August 2015

Be An Answer to Someone’s Prayer.

A couple of years ago during the prayer time of the Sunday school class I teach, a woman requested prayer for her friend’s daughter who had been badly injured in an accident during their vacation. She described some of the situation. Then, as a praise to the situation, she mentioned that the nurse who helped the family that day had been a real answer to prayer. That little phrase really made an impression on me. How had that nurse been an answer to their prayers and the woman even know it?

Ideas Column

What’s the idea?

Integrating teens into the church community.

What was the need?

The students in our church felt like outsiders in their own church. About 90 percent of our students were from other youth groups and were connected to other churches.

Why was this?

Some reasons include that most youth groups in town have their services on Wednesday nights, and we used to meet on Sunday nights.

A Disciple Became a Discipler

About 20 years ago I enjoyed the special privilege of teaching a group of young eager students in the former Soviet Union soon after the Iron Curtain fell. The work of the Church of the Nazarene was still in its early development; educating young leaders ranked high on the list of priorities for the missionaries to that region, Chuck and Carla Sunberg.

The Holy Scriptures

As the Church of the Nazarene, we have created our theological journey throughout the history of the church. All along that road, Scripture has been paramount in the life of our church. Scripture has not only been part of our reformed inheritance from the 16th century (“Sola Scriptura”), but the Bible has also constituted our Arminian and Wesleyan legacy. Jacobus Arminius wrote, “Only in Scripture we have the infallible word of God, and nowhere else.”

A District Superintendent Shares Ideas

Impact Weekends

Concepts that have worked well for us on the Western Cape District are “impact weekends.” People from churches around the district spend a weekend at another Nazarene church that is struggling, or perhaps the community is struggling for various reasons.

We go in and work with the youth, hosting programs for them and perhaps counseling those involved with drugs or gangs.

For the community, we invest funds to work on a house and everyone goes in to clean, paint, and repair it.

Q&A: Philip Weatherill

How did you and Laura meet? At the Perth Church of the Nazarene in Scotland.

Most interesting journey you’ve taken? Marriage (that's good interesting!).

What would we be surprised to learn about you? I am not the most patient person in the world.

Inspiring Quotes

  1. Instead of talking about the fire that went out let’s strike new matches. —Greg Mason

  2. We need to be reminded that we can't buy enough stuff to save our souls. —Olivia Metcalf

  3. God is able to take those who appear insignificant and unlikely to succeed and transform them into important witnesses to the power of God. —Jeanne Serrao

  4. Whatever your need, God is bigger. Whatever your weakness, God is stronger. —David Busic

Jane’s 60-Year Journey

When I was six years old, I felt called to the ministry. I’d stand on our back porch and “preach” to my cats.

However, I went to church with my mother who attended a denomination that does not allow women in leadership (lay or clergy). As a child, when asked what I wanted to be when I grew up I would say that I wanted to be a preacher. First, it was laughed at—it’s cute, this little girl wants to be a preacher—then I was told that I should not say that because it wasn’t something that women could do.

Lessons from the Prodigal

Throughout my life, I have often shared my Christian faith with others. Even as a child, I found ways to talk about Jesus.

These days, I admit to wrestling increasingly with this aspect of being a Christian. As an adult, I have regularly experienced humiliation and ridicule for sharing my faith. Traditional methods of presenting the gospel have become more challenging with each passing year. Jesus promised suffering for those who choose to follow Him. The problem comes when suffering seems to be, at best, unnecessary, and at worst, counterproductive.

Around One Table

As a local church youth pastor, one of my priorities is to facilitate the process of helping students move from owning their parents’ faith to owning it themselves. Most of my students enter our ministry having attended church for as long as they have lived. They know all the Sunday school answers and can recite all the basic Bible stories they learned on the flannelgraph countless times while growing up in church. Ask them how those stories affect their lives though, and you’ll see a lot of blank stares.

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