The first time my friend from New Zealand suggested “takeaways” as a dinner option, I can only imagine the look he saw on my face.

“I don’t know what a takeaway is and it doesn’t sound very appetizing. Maybe we could do pizza.”

When I learned that “takeaways” to him meant “carry-out” to me, we agreed on pizza and all was well.

As we come to the end of our sermon series On Being baptist, I wonder what takeaways we might have. No, not the food. I’m referring to what we want to leave this sermon series with.

Throughout each month, I get the honor of coaching several church starters. For one hour, we visit on the phone and I create space for them to process through their current challenges. Our conversations meander a good bit but when we find something worth digging into, we drill down. After drilling down, we come back up and meander a bit more. This up and down movement is very normal in these coaching calls.

As we come to the end of our hour together, I want to encourage them to synthesize what we’ve talked about. What are the important moments or insights from our conversation? I do this by asking them,

“What are your takeaways?”

It’s always encouraging to hear their responses because the moments that were meaningful to them may not have been the moments that I expected. Regardless, the importance of this is not what their takeaways are but that they have takeaways.

What are your takeaways from our sermon series on baptist identity?

What has been meaningful to you?

What new insight have you gained? What old insight have you been reminded of?

How do you want to be different because of it?

As we step out of this sermon series, we will keep on being baptist. Through God’s empowering, may we be the best baptists that we can be. Thanks for being baptist with me.

Peace to you,



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