What Kind of Bulletin Board Are You?


Remember those church bulletin boards? If not, perhaps it’s because they lacked appeal. Our lives as believers can have a similar effect. People may not even take note that we’re followers of Jesus. — God’s intent, however, is that our lives make people want to stop and investigate further. We authenticate the message when we reflect His light around us (Matt. 5:14-16).

The Kind of Bulletin Boards that Barely Gets Noticed

It’s easy to pass by bulletin boards that are cluttered or outdated.

1) Cluttered bulletin boards make it hard to tell what really matters.

When our lives are filled with so much busyness, stress, or dysfunction, it’s hard to identify what really matters in our lives.

  • What is most important, or central, in your life?
  • Can people see Christ in the midst of all the clutter?

2) Outdated bulletin boards, with images and content that rarely change, lose their relevancy.

When our lives and churches get stuck in ruts and we keep repeating what we’ve always done even it it doesn’t work, it’s hard to imagine that being a Christian makes a difference.

  • What is Jesus doing in your life today?
  • Can people see the difference He makes in your life?

Just as it is easy for people to pass by these kinds of bulletin boards and barely notice their existence, so people might dismiss our lives in Christ if we live similarly.

What Makes People Stop and Want to Investigate

A document for Bible Teachers, Make Bulletin Boards Super, provides a number of tips for designing bulletin boards that have a greater potential of getting noticed. The following suggestions have parallels to our lives:

1) Have a central theme.

What a difference it makes when everything we do is because of, for, according to, and through the Lord, to show love to Him and bring glory to His name.

  • Does your life reflect Jesus in all you say and do? (Matt. 5:14-16)

2) Keep changing.

When people see the transformation Jesus makes in us, they can’t help but notice. They will be drawn to Christ in us. Our lives will make the message look attractive (Titus 2:10).

  • Are you yielding to the Spirit so you’re becoming more and more Christ-like? (Gal. 5:13-26)

How Bright Is Our Light?


Light of the World - How Bright is Our Light?
Sometimes as Christians we act like a light with a dimmer switch. We shine bright when it feels comfortable or convenient, maybe based on the mood we want to set or what people might think about us. But, if we want people to truly see the Light of Jesus in us, that light needs to penetrate the darkness, consistently shining fully. So, the question we must ask ourselves is, “How bright is our light?”

3 Ways to Let Our Light Shine Bright

Our light shines brightest under the following conditions:

1) We must make sure Jesus is our Light Source.

Being a light in the world isn’t something we’re trying to self-generate. Jesus called His followers “the light of the world” (Matt. 5:14-16), the same terminology He used of Himself. When we put our trust in Jesus, we no longer walk in darkness but “will have the light of life” (Jn. 8:12). He gives us His light. — “For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light.” (Eph. 5:8) — We cannot generate the kind of intensity of light that truly reflects all goodness, righteousness, and truth” (Eph. 5:9). We just don’t have it in us (Rom. 3:10-24).

2) We must experience His light in the core of our being so it radiates out.

It’s not just about “doing” good deeds but rather those which flow from a heart filled with light (2 Cor. 4:6). When our own hearts are warmed by the light of God’s love and grace, we can rise above the embittered, antagonistic, discontent in this world. That’s when our light has the potential to truly attract people. — “A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart …” (Lk. 6:45)

3) We must let the fullness of who He is shine through us.

When we focus on primarily one aspect of the Lord, it’s like we’re only shining a small ray of light. Jesus came full of both grace and truth (Jn. 1:14). He is a loving God but He is also holy and righteous. To be sure, some will hate the Light in us (Jn. 3:19-20) when the full brilliance of who He is shines through. But, since it is His light in us, they’re offending our Lord, not us. Let’s keep perspective.

When we reflect the Lord from the core of our being in the fullness of who He is, we are letting our light, which is really His light, shine brightly. We might call it lifestyle evangelism which then backs up what we say when we have opportunity to verbally share the Gospel.


Living as Christians in a Fallen World


As the Church, we need to lay aside our differences and stand as one voice in our Lord, especially as we see the liberal and immoral influences and agendas in our world increase. It’s about living as Christians in a fallen world — the Christ-followers we’re intended to be. Jesus said, “You are the salt of the earth” and “the light of the world” (Matt. 5:13-16).

The world so desperately needs us
to live as salt and light.

It’s About Who We Are Not Just Who We Should Be as Christians

Living as Christians is to be Salt and LightIn looking at Matthew 5:13-16, I was struck by how Jesus said we are the salt and light — present tense. He didn’t say we should be or could be. The tense of the verb “are” in the original language is present indicative which indicates a simple statement of fact. We are inherently salt and light because of our life in Him. It is part of who we are as His children.

Now it is possible for salt to lose its saltiness and for light to be covered over so it is not seen. But, salt is still salt and light is still light. Remember, we are salt and light in Him.

Living as Christians Means Living as Salt and Light in Today’s World

To be the salt and light that we are is to be an influence for good in our world. As the light of the world, we will reflect the Lord before others in all His fullness. As salt, we will season the earth with His grace and truth.

Because we are salt and light, we already have what we need to live that way. As 2 Peter 1:3 informs us, we have “everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him.” — No exceptions! No excuses! So, let’s rely on His grace and power to live as Christians.

Here are some posts that give some thoughts on what it looks like for a believer to not just BE but to LIVE as salt and light in today’s world:


Results of Making Outreach a Priority


God sent Jesus “to seek and save the lost” (Lk. 19:10). The results of making outreach a priority, of making His mission our mission, are significant — the difference between life and death for those who put their trust in the One we proclaim. As we reach out with His heart for the lost, people gain a better understanding of His desire that everyone comes into a relationship with Him so they experience eternity with God rather than apart from Him (2 Pet. 3:9).

3 Results of Making Outreach a Priority

1) People become disciples of Jesus.

Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age (Matt. 28:19-20)

2) Fellowship with those who become Jesus’ disciples is made possible.

We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ. (1 Jn. 1:3)

3) God is glorified.

All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God. (2 Cor. 4:15)

Results of Making Outreach as Priority in Church Purpose Ministry ManualThese results are listed in the Church Purpose Ministry Manual which looks at outreach as one of the ways we fulfill our purpose to love people. The manual also provides some questions to reflect on about your approach to outreach.

Learn More: Resources for Outreach Ministry


Making an Eternal Difference in the Workplace?


The United States celebrates working men and women on Labor Day. But, have you ever asked similar to King Solomon’s question in Ecclesiastes 1:3? — “What do people gain from all their labors at which they toil under the sun?” — Is there more to work than that paycheck? What if its something you don’t enjoy doing? People around you may not be the easiest to work with. Perhaps you’re unappreciated and underpaid with too many expectations. You’re on a treadmill, going through the same motions day after day with little reward. It may be difficult to even think about making an eternal difference in the workplace.

Perspective Needed to See your Job Like a Mission Field, Where You Work in Ways that Count for Eternity

Make an Eternal Difference in the Workplace
Jesus said, “Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you” (Jn. 6:27). Now, Jesus wasn’t saying we should all quit our jobs and “do ministry” but rather to live for Him wherever we are and in whatever we do. It isn’t an either/or proposition. We can work for that which “endures to eternal life” in our jobs if we see the workplace as our ministry, as our mission field.

With the changing landscape of the workplace of many working remotely from home, it may be more challenging to know how to purposefully let our light shine digitally, by phone, with less people contact, or socially-distanced. Certainly, however, God is capable of giving us the wisdom we need for how to live for Him in whatever situation we might find ourselves. He promises wisdom to those who ask (James 1:5).

Power Needed to Make an Eternal Difference in the Workplace

How easy it can be to gripe and complain about our jobs or the people with whom we work. Sometimes the stress of a job, or a boss, seems unbearable. Maybe you find it difficult to put in an honest day’s work from home with all the distractions.

Both our actions and attitudes, along with our words, help determine the kind of impact we have in the workplace so it’s vital that we rise above. The Apostle Paul said, “I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation …” (Phil. 4:12) What was it that enabled him face hardships and persecution with grace? He continued with the answer. — “I can do all this through him who gives me strength.” (Phil. 4:13)

We need to take Jesus at His word when He says, “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” (Jn. 15:5)

  1. We must acknowledge Him as the Source of all we need.
  2. We must constantly draw our Sustenance from Him.

Take a few moments for an honest assessment of whether you look to the Lord as the Source and Sustenance of all you need to make an eternal difference in the workplace.

  • How do you begin your workday? … rushing around trying to get ready and out the door on time? … or, sitting at the feet of Jesus, even if for but a brief encounter (Lk. 10:38-42)?
  • How do you handle the stress and frustration of the day? … flustered, fretting, and fuming? … or, casting all your cares on Him because He cares for you (1 Pet. 5:7)?
  • How do you react to inconsiderate co-workers, unreasonable customers, or exasperating bosses? … annoyed, gossiping, and vindictive … or, relying on the Holy Spirit to develop within you the Christ-like traits of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Gal. 5:22-23)?

With God’s help, it is possible to make an eternal difference!

For More Help: Labor Day and the Workplace Ministry Resources


Telling Our Stories


Telling Our Stories - Our Days are OrdainedWhat do you know about Abraham, Moses, King David, the Apostle Paul, and so many other Bible characters? Even more importantly, what do their stories teach you about the God who worked in and through their lives? In telling our stories, it’s important we not only communicate the details of our experiences but even more importantly that we point people to the God who knew us before we were even born and who has ordained all our days (Ps. 139:13-16).

What’s Important in Telling Our Stories

Whether we’re telling the story of our lives leading to our salvation or testifying about what God has done since then, we need to remember some important elements.

1) Accuracy

Let’s be careful not add to or to sensationalize our story so as to make it more exciting. God is fully capable of using the truth of our stories to move in people’s hearts. God uses what might seem foolish, weak, or lowly to us to confound the wise (1 Cor. 1:25-31) so let’s tell our stories the way they happened and let God use it as He will.

2) Enthusiasm

Why should others care about your story if it doesn’t even appear to move you? — “Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord.” (Rom. 12:11)

3) God-centered Focus

Include personal details but keep pointing back to “God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose” (Phil. 2:13). Perhaps you have a story of God’s grace or of His faithfulness. Maybe the way your story unfolds points to God’s wisdom or power at work. When you keep the focus of your story on God, people begin to encounter a great God worthy to be praised, worthy of their trust.

We have stories to tell of a God who not only worked in the past as recounted in Scripture but still changes lives today. These are stories worth telling.

Have you shared one of His stories lately?