Weekend Links

Weekend Links

Worship leaders, pastors, and everyone serving this weekend: know that I’m praying for you! I pray that God will bless you and stretch you and use you to grow His kingdom and expand His family.

As usual, I found lots of great links this week that I wanted to share with you but that didn’t quite fit into a post. When you get a few minutes this weekend, check them out and be encouraged and challenged. Maybe even learn something. 🙂

Remember, these are just excerpts, but I strongly encourage you to click through and read each post in its entirety.

Zach Trandum on how to reclaim and renew your identity when life gets too crazy:

I started falling back in to some old habits and was becoming more and more sick of myself until I finally just stopped liking myself all together. I was completing losing sight of the fact that Jesus love for me is FAR greater than my habits. I was forgetting that He calls me His and there is nothing I can do to remove that label from my heart. I’m signed and sealed “HIS”.

When life gets crazy it becomes easier to lose our identity in all of it. So lets take a second to remember who we are. To do this I want to share with you something I did about a year or so ago that completely rocked my world in the best possible way.

Kevin DeYoung lists thirteen ways to improve congregational prayers:

Some traditions use set prayers. Others rely on extemporaneous prayers. Both have their place. But I believe what our congregations need most are studied prayers. These prayers may or may not be read, but will be thought through ahead of time. Public prayer is often boring because little thought is put into it. There’s no training for it, no effort put it into it. An hour or two is not too long to spend in preparing a long, pastoral prayer.

Jonathan Aigner shares some good reasons to consider not making Mother’s Day a part of your worship service:

Mother’s Day brings up a huge question for those involved in worship planning. Do we celebrate it? Do we make a casual mention of it? Do we pass out gifts? Ignore it completely? I lean toward the last option. Here are a few reasons why I think we should avoid the whole thing in our worship gatherings.

Eric Drew on diversity, worship, and unity:

The phrase that stuck with me through all those news stories was that we celebrate our Christian worship in all “our diversity and our unity.” We are people from different places, of different races, with different gifts, and that engage and worship in different ways. AND we are sons and daughters of God, called to be united in the Body of Christ. Our worship is not complete without our diversity and our unity.

So yesterday, after a tumultuous week, we gathered to worship again. How can our churches gather to worship and celebrate our diversity and our unity in meaningful and life-giving ways?

Kevin Bradford shares four things to do when life gets out of control:

I imagine you feel like you’re standing at the bottom of an insurmountable mountain. But the only way to climb a mountain is one step at a time. It takes a lot of courage, perseverance, and hard work, but it can be done. In fact, the mountain has been climbed by many people before you, each one in search of freedom from the mess their lives have become. Leverage the path they used to conquer the journey by following in their steps.

So here we are at the trailhead. I want to provide you with a map to get you going, but be forewarned. The journey will be hard at times, but at the end of it is the most amazing sight you’ve ever seen. It’s you living free from the hot mess and enjoying life like never before. So let’s get started. Here are some of the first steps you should take.

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