Question: What Is Missing From This List?

Every July, I spend several weeks thinking about the upcoming year. I then plan and prepare some messages and sermons for the next 6 to 12 months.

I am making a list of pressing concerns that many people deal with today. While these concerns are not necessarily new, they are very real. This list comes from talking with many people as well as observing others.


What is missing from the following list? What do I need to add to this list?

Pressing concerns in the lives of many people:

1. Worry and anxiety related to personal finances. Job loss. Transfer. Uncertainty about the economic future.

2. Concerns related to raising children in this culture. Of particular concern for many families is the violence as well as the mainstreaming of pornographic pictures and behaviors.

3. Questions about faith. Questions about God and the church. What is necessary?

4. A sense that I may not be able to make it. Some think they will never be able to have the kind of career their parents or grandparents had.

5. Hurt and betrayal. Some people have been deeply hurt by a spouse who lied, betrayed, and then walked away.

6. How am I to respond to the suffering in this world? Tornados. Political oppression. Sex trafficking. War. Whether we think about war in Sudan or this weeks tornados in Joplin, Missouri, many people wonder what they are supposed to think about such events.

7. Purpose and mission in life. What am I supposed to be doing with my life?


What is missing from this list? What concern needs to be added to this list? Please leave a comment below.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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6 thoughts on “Question: What Is Missing From This List?

  1. Great list. Only thing I could come up with and this would be more pressing Kingdom concern that individual concern is today’s typical focus is building community, incorporating the power of we. American Christians tend to be more “i” / individualistic, the Bible seems more community based. It’s more than God and me, it’s God and we. Problem is for most people that’s not a pressing concern for them, outside perhaps their family. For God it is at the heart of bringing people to Jesus and brining people together as one. Just a thought.

  2. Richard, you are exactly right. You make great points. I also think you are right about this not being a pressing concern to many people. With some it is probably rooted in individualism and self-preoccupation. I suspect that many others are just overwhelmed by the enormous problems they are facing and are just trying to survive. Thanks so much, Richard.

  3. Terry Briley has been preaching on worship this year, broadly defined. That is, not acts of worship, but living worshipful lives before God amd making God the center and priority of all of life. This has been helpful for us. I think James Smith’s “Desiring the Kingdom” has stimulated his thinking on this, esp. the concept of competing liturgies that shape us.

    If you deal with suffering, particularly natural evil, Terrences Fretheim’s “Creation Untamed” is a good resource.

  4. Jim, would like to forward a news story of Kathy Ireland, 80’s supermodel, previously favoring abortion, now right to life after studying medical records. For you to consider. How to do this? Thanks. Johnny