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Category – Pastoral Ministry


A Pastor’s Reflections: Sports and Sanctification

VFT
One of the places where I have seen godly Christians spiral into a death spin of bad behavior is when they play sports. I used to play pick-up basketball games at my church in the early mornings (I was a non-shooting, non-dribbling point guard, that is to say, I am…
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A Pastor’s Reflections: Mark Them Up!

VFT
I was once sitting in the pastor’s office doing my sermon preparation and one of the members of the church passed by the door and noticed me highlighting my commentary and writing notes in the margins. He stopped and said, “You know, you shouldn’t write in your books. Instead, you…
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A Pastor’s Reflections: Evaporating Evening Worship

VFT
One of the things that I’ve noticed over the last ten years is, more and more Reformed churches are letting the evening worship service fall to the wayside. Churches either drop the service all together, or turn it into a Bible study, or perhaps only have one evening worship service…
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A Pastor’s Reflections: Intellectual Warrior?

VFT
One book that I would highly recommend for any serious student, even the not so serious student, is A. G. Sertillanges’s, The Intellectual Life. While there are some things in the book that one can set aside, Sertillanges approaches the subject of the intellectual life from the vantage point of…
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A Pastor’s Reflections: Deep Work

VFT
We live in an ever-increasing age where numerous technological developments vie for our attention. Slowly but surely we are programming ourselves constantly to be on the alert and listen for imminently arriving bleeps and buzzes from our electronic devices informing us of a newly arrived e-mail, text, phone call, or…
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A Pastor’s Reflections: Run with the Best

VFT
Ever since my teenage years I’ve done my best to exercise three to four times a week, which means that I’ve spent time in the gym for a good portion of my life. My early goals were adding muscle and strength, whereas my present-day goals are fighting the battle of…
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A Pastor’s Reflections: Old Dogs and New Tricks

VFT
If you follow-the American job-then-retirement narrative, you’re supposed to go to college, get a job, work for forty years, retire, and then spend the rest of your days on the tennis court or golf course. The implicit storyline is, there’s a time in your life when you are on the…
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A Pastor’s Reflections: Grin and Bear It

VFT
Over the years I’ve been able to watch seminary students excitedly depart for summer internships and then hear from their supervising pastors how well or poorly they did. Many interns do fine, but there are some who have trouble. One of the most common problems is that interns do not…
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A Pastor’s Reflections: Poker Face

VFT
One of the most important elements of being a good pastor is maintaining a good poker face when you’re counseling, that is, showing no reaction. I promise, chances are you will sit down with people in your church and hear of some crazy things. One couple told me that the…
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A Pastor’s Reflections: Know Your Audience

VFT
One day during a heated doctrinal debate at presbytery my wife walked into the back the church sanctuary where we were having our meeting. She was supposed to meet me for dinner so she arrived a few minutes early. When we broke for our recess my wife greeted me and…
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