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Author Joe LaGuardia

Joe LaGuardia is senior pastor of First Baptist Church in Vero Beach, Florida.

‘Our Muslim Neighbors’

A vast majority of the world’s 1.8 billion Muslims – over 97% – are upright citizens who defy combative, radicalized stereotypes and caricatures portrayed on the news. That’s the point in Victor Begg’s book, ‘Our Muslim Neighbors.’ […] Read More

Does honesty have a place in the pulpit? Preachers shouldn’t be the center of the story. Personal anecdotes can illustrate a point, but they’re not the destination of the sermon. No one comes to church to hear about the preacher. […] Read More

Because most churches avoid politics, we come off as irrelevant or silent about the most pressing issues. Perhaps we should take a cue from late-night talk-show hosts. A humorous monologue can open the door to serious talk. […] Read More

We are often unaware of the influences that shape our thinking. I taught a class recently at Palm Beach Atlantic University about worldviews, seeking to encourage graduating seniors to articulate, further define or develop a Christian worldview that sees not as the world sees, but as Jesus sees. It is a lens through which we […] Read More

The Holy Spirit convicted me about 10 years ago that I needed to learn a thing or two about submission and obedience. I had been a Christ-follower for some time, but I have always had a flavor for independence and strong-willed stubbornness. In fact, I became a Baptist not 10 years earlier precisely because I […] Read More

I tried to keep from weeping the last time I went through an airport security check. I had to take my shoes off at the metal detector because one terrorist, a few years back, tried to light a fire on an airplane. As I walked through the airport that day, it had been four years […] Read More

The long expanse of ministry in which you are pursuing an idea or program that you were excited about starting a while ago – what I call “The Middle” – is rarely addressed at the conferences or meetings I attend. No one ever addresses how to finish well either. Instead, we are encouraged to take […] Read More

Church consultants and pastors have spilled much ink regarding how churches should welcome guests. There is a reason for that: Churches, from veteran churches to church starts, need to learn how to greet guests and be the welcoming community Christ calls us to be. You may be surprised to know that this does not come […] Read More

Christianity is beginning to flourish again in Cuba. This was evident during a mission trip that I took with a small group of clergy and lay leaders to Cuba through the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship (CBF) in early November. In partnership with the Fraternity of Baptist Churches in Cuba, the CBF has been nurturing mission opportunities […] Read More

I fear that some people see hymns only as nostalgic remnants from the church of yesteryear, that hymns are only useful to pass the time at funerals or revival services. Hymns, however, play more of a role than that, and research suggests that hymns contribute to our theology and vision of the world just as […] Read More