Lake Atitlan

Lake Atitlan

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Why Burkinis Should Matter To Christians Who Care About Religious Freedom

Why Burkinis Should Matter To Christians Who Care About Religious Freedom – “Religious liberty for some soon means religious liberty for none.”

When All Your Dreams Come True

When All Your Dreams Come True – “A few years ago, Harvard psychology professor Daniel Gilbert wrote a fascinating book called Stumbling on Happiness. His central premise is that ‘people want to be happy, and all the other things they want are typically meant to be a means to that end.’” But why does it seem inevitable that we will be disappointed? 

How Trigger Warnings Shut Down Christian Speech

How Trigger Warnings Shut Down Christian SpeechAlan Levinovitz is a professor at James Madison University, and he argues in The Atlanticthat “trigger warnings” in university syllabi have the effect of shutting out Christian viewpoints. 

Learn to Stop Yelling at Your Kids

Learn to Stop Yelling at Your Kids – “If you're a yeller, please know that my heart goes out to you. My intention is to help us all look at this situation of anger and yelling and assess what it's really doing in us and our child. We've got to clearly see the damage an ongoing lifestyle of anger is causing. Only then will we see the desperate need we have for God to do a work in us.”

Am I a Hypocrite… and Don’t Even Know It?

Am I a Hypocrite… and Don’t Even Know It? – “The warning sign of hypocrisy is when your heart leaps to excuse your sin, rather than confess it.” 

Why We Can’t Ignore the Lowest Birthrates in US History

Why We Can’t Ignore the Lowest Birthrates in US History – “Today, however, we’ve swung to our lowest fertility and birth rates—just as the largest generation in history steps into the typical age of parenting.”

You Don’t Have to Get Elected or Make Movies to Change Culture

You Don’t Have to Get Elected or Make Movies to Change Culture – “Things are looking dark in American culture. We lament the darkness, but at least it helps make the light of the gospel more visible. However people respond to it, our job is to shine that light.”

Encouragement When We Need Comfort, Grace, and Hope

Encouragement When We Need Comfort, Grace, and Hope – “Our minds will inevitably latch onto something during trials, may they latch onto words of comfort, grace, and hope.”

The Wall is Broken Down

The Wall is Broken Down – “Are we willing to face the music and admit that America is in disrepair primarily because of its neglect of God and our many sins against Him?”

How Can Single Mothers Raise Godly Young Men?

How Can Single Mothers Raise Godly Young Men? – The role of the single parent is so common and so challenging. Here are some suggestions and encouragements for single moms raising their young men.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Discipline That Connects with Our Children’s Hearts

Discipline That Connects with Our Children’s Hearts – “We’ve found it helpful to ask two questions in particular: How did God the Father discipline key Old Testament saints that clearly had a “father-child” relationship with him? What do we learn from Jesus’s response to struggling sinners?”

How Focusing on My Family Turned It Into an Idol

How Focusing on My Family Turned It Into an Idol - We may be keeping our families from experiencing God.

Five Destructive Parenting Habits We Must Replace

Five Destructive Parenting Habits We Must Replace – They’re easy to fall into and Tim Elmore gives direction for getting it right.

What Will You Do When the End Comes?

What Will You Do When the End Comes? – “What will you do when you stand before God as your omnipotent, infinitely just, and all-knowing enemy? What will you do when you face the one you have belittled all your life by finding him boring, and unworthy your greatest affections?”

A Back to School Prayer

A Back to School Prayer “As my children spend less time in my presence, I am thankful that I can bring all my concerns and cares before the Lord in prayer.”

How Reliable Is Your Conscience?

How Reliable Is Your Conscience? – The short answer is “not very”. There are suggestions here for calibrating your conscience that I found helpful.

2 Reasons Why I Disagree With Colin Kaepernick

2 Reasons Why I Disagree With Colin Kaepernick - This may help you focus the discussion.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Quiet

Quiet – “Life's distracting and relentless sounds become idols when they prevent us from truly hearing the beautiful and transforming truth of the gospel.” 

The Sufficiency of Scripture & Practical Bible Doctrine

The Sufficiency of Scripture & Practical Bible Doctrine – “Is the Bible our sufficient authority? Or, is our authority some arbitrary combination of what we think, feel, and the Bible?”

Learning Repentance from the Psalmist

Learning Repentance from the Psalmist - Psalm 51 provides lessons and language for learning repentance.

The Beautiful Gift of Gospel Community

The Beautiful Gift of Gospel Community“Here’s reality: life is hard! Yet, God has so gifted us with a means to remind each other of the gospel in Christian community.”

Saturday, August 27, 2016

How to Grow Through Failure

How to Grow Through Failure – There are good examples. If you’re in a hurry, the last paragraph summarizes the applications well.

Spiritual Advice for Surviving Cancer and Other Disasters

Spiritual Advice for Surviving Cancer and Other Disasters – “What I had studied in mass disaster zones around the globe seemed to play out in my own life. My disaster work taught me about cultivating faith and resilience in times of personal crisis. Cancer taught me these lessons in a whole new way.”

Justice According To Jesus

Justice According To Jesus – Here are three lessons about practical justice from the story of the rich man and Lazarus.

Is God the Center of Your Marriage?

Is God the Center of Your Marriage? – “Making God the center and highest priority of your marriage may be the key to saving it, even if it’s not in trouble — yet.”

Friday, August 26, 2016

Are American Christians Really Persecuted?

Are American Christians Really Persecuted? – “I was challenged by the words of brothers and sisters across the globe. ‘Persecution is easier to understand when it’s physical: torture, death, imprisonment….American persecution is like an advanced stage of cancer; it eats away at you, yet you cannot feel it. This is the worst kind of persecution.’”

5 Conversations You Need to Have Before Getting Married

5 Conversations You Need to Have Before Getting Married - If you want to stay married

7 Blessings Of Studying Your Bible

7 Blessings Of Studying Your Bible – “Between the "already" of your conversion and the "not yet" of your final home going, few things are more important in the Christian life than a practical and functional level of biblical literacy.”

When God Feels Far Away

When God Feels Far Away – “It seems to be one of the most common experiences of the Christian life.”

Making Mistakes Makes Friends

Making Mistakes Makes Friends – “The need to be right all the time often repels friends.”

What Causes Us To Worry?

What Causes Us To Worry? – Here are several core elements that contribute.

How the Percentage of Americans Who Go to Church Every Week Is Changing

How the Percentage of Americans Who Go to Church Every Week Is Changing – “This is pathetic, especially when you consider the lengths people go to to get to kids sporting events.”

Is My Life Worthy of the King?

Is My Life Worthy of the King? – Colossians 1 tells us to “walk in a manner worthy of the Lord”. What would that look like?

37 Ways to Love One Another

37 Ways to Love One Another – “A quick glance at the practice of the New Testament church reveals that they thought very little about programs and very much about relationships.”

Thursday, August 25, 2016

‘Fear Not’ Is a Commandment We Need to Take Seriously

‘Fear Not’ Is a Commandment We Need to Take Seriously - Even in a truly frightening world.

For Those of Us Who Struggle to Be Patient

For Those of Us Who Struggle to Be Patient – “Heavenly Father, I’m not sure who first warned about asking you for patience, out of fear you’d create difficult circumstances that require patience. That’s not only silly, it misrepresents your Fatherly heart, and grace-full ways…”

Busyness Is Not the Problem

Busyness Is Not the Problem – Here’s a practical teaching and application for all of us in our busy days.

God All-Sufficient

God All-Sufficient – I had enjoyed this prayer years ago when I first read Valley of Vision. It was good again today.

You Are Not the Bride of Christ

You Are Not the Bride of Christ“Let’s not dilute or distract from this great biblical image. You are not the bride of Christ; we are.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

How to Pray for Your Children

How to Pray for Your ChildrenMark Batterson, offers 5 ideas on how to be a prayer warrior for your kids.

Our Faith Is Historically Verifiable—Or It’s Nothing

Our Faith Is Historically Verifiable—Or It’s Nothing – “So ask your questions, raise your doubts. Christians have nothing to fear from questions, however searching, or doubts, however scathing. History is on our side. It really happened. That changes everything.”

13 Reasons You Are Precious To God

13 Reasons You Are Precious To GodHere are some good reminders.

The Difference Between God’s Adoption and Ours

The Difference Between God’s Adoption and OursThis was for me a great word on the grace of our loving Father.

One Very Good Reason to Read Your Bible

One Very Good Reason to Read Your Bible – “If you can’t or won’t do devotions for your own sake, won’t you do it for the sake of others? Won’t you do it for their good, even if not for your own?”

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Monday, August 22, 2016

The 3 Minor Prophets Who Wrecked Me

The 3 Minor Prophets Who Wrecked Me – There is major truths to be mined from the minor prophets. You’ll learn something from these quick summaries. 

Loving Much Because We’ve Been Forgiven Much

Loving Much Because We’ve Been Forgiven Much – Here’s a Monday morning prayer to focus our love for God.

Singing Helps Us Feel the Gospel

Singing Helps Us Feel the Gospel – “Singing stirs and engages the heart, celebrating our greatest joys and consoling us in our deepest sorrows.”

Do You Pray Like a Nonbeliever?

Do You Pray Like a Nonbeliever? – “How then do they pray? Generally, they do not ask God to do bad things. They ask him to do good things without asking him to do the best thing. They pray as though God were the giver but not the gift.”

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Praying for a New School Year - Prayer Guide

As we begin a new school year, consider prayerwalking (or prayer-driving) near your local school. God has great room to work in the mission field that is our educational system. Here are some suggestions for prayerwalking your neighborhood schools.

WHAT IS PRAYERWALKING?  Prayerwalking involves walking and praying in the location or near the location where you expect God will be answering the prayer.  It flows from the idea of Joshua 1:3, “I will give you every place where you set your foot…”  As we walk and pray we come to see our schools, our neighbors, and our city through God’s eyes. We can begin to sense where God is at work and how we can be a part of it.

PRAYERWALKING SUGGESTIONS:
Be alert as you walk, keep your eyes open and be observant.

Ask God to let you see through His eyes.

Pray aloud.  Verbalizing your prayers helps focus on the object of prayer.

Allow the Holy Spirit to lead your prayer.  Pray for what you see and what you don't see - the people behind the doors of homes; those who will fill the school buildings this week.

Walk with someone else – a friend or with your family.  Pray together.  Take turns praying short prayers about a certain subject or area of focus.

Walk slowly to allow time to observe.

Pray for God's love and compassion to be known by the people you pray for.  Ask God to remove all barriers that hinder belief in Jesus.

Be alert to how the Holy Spirit may be leading.  Sometimes it may be to speak to someone along the way.  Watch for open doors to witness.  Also, be alert for opportunities to pray for spiritual and other needs.

SUGGESTED TOPICS TO BE ADDRESSED DURING THE PRAYERWALK:

STUDENTS:
“These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts.  Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.” (Deuteronomy 6:6-7).

1. Pray that God will protect the students from harm.
2. Pray that God will have a growing influence in the lives of each student.
3. Pray for God’s blessings on the students as they learn and grow.
4. Pray for the families of each student.  Pray for strong marriages and wise parents.
5. Pray that God will open doors of opportunity for each student to hear about Jesus.
6. Pray for students to avoid temptation and even the appearance of evil.
7. Pray for Christian students on campuses to be strong in their faith and testimony for Christ.

ADMINISTRATION AND TEACHERS:
“Seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and  pray to the LORD on its behalf; for in its welfare you will have welfare.” (Jeremiah 29:7).

1. Pray for wisdom, direction, and strength for the members of the school board.
2. Pray for the those serving in the district administration offices.
3. Pray regarding decisions made by state and national bodies that affect our local   schools.
4. Pray that God will give school district leaders clear vision for the future.
5. Pray for God’s blessing and watchcare over the lives and families of each teacher, staff member, and administrator.
6. Pray for Christians in the schools to represent Christ and give clear testimony to Him.
7. Pray for those who are not yet believers that they will be open to Christian testimony.
8. Pray that God will open doors for the Gospel to be communicated.
9. Pray for teachers and administrators by name.


PARENTS/CITIZENS/OURSELVES:
“Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up.” (Luke 18:1).

1. Pray that we will be quick to pray and slow to criticize.
2. Pray for the involvement of Christians in the support of the schools.
3. Pray for opportunity to build witnessing relationships.
4. Pray that by word, example, and deed Christian testimony will shine through into needy lives.
5. Pray that Christians will have a reputation for support and encouragement.
6. Pray that if Christians feel impressed to challenge a practice they will do so with Christlike love and compassion.
7. Pray that our praying will not be limited to one day at the beginning of the school year.


OTHER CONCERNS:
“For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them.”
(Matthew 18:20).

         You are encouraged to pray for your neighbors and the children in your child’s classroom.  God will bring other specific things to mind as you seek to be sensitive to His will.  God honors the prayers of His people.  Perhaps God would lead you to form a group to pray together on a regular basis for our schools or for your children’s school in particular.  May God raise up an army of prayer warriors in our community as Lighthouses of Prayer.

Can the Devil Read My Mind?

Can the Devil Read My Mind? – This may be a question you’ve considered. Here’s a pretty good answer.

7 Simple but Effective Strategies to Get You Through a Bad Day

7 Simple but Effective Strategies to Get You Through a Bad Day – “We all have bad days. How we cope with them and recover matters.”

3 Things to Learn from Olympians David Boudia and Steele Johnson

3 Things to Learn from Olympians David Boudia and Steele Johnson – “As the world bids farewell to the Games of the XXXI Olympiad, I’m reflecting on the ways God has been displayed through them.”

Danger to California’s Christian Colleges Has Been Avoided — For Now

Danger to California’s Christian Colleges Has Been Avoided — For Now – Here’s an update and prediction on where things go from here.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Here's What Spiritual Growth Looks Like

Here's What Spiritual Growth Looks Like - Five ways to grow in discipleship.

The Most Boring—and Spiritual—Olympic Sport

The Most Boring—and Spiritual—Olympic Sport – “But TV doesn’t do justice to the physical intensity and endurance required to finish—let alone win—a marathon.” Here are some biblical applications.

No, the 'Safest Place' Isn't the Center of God's Will

No, the 'Safest Place' Isn't the Center of God's Will - It's important not to misunderstand the phrase.

Waging a Long-Term War Against Anxiety

Waging a Long-Term War Against Anxiety - “How do we reorient our emotions and lifelong thinking patterns in order to win the long-term war? Here are a few ways.”

3 Keys To a Powerful Prayer Life

3 Keys To a Powerful Prayer Life – “Every Christian comes to find that prayer is difficult. Prayer is a tremendous joy and a tremendous blessing but the joy and blessing come through tremendous difficulty.”

God Remembers You

God Remembers You“The King of kings, whose deeds are worthy of being proclaimed among the nations, remembers the weak. He never forgets. His mind is a veritable steel-trap. He knows the conditions and concerns of his people. How encouraging is this?”

Aging with Grace

Aging with Grace “Proverbs says Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised and Gray hair is a crown of glory. After all, isn’t my age part of God’s sovereign plan for my life? He decided the year of my birth. Not a decade before. Not a decade after. And if every hair is numbered, that includes the ones that are no longer black.”

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Praying in the Whirlwind

Praying in the Whirlwind – “In the whirlwind of life Calvin reminds us of four rules for prayer–four rules for when we need the basics all over again.”

Unexpected Answers to Our Biggest Questions

Unexpected Answers to Our Biggest Questions – “God’s unexpected answer to our biggest questions is “I will provide.” Whether wisdom, righteousness, holiness, or redemption, God takes the decisive initiative and does for us what we cannot do for ourselves, and promises to be for us what we cannot be for ourselves.”

Ecclesiastes

EcclesiastesThe Bible Project moves on to Ecclessiastes with one of their unique videos.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Are You a Distracted Parent?

Are You a Distracted Parent?“Learn how to parent well and survive the age of distraction with this simple, 2-step solution.”

The Problem with Discipleship No One Talks About

The Problem with Discipleship No One Talks About“Christians tend to approach discipleship in one of two ways. But what if I told you that both methods miss the mark?”

Your First Breath After Death

Your First Breath After Death – “Think about your first breath after death. That moment has everything to do with this one (and every moment between now and then) — that first newborn inhale in heaven. Why will that gasp of air be any better than your last breath before death?”

3 Qualities of an Encourager

3 Qualities of an Encourager“As Paul sat in a Roman prison, considering the last words he would pen under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, the name of his faithful friend could not help but come to mind. Here we learn three qualities of a faithful encourager.”

A Key to Understanding the Development of the NT Canon

A Key to Understanding the Development of the NT Canon – “While there is no quick cure for such misconceptions, there is one essential key that really helps clear away the cobwebs.  And that key is understanding the different categories of books in early Christianity.”

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

God Closing Doors Is Actually a Good Thing

God Closing Doors Is Actually a Good Thing - We should start embracing those moments.

Jesus Never Worried About Politics

Jesus Never Worried About Politics - We shouldn't either. Just a reminder in this election year.

Should the Church View Homosexuality Like Divorce?

Should the Church View Homosexuality Like Divorce? – Russell Moore takes on a hot question and addresses it with biblical clarity.

3 Dangers of Dividing People By Generation

3 Dangers of Dividing People By Generation – “The bridge between ages seems rickety these days. We’ve grown accustomed to dividing up people by generation: the Builders and Boomers, Generation X and the Millennials – now the biggest generation in American history.”

Are We Talking Past Each Other? 3 Tips For Talking Faith With Friends & Neighbors

Are We Talking Past Each Other? 3 Tips For Talking Faith With Friends & Neighbors“It is past time we return to the basics if we are to relate to those around us in a way they will understand who God is and what it means to follow Him.”

6 Reasons We Shouldn’t Freak Out over Word Variations in our Modern Translations

6 Reasons We Shouldn’t Freak Out over Word Variations in our Modern Translations – “So don't freak out over the slight variations in wording between our modern translations. Let those variations prompt you to a deeper study of the Word!”

The Omniscient God

The Omniscient GodHere are ten things to know about God’s omniscience.

Monday, August 15, 2016

State Department: 74% of Global Population Does Not Have Religious Freedom

State Department: 74% of Global Population Does Not Have Religious Freedom - Pray for the persecuted church around the world.

How Parenting Flies By

How Parenting Flies By – Whatever age your children may be, there’s a word here for you.

When God Asks Too Much

When God Asks Too Much – “If God hadn’t called Elijah into ever deeper, ever more demanding trust, Elijah wouldn’t have seen God’s tender provision or death-defying power. He would’ve missed the story God was telling—not just with Elijah’s prophecies, but with his life.”

He Knows Your Sorrows

He Knows Your SorrowsThere is comfort to be found in what God knows about us. 

Not on Earth as It Is in Heaven

Not on Earth as It Is in Heaven – “Three aspects (at least) of our worship during this earthly age should differ from the heavenly worship of the age to come: confession of sin, mission to the lost, and lament over brokenness. If we diminish or remove any of these aspects, our worship will suffer in the here and now.”

Gossip Says More About Me

Gossip Says More About Me“Why does gossip taste so good? Ironically, while gossip’s content usually focuses on other people, at its core, gossip is really about me. It promises to make me feel a certain way about myself.”

Monday Morning and My Endless To Do List

Monday Morning and My Endless To Do List“Do your plans for plans for this week cause anxiety to rise in you before you’ve even seen the sun rise? Are you trying to cross off tasks from your to-do list before you’ve finished your first cup of coffee and your toddler bounces into your room? Hello, Monday, we have not missed you.”


Sunday, August 14, 2016

What I Would Have To Deny To Deny Hell

What I Would Have To Deny To Deny HellIt is still common to hear people say they are Christians who don’t believe in hell. What do you deny when you deny hell?

Why Annihilationism is Wrong

Why Annihilationism is Wrong“The traditional doctrine of hell is currently undergoing significant challenges from both within and without the church. Many question the reality of hell outright, while many others opt toward annihiliationism—the belief that the damned won’t suffer eternally but will instead have their consciousness extinguished at some point.”

7 Truths About Hell

7 Truths About Hell – “Hell is a difficult reality, but it is something that the Bible teaches, and we can’t fully understand God and his world unless we grapple with it. These seven truths should frame our discussion of hell.”

3 Benefits to Thinking about Hell

3 Benefits to Thinking about HellGod uses our knowledge of the doctrine of hell to accomplish His work in us. It’s worth thinking about.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

9 Proverbs Every Voter Should Read

9 Proverbs Every Voter Should Read - "Let the Bible shape how you think about the next president."

Parenting in the Age of Binge-Watching

Parenting in the Age of Binge-Watching – “The human heart wants as much pleasure as it can get for the least amount of work it has to put into it. It’s called the ‘pleasure principle.’ When our children pick up a screen, the pleasure principle starts paying in spades.”

10 Things You Should Know About the Immutability of God

10 Things You Should Know About the Immutability of God“Some see the concept of immutability as a threat to the biblical portrait of God who appears in some sense to change. Others are equally concerned that a careless tampering with this attribute of God will reduce him to a fickle, unfaithful, and ultimately unworthy object of our affection and worship. It is imperative, therefore, that we proceed cautiously, and yet with conviction, in articulating these ten truths about divine immutability.”


Friday, August 12, 2016

What I Learned Through 10 Years of Life Not Going 'According to Plan'

Lay Aside the Weight of Moodiness

Lay Aside the Weight of Moodiness – “But more often than not, for most of us, our bad mood is being fueled by a wrong belief. And the mood, though likely sin-infected, is a mercy. It is God’s designed gauge to alert us that a sinful or defective functional belief is governing us at the moment and must be corrected with God’s truth.”

6 Surprising Ideas the KJV Translators Had

6 Surprising Ideas the KJV Translators Had“The KJV translators themselves had particular ideas about translations other than their own, and they lay out their views clearly and forcefully in the published Preface of the original edition of their eloquent translation. Ironically, their views are very different from those who champion their translation today. So here are 6 ideas the KJV translators had about other translations of the Bible.”

“God Made Me for China” — Eric Liddell Beyond Olympic Glory

“God Made Me for China” — Eric Liddell Beyond Olympic Glory – “God made me for China.” Eric Liddell lived his life in answer to that calling and commission. As Duncan Hamilton explains, Liddell “considered athletics as an addendum to his life rather than his sole reason for living it.”

Thursday, August 11, 2016

An Eternal Perspective For Momentary Trials

An Eternal Perspective For Momentary Trials – How are you handling disappointments, heartache, and despair?

Trusting God with Our Prodigals

Trusting God with Our ProdigalsWe know them. We have them. We are them. 

Partial Victory for California Christian Universities

Partial Victory for California Christian Universities – A step in the right direction, for once.

Secret Wisdom in the Wake of Suffering

Secret Wisdom in the Wake of Suffering – “Job was starved for wisdom in the wake of perhaps the greatest personal tragedy ever recorded.”

What Would God Say to Your Anxiety?

What Would God Say to Your Anxiety? – “Fortunately, the Bible has something to say to anxious hearts. As a child of God, you have a jaw-dropping past, an infinitely compelling future, and a rock-solid reality to stand on without fear or worry in any circumstance.”

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

The Problem with Voting for the 'Most Christian' Candidate

The Problem with Voting for the 'Most Christian' Candidate - "Are we asking the right questions?"

John MacArthur’s 9 Tips on Self-Discipline

John MacArthur’s 9 Tips on Self-Discipline - "Discipline is without a doubt one of the hardest things to master. As a young guy in ministry, I’m always looking for advice from men and women who live very disciplined lives."

Whatever It Takes, Lord

Whatever It Takes, Lord – “We are never safer than when we are in Jesus’s hands (John 10:28). And the safest way we can pray is to ask God to do whatever it takes for Jesus’s joy to be in us and for our joy to be full (John 15:11).”

Affliction Does Not Hinder the Gospel

Affliction Does Not Hinder the Gospel – I was blessed by this powerful testimony of faith under persecution and the power of the Gospel.

6 Reasons to Delight in the Word

6 Reasons to Delight in the Word – There are at least six reasons why it is spiritually profitable for us to mimic the psalmist’s resolution, “I will delight myself in Your statutes; I will not forget Your word” (Psalm 119:16).

Do I Really Have to Pray for Politicians I Oppose?

Do I Really Have to Pray for Politicians I Oppose? – “With today’s ever-changing political environment, it is very easy to complain and not pray for our leaders. And, yes, many are deserving, sadly, of the comments they receive. Yet, the Bible tells us to pray for our leaders…”

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

8 Ways to Cultivate a More Restful Home

8 Ways to Cultivate a More Restful Home – Here are some practical ideas for parents and over-committed families.

Offloading Our Burdens on Our Father

Offloading Our Burdens on Our Father – It’s a good way to go into a new day.

Plan Now to Die Well

Plan Now to Die Well – “If you don’t have a better plan for how you are going to die, someone will probably just turn on the television.” This is a good story.

If He Does Not Love Jesus, He Will Not Love You

If He Does Not Love Jesus, He Will Not Love You – “The best way for your boyfriend to love you is to love Jesus.”

Why Satan Is So Skilled at Tempting Us

Why Satan Is So Skilled at Tempting Us“Satan is a formidable foe. He opposes all those who are created in the image of God and is bent on their complete and utter destruction. What makes Satan so skillful at tempting us to sin?”

Monday, August 8, 2016

God and Your Marriage

God and Your MarriageTony Evans says, “A healthy vibrant marriage is all about focus. Is your focus on God and His purpose and power, or is it on yourself and what you want?”

Can We Hope Again?

Can We Hope Again? – This is my favorite quote from this article – “Hope as a willingness to wait attentively…attending wholly and with concentration focused on what is not yet happening, so that whatever is happening is handled with a mind supremely bent on something else.”

30 “I will’s” from Hosea

30 “I will’s” from Hosea – Here are thirty divine “I wills” from this little book of Hosea.

The Surprising Truth About False Teachers

The Surprising Truth About False Teachers – “The question is not whether you ever hear the voice of false teachers. You do — probably every day. The question is whether you can discern which messages are false.”

The Bible Is Not Boring

The Bible Is Not Boring “If God’s word seems boring, there’s either a problem with the reading or the reader.”

Throwing Sheep Into a Pit

Throwing Sheep Into a PitAre you routinely encroaching on God’s day with the crisis of the moment? The author writes, “We don’t rest to maximize our productivity later. We rest to remember that our worth does not hinge on our productivity.”

Pedophilia as a Sexual Orientation

Pedophilia as a Sexual Orientation This is where the road would lead in our current culture. A new book seeks to make the argument in favor.

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Don’t Say God Is Silent with Your Bible Closed

Don’t Say God Is Silent with Your Bible Closed – “These ten words rebuke our fear that God might be inactive or uncaring in the brokenness and messiness of our lives, and reminds us that he cares, he sees, and he speaks. But too often, we’re just not listening.”

Saturday, August 6, 2016

6 Christian Athletes to Watch

6 Christian Athletes to Watch at Rio 2016 – “If you want to cheer for the good guys, here’s a list of a few Christian athletes competing at the Olympics.”

Directions For Profitable Bible-Reading

Directions For Profitable Bible-ReadingHow can children of God read God’s Word as spiritual food and nourishment for the soul? 

How Do I Know If My Child Has Become a Christian?

How Do I Know If My Child Has Become a Christian?“As parents we do have some guidance in knowing if our children are truly in the faith. Everything that would be present in an adult’s conversion will be present in a child’s conversion, but it will show itself in a different manner.”

Friday, August 5, 2016

9 Things You Should Know About the Olympic Games

9 Things You Should Know About the Olympic Games – “The 2016 Olympic Games officially start today in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Here are nine things you should know about the world’s leading international sporting event.”

Religion and the Olympics—and the Olympics as Religion

Religion and the Olympics—and the Olympics as Religion –  Here’ a brief story about Pierre de Coubertin, the aristocratic Frenchman who revived the Olympics in 1896. “Deeply suspicious of conventional theistic religions they promoted Olympism as a substitute for traditional faith.” Church historian Elesha Coffmann adds that when Coubertin “announced his decision to reinstate the games, he said, ‘The first essential characteristic of the Olympics, both ancient as well as modern, is to be a religion. . . . It represents, above and outside the churches, humanity’s superior religion.’”

25 (Really) Lame Excuses for Not Following Your Calling

25 (Really) Lame Excuses for Not Following Your Calling – “I’ve found over the years that I hinder my own calling with excuses. Identifying them, however, helps me annihilate them. So let me do that for you, by sharing my top 25 lame excuses for not working out my calling:”

Watch for God at the Olympic Games

Watch for God at the Olympic Games – “The Bible doesn’t mention baseball, basketball, or football, but God has something explicit to say about the Olympics.”

The Cost of Nondiscipleship

The Cost of Nondiscipleship – We hear a lot about the cost of discipleship. Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote the beloved book The Cost of Discipleship, where he says so memorably, “When Christ calls a man, he bids him come and die.” But, according to Dallas Willard, the truth is that “the cost of nondiscipleship is far greater.”

How Not To Grow Weary In Doing Good

How Not To Grow Weary In Doing Good“You would not think that we who believe in Jesus would grow weary of doing good. He’s been so good to us. When we do good it brings him joy and he rewards us. Yet Paul warned the Galatians not to grow weary in well-doing. Why?”

Thursday, August 4, 2016

What to Do When You're Bored with Your Faith

What to Do When You're Bored with Your Faith - "Following Jesus can be the adventure of a lifetime."

Our Priorities Are Off When Family Is More Important Than Church

Our Priorities Are Off When Family Is More Important Than ChurchThis will rock your boat – “Jesus’ relationship priorities help us understand that the church—the family of God—is not here to serve the interests of our family, it’s preferences, desires, and needs. Rather, our families are here to serve the family of God.”

9 Sins the Church Is Totally OK With as Long as You Say You Love Jesus

9 Sins the Church Is Totally OK With as Long as You Say You Love Jesus “Maybe it’s the sins lying underneath, the ones considered normal or acceptable, the ones going undetected, that are affecting the church the most. I want to address 9 of these sins.”

The Problem of Praying for Our Children

The Problem of Praying for Our Children – “There’s nothing I want more than for my children to walk with their Savior and be used for his glory. But I cannot pray for that and pray that God spare them from all earthly pain.”

Five Natural Ways to Get to the Gospel

Five Natural Ways to Get to the Gospel – “Think of evangelism like a road trip. Every trip you take has a beginning and an end. You determine your route not only by your destination, but also by your point of origin.”

4 Ways the World Will Pressure You To Conform

4 Ways the World Will Pressure You To Conform Here is a discussion of “four ways in which the Babylonian empire sought to bring the Jewish exiles in line with their pagan ways. These strategies show us how the world, in every era, can pressure Christians to conform.”


Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Pointing Fingers; Throwing Rocks

Pointing Fingers; Throwing Rocks – This is a good reminder at multiple levels. “God cares about every one of these empty words. My hand might feel empty as I point a finger, but God wants me to feel the weightiness of my accusation.”

Why We Are Fighting in California

Why We Are Fighting in California – Barry H. Corey, president of Biola University, writes about the reason for the current religious liberty fight in California. What happens with California bill SB 1146 will affect every religion-based institution in the country and ultimately our individual religious liberties. It’s a big deal.

God’s Sovereign Grace in Timbuktu

God’s Sovereign Grace in Timbuktu – “We won’t all, in this life, meet someone whose story will suddenly shed light on God’s purpose in our loved one’s suffering or death. But I think most of us will have that very experience one day.”

Through New Eyes

Through New Eyes“One of the great joys of being a Christian is the ability we gain to look at the Bible and, through the Bible, to see the world in the way God sees it. It is like the Bible is a pair of glasses through which we gain God’s vision and God’s perspective.”

Don’t Despise Small Beginnings

Don’t Despise Small Beginnings“God’s great works often have humble beginnings.”

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

3 Ways Suffering Helps to Make Us like Christ

3 Ways Suffering Helps to Make Us like Christ – “We cannot know Christ deeply without sharing in His sufferings.”

Take My Yoke and Learn from Me

Take My Yoke and Learn from Me – “Jesus isn't just offering to take our heavy loads and let us rest. He doesn't stop there. He also gives us the chance to learn.”

Healing for Backsliders

Healing for Backsliders –Octavius Winslow said, “There is a tendency to secret, perpetual, and alarming departure from God.” Backsliding requires no effort. You don’t need to do anything to slip away; it is such a gradual process that it is usually unnoticed until it is too late. And this despite preachers like Hosea pointing it out so clearly.

Yes Christian, You Need the Church

Yes Christian, You Need the Church – “It happens to be one of the more popular traps along the journey of faith—the idea that somewhere along the path of righteousness we somehow outgrow our need for the church. Perhaps you’ve met someone who was too busy for the church. Maybe you’ve encouraged someone who thought they were too important for the church. What was once the central aspect of their life has now turned into an occasional hobby. We all need a healthy reminder from time-to-time that we need the church in all seasons and successes of life.”

What to do When You Are in a Spiritual Dry Spell

What to do When You Are in a Spiritual Dry SpellYou must know these times: “We sing in worship and feel nothing. We read the Bible and stare blankly at the words. We pray and think we are talking to ourselves. The joy is not there, and it seems as if God is a thousand miles away.”

10 Things You Should Know About General Revelation

10 Things You Should Know About General Revelation – “Because of our focus on the inspiration and inerrancy of God’s written revelation, the Bible (i.e., Special Revelation), we often tend to ignore the other ways in which God has made himself known more generally to all mankind. Theologians call this General Revelation. What is it and why is it important that we understand what is meant by it?”

Monday, August 1, 2016

How to Pray for a Presidential Candidate You Don’t Like

How to Pray for a Presidential Candidate You Don’t Like –  Facing the prospect of opening the nineteenth century with Thomas Jefferson at the helm, they expressed their dismay.  “O, Lord, wilt Thou bestow upon the Vice President a double portion of Thy grace,” Connecticut minister Jedidiah Champion begged God, “for Thou knowest that he needs it.”

Euphemisms Abound in the Democratic Platform on Abortion

Euphemisms Abound in the Democratic Platform on Abortion“The 2016 Democratic platform contains a number of euphemisms that hide abortion in a haze of abstraction.”

The Citizenship I Need to Cling to Now More Than Ever

The Citizenship I Need to Cling to Now More Than Ever – “We are strangers in this world—sojourners. Temporary residents, if you will. (See 1 Peter 2:11.)”

Corporate Worship Is a Call to Love

Corporate Worship Is a Call to Love – “Neither our worship of Jesus, nor our love for his people should be separated out to certain segments or hours of the week. Both are for all of life. And both are essential on Sunday morning.”

Stop Having ‘Quiet Times’

Stop Having ‘Quiet Times’ “In the verbal actions of the psalms—rejoicing in who God is, asking for needed help, expressing heartfelt thanks—we’re talking to someone. It’s fair to say that having a ‘quiet time’ is a misnomer. It’s more of an out loud, ‘noisy’ time.”

3 Practical Steps to Resist the Tyranny of Tolerance

3 Practical Steps to Resist the Tyranny of Tolerance – “As Christians who care about truth and want to love our neighbors well as people made in the image of God, what are we to do? Here are three practical steps you can take to resist the Tyranny of Tolerance.”