May the following provide inspiration (literally taking in the Spirit).
Eternity started at the beginning of time and runs through to the end of time, but it also includes today. God’s Kingdom extends to the furthest corners of the universe, but it also includes the corner of the universe that you are standing on right now. In short, the Kingdom of Heaven is all around us at this very moment, rejoice and be glad in it!
The Bible is NOT a book to examine so we might learn what we are, but a book that examines us so we might learn whose we are.
Pastors serve as tour guides along the road of life. They can neither bear the sins of the world nor heal the wounded. Pastors can only point the Way to the One who bears all sins and heals all wounds.
A pastor must not merely preach against sinning, for that would be like telling a fish not to drink. A pastor must give the fish lungs by inviting sinners to experience the new reality in Jesus Christ and then invite the converted fish onto land to live a life worthy of its new reality.
Grace precedes repentance. Consider Romans 2:4b: “Do you not realize that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance?”
How does the marginalization of religion in modern society compare to the Babylonian exile? What new thing is God doing in the marginalization of religion?
There is nothing wrong with lust! It is a like a brazing torch. Wrongly directed, it destroys. Properly applied towards one’s spouse, it can weld a relationship.
Interim Ministry is like being hired to direct a play between the first and second acts of a performance, following a former director’s departure. While the interim director knows there will be a third act, the Author has yet to reveal any details. Meanwhile, the show must go on.
As the curtain raises for the first scene of this second act, the interim director must calm the distressed cast, find and read as much script as exists, while prima donnas attempt to rewrite the already completed first act, reinterpret the Author’s notes on the second act, and promote their own ideas for the third act.
During the second scene the interim director helps the cast discern why the last director departed and remember previous standing room only performances.
A key actor threatening to walk out mars the third scene. Add a leading lady simply failing to show up, and unseasoned thespians gain opportunities to step into new roles, adding to the interim’s stress.
As order begins to appear backstage during the fourth scene, the Author releases hints of what will happen in the third act by editing the final scenes of the second act to enhance the roles of thespians filling in for former stars.
While the last scene of this interim act is flawlessly staged, potential future directors visit, the cast and crew cleans and organizes backstage, and the interim director longs for the intermission.