This month: 189 - Freedom in Christ
Exploring the Heart of Restoration

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Archives for January, 2019

Here are all the resources Wineskins currently offers. All of these are accessible through the drop down menus. Please share what you find helpful with others:

Research

Wineskins Research Reports – Our goal is to do one study per year on various topics in churches of Christ. So far we have done a study on churches that implemented changes on Women’s roles and another study on minister health.

Thesis and Dissertation Library – We recently started a list of relevant dissertations and thesis from members of Churches of Christ.

Ministry

Book Reviews – a list of resources and discussion forum related to book reviews

Children’s Ministry – a list of resources and discussion forum for Children’s ministry resources.

Singles’ Ministry – a list of resources and discussion forum for Singles ministry resources.

Marriage & Family – a list of resources and discussion forum for Marriage & Family ministry.

Study

Commentary – Old Testament – This is an index of past Wineskins articles by verse from the main site as well as current and past Wineskins authors’ blogs.

Commentary – New Testament – This is an index of past Wineskins articles by verse from the main site as well as current and past Wineskins authors’ blogs.

Books By Wineskins’ Authors – A list of books by writers for Wineskins.

ebooks – Free ebooks by various Wineskins writers.

Jobs

View Jobs – a place to find job postings for churches of Christ looking for a minister.

Submit Jobs – a place for churches to post their job openings with Wineskins.

Manage jobs – a page where churches can edit their listing.

Past Issues

This is a link to the Wineskins archive of all articles back to 1992. The archive also contains some issues of Image magazine.

Curriculum

Bible class curriculum – Thousands of pages of free Bible class materials.

Small group curriculum – Thousands of pages of free small group materials.



Preaching and Spiritual Vitality

The phrase “to preach” often carries a negative connotation these days. “Don’t preach at me” is a plea to refrain from moralizing or condemning a person’s behavior. Even telling the truth can be seen as something different from the act of preaching in many settings. But that’s not all that makes meaningful preaching so difficult today.

Those who preach in congregations today are held to increasingly high standards. Congregants can easily turn to their laptops and cell phones to hear from famous preachers, noted authors and ministers who lead large congregations. The Sunday morning sermon at our home churches, where the preacher spent the night before out too late with the youth group or at the hospital with a dying saint, just doesn’t have the same vibrant energy or wisdom.

The net result? Preaching ends up with a poor reputation. Ministers and other church leaders who rise up Sunday after Sunday to present a word from God can easily fall into the trap of thinking what they say doesn’t really matter.

Although I understand this line of reasoning, I also reject it. Preaching does matter for congregations and for spiritual vitality. Preaching that emerges from prayer and from the context of the congregation’s own particular journey matters. I believe this for the following reasons: God is at work in the world, and the best place for us to see that work is within our own congregation and community. Preaching helps us to see God’s work. Restoration and renewal are God’s work, and the weekly articulation of the gospel is the generative center for what God desires to do. I can learn from any God-honoring preacher anywhere, but the God-honoring preacher who speaks within my congregation and context is much better positioned to say what I most need to learn. Of course, preaching is not easy work, but it matters for healthy congregations. Declaring the gospel message week in and week out in ways that relate to people in your congregation and community is ground zero for nurturing disciples.

So if you are a congregational leader, do your best to encourage those who preach to do so as if it matters. And if you are a preacher, then take courage to do your work well – for God’s sake.

On March 21-23, we will once again host Journey: From Text to Congregation, a conference for preachers. These three days focus on the work of moving from Scripture to a vibrant, life-giving message for the local congregation. I invite all those who are called to preach and teach to come and share in the resources that Journey will bring to the task of preaching.

Blessings,

Carson

NEWS

2019 Ministers’ Salary Survey
We have launched our 2019 Ministers’ Salary Survey to gather information about current levels of compensation for ministers in Churches of Christ throughout the U.S. For survey purposes, the term “minister” includes any person paid by a congregation for ministerial work, including but not limited to preaching, youth, children’s, executive, etc. Our secure survey link protects participants’ privacy by avoiding the need for email addresses or any other identifying information. We invite you to participate in the survey now or thttps://goo.gl/forms/LR78M0ym4nqebL222o forward it to any ministers you know who serve in a Church of Christ. Visit this page for more information or to access previous years’ results.

Announcing the new Siburt Institute website!

We are excited to unveil our new website, siburtinstitute.org, a dynamic user-friendly portal to our programs, resources and upcoming events. We encourage you to take it for a test drive and tell your friends. We hope you like what you see!

Storytelling and the Good Samaritan

In his latest Mosaic article, Eric Gentry explores the account of the Good Samaritan to highlight storytelling as an effective instrument for the gospel and its call to love God and neighbor. He reminds us that Jesus, the master storyteller, is able to recognize the question behind the question. When asked, “Who is my neighbor?” Jesus ushers the questioner into an identity crisis and extends an invitation to transformation. Eric Gentry is associate preaching minister at the Highland Church in Memphis, Tennessee.

2019 Women in Ministry Conference

We are delighted to be one of the sponsors for this year’s Women in Ministry Conference, March 4-6 at the Highland Oaks Church of Christ in Dallas, Texas. The conference is open to women representing a broad spectrum of ministry and leadership, whether in congregational or university settings, whether paid or volunteer. The annual gathering is organized by the Community of Women Ministers, a group providing support and friendship for Church of Christ women pursuing vocational ministry.

One of its leaders, Dr. Amy Bost Henegar, also blogs for Mosaic, and in her latest post she shares more about the community and the conference. Click here to register or learn more.

Dr. Jason Byassee to speak at Summit 2019

Dr. Jason Byassee will be a featured presenter for Summit 2019. Byassee teaches preaching, Bible, leadership, church history and writing at the Vancouver School of Theology, where he is the inaugural holder of the Butler Chair in Homiletics and Biblical Hermeneutics. He has authored numerous books and contributed to journals such as The Christian Century, First Things and The Other Journal.

Byassee will share principles from his book, The Gifts of the Small Church, along with insights gained as a former preacher for a small congregation. He will participate in the Small-Church pathway and present in other areas during the four-day event.

We are honored to partner with the First Central Presbyterian Church in Abilene to bring Byassee to Abilene, and we hope to partner with additional churches across the region as we seek to equip and serve church leaders and other Christ-followers for God’s mission in the world.

Mark your calendars for Sept. 15-18 and join us for Summit 2019 where we will explore the theme: “At Home in the Psalms: Sorrow, Hope and Joy.”

A couple of reminders!

• Ministry in Times of Illness and Loss Workshop
Join us for a Feb. 23 workshop in collaboration with Lifeline Chaplaincy at the North Davis Church of Christ in Arlington, Texas. The workshop is for anyone wanting to improve their skills in providing spiritual care to others. Visit theregistration and event page to register or for more information, including schedule, speaker lineup and session topics.

• Dallas/Fort Worth Ministers’ Lunch
Ministers in the Dallas and Fort Worth Metroplex are invited to join us for lunch on Feb. 5 at CHRIST Church in Irving, Texas. The event will feature noted author Dr. Richard Beck (’89), professor and chair of psychology at ACU. Beck will discuss his recent book,Stranger God: Meeting Jesus in Disguise. The lunch is is sponsored by ACU’s University Relations team in Fort Worth and the Siburt Institute. Registration is free, but space is limited.Click here to RSVP.

MARK YOUR CALENDARS
Dallas / Fort Worth Ministers’ Lunch, Feb. 5
Ministry in Times of Illness and Loss, Feb. 23
Ministers Support Network Retreat, Feb. 28 – March 3
Journey: From Text to Congregation, March 21-23

THOUGHTS TO PONDER

“While prayer and God-honoring relationships are essential to mission-informed leadership, disagreements and conflict can happen. Unity does not mean uniformity. Unity within a church happens when, despite disagreement or difference, we are on the same page when it comes to the mission and philosophy of the church and its directions … the elders are rooted in a deep understanding that what the church is doing is in alignment with God’s heart.” – J.R. Briggs and Bob Hyatt, Eldership and the Mission of God: Equipping Teams for Faithful Church Leadership

“The true leader serves. Serves people. Serves their best interests, and in so doing will not always be popular, may not always impress. But because true leaders are motivated by loving concern rather than a desire for personal glory, they are willing to pay the price.” – John White, Excellence in Leadership: Reaching Goals with Prayer, Courage & Determination

There is a resource on our site that gets used every single day by people all around the world – our Curriculum. It is free to download and you are welcome to print, email/share it, etc however you like.

I want to share a number with you a number that makes me very happy.

135,000

That is the number of pdf lesson series that have been downloaded!

Our goal is to make that number grow exponentially by doing three things, two of which require your help: 1) continuing to create and share more quality curriculum, 2) encouraging you to download it and 3) you sharing this information and links with people who you know who could benefit from it. Bible class teachers and group leaders around the country write their own curriculum and purchase curriculum These lessons will give them a head start on lesson prep or save them valuable resources by not having to purchase curriculum elsewhere.

You can find the lessons through the “Curriculum” dropdown menu and click on either Bible Class Curriculum or Small Group lessons. We will also be adding curriculum in the future in our ministry areas that will be specific to the ministries.

I hope you find these lessons helpful. Thank you for reading!

When we revamped Wineskins.org back in 2013 I had a vision for a few things that are just now coming to fruition and I want to let you know about them. I will be posting several articles this month that will inform you about the resources we have on the site. Much of it has gone underutilized and I have made it my goal in 2019 to better utilize all of the tools and content we have on the site so that we can make an even bigger impact on the kingdom!

When the site revamped I really wanted to have active discussion forums. So we created over a dozen forums, hoping people would find them in the drop downs and start conversations there. I was naive. People were already having discussions on social media and just throwing up a discussion forum wasn’t going to get them to show up at Wineskins to move the discussion there.

So I came up with an idea that I believe will help. Rather than just create discussion forums for various types of ministry, I decided to create ministry resource areas. These resource areas would point you to curriculum, content, and experts in the field for a given ministry (children’s ministry, marriage and family, missions, etc).

I then realized that I am not an expert in all of these areas so I needed to recruit help. It was determined that no ministry resource area would be made public until it had someone to spearhead that area who was an expert in that particular field. This person would help create the resource links and point people looking for ministry help in the right direction. Instead of 15 poorly done areas, we launched four, each with someone overseeing it.

It is our intention to make each of these areas a “go to” resource for people to get equipped, find great resources and join in a discussion with others.

That brings us to the forums. The forums are still very much alive and well but we only have forums up for the ministry areas that have an expert on hand to make sure everything is done with excellence and expertise.

Here are the ministry areas we currently have live. You will find resources at each of these as well as the link to the related forum. We will be adding more in the very near future:

Marriage and Family – Trey Morgan
Children’s Ministry – Shannon Clarkson Rains
Single’s Ministry – Jim Miller
Book Reviews – Matt Dabbs

These can all be found in the Ministry drop down menu on the homepage.

I hope you will try out these pages and please comment on them with resources that have been helpful to you so we can network with you to expand and broaden the resources. I also hope you will join the forums and jump into a discussion, ask questions you have, and network with others who are working on similar things.

Thank you for reading this. There are good things ahead! We are excited about all God is doing at Wineskins and we hope you are as well.

When I was 8 or 9 yrs old, our little mission church launched a Read Through the Bible in One Year effort. I was in, especially since the kids got a dispensation to read only the New Testament. I was the son of the minister so…how hard could it be? I couldn’t wait to start so, sometime during the service, I cracked open my New Testament and started with Matthew Chapter One.

Thud.

My enthusiasm ran into a brick wall. All those begats… Is this any way to start a story? This is the Greatest Story Ever Told! I knew that because we had a tract in a rack by the front entry of our tiny church building that said so. Why would you start a story this way? (Besides, we did a lot of scripture reading aloud in worship and I was terrified that I would be handed that chapter. Why would a loving God allow that to happen?)

Later, I learned the standard answers: 1) Jews have their own ways of telling stories. What seems annoying to us was just setting the scene for them. 2) Matthew’s gospel is all about Jesus being the Promised Messiah and King so Matthew had to establish his kingly line early in the story. I have no reason to doubt either of those answers but, over the years, I think there is more to it than that.

Matthew 1 is history, but it is much, much more than history. It breaks my heart when I hear people say that they don’t like history. Often, it is traceable to a boring history teacher who forced names and dates on them without revealing the drama and context of the times. But history is us! When you go through the list of names in Matthew 1, it is imperative that you remember that each of these were individuals, real people with hopes, dreams, fears, successes and failures.

They were people. Jesus entered a people story.

Allow me to stupefy and disappoint many of you: I don’t care for super hero stories or movies. I enjoyed the first Iron Man and loved the spiritual, theological issues in Wonder Woman but, other than that, they leave me cold. I think it is because I have a hard time embracing the characters or their physics-free lifestyle. That is why, when I enter Matthew 1, I am blown away by the fact that Jesus entered a human story – a badly broken human story.

We see Tamar here. Abraham was no superhero and, if he lived today, he’d be named in the #metoo movement and for good reason. David? Can we say “murder, treachery, adultery” for starters? There’s Ruth, the Moabite, when Moabites weren’t allowed anywhere near the worship of God (Deuteronomy 23:3). We can talk about Rahab and Manasseh if you’d like, but I’d rather not. These aren’t the kind of ancestors about which one might brag on Facebook.

When I was a boy, it amazed me how many Americans claimed to have a “Cherokee princess” in their bloodline. Especially since they didn’t have princesses. The claimants were merely trying to borrow glory and a sense of “specialness” from having high placed, Native American royalty as a grandmother. There is none of that in Matthew 1. Sure, it is a royal line and there is royal blood there but there is also an inordinate amount of commoner, stranger, foreigner, and “questionable individual” blood there, as well.

That’s the story Jesus entered.

He entered through the body of a very young girl who was engaged to a man named Joseph. Joseph, this real person, was torn about how to respond to this situation into which he was cast. As a “tsadiq”, a righteous man, he wanted to do the right thing but…how? And what would that be, exactly? God makes sure that Joseph knows that Mary is telling him the truth, so he stays with her and they become a family.

It gets even messier. Mary’s own sons didn’t believe her story until Jesus was resurrected. They grew up thinking their mother was a liar and a loose woman (at least, loose once). If they believed that about their mother, what did those around them in their village think of her? Jesus would be taunted with “where is your father?” and “we know who our father is” in public places (John 8 for one example).

Is this the kind of story you expected? I didn’t, and all those begats almost kept me from seeing it in the rush to get to the “good parts.” But it gets even more interesting…

Joseph is told to “give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” Preachers told me that Jesus was named Jesus because that name means “the Lord saves.” Actually, the name Joseph means that, and “Jesus” is a variant but let’s not get picky. Instead, let’s look at a cultural and historical fact: Joseph, Jesus and Joshua were the most common names in that area. Jesus’ name would not have stuck out and people wouldn’t have heard his name and thought “well, a savior is among us.” Almighty God entered a messy, broken, human story and took on a name that was the most common available. God asked us to call His Son Joe, or John, or Tim…you get the point.

And then comes Matthew to add this: “All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: ‘The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel.’” In parentheses (which did not exist when Matthew wrote his gospel) we see a note explaining that Immanuel means “God with us.” I can remember that verse bothering me because Joseph didn’t name his son Immanuel but Jesus. What’s up with that? And, before I try to answer that, let’s mention a controversy that blew up pulpits in the last century…

The translators of the Revised Standard Version didn’t use the word “virgin” in Isaiah 7:14, the passage Matthew quotes here. They put “young woman” there instead. I am old enough to remember preachers getting red faced and yelling about “so called versions” that ripped the miraculous out the story. The fact is, the word means “young woman” and it means “virgin,” because, in that world,they were presumed to be one and the same if the young woman was not married. Purity was assumed and strictly enforced by a wide-ranging set of laws and cultural norms.

So, I want to do something that might make some of you uncomfortable; I want to say this means “young woman” and that is more weighty and exciting than we were led to believe. Here we go:

God entered a very human story full of broken human beings, people with good intentions, some people with evil intentions, women of questionable provenance with histories that make us blink, and some men that, in my opinion, should have been lopped off the family tree a long time ago. God didn’t lop them off and for good reason.

He then gave His Son the most common name around. He wasn’t “Mega Holy, the Soul Saver.” He was Bob. And he was named that way because he was going to save the Bobs, Tims, and Joes of the world. He wasn’t here to cut swathes of blood and vengeance through the world; he was here to save us so he, first, became one of us.

And that is why the sign of a young woman giving birth to him is so dear to me. I can remember being at a Christian college lectureship when I was a young teen. My dad brought me along on the long trip and I was surrounded by “big names in the church” the entire time. I listened as the speakers used amazing scholarship or passion in their presentations and I was impressed. This was a whole new world for me. And I remember a long keynote lecture about Isaiah 7:14 where the speaker said “what kind of sign is a young woman having a baby? That makes no sense!” He went on to use humor and sarcasm to attack the RSV and I laughed along with everyone else. I’m not laughing now because I think that we may have missed the whole point…

God is with us. He isn’t with just the super holy. He isn’t just with those who have many generations in “the church” and who are known for being “sound.” He is with all of us. He is with the woman whose past shames her (even if she had little or no control over what happened to her). He is with David whose good name is forever sullied by his treatment of those around him and his shameful use of power to get what he wanted. He is with Tamar when no one else was. He is even with Manasseh. Let that one sink in for a bit.

He is with us. He entered our story as one of us. He continued to live and walk and teach as one of us. And in the next world, we will be called his brothers and sisters because that is what we are.

2018 was a year to remember. Unless you were asleep under a rock somewhere, you will have an awareness that the faith community and beyond was rocked by sex abuse scandals. January began with the Larry Nassar sentencing in Lansing, MI where an unprecedented over 150 victims gave impact statements on record. In the same month Jules Woodson came public with her story of abuse from her former youth minister Andy Savage of HighPoint Church in Memphis. Both Any Savage and Chris Conlee have since resigned. Bill Hybels of Willow Creek had multiple victims come forward and accuse him of sexual misconduct. Hybels took an “early retirement,” all the elders resigned, along with pastor Heather Larson.  

In August the Pennsylvania Grand Jury report was published, exposing over 300 predator priests and over 1,000 victims of child sexual abuse. That sparked a nation-wide probe into the Catholic church and its cover-up of abuse. Paige Patterson, president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, was fired in 2018 for failing to report a rape and for repeatedly bragging about telling women in abusive marriages to endure the physical abuse. Sarah Smith at the Star-Telegram released a bombshell investigative report into the Independent Fundamental Baptist Church that spanned 40 states and Canada. It revealed reports of over 200 victims–412 allegations in 187 churches. Of the 168 leaders accused or convicted, at least 45 of them remained in ministry after credible allegations arose. 75 year old Creation Fest co-founder and minister Harry Thomas was sentenced to 18 years in prison for sex with minors. 

And of course Bill Cosby was sentenced 3-10 years to a Pennsylvania state prison. There were many more scandals that rocked both mega churches and small churches alike. I had the high honor of meeting many of the Catholic abuse survivors from the PA Grand jury report. I marched with them on our state’s capital, met with Senators, and was sitting with survivors in the House galley when it passed the Window to Justice Bill. I’ve met so many friends the past year and all share a sacred bond. All of the people I met were either sexually, physically, or spiritually abused or were family members of abuse victims. Almost all of them were rejected by the church. Jules Woodson has become a friend. She shared her story on my podcast. Shaun Dougherty shared his story with me about how his coming forward opened the door to the sate wide investigation into the Catholic church here in Pennsylvania. I’ve met incredible survivors and have been blessed to be able to hear them tell their stories. Kelly Haines is another brave survivor whom I’ve become friends with. 

I’ve listened to hundreds of stories in 2018 and met so, so many incredible survivors and advocates. But what keeps haunting me is how badly the church still is failing to care for and protect the innocent and the wounded. I wrote an article last week called Our “Jesus accepts all” theology is empowers abusers, big time. I write about this a lot–how our theology is embarrassingly protective of abusers and dangerously antagonistic toward their victims. It’s not just my imagination, either. After consulting with churches, personally speaking with hundreds of survivors and dozens of church leaders, I’ve learned that many church leaders radically defend abusers and survivors are feeling the sting. The number of survivors who’ve told me that they attempted suicide after talking with their church leaders about their abuse is breathtaking.

One survey was posted a couple weeks ago that asked if survivors of abuse were helped or felt worse after speaking with church leaders. A staggering 98% said they actually felt worse after meeting with church leaders. Rachael Denholander was interviewed by Morgan Lee at Christianity Today in an article called, My Larry Nassar Testimony Went Viral. But There’s More to the Gospel Than Forgiveness. Rachael bemoaned the fact that religious leaders gushed over her one-liner about forgiveness when almost the entire 37 minute testimony was about God’s justice and the need to repent. But what really caught my attention was Rachael’s feelings about how the church responds to abuse survivors: 

Church is one of the least safe places to acknowledge abuse because the way it is counseled is, more often than not, damaging to the victim. There is an abhorrent lack of knowledge for the damage and devastation that sexual assault brings. It is with deep regret that I say the church is one of the worst places to go for help. That’s a hard thing to say, because I am a very conservative evangelical, but that is the truth. There are very, very few who have ever found true help in the church.

There are a number of reasons why the church continues to fail (another post for another day!). But rather than focus on that for now, I’ll just say that we need to steer our sinking ships back to the harbor of Jesus’ mission. Jesus couldn’t have been more clear: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor” (Luke 4:18-19 ESV). 

This month’s theme is resources for the kingdom. There are good resources for churches that are out there for preventing abuse and for walking a church through the aftermath of it. Step one is to become aware of the most valuable resources that are out there. Step two is having the humility to tap into those resources. In the next post I will list different resources and what each person/organization specializes in. As a church leader myself, I have a heart for helping them. I was lost when an allegation of abuse came to me about my own father. I don’t want others to be lost like I was. There is good help out there now. Abuse is incredibly common. In seven years, I have yet to speak at a congregation where there are no victims of abuse. Many of them who tell me about their abuse have never told anyone before. Church, we’ve got to make it safer for victims to come forward and get healing. They should not be terrified of their leaders. We have work to do, but it can be done! 

We have uploaded a new lesson series to serve as a guide for Bible class leaders or small groups. This series is on the Holy Spirit starting in Genesis and working through the New Testament. It contains 10 lessons, an appendix on the Holy Spirit in the Restoration movement and a Bibliography. It will be added to our Bible Class Curriculum resources here at Wineskins.

Download – The Holy Spirit Through the Bible by Matt Dabbs


“18 As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. 19 “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” 20 At once they left their nets and followed him.

21 Going on from there, he saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John. They were in a boat with their father Zebedee, preparing their nets. Jesus called them, 22 and immediately they left the boat and their father and followed him.”

Imagine the scene.

Jesus is walking on the shore. The waves are rolling in. Fishermen are all around. Men are fishing. Nets are being mended. The rabbi walks right up to the Galilean fishermen.

Can you see it?

Can you picture it all in your mind’s eye?

Read the verses above again and this time picture each moment in your mind. Read a few words and picture what you read. Can you see it all? Can you see Jesus walking? Can you see the boats, the sea, the fishermen…?

Then he speaks. Jesus called out to Peter and Andrew just as they were casting a net into the sea. Can you hear his voice as he says, “Come follow me and I will send you out to fish for people.” Can you see the look on his face as he offers that invitation to these two men? Can you see the love in his eyes?

Next, we watch them leave their nets and boats and follow Jesus. Can you picture the three of them walk over to another group of fishermen? This time we see James, John and their father Zebedee fishing. They are all in the boat together working on their nets when Jesus calls out with the same invitation. They, too, leave it all to follow Jesus.

Can you see it?

Can you picture it all in your mind’s eye?

Next the five of them walk along the sea and your attention is drawn to another person…someone you almost didn’t notice. They heard these invitations. They watched the fishermen walk away from it all. This person has a look of nervousness about them. The look on their face speaks as loudly as if their mouth had said the words, “Will he call me too?”

Can you see the look on Jesus’ face as he turns to this one as well and offers the invitation to follow him a third time?

Now, turn your attention from Jesus’ face to this one’s face. Look closely at the person standing there and take a good look at their face. The face you see, is your own! It is as if you are looking at yourself when you have just received the best news of your life.

Jesus wants you on his team. He wants you to be with him, to follow him, to love him and be loved by him.

You belong.

You are wanted.

You are invited.

You are loved.


Welcome to 2019! With a new year comes new vision. This is the year we revamp things at Wineskins and we want to let you in on our vision for these changes. We are expanding beyond providing articles (which we will always do) to something larger. The goal is to make this a site that both provides and points you to the best resources for faith and ministry.

This requires us to be more purposeful, make better use of existing ministry networks, and create new networks to create something that truly has an eternal kingdom impact on the world at large, Christianity more specifically, and Churches of Christ at the smallest micro level.

This month our writers will be posting articles on a variety of topics and along the way I will be pointing you to the growing list ministry resources that we are constantly adding to the site. We are adding slowly and purposefully rather than adding dozens of things that are half-way done.

Along the way, I hope you will chime in and point us to the resources you have found valuable in your faith and ministry.

Blessings,

Matt