If you are wanting to grow spiritually, here are some foundational ideas upon which to build your routines and expectations.
Rethinking How We Interpret Scripture with Rachel Howell
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.
Top 10 Posts of 2020
Looking back at 2020, here were the most viewed posts at Kingdom Upgrowth.
Haikus from the Minor Prophets
A collection of my devotional Haikus based on the Minor Prophets.
Mark Powell: Discipleship In Community
Mark Powell talks about Discipleship in Community, a book he co-wrote containing a theological vision for the future of churches of Christ.
A Review of Discipleship in Community: A Theological Vision for the Future
My book review of Discipleship in Community: A Theological Vision for the Future by Mark Powell, John Mark Hicks, and Greg McKinzie.
How is Philosophy Valuable for Christians?
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.
A Review of Strange Rites: New Religions for a Godless World
My book review of Strange Rites: New Religions for a Godless World by Tara Isabella Burton.
Getting to Know the God of Israel
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.
The Positive Side of Grace
Why grace might be even more amazing than you think it is.
Denied: A Mother’s Request
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.
A God Who Suffers With Us
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.
New Translations for New Perspectives
Here are some recent translations of the Bible I have been reading and am intending to read soon.
Useful Books for Church Leaders
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.
Reading John Through Ancient Eyes
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.
Reading John Theologically
Dr. Mark Powell of the Harding School of Theology talks about how John’s Gospel enhances our understanding about God.
Using John for Spiritual Formation
Lauren Calvin Cooke guides us in how to utilize the Gospel of John for personal spiritual growth.
John’s Unique Voice
Dr. Kindy De Long shares insights into some of the things that John’s Gospel uniquely contributes to the Gospels’ telling of the story of Jesus. What might John be showing us that he considers of special importance?
John’s Legacy in the Church
Dr. Keith Stanglin shares how John’s Gospel was valuable to the early church, and how these insights help us to utilize it today.
Join us for a Journey Through John!
In 2020 we’re going on a journey through John’s Gospel. We hope you’ll come, too!
Haikus from I John
Engaging Scripture creatively helps us engage it more deeply. Here are some of my haikus based on I John.
Haikus From Jonah
Engaging Scripture creatively helps us engage it more deeply. Here are some of my haikus based on Jonah.
Haikus from Isaiah
Scripture comes to life when we engage it creatively. Here is a collection of haiku poems I’ve written based on Isaiah.
Salvation is not about emphasizing one particular action over another. It is about God redeeming your whole person.
The Significance of the Tomb
It is significant that Jesus came in a physical body and physically died. These are reflections about Hans Holbein’s classic art work that brings out the grotesque nature of death.
How the Old and New Testaments Work Together
The Old and New Testaments work together to provide a beautiful portrait of a loving God who has acted powerfully throughout history.
Engaging Longer Texts
If you are wanting to teach a larger book of the Bible without overwhelming your listeners, here are three strategies for making larger, complex books more accessible.
Book Review: Worship Essentials by Mike Harland
A review of Mike Harland’s book Worship Essentials (2018).
A Dwelling Place for the Spirit
Avoiding Ditches In my religious tradition (churches of Christ) we have had an uneasiness with the Holy Spirit. As with most areas of doctrine, when
An Interview with Bob Turner
I was thrilled to have a conversation with Bob Turner about books and trends in Christian publications. Bob serves as the Library Director at the Harding
W.A.Y.S.?: Seeking God’s People by Christine Fox Parker
Note: This post is part of the 2018 blog tour What Are You Seeking? Hosea. A testimony to God’s steadfast lovingkindness towards Israel and Judah.
My Favorite Reads of 2018
If there is anything that bothers me, it’s that I feel like I never have enough time to read. As I started compiling a list
W.A.Y.S.?: What Am I Seeking When I Study The Old Testament? by Lance Hawley
Note: This post is part of the 2018 Blog Tour: What Are You Seeking. What am I Seeking when I Study the Old Testament? The short
W.A.Y.S.?: Your Eyes Tell It All by Jonathan Woodall
Note: This post is part of the 2018 blog tour: What Are You Seeking? As soon as I heard the theme for this year’s blog
A Mentoring Model for Intentional Disciple-Making: with Dr. Jason Bybee
For this Research Spotlight, I had a rich conversation with Dr. Jason Bybee about discipleship. Discipleship is so much more than making converts. Through Scripture and
W.A.Y.S.?: The Search for the Search by John Dobbs
Note: This post is part of the blog tour series: What Are You Seeking? God created mankind upright, but they have gone in search of many
W.A.Y.S.?: The Seeker’s Heart by Matt Stidham
Note: This post is part of the 2018 Blog Tour: What Are You Seeking? “You are what you love.” That’s the title of a book
W.A.Y.S.?: What are you seeking…really? by Peter Horne
Note: This post is part of the 2018 Blog Tour: What Are You Seeking. Several weeks ago I was having a conversation with someone about
W.A.Y.S.?: What You Can Stop Seeking
“It was in the last place I looked.” One of my least favorite expressions follows an anxious search for keys, wallets, and phones. Having scoured
2018 Blog Tour “What are you seeking?”
For this Fall, some ministry friends reached out to me about a blog tour. I’m honored to participate. I’ll be sharing one post of my
Questioning Forward: Appreciative Inquiry in Action
What does it look like when you put Appreciative Inquiry into action? I’ve made lots of posts the last few months about Appreciative Inquiry, and
Worship As Spiritual Formation: A Conversation With Kevin Burr
CLICK HERE FOR THE AUDIO-ONLY PODCAST In this Research Spotlight, I am excited to share a conversation I had with Kevin Burr. Kevin is a Ph.D.
Spontaneity and Spiritual Growth
My family went for a period of about 2-3 months when we played Scrabble all the time. Many evenings when homework was done, we would
You can’t really know you love God until you feel like he’s wounded you. That’s my understanding, anyway. There is a significance to the name
Would-Be Disciples, Beware!
If I ever make it to Greece, one of the places I most want to go is to the Monasteries of Meteora. This is a
The Path Between
Most life paths are best traveled in moderation. There are two sides of any road into which one can tumble by means of “too much”
Why is it that we as human beings are so determined to have idols? It surprised me what an active interest I took in the
If you could go back to the first century, to Joppa, there on the shore of the Mediterranean Sea, perhaps you could find a woman
Millennials and Mission: A Moratorium
I’m ready to stop talking about Millennials. I couldn’t even tell you how long it’s lasted, but for years now, every week, I see at
When Churches Choose Faith Over Fear
Fundamentally, the church should be a community of people in whom the Spirit of Christ is alive and well. Where the Spirit of Christ is