In my younger years, I was very involved in church worship music. I played the piano for church services, led times of worship, wrote songs, directed a choir, and did some studio recording work. Occasionally, when speaking at various churches and conferences today, I will go to the piano and sing one of my own compositions.… Read the rest
My first encounter with burnout was back in 2002. I experienced what I would call an ‘emotional valley’ that lasted for about 6 months. I wasn’t sure what was wrong with me but it took everything within me just to make it through the next meeting, the next appointment or the next project.… Read the rest
Most churches I have been a part of over the years have undergone a building project or extension at some time. Of course, a church is not a building nor is a building ever meant to be the vision or the focus.… Read the rest
Right now, Australians are deliberating about just one question – “Should the law be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry?” A majority of conservative Christians (as well as Jews and Muslims) are campaigning for a 'No' vote, while less are saying it should be 'Yes'.… Read the rest
CityLife Church, located in Melbourne Australia, had three Senior Ministers in the first 50 years of it's history. Richard Holland was the founding pastor and led the church for 20 years, followed by my father, Kevin Conner, who led the church for the next 8 years.… Read the rest
I would never suggest that pastors and church leaders work harder than other people … but church work has its unique challenges and pressures.
Here are five of them:
1. Ministry work is never done. It is open ended. There is never full closure.… Read the rest
John 17 is the longest recorded prayer of Jesus and it reveals what was important to him. After praying for himself (vs.1-5) and his disciples (vs.6-19), he prayed for all who would believe in him – for the church yet to born (vs.20-26).… Read the rest
At a recent conference, I shared a message about "Navigating Transitions".
Here is a summary of the main insights I shared:
1. Trust God for the Future.
Life is a journey with many seasons. We can have a sense of where we have come from, where we are now and where we are going.… Read the rest
When I became the Senior Minister of CityLife Church back in 1995, I invested extensive time in prayer, study, research and reflection about principles for building a healthy and effective church. As a result, I was prompted to lead our church through seven "strategic shifts" over the next few years.… Read the rest
As we move towards Easter, let's take a look at the supper from Mark 14:12-26.
Part of our God-given humanity is the instinct to celebrate significant moments with significant meals (e.g. Christmas, birthdays, weddings, and anniversaries). Sharing a meal bonds a family, a group of friends, a team, a collection of colleagues together.… Read the rest
The Gospel of Matthew tells us this about the ministry of Jesus:
Matthew 9:35-37. Jesus traveled through all the towns and villages of that area, teaching in the synagogues and announcing the Good News about the Kingdom. And he healed every kind of disease and illness.… Read the rest
There are four kinds of churches in the world today:
- The Museum Church. They are old and beautiful but empty (like the picture above). No one goes there. They are showpieces of past. Sadly, there is no spiritual vitality within their ancient walls.
And while the latest Census results show that Christianity is the religion with which most Australians identify (61.1%), well above the second most popular religion in Australia, Buddhism (2.5%), less than one in seven of the Australians who ticked “Christianity” on their census form regularly attend a church.… Read the rest
1. Give of what you already have. That could be something from you personal savings and investments or even a loan redraw.… Read the rest