Archive for the ‘Body Ministry’ Category

Fifth Sunday of Kingdomtide-Oct 1

05 Oct

Developing mutual concern-People were attracted to the early church because of the love they saw members had for each other. Our society has become increasingly isolated. Though surrounded by crowds, they are strangers and people withdraw into their private world. This isolation is seeping into the church as people drive farther to church and often do not see each other from one Sunday to the next. While many pastors and church leaders feel they have good access to knowing when members have problems, few members in most churches know each other well enough to drop the mask they wear to keep people at a distance and reveal who they really are and that they have needs. The lack of this concern is why there are so many in church who struggle with loneliness and depression and why there are so many in church who do things that hurt others. Many people who form the core of churches today are interrelated to others in the core of the church because their children grew up together in the church and married. When they have problems or needs, their family helps either directly or through the church. However there are many in most churches who are outside the core because they have only recently joined or their children had left home before they joined and often are not well known by those in the core. When they have problems or needs, the core of the church is often not aware of it and those in need are reluctant to ask for help. In a small church, where the pastor gets out and regularly visits all his members, he may eventually become aware of problems, however, in a large church, the pastor can not personally visit everyone so a deacon or elder board should divide up the congregation so each board member has responsibility for overseeing a portion of the church. (see “The Living Presence” in my series “Rebuilding The kingdom” for pastors and church leaders) Small group fellowships enable people to get to know each other and develop a concern for each other. Developing a concern for someone goes beyond merely knowing about them, it involves caring about what happens to them. As they get to know each other, they are more willing to share who they really are and that they have needs. They also begin to care about each other and minister to each other’s needs. People who care about each other seek to help each other grow and prosper.


Fourth Sunday of Kingdomtide-Sept 24

27 Sep

Developing relationships-The days after Pentecost were days of learning what it meant to follow Christ in a community of believers. Many were attracted to the church by the preaching of the disciples and had not previously known each other so it was a time of learning to live with each other as Christ would have them. Our society values isolation and the church has fallen prey to it. As a result, few in the church really know each other well enough to admit to having needs. In addition, very few know them well enough to minister to them because they have not had a close relationship with them. People require more than an hour a week in a worship service to develop close relationships. Churches need to make a big effort to help members get to know each other. In the past, pot luck suppers were a place where people got to know each other but few churches today organize social times. Many churches today that still have social times are going to catered meals and eating at restaurants but that is only available to those who can afford them. In addition, many members do not know other members well enough to be open and honest so little socialization occurs in large gatherings. People today develop best in groups of less than 16 people, therefore the church needs to organize small group to help members get to know each other and learn to live like Christ would have them live. Short six week Bible studies are not adequate, it requires long term commitment to each other. (See “Living Presence” in “Rebuilding the Kingdom” (Lulu Press) for developing a small group ministry)


Third Sunday of Kingdomtide-Sept 18

13 Sep

organized teaching-In addition to a firm foundation, members need organized teaching. Often, the preaching and the adult Sunday Schools of many churches are very haphazard with no master plan. Sermons are often chosen week by week or from a series that hits the pastor’s fancy. Adult Sunday School classes are often chosen for each quarter at random. Without a basic foundation of knowledge and without organized instruction, bits and pieces of knowledge are tossed together in a heap. Many adult church members know many things about the faith but have no way to pull it together and do not understand how it applies to their life. The church needs to draw up a blueprint of what its members need to know and teach them in an organized manner. Using the Christian calendar gives structure to teaching and helps the church provide organized teaching. By going through the Christian calendar, it goes through all the major teachings of the church each year.  I have a series of courses on Udemy to teach Christian beliefs. It begins with a course on Basic Christian beliefs. Next is a course on the Celebrations and how they help members understand the faith. Next I have courses on the values laid down in the Ten Commandments., including the value of life, the value of the rule of law, and the value of the family. See promos and links under “study courses”                                    


Second Sunday of Kingdomtide-Sept 11

09 Sep

A firm foundation- Catechism. When I began my ministry, it was common for churches to have a concentrated time of study for those coming of age, generally considered about age twelve, to give them a basic foundation of understanding of the church and its beliefs. Few churches today, particularly evangelical churches, have any organized classes for twelve year olds to teach them the basic tenets of the faith. Even children who have been in Sunday School their whole lives need a concentrated time to pull together everything they have been taught. As a result, many children today do not have even a basic foundation of knowledge and cannot build their faith as they grow older. There is also no concentrated study for those coming into the church who did not grow up in church. The result is that few adult church members today have even a basic understanding of the faith. I have developed a basic catechism course of study for new members for that purpose (Understanding the Path We Walk-see “books” on website and Basic Christian Beliefs on Udemy-URL-



First Sunday of Kingdomtide-Sept 4

02 Sep

 Time of growing deeper-Kingdomtide is a time when the church should be active in helping its members in growing deeper and building spiritual depth. Large numbers of people were suddenly brought into the church following Pentecost. They had not sat under the teaching of Jesus and they had to be taught how to live like Christians. Too many members today are not trained in Christian living and easily fall back into living like the world. The church needs to concentrate on building relationships through younger members learn from older members. They learn how to minister to those needs as they watch more mature Christians ministering to those in need. As they learn to identify needs and how to minister to those in need in the small groups, they begin to see the needs of those outside the church and can begin to minister to them also, demonstrating the love of Christ to unbelievers. As unbelievers see the love of Christ, they begin to desire that love and are attracted to the small group. It should also concentrate on helping members understand the basics of living in community. Where Advent concentrates on building individual faith, Kingdomtide concentrates on building community.



Fourth Sunday of Eastertide-May 8

04 May

Fourth Sunday of Eastertide-Explore- One of the most important ways to find what our gifts are is to experiment in different areas of the church to find what we enjoy doing and do well. This is one of the most neglected areas of the church today. Most churches are run by a small group of people who have always filled the same positions. While they complain that no one wants to work, they give very little opportunity for new people to become involved. The church must provide opportunities for members to become involved in various areas of the church so they can find their interests and talents. One way is through a requirement that limits everyone to two three-year terms and requires everyone to take a sabbatical every seventh year. This helps prevent workers from becoming burned out and enables new people to become involved. It also gives members on their Sabbatical time to shop around to see if there are other areas that might interest them. Some churches have a Sunday where each church work group has a booth in the fellowship hall and members can wander from booth to booth talking with people who belong to that work group. Some churches even invite Christian community service groups to have a booth for those called to serve beyond the local church. There are also interest surveys available. I have written a booklet, “The Important I” which helps with determining what would be a good career (part-A), but also outlines areas in the church and community that offer opportunities for volunteer work (part-B). It includes an interest survey and can be obtained by E-mailing me at, requesting the booklets, “The Important I” and put “booklet” in the subject line.


Second Sunday of Lent-Mar 13

09 Mar

Matthew 18:1-5 Like A Child-Many people now think that Sunday school is for children. When they grow up, they don’t need to go anymore. Jesus says that unless you are converted (born again) and become as little children, ye shall not enter the kingdom of heaven. When we are born again, we become like a child and need to learn how to walk in the way God wants us to, just as a child has to learn to live the way society expects him to behave. Children are not apathetic about the world around them, they are fascinated with everything around them. They want to see everything, feel everything, and try everything. We should be just as eager to learn about God and how to walk in His ways.


Sixth Sunday of Epiphany-Feb 13

11 Feb

Lack of Social Interaction Many single mothers are under tremendous pressure with no one to help them. They are often working and trying to keep house as well. Many are constantly tied down with the kids and have no one to watch the kids while they shop or attend other activities. Providing child care during church programs can free such women to relax and enjoy the activities and may enable them to attend where they might not otherwise be able to. With many families having no more than one or two children, children are often isolated. Child care will also provide opportunity for children to interact with other children in informal activity. Older Christian women can watch the kids for short periods or two mothers can take turns watching both sets of kids while the other one shops or just has some quiet time. Women’s activities at church with child care also helps.



Fifth Sunday of Kingdomtide-Oct 3

01 Oct

– While those who see marriage from their own perspective, see it only as a source of immediate pleasure and convenience, those who walk with God are able to see beyond that to the long-term benefits to them and to society. Those who see it only from their own perspective are often ready to abandon it if they see no immediate benefit, while those who see the long-term benefits are willing to endure a few problems to gain them. Many of the social problems we face today are directly related to a loss of fellowship with God and the resulting loss of respect for marriage. The church can do a great deal to strengthen the marriages in its church families, but many churches today are failing because they do not support the families in the church.  The subject is too broad to cover here but I have written a series on God’s design for His people including “God Made Them Male & Female” (about differences between them), “In Defense of Marriage” (about benefits of marriage), and “What is Normal” (Problems we have today due to the breakdown of marriage) which are available electronically upon request at no charge.


First Sunday of Kingdomtide-Sept 5

01 Sep

 Growing in faith by watching Kingdomtide is a time when the church should be active in helping new converts grow deeper.  While few new converts are coming into the church this is vitally important today when so few churches teach members how to live a life pleasing to Christ. Many members who transfer in from other churches where they were members for many years come with very little spiritual depth. As a result, I was asked to develop the lecture series  “In The World But Not of It” (published by Outskirts Press). Surrendering to Christ does not automatically bestow maturity in Christ. When we are born again, we are like babies in the faith and must grow to maturity. Children learn by observing adults and copying the way they do things. In the same way, new Christians need to observe more mature Christians in the faith and interacting with them. It is very hard to explain in a sermon or Sunday School class how to love others or to humble ourselves. It must be learned by watching others who are more spiritually mature, and interacting with them, as they live out their faith day by day, however few churches today have the close relationships needed to help new Christians grow in Christ. With very little spiritual training, new Christians have few mature Christians to learn from. There is also no close interaction of members with spiritual leaders to enable them to grow spiritually as they see them in action. There needs to be active mentoring of new members by those who are spiritually mature,  however  many church leaders today are chosen for their financial management skills and popularity rather than their Christian maturity and do not provide good spiritual role models to follow.