1. 10 Ways to Be a Blessing to Your Missionaries

    August 28, 2014 by Paul Chappell

    international-flags

    It is impossible for any local church to carry out the Great Commission without missionaries.

    Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.—Matthew 28:19–20

    Missionaries, then, are our co-laborers in the harvest. Just as we strive to be a blessing to those we physically labor alongside, we should look for ways to be a blessing to the missionaries we are privileged to support and send.

    How can we be a blessing to missionaries? Here are ten suggestions: (more…)


  2. The Role of the Church in Christian Education

    August 25, 2014 by Paul Chappell

    Christian-School

    At 8:00 this morning, Lancaster Baptist School begins its twenty-sixth year of cultivating hearts for God and minds for Christ.

    As I look back over these past twenty-five years, I thank God for the investments we’ve made in the lives of young people, many of which are still serving the Lord and are now raising their children for God.

    I often tell parents, “Christian education doesn’t cost—it pays.” I believe this is true, not only for parents, but also for the local church that invests labor in building the Christian school as a ministry of the church. Truly, the rewards for our efforts over the past twenty-five years have been beyond measure in the lives of our graduates.

    God’s desire for young people is that they would cultivate a heart for Him and develop the mind of Christ. And God instructs parents to invest in their children to that end:

    And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.—Deuteronomy 6:6–7

    The local church also plays a tremendous role in this development as pastors and teachers team with parents to encourage young hearts for God and provide biblical teaching for the home. (more…)


  3. Moving the Arm of God through Social Media

    August 23, 2014 by Paul Chappell

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    You know the traction-gaining tool for social media: hashtags. Whether it’s #WeAreN or #icebucketchallenge, people turn to hashtags to use their Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram posts to make a difference.

    Why? We want to use social media to effect change. With or without a hashtag, we post because we have something to say that we want someone else to read—and we hope our words will find a place in their attention, if only for a moment.

    Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn’t.

    But could I remind you of a form of posting that always works? It’s called prayer, and it is guaranteed to move the arm of God. (more…)


  4. What You Shouldn’t Be Good At

    August 19, 2014 by Paul Chappell

    five-loaves-and-two-fish

    Here’s a faith-building exercise: Take one of the miracles of the Bible—any miracle will do—and write a list of reasons why it couldn’t be done.

    For instance, let’s take the feeding of the five thousand. That one’s easy because Philip and Andrew already told us why it couldn’t be done:

    Philip answered him, Two hundred pennyworth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may take a little.—John 6:7

    There is a lad here, which hath five barley loaves, and two small fishes: but what are they among so many?—John 6:9

    “We don’t have enough money” and “There are too many people.”

    Philip and Andrew were right, of course—they didn’t have enough money, and there were too many people.

    We can never do ministry to the “exceeding, abundantly above” level that God desires for us—and God doesn’t expect us to. He wants us to come to the end of ourselves and then look to Him to do something bigger than we are capable of. (more…)


  5. Just Do It!

    August 14, 2014 by Paul Chappell

    book-review-buy-the-field

    This summer I read Pastor Rob Fleshman’s book, Buy the Field: Find, Follow and Finish God’s Will for Your Life.

    One of the aspects about this book that I loved was its biblical bias for action. Like Nike’s “Just Do It” slogan, Pastor Fleshman challenges readers to carefully consider a field and then buy it. Jump in—all in—and get to work.

    Sometimes we become so cautious and hesitant that we miss following through on the great opportunities God places in front of us. And sometimes, because we see personal cost or sacrifice involved in following God’s plan, we’re unwilling to step out in faith. But if we would just “buy the field,” acting on the opportunities and directions God lays before us, we would discover great treasure. (more…)