A letter to Kentucky Baptists

Dear Kentucky Baptists, The Guidepost Solutions Sexual Abuse Task Force Report released Sunday afternoon was heartbreaking and shocking, to say the least. The abuse perpetrated against fellow image-bearers — the fact that those involved in abuse held positions of leadership in Christian ministry, and the fact that the abuse was covered up — speaks toContinue reading “A letter to Kentucky Baptists”

Rejoicing over 7,128 baptisms

This past year’s Annual Church Profile was just tallied, and Kentucky Baptists have reason to rejoice! With 77 percent of convention churches reporting, Kentucky Baptist churches baptized 7,128 professing followers of the Lord Jesus Christ this past year. That number is much lower than years past, but higher than the previous year. As churches continueContinue reading “Rejoicing over 7,128 baptisms”

She had never heard the gospel

She can see the church building every time she walks through her front door to get on the school bus, but she had never heard the gospel. The 12-year-old girl with four siblings lives in a mobile home a couple hundred yards behind the church building. I met her and her mother recently while doingContinue reading “She had never heard the gospel”

In our own backyard

I recently met a young man in Kentucky who claims he never heard the gospel. I haven’t been able to get past that experience. Here’s how the interaction happened … I was doing front door evangelism with a Kentucky Baptist pastor when we came to this young man’s door. We knocked on the door andContinue reading “In our own backyard”

Learning from leaders

I learn more about ministry leadership by watching other leaders lead than I ever did in the classroom. I have always benefited from seeing others do something before I do it. I may not do it exactly the same way — but it gives me a pattern to follow. The Apostle Paul must have beenContinue reading “Learning from leaders”

REACH 2022 – A Big Hit

I have vivid memories as a 27-year-old pastor of attending a KBC Evangelism Conference. I remember feeling inadequate in my ministry position. But sitting with a crowd of preachers at Immanuel Baptist Church in Lexington, I heard some incredible preaching. One sermon focused on God’s unconditional love, and it met me right where I wasContinue reading “REACH 2022 – A Big Hit”

Three keys to a great funeral sermon

I had just begun my first pastorate when an older and wiser church member came by the church office and asked an unexpected question. “Have you prepared for your first funeral?” he asked. I probably asked him if someone from the church had died without me knowing about it, and I didn’t give any moreContinue reading “Three keys to a great funeral sermon”

Be alert to spiritual landmines among bloggers

I have a difficult time with so-called “discernment bloggers.” As a person who leans toward being an encourager and who strives to believe the best about others, it’s hard to understand the intentions of people who make their primary, or secondary, calling to point out the shortcomings of others. The work itself is fraught withContinue reading “Be alert to spiritual landmines among bloggers”

Be careful, little mouth, what you say

“Oops, I did it again,” is more than the title of a 20-year-old Brittany Spears single. It is also the expression many Christian leaders have used (me included) after saying something that would have been better left unsaid. A crucial part of ministry is knowing when and how to say a helpful or uplifting word,Continue reading “Be careful, little mouth, what you say”

Using your voice

As a young pastor, I was cautious about becoming overly involved in politics. I didn’t want to alienate anyone, and I certainly didn’t want to get off on the wrong foot in my new church. But the mistake came when I avoided such conversations so much that I was reluctant to speak on social issuesContinue reading “Using your voice”