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Jim Buchan's Blog (53)

The Power of Dis-Engagement

One of the top concepts in the corporate world these days is “the power of full engagement.” It’s a paradigm for managing your personal or organizational energy, and I think you would find it very helpful.

But recently I’ve been learning about the flipside of that concept: the power of full DISENGAGEMENT.

Let me explain why this is so important…

My baby blue 1976 Fiat was the favorite car I’ve ever owned. With 5-speed manual transmission and a responsive…

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Added by Jim Buchan on August 3, 2015 at 4:43pm — No Comments

The Brink of Your Miracle

Years ago my car engine burned up because the oil had leaked out. I’m sure the leakage had been going on for a while, but the destruction to my engine happened quite rapidly, mere moments after I saw the warning light on my dashboard.

Lately I’ve been reflecting on my need for “oil” of another kind—the oil of the Holy Spirit. And I’ve also been challenged about the necessity of regularly checking the warning lights on my spiritual dashboard.

Jesus told an intriguing story about…

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Added by Jim Buchan on July 23, 2015 at 1:05pm — No Comments

Ready for a Second Wind?

“Second wind is a phenomenon in distance running, such as marathons or road running, whereby an athlete who is too out of breath and tired to continue suddenly finds the strength to press on at top performance with less exertion.” – Wikipedia

I meet lots of people who are weary today. Many of them are fellow baby boomers, who get tired more easily than in their younger days.

But weariness is an epidemic affecting people of all ages, and often it has…

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Added by Jim Buchan on July 15, 2015 at 1:26pm — No Comments

12 Tips for Powerful Prayer Meetings

  1. “We” trumps “I.” Jesus instructed us to pray “OUR Father…” (Matthew 6:9). Ordinarily, things are getting off-track if there is too much use of the word “I” in corporate prayer.
  2. God-centered rather than problem-centered. The Lord’s Prayer, the prayers in Acts and Paul’s epistles, and the other prayers in the Bible sometimes addressed current problems (e.g., prayer in Acts 4:23-31 regarding persecution). However, the overwhelming them is always God’s power, glory,…
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Added by Jim Buchan on August 19, 2014 at 6:09pm — 1 Comment

What Intercessors Can Learn from Jabez' Prayer

We all go through painful experiences of one kind or another, and how we handle life’s adversities will have a lot to do in determining our character and our destiny. The intriguing story of Jabez reveals how our pain can be transformed as we lay hold of God’s promises:

 

Jabez was more honorable than his brothers; and his mother called his name Jabez, saying, “Because I bore him in pain.” Jabez called upon the God of Israel, saying, “Oh that you would…

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Added by Jim Buchan on August 13, 2014 at 2:07pm — 2 Comments

When All Else Fails... ROUSE YOURSELF!

I hope you are doing well today. But if not, there’s a good chance you’ve found someone else to blame for your malaise. 

You know what I mean. You’re in a bad mood, so you blame it on the lack of affection you’re receiving from your spouse. Your bank account is empty, and you’re convinced it’s because your employer is too stingy to pay you enough. Your spiritual life is bone dry, so you claim it’s the result of your pastor’s uninspiring preaching. You don’t like your situation in…

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Added by Jim Buchan on March 8, 2014 at 7:40am — No Comments

Spiritual Hunger & the Legacy of John Hunter

More than 30 years ago, I received a call from an elderly man named John Hunter. Someone had given him my name, and he said he hoped I might be able to answer some of his questions about the new things God was doing in the church.

I agreed to meet with him, and after that initial meeting John and I got together often. I learned that he had already known the Lord for more than 50 years—much longer than I had even been alive at that point. He didn’t flaunt his credentials, but he also…

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Added by Jim Buchan on January 26, 2014 at 8:51am — No Comments

Charred Stones & New Wineskins--Which Are YOU?

It’s an oversimplification to say there are only two kinds of Christians in the U.S. today, but let me try to make a case for that view nevertheless.

 

      On the one side, there are “Charred Stone Believers,” most of whom are Baby Boomers like me. The “charred stone” imagery reflects the cynical words of Nehemiah’s critics: “Do they actually think they can make something of stones from a rubbish heap—and charred ones at that?” (Nehemiah…

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Added by Jim Buchan on November 5, 2013 at 4:53pm — No Comments

Grandma's Theory on Church Growth

Grandma Buchan was a very wise woman, and she had a fascinating theory on church growth. Well, actually, her theory had to do with restaurants, but many of the same principles apply to churches.

 

      “Jimmy, I never go to a restaurant if the parking lot isn’t full,” she told me firmly one day.

 

      I had never thought about restaurants that way. In fact, it seemed to me that there should be other…

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Added by Jim Buchan on October 26, 2013 at 1:13pm — No Comments

Modeling the City of God

Thanks to National Public Radio, I learned something new recently: China has spent billions of dollars constructing buildings—and even entire cities—to replicate some of the world’s most renowned architecture.

 

      If you live in Beijing or Shanghai, you no longer have to travel to Paris to see the Eiffel Tower, for there’s now a copycat version in your own country. If you’ve always wanted to visit Manhattan, you can see a replica nearby, complete with Rockefeller and…

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Added by Jim Buchan on September 21, 2013 at 9:41am — No Comments

Are WE on the Road to Damascus?

As you probably know, the capital of Syria is Damascus—the same place Saul was headed in Acts 9 when he had a life-changing encounter with the risen Jesus. And in case you haven’t been watching any news lately, Syria is the place President Obama is apparently headed too.

 

      Saul was on his way to Damascus to kill or persecute Christians. In contrast, President Obama seems poised to send cruise missiles into Syria as “a shot across the bow” to punish Syria’s president for…

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Added by Jim Buchan on August 30, 2013 at 3:55pm — No Comments

The Struggle to Walk in 'Reality'

      Why all the fascination with “Duck Dynasty” these days? Is it just another example of mindless cultural fluff, or is a profound spiritual message somehow involved?

 

      The A&E Network’s unlikely hit series is the second most watched original series on a cable channel. As you probably know by now, the show chronicles the Robertson clan, the rags-to-riches family that has turned making duck calls into a lucrative company called Duck Commander.

 

     …

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Added by Jim Buchan on August 17, 2013 at 4:08pm — No Comments

A 'Platform' on Our Knees

When I recently I hit 20,000 Twitter followers @BestBibleTweets, I started having eerie flashbacks of a conversation last year with a pastor friend named Steve. He had spent a considerable amount of time trying to build a social media “platform” to promote a book he had written. Some marketing guru apparently had told him that if he could gain 20,000 followers on Twitter, it would be a breeze to sell his book.

 

      It took several years, but finally Steve achieved his…

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Added by Jim Buchan on July 31, 2013 at 12:13am — No Comments

Colliding Kingdoms & Living on the Fringe

Recently my wife and I started watching the Fringe TV series on Netflix. The fictional show deals with unexplained supernatural and technological occurrences investigated by the FBI’s “fringe science” division. It turns out that many of the grisly events have been caused by a collision of parallel universes and alternate timelines.

      Having watched several seasons of Fringe, I can’t help but think of a pivotal but rarely discussed passage in Job 26:14: “Behold,…

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Added by Jim Buchan on July 18, 2013 at 11:54pm — No Comments

Mystics in an Age of Metadata

On the surface, it would seem that God’s words in Hosea 4:6 are no longer true. Can we really say today that people are “destroyed for lack of knowledge”?

 

Let’s take a closer look…

 

At first glance, it might seem that the very opposite of Hosea 4:6 is true today. Instead of being destroyed because of our LACK of knowledge, our culture is literally drowning in it. We’ve even had to coin an entirely new term for this: “metadata,” which…

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Added by Jim Buchan on June 15, 2013 at 5:17am — No Comments

When Narcissism Comes to Church

Have you ever visited a narcissistic church? Even worse, do you attend—or perhaps lead—a congregation that is self-absorbed and in love with itself?

Not long ago, I had the unpleasant experience of visiting such a place. I had heard good things about this church, and I had high hopes for what I would find there. And lately I’ve been trying really hard to see the good and not be critical toward other believers.

 

Of course, you probably wonder how I…

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Added by Jim Buchan on June 1, 2013 at 4:12pm — No Comments

Are True Disciples Possible in an Age of Twitter?

When I entered the Twitter world in May 2012 with @BestBibleTweets, I set a goal that seemed audacious at the time: gaining 4,000 followers within one year. However, that goal was surpassed in just six months, and I’m now reflecting on having reached the new  milestone of 15,000 Twitter followers.

Although this accomplishment is exhilarating in many ways, it’s also a time of sober reevaluation. At each new milestone, I’ve…

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Added by Jim Buchan on May 23, 2013 at 10:52pm — No Comments

Adding 'Skin' to Our Praying and Preaching

Attributed to renowned investor Warren Buffet, “skin in the game” is a term describing the willingness of a company’s top executives to invest some of their own money in a project. It’s a sign of good faith and their confidence in the outcome.

 

The concept makes a lot of sense, if you think about it. Why should you or I want to invest in a company or a project if the insiders don’t believe in it enough to risk their own money?

 

But the skin-in-the-game…

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Added by Jim Buchan on May 8, 2013 at 10:09am — No Comments

What's Holding You Back?

Sometimes we’re on the brink of our breakthrough, but something is holding us back. Can you relate?

 

After Moses’ death, Joshua found himself on the banks of the Jordan River, overlooking the Promised Land on the other side. God was telling him to take the Israelites over the river and into their destiny—but there was a problem.

 

Forty years earlier, Joshua had been one of the 12 spies sent to view the Promised Land before the Israelites entered (Numbers 13 –…

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Added by Jim Buchan on May 4, 2013 at 8:40am — No Comments

You're Richer Than You Think!

You can search the whole world for your breakthrough, when it’s actually a lot closer than you think. Whether you need a miracle in your health, finances, relationships, or peace of mind, it’s possible that the answer is right under your nose—or perhaps right under your feet.

 

In his classic book, Acres of Diamonds, Russell H. Conwell tells the story of a Persian man named Ali Hafed, who heard about the discovery of diamond mines in some parts of the world. Ali sold his…

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Added by Jim Buchan on May 1, 2013 at 2:02am — No Comments

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