October 28, 2007

Combined starter & advanced study guide – Oct 28

Posted in MCC resources at 9:35 PM by alexlozada

Choose the supplemental questions that fit your group, and blend those with the basic study guide.

Oct 28 combined study guide


October 27, 2007

Study guide (101 level) For Oct 28

Posted in MCC resources at 9:27 AM by alexlozada

The advanced supplement should be ready some time Sunday afternoon / evening. Meanwhile… Oct 28 101 level study guide

October 21, 2007

Microenterprise and missions

Posted in cross cultural mission at 5:55 PM by alexlozada

At lunch today, Bryan and Kelly Brock (Christian Missionary Fellowship) shared their vision and heart for their prospective work in Nairobi, Kenya.  Bryan and I had thought-provoking discussion about Community Health Evangelism  and the role of micro-enterprise in long-term culture change to remedy poverty and the AIDS crisis. Bryan recommended William Easterly’s The White Man’s Burden as a rebuttal to Jeffrey Sach’s  The End of Poverty

Part of becoming a better disciples means using my resources (money and maybe talent at making money) to advance the kingdom.

October 19, 2007

Study guide for “Get a Grip” series

Posted in MCC resources at 3:02 PM by alexlozada

Mountain Christian is starting a new message series. The audio and a better-formatted study guide will be available shortly after each Sunday Oct 21 – Nov 11 from the website. If you’d like the study guide ASAP, I’ll try to upload them here no later than Sunday afternoon of each message.

GET A GRIP on Your Personal Finances (so you can climb out of the money pit)

October 18, 2007

Everything tastes better shared

Posted in the Northeast at 2:56 PM by alexlozada

I’m presenting a workshop @ the Eastern Christian Convention in Hershey PA Saturday, Nov 17. As it gets closer, I’ll try to remember to post some personal memories. I realized this year that I’ve been attending the ECC nearly 30 years (my mom & dad brought my sisters & I to our family’s first ECC in 1978.

The emphasis is how our relationships w/ fellow Christians can help us become better disciples (whether through “structured” small groups or less structured relationships w/ mentors or peers), NOT “this is how your church can start or manage a program.”

Though my formal title is Pastor of Adult Small Groups – I have to keep reminding myself my kingdom assignment is not managing a program, but nudging people into relationships (w/ the others in their small group) that the Spirit can use to grow them.

October 12, 2007

Sin and faith

Posted in better disciples at 1:50 PM by alexlozada

My teammate Ethan Magness quotes from Luke Timothy Johnson’s Romans commentary in his blog. Another section from the same commentary that clarifies my thinking on sin “Both Jews and Greeks can be virtuous – the can do good deeds … As Paul uses the concept, sin has to do w/ the human relationship w/ God – or, better, w/ the breaking of the human relationship w/ God. In this sense, the opposite of sin is not virtue but faith…. It is a matter not of ‘sinful acts’ but of a fundamental disposition of human freedom, a basic rebellion of the will against God.”

If I am understanding the scholarly language correctly, this means that while the slowly-becoming-a-better disciple still commits sinful acts, because of faith, he or she is no longer in rebellion against God. I still make mistakes, I still commit sins, but even these don’t break my relationship w/ God through Jesus.

October 2, 2007

So Many Infant Christians

Posted in servant-leader at 2:05 PM by alexlozada

I confess I have a hard time separating the article from the writer, or the message from the speaker.  I remember reading Gordon MacDonald’s Ordering Your Private World, and then hearing of his fall and restoration, and subsequent writing and leadership.  His Christianity Today article offers a lengthier version of the pithy critique “a mild wide and an inch deep,” but the hopeful nugget is “mature Christians do not grow through programs or through the mesmerizing delivery of a talented speaker (woe is me) or worship band. Would-be saints are mentored: one-on-one or, better yet, one-on-small group (three to twelve was Jesus’ best guess). The mentoring takes place in the streets and living-places of life, not church classrooms or food courts. And it’s not necessarily done in Bible studies or the like. Mature Christians are made one by one through the influence of other Christians already mature.”

Sounds like making-better-disciples-through-relationships groups and leader-coaching to me 🙂