5 Things I Learned in Canada Last Week

So last week my wife and I came back from a week of preaching and teaching and fellowship on Prince Edward Island in Atlantic Canada. I was honored to be one of the speakers at The Gospel Coalition, Atlantic Canada. We had an absolutely lovely time up there and I wanted to share with you about some of our experiences: 1) It's an honor to be invited to share God's Word with any audience. I hope this feeling never wears off, but every time I'm asked to preach somewhere, I feel a tremendous privilege. To hold in our hands the very precious words of the living God and to be used by the Spirit of God to teach His people is a gift of grace. For someone to trust me to handle the Word before their people is a job I try not to take lightly. All pastors and Christian speakers should...

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TGC Atlantic Canada

So this week, Angela and I are off to beautiful (so I hear) Prince Edward Island, Canada. We were graciously invited by the Gospel Coalition, Atlantic Canada. I'm preaching two times, conducting a workshop, and participating in some panels (schedule here). We are looking forward to some gospel fellowship with brothers and sisters in the Lord. And maybe we'll get in some sight-seeing as well. My wife is interested in touring some of the Anne of Green Gables sights. Ok, I'll admit that, as an avid watcher of Anne (mancard = gone) in my youth, I'm curious about the sights as well. If you are attending, can't wait to meet up with you. While I'm gone, the blogging will be light. On Thursday, my friend Dave Jenkins will guest post with some wisdom from his experience caring for a parent with a serious illness. On Wednesday, I"ll have a post...

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Pastors, Love the Ones You’re With – The Gospel Coalition Blog

The Gospel Coalition graciously posted another of my articles. This one is about a new lesson I learned from a familiar passage: I've read 1 Peter 5:1 many times. As a young pastor, I'm paying more attention to its straightforward directives for my calling as a shepherd. But it wasn't until a few weeks ago that the simple, often overlooked phrase "among you" leaped off the page and into my mind. Why did Peter add this prepositional phrase? We know he wasn't meeting an editor's quota. And unlike so much of my writing, the inspired Word of God doesn't contain throwaway phrases. No filler here. So this means the phrase has significance. Peter could have easily said, "Shepherd the flock of God." But he didn't, because there is a lesson in that seemingly innocuous string of words. via Pastors, Love the Ones You’re With – The Gospel Coalition Blog....

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Flattery Can Kill – The Gospel Coalition Blog

The Gospel Coalition website posted my article entitled, "Flattery Can Kill". In this piece I share the story of my being wooed by the flattery of a church member and how it ultimately hurt the ministry: Flattery is a hidden trap for pastors, especially young men new to leadership. Pressured to grow and besieged by our own insecurities, we allow flattery to shape the way we do ministry.For one thing, flattery can feed a natural, human desire to compete with the other ministries in town. We do this in subtle ways. A few folks throwing around some hyperbolic words and suddenly we begin to think that perhaps we are preaching more biblically or with more relevance than the other evangelical congregations in town. We forget that our body of believers is but one expression of Christs body in our community.For a while we can build a loyal following based on our...

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