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First Person

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FIRST-PERSON: How you can help the overlooked children affected by substance abuse

The turning point for me occurred at a funeral. I was holding a 4-year-old child I did not know. His mother had passed away after overdosing on a dangerous mix of fentanyl and cocaine. The family reached out to our church and asked for a pastor to officiate the funeral. I’ll never forget the young boy’s words.

FIRST-PERSON: Let’s charge ahead with confidence

As a former athlete and coach, I have competed in games that demanded a strategic plan to win. At times, this required multiple options – a Plan A and a Plan B – while at other times we needed to be committed to a singular strategy to bring us victory. When it comes to fulfilling […]

FIRST-PERSON: Is it ministry failure to see a counselor?

Attending to our mental health is essential to overall wellbeing. Unfortunately, there is still somewhat of a silent stigma around mental illness and the need for treatment among Christians –especially among church leaders.  

FIRST-PERSON: How the social internet is making our teenagers anxious

Do you remember what it felt like to walk the hallways of high school between classes or sit at the lunch table?

FIRST-PERSON: Crowning achievements

The Bible is full of crowns. The first time the word crown appears in the Bible, it was spoken by the patriarch Jacob referring to the crown on the head of his son, Joseph, who ruled in Egypt.

FIRST-PERSON: What the war in Ukraine is teaching us about our culture’s longing for virtue

LA GRANGE, Ky. (BP) – “I need ammunition, not a ride.” Those words sound like they could have been taken right out of the script for Band of Brothers. Instead, they were supposedly spoken several weeks ago in the context of a present war by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy as he politely rejected an offer from the United States to evacuate him from his country ahead of Russia’s cruel and violent invasion.

FIRST-PERSON: We need not fear evangelism

GRAPEVINE, Texas (BP) – When someone says the word “evangelism,” followers of Christ tend to tighten up. Why?

FIRST-PERSON: Myths about California

ONTARIO, Calif. (BP) – As I travel to speak in the Midwest and South, when Southern Baptists learn I am from California, the reactions are predictable, frustrating, and sometimes amusing. The most common response is “I’m sorry for you” – as if living in California is akin to a spiritual prison sentence. Other responses are often phrased as questions, “Why would you want to live in that awful place?” or “How do you put up with California crazies?” are good examples.

FIRST-PERSON: Things aren’t as they are supposed to be, or are they?

Do you ever find yourself trying to control and fit Jesus into your life rather than just giving it all up and letting Jesus take the lead … and really trusting?

FIRST-PERSON: Fatigue can be fatal

AMARILLO, Texas (BP) – Leadership is a high-stress calling. There are no two ways about it. Pastors have all the stresses of any leader with the added weight of spiritual burdens.