A Church I Can Believe In

Brian Fulthorp:

what happens when we utilize and attractional way of thinking instead of engaging a missional way of thinking….

Originally posted on W.onderful W.orld of W.adholms:

Church FunnyA major issue in our western consumerist culture is that consumerist concerns are immediately applied to the way Church is viewed and practiced.  What can be offered for me?  What do I gain by being a part of this congregation?  What can we do to attract more folks?

While this is not only a problem in the contemporary or western Church (think of the issues mentioned by Paul and Jude concerning preachers in it for their own gain, or the Corinthian battle for pneumatic-supremacy), it has been sharpened by our propensity to consume.  If we don’t find what we are shopping for then we move on. This does not tend to be driven by any biblical notion of priorities for participating in the life of the Church.  Instead, it seems to be driven by market values (e.g., programs).

Certainly there is much to be said for trying to reach our…

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what is your greatest fear?

Most people (that’s me) are not really afraid of failing, they are actually afraid of succeeding…

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others. -Marianne Williamson

Gog, Magog, and Premillennialism

Brian Fulthorp:

If you’ve been wondering about the terms gog and magog in the Bible and how they apply to end times and such, and especially recently in light of certain recent events, this will be a helpful read.

Originally posted on W.onderful W.orld of W.adholms:


In a recent conversation about events in the Middle/Near East, a question was raised as to the potential for fulfillment of prophecy, specifically concerning “Gog and Magog”.

Gog and Magog have so captured the imagination that their very mention seems clouded by mystery and ready at hand to apply to nearly any particularity in contemporary geo-politics involving the modern nation-state of Israel. However, few consider the actual texts where these terms are mentioned in Scripture. Gog (the referent to the prince of the eschatological hordes) only occurs two places in Scripture (excluding the referents which point to an genealogical figure): Ezekiel 38-39 and Revelation 20.

In Ezekiel, Gog is the prince from Magog (meaning “place of Gog”). This ruler is brought by the will of YHWH to a restored Israel to make war. He is gathered with hordes from the corners of the known world (6th century BC). These two…

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Serving Saul: 6 Survival Tips When Serving a Wounded Leader

Brian Fulthorp:

This is very good. We’ve been down this road too many times…. you think we’d be experts at it by now.  But it still gives me plenty to think about. I think we haven’t reached number 6 yet because I’ve struggled to get past number 2. I struggle not to be angry or to let depression take hold, or even discouragement. I’ve also struggled to honor authority in that we’ve had to sit under so much bad leadership and or teaching.  My heart hasn’t always responded well to this.  Well, I know I tend to way over think stuff and also because of my perfectionistic nature I tend to be way too hard on myself.  What we’ve been through wasn’t our fault and neither was that the case for David.  The fact is many leaders are wounded and do not know how to lead out of their woundedness (or lead with a limp) (e.g., the wounded healer, etc).  Instead they lead in a reactionary way that is much like how Saul turned out.  Well, it’s a good read and I hope it blesses someone to read it too.  -Blessings,

Originally posted on Vertical Leader:

sauldavid“So from that time on Saul kept a jealous eye on David.” 1 Samuel 18:9

No it’s not right, but it’s a reality. You have dedicated your life & sacrificed everything: family, fortune, time, sleep, rest, comfort & more to do one of the toughest, most demanding jobs on the planet – ministry. But each life changed by Jesus makes it all worth it! Yet suddenly things have become tougher, much tougher. Your leader is wounded, & out of his hurt, he is now hurting you. You feel dis-honored, un-appreciated & ill-equipped. The one person who should be exemplifying the Fruit of the Spirit such as love & kindness, is instead manipulating & controlling you out of his own fear & insecurity. In this atmosphere of mistrust, mole hills turn into mountains & differing views are interpreted as disloyalty.

He who should have your back now has you in his…

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Walking solves problems?

Brian Fulthorp:

This is a really interesting post here about pilgrimage and how often times problems can be solved in our lives simply by going for a walk. I’ve never been on a pilgrimage, but I’ve been on lots of walks. I know the author here is talking more about spiritual pilgrimages, but one thing I so so miss about living in Washington state was the easy access to some really great hiking in the Cascade Mountains. I would go all the time for solitude and to just get away, and you know what? nearly any problem I was facing… solvitur ambulando. Blessings.

Originally posted on Truth Along The Way:

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It’s a phrase I’d never heard until just a few months ago. Solvitur ambulando.

A well-read and accomplished friend who’s already thru-conquered the Appalachian Trail made the simple post on a recent social media thread where I’d let the waiting world know I was out on a practice hike. Solvitur ambulando, he wrote, succinctly.

I was embarrassed not to know the Latin phrase, and too curious not to look it up. I’m sure that’s probably what he intended.

“It is solved by walking.” … solvitur ambulando. How lovely, and how true.

“The geographical pilgrimage is the symbolic acting out an inner journey. The inner journey is the interpolation of the meanings and signs of the outer pilgrimage. One can have one without the other. It is best to have both.” ~ Thomas Merton

I never even thought much about pilgrimage until the seventh grade when social studies teacher I had…

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The Great Commission or the Great Suggestion?

Brian Fulthorp:

This is as a the saying goes “an oldie but a goodie” and I wanted to share it here. The great commission is not a suggestion – it is a mandate and it is the responsibility of every Christian to do his or her part to play a role in its fulfillment be “cross the sea” mission or “cross the street” mission – each has a role to play and it must be done with urgency, courage, and determination. Blessings,

Originally posted on Daniel B. Wallace:

I don’t know the source, but I suspect it is from a Christian magazine article written in the last 75 years. My guess is that this idea would have found fertile soil during the Great Depression (when funds were definitely low and excuses for lack of action could be high; for a parallel, see Jas 2.1-13). There’s a myth foisted on the Christian public about the meaning of the Great Commission (Matt 28.19-20). It goes something like this: “In the Greek, the word translated ‘Go’ is really a participle and it literally means, ‘as you are going.’ But the words ‘make disciples’ are an imperative in Greek. That’s the only imperative in these two verses. Therefore, the Great Commission is not a command to go; rather, it is a command to make disciples as you are going, or make disciples along the way.” The exposition based on this understanding…

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