich biblical study of sanctification - how Christians grow in holiness and become more like Jesus. In a day when Christians are very prone to pursue self-help methods to grow in obedience to Christ, Walter Marshall lays out the biblical way of growth: obedience comes as Christians live by grace, in union with Christ, by faith.” This book influenced me PROFOUNDLY on the topic of sanctification. The Modern-English re-write makes this a TOP PICK for 2011!
12 Steps for the Recovering Pharisee (like me)
I ‘accidentally’ picked up this book simply for the title alone. I grew to hate it quickly. It hit a little ‘too close to home.’ Fischer’s book plunges the scalpel of self-awareness and need for deep repentance deep into the hard hearts of Pharisees like ME!
- Redeemer Presbyterian Church
Ricky Jones is the pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He is a trophy of grace. If you want to listen to bold preaching by a man who knows his sin, knows his weaknesses and trusts only Jesus to take what he says and use it to God’s glory then you are heading in the right direction. The preaching is bold, the preacher is humble and you will be blessed.
- Key Life Ministries
Steve Brown is not the most subtle guy you will ever meet. If I were to write an S.A.T. question about Steve this is how it would go: Steve Brown is to legalism what a child hopped-up on cake and ice cream is to an pinata! I love this guy. Check out his website and fair warning: you are not heading to a ‘SAFE’ little Christian site!
- Coral Ridge Presbyterian
As one comment on iTunes said: “Tullian preaches the Gospel in an unadulterated and undomesitcated way…The way it should be preached!”
- Mockingbird Blog
Mockingbird is a ministry that seeks to connect the Christian faith with the realities of everyday life in as fresh and down-to-earth a way possible.
- White Horse Inn
White Horse Inn is a multimedia catalyst for reformation. We believe that each generation must rediscover and apply the gospel to their own time. We long to see a second reformation take hold of our churches and return them to the God-honoring, Christ-centered, Spirit-wrought places of worship they should be.
- On Earth as it is in Heaven
William Graham Tullian Tchividjian (pronounced cha-vi-jin) is a Florida native, the pastor of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Fort Lauderdale, a visiting professor of theology at Reformed Theological Seminary, and a grandson of Billy and Ruth Graham.
Smith is the founding Pastor of Christ Community Church in Franklin, TN, avid writer, prolific blogger and tweeter. His nuggets of Gospel wisdom are seasoned by years of service to the Bride. He is gentle and very purposed in his every comment.