What is Christmas?

What is Christmas? I know the question is almost passé. It’s been asked a thousand times over the holidays, used as a sermon title, and scrutinized by historians who point us to how the roots of Christmas grow out of pagan rituals…

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Merv BuddTopical
The Fruit of Fear Properly Stewarded

I’m always a bit wary of lists that seem to systematize mysteries, yet there can be benefit in examining what Scripture says about the fruit of fear that is properly stewarded. Perhaps you can do a self-inspection and see if your fear is properly ordered…

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Merv BuddStrength
Stewarding Fear

Perhaps you’ve heard, as I have, that there are 365 “fear nots” in the Bible – one for every day of the year. The impression given is that fear is a bad thing, something we should resist, avoid and turn from. The problem is that we are also told in Scripture to fear God. So are we to fear or not fear?

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Merv BuddStrength
Fear of the Unknown

Recently the Heineken Beer company released an advertisement that sought to bring people together who would normally not associate. People who held not just opposite views but who held prejudices against them. What they found was that as people began to know those whom they had objectified as people, they began to be less harsh and less judgmental…

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Merv BuddStrength
What's Fear Got to Do with It?

What does fear have to do with the Missio Dei? This was the question I was asked when I pitched the idea of doing a series of blogs on fear. The truth is that fear is very influential in our engagement with God’s mission. What we fear, how we steward our fear, and our manner of processing fear all get played out, to some degree, in how we love God and our neighbour…

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Merv BuddStrength
Neighbourhood Matters

Commuter congregations occupy a generic space once or twice a week under the assumption that what we do there will attract and bear witness, disciple and grow those who attend and those whom we want to attend. As a result, the church is not a stake holder in the neighbourhood and while perhaps able to be a service provider and “do outreach” there, she is not an incarnational presence…

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Karen WilkNeighbour
What If...

What if… every Christian in every neighbourhood in North America (and around the world?!) actually loved their neighbours, those with whom they live in proximity…

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Karen WilkNeighbour
Why I don't wish you a Happy New Year

I’ve heard it my whole life every 365 days: “Happy New Year.” For many it summarizes the goal and purpose of life—happiness. “Happiness is the truth,” croons Pharrell Williams. And caught up in the catchy tune and rhythmic beat we bob our heads in agreement. But is happiness the true purpose of life?

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Merv BuddTopical
Exploring Exile with Lee Beach

Canadian author Lee Beach, in his recent book The Church In Exile, helps us imagine what the hope and mission of God’s people can look like in a post-Christendom culture. Here is the first of a two-part interview with Lee on some of the points from The Church in Exile…

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Merv BuddMind
Obstacles We Face

I love being a local church pastor… most days. God has given me front row seats to watch some amazing stories unfold in the lives of His people. It does not get much better. But I don’t always feel this way as a number of things block my view…

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Cam RoxburghHeart
Measuring Church Health

Defining the missional church as having “a renewed theological vision” means that we pay attention to assessing church health in some specific ways. Church health must be seen through the lens of scripture that reflects the nature and action of God…

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Cam RoxburghHeart
The End of Safety

A generation later, things do not look as good as we thought. Churches like Willow Creek are admitting that their emphasis on being safe led inadvertently to producing consumers instead of disciples/missionaries…

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Cam RoxburghMusings
The Pain of Conversion

We can often forget that there is genuine emotional pain when we call people to consider Christ. There is great uncertainty and insecurity to abandon what they have only known to fully embrace what is so new and uncertain to them…

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Merv BuddMusings
Taking the Next Steps

In my last post, I asked the question, might it be true that we as God’s people today, have drifted and also need “a renewed theological vision of the church on mission?” Perhaps our understanding of God is too narrow. Our box for Him too small…

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Cam RoxburghHeart
A Renewed Theological Vision

One of the problems with sin, is that it leads us away from a relationship with the Lord both as individuals and as a community of His people. We wander, we drift, we do our own thing. But the Lord is gracious and slow to anger. He is faithful and calls His people to return to Him and to bear witness to the reality of the fact that He is about redeeming all things…

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Cam RoxburghHeart
The Decision- A Parable

Carol was a persuasive woman. Her first-hand accounts of her visits overseas were stunningly and attractively descriptive. When she spoke to Jake about her adventures it captured his imagination. On cold winter days he could feel the warmth of the sun on his back as she spoke. “Why don’t you go?” Carol challenged. She was a born persuader. “You’ll never regret it…

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Merv BuddMind
The God Who Reveals: Loving God with our Minds (Part Two)

The basis of missional life is our new identity as sons and servants, and our calling to love God with all our heart, mind and strength, loving our neighbours as we love ourselves. Last week, we looked at how God reveals Himself to our minds: through the Scriptures, through the Son, and through the Spirit empowering His people…

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Cam RoxburghMind