An explanation and guided experience in an old practice called Lectio Divina. Try it and see what you think!
Even though your life is unique, it is helpful to consider what has helped other people to grow closer to God. Here are some basic frameworks for thinking about God, pathways to God, and typical moves that faith can involve as you engage with these practices.
Here are five foundational ideas for how Spiritual Growth works, and a challenge for you to try.
This post is a collection of links to the various posts in the series: Designing Your Life For Growth as well as an annotated bibliography of books to consider on the topic of Spiritual Formation.
It isn’t my opinion that AI-generated content is yet capable of replacing the deep thinking and creativity of humans, but it can provide terrific starting points and initial brainstorming.
Virtual Reality and Artificial Intelligence are here to stay. How might we harness their potential for the Kingdom of God?
Reflections about times of transition and the interactions between church leaders.
To make slides more impactful, pay attention to the basic principles of photography.
In many settings, identifying groups can lead to negative things. But to encourage positive change, it can benefit a person to know how and with whom they identify themselves.
To help people stay with you, when you have a variety of content, the order matters in which you give it.
One of the most helpful books I’ve read in a while is Bowdle’s Rethink Communication. It’s all specifically about churches and how we communicate. I
People’s lives are constantly stimulated and distracted. To keep them with you, you must vary your content style frequently.
If it’s all on your slides, why do they need you? Let visuals be an aid, not a replacement.
Speak to the intersection of theology and life. If your theology doesn’t “become flesh” it won’t provide anything useful.
People are distracted enough as it is. Don’t contribute to your listeners’ struggle to focus on your message.
If you are wanting to grow spiritually, here are some foundational ideas upon which to build your routines and expectations.
In this episode, we talk with Rachel Howell about Biblical interpretation. A scholar and missionary herself, Rachel has taken a deep dive into Alexander Campbell’s influence on Churches of Christ in the way we view and interpret Scripture. She will critique some areas of imbalance and suggest what it might look like to build an even healthier hermeneutic as we move forward.
As you prepare to speak, how do you go about researching what you will share? It might help to balance out the commentaries with which you’re interacting.
For your sermons to be of consistent in their quality, you need to give them room to grow. Here’s one way to do it.
If you want people to put your message into action, help them put it into steps they are capable of taking.
One of the best ways to make a story come to life is to help people explore it through their senses.
An introductory post for a new series of short insights on preaching.
Drawing from his original doctoral research at ACU, combined with his experience as a minister and as a Navy Reserve Chaplain, Daniel McGraw talks about how to lead effectively while continuing to nourish one’s soul.
Dr. Mac Sandlin describes the active way in which the Holy Spirit leads us into greater virtues, helping us to become more like Christ. Beyond asking, “What should I do?” Mac invites us to ponder, “What kind of person should I be?”
Dr. Mark Adams sits down with Dr. Kevin Burr to share some experiential advice for young ministers…and really, for anyone looking to grow spiritually.
Needing to reconnect with your partner? Working on deepening a relationship in your life? Here are some great places to start.
Looking back at 2020, here were the most viewed posts at Kingdom Upgrowth.
A collection of my devotional Haikus based on the Minor Prophets.
Mark Powell talks about Discipleship in Community, a book he co-wrote containing a theological vision for the future of churches of Christ.
My book review of Discipleship in Community: A Theological Vision for the Future by Mark Powell, John Mark Hicks, and Greg McKinzie.
Surely one of the antidotes to cultural chaos is principled people who are intentional about their presence in the world. Chet Duke talks with us about the value of Philosophy for Christians in our faith, our ministry, and our interactions with the world.
It’s been a hard time for all of us. Here are some things you can do to help you get through.
For my birthday, I’m sharing 40 things I’ve learned over the last 40 years.
Know these two frameworks, and you’re largely up to date on contemporary thought about healthy church leadership.
My book review of Strange Rites: New Religions for a Godless World by Tara Isabella Burton.
Scripture speaks often of the “God of Israel.” But who did Israel believe that God was? What kind of a God did Israel envision as she worshiped? Dr. John D. Fortner provides insight into this compassionate, active God we encounter in Scripture.
Why grace might be even more amazing than you think it is.
What does it actually look like for people to get healthier incrementally? How do we help dysfunctional tribes become high-functioning teams? Here are a few ideas.
Mrs. Zebedee believed more than anything that she wanted her sons to be at Jesus’ right and left hands as he entered his kingdom. But at the foot of the cross, her perspective may have changed.
Certainly, we don’t know what it’s like to be God, but how well can God really understand what it’s like to be us? This is of special significance in times of suffering and difficulty. Can God suffer with us? Does God suffer with us? Alicia Williamson shares insights from her research into this important question about the nature of God.
How can we lead our churches in healthier ways? Research Spotlight is a collection of live interviews with leading scholars, based on their original research.
Spiritual gifts or ministry roles? Dr. Matt Carter shares his research about best practices for helping church members connect to life-giving ministry, and the kind of leadership that makes this possible.
Here are some recent translations of the Bible I have been reading and am intending to read soon.
In financial matters, ethics matter. Dr. Carl Williamson draws from his original research to provide principles for best practices in church finances.
All of us, from time to time, end up in the unenviable spot of needing to prepare for a funeral. Here are bits of experiential wisdom and advice from my time in ministry.
Rather than merely discovering or developing your interests, what if you took things to the next level?
People often ask me for book recommendations about specific situations and questions. Here are some of the questions I encounter most frequently, along with the resources I recommend.
Kevin Burr helps us gain a more culturally-informed view of John’s Gospel. What would John’s original audience have assumed that we might not? This conversation helps to bridge the gap.
Dr. Mark Powell of the Harding School of Theology talks about how John’s Gospel enhances our understanding about God.
Lauren Calvin Cooke guides us in how to utilize the Gospel of John for personal spiritual growth.