Monday, September 5, 2011


Yesterday, I had the wonderful privilege of attending two sporting events here in my city-the inaugural University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) football game in the afternoon, and the San Antonio Silver Stars (WNBA) basketball game last night. Today while thinking about my outing last night, God prompted me to ask myself this question, “Shouldn’t we (Christ followers) be some of the first ones to attend our community events? Shouldn’t we look for opportunities to attend our community festivals, sporting events and other celebrations and be some of the most ardent supporters of them?” I’m not talking about attending only Christian events (although we should attend those as well) and I am not talking about attending events that blatantly make a mockery of God (and there are plenty of those). I am talking about getting out into the places where the people are, where engagement and conversation and relationship can be formed. In fact, when I look at Scripture, I see Jesus doing that very thing. He didn’t have a problem attending parties, or going to the festivals, or interacting with people in large crowds at celebrations in the community. He wanted to be where the people were, that’s where some of the greatest ministry could be accomplished.

When the people around us begin to see that we care about the things they (our community) values, then a great INTERSECTION develops-a place where you share the same passions, if only about a particular subject matter and if only for a short amount of time. It is in that intersection where God can do some of this best work. In fact, had I stayed home yesterday, I would have missed the opportunity to see my friend and ministry buddy Luke intersecting with a family sitting next to him at the football game. What a joy it was to watch as he and a complete stranger discussed the finer points of football and celebrated together each touchdown scored. That is intersecting with our community. Had I been too tired to go to the basketball game in the evening, I wouldn’t have met Marquis, a fellow brother in Christ who was introduced to me by my mother-in-law Glenda after she turned around in her seat to comment on his voice-which reminded her of someone she knew. Out of that intersection, subsequent introduction and further discussion, Marquis and I traded business cards and are looking at ways to partner together in ministry right here in our community.

What’s my point? Well, I had an epiphany today that when Jesus said GO in Matthew 28 he didn’t just mean GO to Africa or Mexico or even to our local coffee shops and school buildings. Don’t get me wrong, believers in the Lord Jesus Christ should be going to all of those places. But I believe we should also be checking our community calendars and looking for announcements of upcoming fairs, festivals, celebrations and sporting events in our communities. If we love the people in our communities like we say we do, then we should want to be where they are. Yes, that means having them bump into us and spilling beer on our shoes. Yes, that means waiting in long lines to get out of parking lots and visiting smelly port-o-potties. The only way to truly love and minister to our communities is to become a part of the community. And the way to become a part of the community is to GO where the community gathers.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Ability Translated into Availability

My mentor writes a great message every month to all of those that support him in ministry. Unfortunately, not enough people get to read his messages. So, I am taking the liberty to post this month's message because I found it to be particularly impactful. I hope you do as well.

His pleasure is not in the strength of the horse, nor His delight in the legs of a man; the Lord delights in those who fear Him, who put their hope in His unfailing love.-Psalm 147:10-11

Do you ever feel so skilled in what you do that you require little help from others? Perhaps you may feel that you are more skilled than any other in your field. Does God need your skills and abilities in order to accomplish His purposes on this earth? The answer is NO.

One thing God does not need is our skills and abilities. However, He does give us the privilege to exercise our gifts and abilities for His service. That service may be as a computer technician, a secretary, an ironworker, or even a lawyer. God calls each of us to our vocations to work unto Him. To believe that He needs our skills to accomplish His mission on earth would be to lower our understanding of an all-encompassing and all-powerful God.  The psalmist tells us that His pleasure is not in our strength and ability, but His pleasure is in the attitude of the heart. It is what we find in the heart that helps determine whether ability is translated into availability. You see God is looking to and fro throughout the earth for a man or woman who is fully committed to Him. A man or woman who is fully committed to fearing the Lord and placing his hope in His unfailing love is the person God seeks to support. "For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to Him" (2 Chron. 16:9a). When our agenda becomes His agenda, we can expect God to fully support all that we do. If we want to see our skills and abilities multiplied a hundredfold, then we must make them completely available to His service. Where are the opportunities in which God is calling you to be available to Him? Next time someone asks you to be involved in some activity, before you say yea or nay, make sure you check in with the Master of our decisions to ensure that your gifts and talents are being used, as He desires."
-Steve Stoner, Biblical Leadership for Excellence
August, 2011

Thursday, August 18, 2011


1. A substance that causes or accelerates a chemical reaction without itself being affected.
2. Something that causes activity between two or more persons or forces without itself being affected.
3. A person or thing that precipitates an event or change
4. A person whose talk, enthusiasm, or energy causes others to be more friendly, enthusiastic, or energetic.

What does all this mean? More to come VERY soon.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Tough Callings

At this year’s Willow Creek Leadership Summit, we were asked to mediate on, pray about and write down what God was revealing to us about a tough calling in our lives. What I wrote down was this:
Greg, the American church is broken.”
Over the last number of years,
This has been the thing that keeps me up at night more than anything else
This has been the thing that stirs my soul like no other-my holy discontent
This has been the thing that I find continually comes up in conversation over and over again no matter the person I am talking to

And I want to be clear about what I am saying: I am not calling out one particular brand of church over another. I am not calling out any church of any size over another. It is irrelevant to me whether the church meets in a home, a store front, a coffee shop, or a large building. Folks, I believe that the AMERICAN CHURCH is broken. And WE are the American Church.

And yet despite this brokenness, Jesus is still in the business of redeeming a lost world to himself through the church.
Do you believe that?

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Spiritual Castration

I believe we have allowed the enemy to SPIRITUALLY CASTRATE us. What does that mean you might ask? Get this, here is the definition of castration and I would like for you to not only think about it in a physical sense but especially in a spiritual sense.

Castration-Removal of the testes. The procedure stops most production of the hormone testosterone (a hormone responsible for MATURITY in males). If done before puberty, it prevents the development of functioning adult sex organs. Castration after sexual maturity makes the sex organs shrink and stop functioning, ending sexual interest and behavior. Livestock and pets are castrated to keep them from reproducing or to create a more docile animal.

In many cases, WE HAVE ALLOWED the enemy to remove something from the body that is helpful in aiding in our maturity and in developing as a body appropriately. And when it is removed, we lose spiritual interest and behavior. And since we lose interest, we don’t reproduce and instead just become docile and paralyzed with mediocrity.

And this castration, this paralysis is best exemplified in Revelation 3:14-20

Luke-warmness, mediocrity, devours the church!