Category: The Gospel and the Ministry

Accountability, Friendship, and the Gospel

Over the last two posts, we’ve considered the problem of ministry burnout and rest and renewal in Christ. Today we’re going to explore our ongoing need of the gospel, friendship, and accountability. My Ongoing Need of the Gospel In August of this year, I will have lead Servants of Grace for seventeen years. Let me be honest with you dear ministry leader friend; I have often wanted to give up. I’ve wanted to say enough is enough. Enough of email, producing content in a variety of forms, dealing with difficult people, and responding to critics. Then I remember the...

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Resting in and Being Renewed by Christ

Introduction In the first installment of this series, I shared my own story of ministry burnout, and we learned that the root of ministry burnout is unbelief. In today’s article, we will discover what it means to rest in and be renewed by Christ. A survey of 1,220 adults published in USA Today revealed that most people are looking for more rest in their lives. Nearly 70 percent of those surveyed cited a need for more fun.[i] For most busy ministry professionals, additional fun time won’t happen without additional planning. The survey revealed that 67 percent said they needed...

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What Is Gospel-Centered Counseling?

What is gospel-centered counseling? It seems today that as Christians we’re always using the words “gospel” and “gospel-centered,” but what does that mean, especially related to counseling and one-another ministry? What Gospel-Centered Counseling Is Not I don’t know about you, but I often learn best from the opposite. So perhaps we could all consider what is not gospel-centered counseling. And perhaps we could learn from the stereotypical critiques that some share about their perception of biblical counseling. Gospel-centered counseling is not one verse, one problem, one solution. We might call this approach the “concordance” approach. Someone shares with us...

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My Story of Ministry Burnout: Idolatry, Unbelief, and the Gospel

Fairly recently Lifeway Research conducted an in-depth examination of the problem of ministry burnout and concluded through its research that only ten percent of pastors left the ministry because of burnout.[i] Whether it’s ten percent or more, ministry burnout is an issue, and it’s something I am personally familiar with. My Personal Story of Burnout I was 24 when I first experienced burnout. At the time, in 2004, I was leading Servants of Grace through a time of great growth, preaching on an internet radio station once a week, and attending a community college studying philosophy. There were many...

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What Biblical Counseling is NOT: Simply Spiritual

What Biblical Counseling is NOT: Simply Spiritual At some level all our problems are theological. A more controversial statement cannot be made in the realm of counseling, but it’s a statement that I truly believe. Since we live in God’s world everything about us, our lives and our struggles are related to God. That means everything has a theological or spiritual element to it. This truth is, in part, what drives the approach of Biblical counselors. Such a concept of people, problems, and life itself has led many to conclude that biblical counselors can only offer spiritual guidance, no...

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