Q & A with Pastor Mark Haines

A place for heartfelt, honest answers to your questions from a caring pastor

Category Archives: Discipleship

How Can the Gospel Be Good News to Gays?

It would be very easy for some to dismiss any answer to this question that I might present.  However, this link will take you an answer generated by a man who is fighting and winning this battle.  Check it out.  How Can the Gospel Be Good News to Gays?.

Let his conclusion challenge you to a deeper faith and confidence in Jesus.  He declares,

There is a huge amount to say on this issue, but the main point is this: the moment you think following Jesus will be a poor deal for someone, you call Jesus a liar. Discipleship is not always easy. Leaving anything cherished behind is profoundly hard. But Jesus is always worth it.”

What do you need to leave behind to follow Jesus more closely?  No matter how hard it may seem to be, remember this, “Jesus is always worth it.”

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Three Steps Out of Church Stagnation

Why isn’t our church growing like it did when I was a kid?

“If you or people around you are focused on someone or something other than Christ and his Kingdom, the purpose of the Church is out of view.” (Dunn & Stevenson)

“The need of the church is not a methodological fix.  It is much more profound.  The church needs a mission fix.”  (Reggie McNeal)

Here are three steps that might help your church move out of a stagnant state.

Consider them carefully and prayerfully. Read more of this post

Jesus Isn’t An App!

A great post from Eagles in Leadership: Transformed! Podcast — http://eaglesinleadership.org/2012/03/05/jesus-isnt-an-app/

4 Everyday Drills to Improve Your Integrity


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The apostle Paul gives at least 4 Everyday Drills to Improve Your Integrity in 1 Timothy 4:12-16.

Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.  Until I come, devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to preaching and to teaching.  Do not neglect your gift, which was given you through prophecy when the body of elders laid their hands on you.  Be diligent in these matters; give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress.  Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.

Drill #1: I will spend significant time each day studying and applying the Bible.

Read more of this post

The Shocking Truth about Lent

The truth about Lent is not a secret.

'Lent for life 2' photo (c) 2008, LivingOS - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

You know it.  Your friends know it.  But I’m going to say the shocking truth about Lent out loud.

Giving up something for Lent that you look forward to starting up again on Easter Sunday afternoon will never change you.  When you give up coffee or chocolate for Lent, you start counting down to Easter when you will wash down that 2 pound chocolate bunny with a half-gallon of Starbucks coffee.  After you wake up from that sugar and caffeine buzz, you go right back to being and acting like you did before Lent began. Read more of this post

Top 5 Posts for the Week of February 6, 2012

Top 5 Posts for the Week of February 6, 2012

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#5  How Would Jesus Vote?

#4  7 Overlooked Factors that Can Affect Your Church’s Finances

#3  Why does God let bad things happen to children?

#2  What are the benefits of reading the Bible?

#1  Praying for Church Finances

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You just finished reading Top 5 Posts for the Week of February 6, 2012 a post on Q & A with Pastor Mark Haines, © 2012 Mark Haines.  Please share it with your friends and family.  Just preserve a link to the source.  Thank you.

Prayer Secrets from God’s Saints

I’ve collected a few prayer secrets from God’s saints — both ancient and modern.

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Jesus Christ never taught his disciples how to preach, but only how to pray.

Citation: D. L. Moody, Leadership, Vol. 1, no. 1.

The paradox of prayer is that it asks for a serious effort while it can only be received as a gift. We cannot plan, organize or manipulate God; but without a careful discipline, we cannot receive him either.

Citation: Henri J.M. Nouwen in Reaching Out. Christianity Today, Vol. 32, no. 6. Read more of this post

How to Experience God While You Read the Bible

Pastor, how can reading my Bible become more than a religious ritual or obligation?  How can I experience God as I read?

God gave us the Bible not only to give us information but also to allow us to experience transformation.  When you read the Bible to meet with the Lord you approach it in a different way.

Image: Arvind Balaraman / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Prepare to Hear God’s Word

Keep a pad of paper and pen at hand as you read today.  Prepare to experience God by emptying your mind of all the things you need to do.  Write them on the first page of paper.  Add to this list throughout your Bible reading time, as needed.  Ask God’s Holy Spirit to meet with you as you read. Read more of this post

How to Find Rest for Your Soul

Pastor, I’m so full of nervous energy I have a hard time relaxing. Can God help me find rest?

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Prepare to Hear God’s Word

Imagine what rest for you soul would be like.  Write down a description of how you would feel.  Ask God to speak to you through the Bible reading. Read more of this post

How to Grow Spiritually (Even When You’ve Tried and Failed)

Why can’t I become more like Jesus in the way I think and act?

'Beautiful Butterfly' photo (c) 2008, Sarah-Rose - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/

You may be settling for discovering heaven’s password.

In a scene from Monty Python and the Holy Grail, King Arthur and knights come to a bridge over the Abyss of Eternal Peril. The keeper allows people to cross after they answer three questions correctly.  Miss one and he throws you over the edge. Read more of this post

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