Ministry Life

How to Sabbath As a Pastor

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By Mike Osborne I recently retired from pastoral ministry and took on a new challenge as Dean of Students at a theological seminary. Now relieved of the responsibilities of church work, I’ve been reflecting on my thirty-two year pastoral career. One of the things I’ve been stunned to realize is just how much those years were filled with anxiety and frantic ambition instead of “the peace that passes understanding” that we Christians talk about. Looking back, I wish I had “Sabbathed”…

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The Place I Find Myself

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By Mike Osborne “Who are you?” It was 1973. I was a 19-year old student at Furman University in Greenville, South Carolina, eating lunch with friends. Stephanie—serious, inquisitive, known for deeply diving into matters of the heart—was sitting to my right in the dining hall. As I munched on my dry hamburger I could tell she was staring at me. I glanced over at the eyes that were looking into me. She asked again, “Who are you?” I thought: What do I say? Friends…

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4 Ways to Refresh When Your Soul is Weary

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By Dan Reiland Early in March, the prevailing thought was that we’d all be back in buildings for church services by May. Very few expected the COVID pandemic to go this long. It’s now May, and only a handful of churches have reopened at very limited percentages of their normal seating capacity. Some churches are working on plans for reopening in June, still limiting their seating, and many will not reopen till July or August. One of the major existing…

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7 Ways to Create Unity in a Church

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By Ron Edmondson I once consulted with a church struggling to move forward. The pastor had been there a couple years, had a great vision and was supported by most everyone, there were adequate resources, the community needed a healthy church (as all do), but they never could get any traction. In working with the church, I quickly assessed they had a unity problem. The church had two dominant factions – mostly split over a denominational issue. I felt like…

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Mental Health and the Church

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Mental illness has been a highly controversial topic in the Christian community for quite some time. When I was attending Seminary for my Master’s in Marriage and Family Counseling, there was a continuous debate between the school of theology and the school of education about mental health and what we should believe.  When attending, I was often caught in conversations about mental illness and was led to consider by many that mental illness was solely a spiritual issue and that there…

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