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Generosity, Empowered by the Holy Spirit

Anyone can give. And most people do, to one degree or another. But for Christians, there is a whole new level of generosity that can be opened when we allow the Holy Spirit to work in and through us. Paul challenged the Corinthian believers, "Since you excel in so many ways—in your faith, your gifted speakers, your knowledge, your enthusiasm, and your love from us—I want you to excel also in this gracious act of giving." (2 Corinthians 8:7 NLT) Paul knew that the …

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Acknowledging the Ultimate Gift Giver

James, the brother of Jesus, once said, "Every good present and every perfect gift comes from above, from the Father..." (James 1:17 GW) All the stuff we possess is a gift from God, and failing to recognize Him as the Giver is to miss the opportunity to glorify Him in our lives and in the world. Acknowledging and thanking God as the Giver does two things for us. First, it helps us worship. That is, it elevates Him in our minds, causes us to feel dependent upon Him, and …

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Pastor, Don’t Raise Funds. Raise Faith.

Fundraising is no fun. Most Pastors I know say it's the one aspect of supporting a church's ministry they find most difficult. Having launched into church planting, I tend to agree. The least pleasant task I have is asking for money. So let's just stop it. We don't have time to raise funds. But we do have time to raise faith. Instead of asking for money, help people grow. You can ask for money and if you do it well, you'll probably receive it. But if you raise the faith of …

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5 Reasons To Partner with Grace Hills Church

I've heard from plenty of people that church planting is tough. When Angie and I expressed a calling toward it, we were warned by quite a few ministry leaders to the effect of "Don't do this unless God has definitely called you because it's hard." Church planters face isolation, criticism, and the constant pressure to become self-sustaining. But for me, none of these represent the toughest aspect of church planting. The toughest aspect so far has been fundraising! One of …

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How You Can Help Plant Grace Hills Church

Donate to Relocation to Plant Grace Hills Church Or, if you're a PayPal nut... We are now just sixty days from relocating to northwest Arkansas to begin the work of planting Grace Hills Church. The feedback we've received thus far has been tremendously positive. We've been encouraged by friends and family, fellow church planters, and the staff at Saddleback. I am confident in God's calling. I know this is His will, and I'm already envisioning what our …

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Is Money a god or a Gift?

Jamie Munson tackles that very question in his book, Money - God or Gift. Jamie's book is intended for use as a Bible study for either small groups or individuals. The really good side of the format is that Jamie gets right to the point in every chapter with a biblical principle and real life illustrations. This book is for people who love money, hate money, new Christians, old Christians, and people who don't have a relationship with Christ at all. It's both biblical and …

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Always Be Investing In Someone

Call it discipleship. Call it mentoring. Call it whatever you want, but one of our kingdom assignments is to gather people around us and invest in them. Jesus did it with the twelve, and even more with the inner circle of three. Paul did it with Barnabas, then Silas, then Timothy. Barnabas did it with Paul, then John Mark. John did it with Polycarp and Batman did it with Robin. I read an amazing story over at Danny Brown's blog today about the boy with the bread. He tells …

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Blog Action Day: Give the Gift of Water

It's Blog Action Day, which is a web-wide event in which bloggers and media companies give attention to a significant need in the world. Today is all about water. Water is everywhere. I live next to the Pacific Ocean, which is one big part of the world covered by water. Sometimes, looking across the surface of the sea, you forget just how precious clean, drinkable water is throughout the world. That's true in the United States (in places like Las Vegas), but it's far more …

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Why We Give Offerings On Sunday

I heard a pretty blunt statement recently in response to a church that doesn't talk about money because they don't want to alienate the unchurched. The response was simply "but you can't make disciples without talking about money." Wow. How true. If discipleship is all about submission to the Master, then our money has to be near the top of the list of things we have trouble submitting. As a Pastor, I think about this subject often - why do people give offerings on Sunday? …

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Thoughts About Feeding the Hungry

Last night we had a very special dedication time for our Storehouse food distribution ministry. Everything has been done with excellence. We're well prepared and ready to go. Tomorrow the doors will open and we'll be feeding the hungry and providing groceries to families in need. As part of our church family's time together, I shared some general thoughts about feeding and serving from God's Word. They're random, but I wanted to post them here... …

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